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TV Recap: The Wire - The Dickensian Aspect

The bullshit McNulty was selling — and everyone was buying — last week only served to spit shine Mayor Carcetti's image with the press this week. Thanks to McNulty and Freamon's bogus serial killer, Carcetti got the chance to act like a leader with a cause. The good mayor, who's eyes are locked on the governor's seat, promised that the bum-bumping serial killer was the city's top priority. The police department would spare no expense to track him down, he said. The homeless are important to his administration. That was all bullshit too, of course.

McNulty is denied more funds, a wire tap on Templeton's phone and additional detectives to work his case. The bogus serial killer plan, which is supposed to secretly provide the resources needed for Freamon to nail Marlo Stanfield for good, is going south. What's a desperate, drunk and debased cop to do? Find another dead homeless person and blame the "serial killer" for his death, right? It's too bad McNulty can't get near any dead homeless people. Instead, he kidnaps a homeless guy and shoots cell phone photos of him with plans to send them to Templeton. Freamon clearly has problems with this idea, but nailing Marlo is too important. He goes along with it as McNulty, finally becoming kinda disgusted with himself, hides the poor homeless guy inside a shelter in Richmond.

Freamon figures out Marlo is using cell phone pictures to communicate with the Greeks. It's a lead, but Freamon needs more surveillance equipment to figure it all out. Marlo clearly has other things to worry about. Last week we watched as Omar pulled some "Spider-Man shit" as he leaped out of Marlo's balcony and disappeared. Chris, Snoop and crew scour the streets looking for him (they even check the sewers), but Omar's hiding deep — in the janitor's closet of Marlo's building! Omar morphs from Spider-Man to The Punisher as he wages a bloody one-man war on Marlo's crew. He fast becomes Baltimore's ghetto boogeyman with folks screaming "It's Omar! It's Omar!" when he strikes.

I wish Omar had a vendetta against Scott Templeton. The Baltimore Sun's worst journalist gets more undue praise from big boss Whiting and scores some celeb cred with a live spot on Nancy Grace. Later, he decides to spend the night with Baltimore's homeless to depict the "Dickensian aspect," Whiting's words again, of their lives. He actually meets a homeless veteran who tells him a heart-wrenching war story. Templeton finally files some copy that isn't phony and, as Gus hilariously pointed out, isn't full of unnecessary adjectives. Still, Gus has suspected something for a few eps now. It looks like he's working on a plan to dig up the truth about Templeton, but we didn't get all the details in this ep.

It seems like the only honest men left on The Wire are Gus and Bunk. Working alone, Bunk does some actual police work and starts to put the pieces together regarding the unsolved 22 murders. He hits a few snags thanks to a staff-deprived crime lab (very anti-CSI), but he makes a connection between Michael and Marlo. Will his trail officially lead to Marlo before McNulty and Freamon's elaborate plan pays off?

On the other corners ... Bond wants to be the one to try Clay Davis. Rhonda tells him about the leak ... Rawls comes off like a competent pro when talking about the homeless murders during his first major press conference ... Nicky Sobotka throws an F-bomb at the mayor and his New Westport condo plan ... Bubbles, were are you?