TremeTV Series |
This detailed portrait of post-Katrina New Orleans isn't The Wire, but what is?
David Simon's Treme, which focuses on a disparate group of New Orleans occupants in the trying times following Hurricane Katrina, reaches gratifying artistic heights in its character development and its meticulous, lovingly created stewpot of the beleaguered city. Because it's New Orleans, there's a big emphasis on music and food, but the Big Easy of Treme never feels touristy; it almost always feels lived in and real. The show is much more character-dependent than Simon's The Wire, which had a suspenseful, high-stakes plot underlying its dense analysis of human and institutional behavior. There are wonderful protagonists here, including womanizing trombonist Antoine (Wendell Pierce), struggling chef Janette (Kim Dickens), and feckless disc jockey/wannabe musician Davis (Steve Zahn). We want to spend time with them, but the quick-cutting style that worked so well on The Wire often leaves Treme feeling frustratingly disjointed. Treme can be grim, even depressing, killing off two of its more likeable characters and having a third subject to a brutal assault over the course of its first two seasons. The show's many celebrity cameos—with musicians, chefs, writers, and other local personalities playing themselves—can also sometimes be a distraction. That all said, Simon and co-creator Eric Overmyer examine the details of urban living in a way no one else even attempts, and when its fragments come together right, Treme is as good as anything on TV.
|Treme Season 2 Preview|