So far, all we’ve got are a few scenes. Contributions welcomed.
1. A street corner in Baltimore. Young men of various ages run to and fro, taking money from and drugs to buyers who drive up in big SUVs. As they work they sing:
Pandemic! It’s the stuff that makes your juices flow,
Pandemic! It gives a golden glow to Baltimo’,
When you need a little something to brighten up your day
Just grab a spike and a spoon and a tourniquet
Watch out, it’s the fuzz!
Most of them scatter, leaving Bodie sitting nonchalantly on a stoop. Enter Officer McNulty.
I’m Officer McNulty, how do you do?
If you’re recently deceased I got an appointment with you
I’m the smartest damn cop Homicide ever had
They say Jimmy Be Good, but I just wanna be bad!
All you drug dealing mopes, you just make me laugh
Dealing all kinds of dope, it seems like a faff
Don’t you know the risks, you’d be better off retiring
Just get your kicks from Nintendo and drink-driving
Then again, if you did, it wouldn’t be so fun,
And I mightn’t get to run around town with a gun,
Stuck behind a desk, it wouldn’t be the same,
Because you know what they say …
The game is the game.
Officer McNulty, it’s not my fault you see
My course was set from education primary
I’m a victim of poverty plus emotional privation
My peer group and neighbourhood have acute deprivation
We got racism, crime and municipal distress
Gee officer McNulty, no wonder I’m a mess!
Bassoon solo, swish of leather overcoat, a figure flits from stage prop to stage prop, always out of reach of the moving spotlight
[chorus of cornerboys]
pack up your product, let’s move
something here just don’ feel right
the biggest punk on the street’s in town
and i think he might strike tonight
what was that?
just a cat
do i hear trouble?
nah that’s just bubbles
man i got fear …
The music stops. Omar walks in to the spotlight.
[Omar (basso contralto)]
Stringer is counting money in the backroom of the funeral parlour
Supply and demand, supply and demand
I like markets where I’m the invisible hand
Business is business, but what a trade to be in!
No need for micro-management or stimulus Keynesian
The customers never stop stuffing product down their gullets
And the velocity of money’s the same as a bullet’s
Prop Joe struts across the stage, twirling a cane, to the sound of ‘smooth jazz’
They call me Proposition Joe
I’m the king of Baltimo’
I squeezed out the Barksdale crew
Easy does it, no to-do!
Their style, it was all just show,
Just not how it’s done, comme il faut
They’re such obvious criminal (I’m more subliminal)
So now I run this town – or didn’t you know?