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The Wire is considered by many as the one of the greatest TV shows ever, and for good reason. It is acted authentically and written magnificently, with great believeability about it. The show follows the story of the Baltimore Police Department in their investigation into a drug-dealing family, the Barksdales. The story shows the investigation, the wire taps, the surveilence, the set backs, and finally the sentencing of the men they arrested. The first series has plenty of surprises, interesting characters (Bubbles is a particular favorite of mine) and a realism not achieved in other TV shows. However, this does not earn five stars. That is because of the fact that despite all the pros I have listed, the series is slow in starting. The first episode did not leave me desperate to watch the second one immediately, but I did and as the series progressed so did the quality. Once you reach four episodes in, everything begins to take shape and the story becomes more enticing and it makes for addictive viewing. As for the people who have complained about the frequent bad language, LOOK AT THE AGE RATING! 18 is the rating which indicates something that will be full of swearing, drug use and violence. If that is not enough look on the back, it says "Contains Very Strong Language." Look at that and if you don't approve of swearing, don't watch the series and then complain about it. Overall the Wire is a great series, that explores in depth the way that drug families are investigated, how the evidence is gathered and how they are convicted. The portrayal of the dilapidated "Projects" in Baltimore is exquisite, and the characters there are just as good. If you enjoy shows that focus on characterization, if you enjoy cop dramas, if you enjoy complex dramas and if you enjoy slowly unraveling stories, this is for you. Do not hesitate to buy this, it is well worth a watch.