"I wanna ask you a question: what's your dream? What is it about the 'big city' that brought you here?"
The Deuce is the best show on TV that hardly anybody seems to watch, which is a total bummer. The Wire masterminds David Simon and George Pelecanos have concocted a truly special look at a period in NYC where porno and exploitation filmmaking rose from the streets and overtook the marquees of Times Square. If you're even remotely interested in the history of cinema (not to mention America itself) it's essential viewing (as I said in my review of Season One's finale):
"What truly marks The Deuce as being a work of superlative artistic dissection is the fact that Simon and Pelecanos never lose sight of how exploitation operates from the top down. As long as the big wigs and power brokers profit, it doesn't matter if a few eggs get cracked. If some low level players figure out a way to tag along and make a buck for themselves, more love to them. In the end, the sex industry is going to continue to operate out in the open until enough objections are heard, or there aren't any more dollars coming into the till. The Revolution will be projected on celluloid, and it's only just begun."
Now, Simon and Pelecanos are back with Season 2, which promises to double down on the series' examination of exploitation. Take a look:
The trailer seems to showcase the fact that The Deuce is sticking to Simon and Pelecanos' three season plan, which they outlined here:
"Assuming that all the critics in the world don’t come down on our heads and it finds an audience of some sort, it’s planned for two more seasons. The ensuing season will be in the late’70s, after these characters have been around, in this world, for about four or five years. And then, the final season we’ve planned for is ‘85/’86, which is when Times Square came crashing down around their heads. That would conclude it."
Picking up at the tail end of 42nd Street's height with Season Two should be a treat (not to mention totally decadent), while this writer has to admit to dreading the third installment. Watching crack invade Times Square as the sex trade falls into its pre-Giuliani decline is going to be a wholly depressing experience.
Season Two of The Deuce drops on HBO in just a few weeks: Sunday, September 9th. Tune in. Get high. Learn you some shit.