Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Thoughts on Treme

I've held back my thoughts on Treme so far, because I wanted to see the entire season before I made any judgements.  The season finale was Sunday, so now I feel comfortable sharing my opinions with you.  For those who haven't seen the show yet, don't worry.  I won't ruin any storylines for you.

First of all, it's a great show.  Well presented, extremely well written.  My hat is definitely off to the writers, I can understand why everyone was so nuts for The Wire, although I still have no interest in seeing that show.  I'm only interested in Treme because it's so desperately, painfully, close and personal to me.

A little too close.  A little too personal.

It is, without a doubt, the most accurate portrayal of the city I love the world has ever seen  It's on the same level as Confederacy of Dunces, which is quite possibly the Greatest Book of All Time.

But what's difficult for me about seeing my city and my people so accurately portrayed is that now the air is ripe for misinterpretation.  People have always been sadly misinformed about New Orleans, so many people have a vision in their minds that's so far off it's depressing.  It got worse after Katrina.  Much worse.  I had just gotten to San Francisco, and I can't tell you how many times I had to walk away because some yuppie douchebag fuck who had never even BEEN to New Orleans was telling me "facts" about my hometown and I wanted to smack the fuck out of him.

Oh, sorry.  Did I just go off on a little rant there?  Oops.  That's not what this post is about...

Anyway, I'm afraid the same thing might happen with Treme.  Now people all over the country are going think they know all about New Orleans because they watched a stupid fucking TV show a few times.  They'll half understand or half remember what they saw, then run around talking shit, getting everything all misconstrued.  And then they'll start talking shit to me, and I'll want to smack the fuck out of them.

I was talking about it with my father, who has been to New Orleans many times to visit me and knows the city and her people well.  He said, "Man, if I had never been there, or only been once and didn't know what that place was all about, I don't know what the fuck I would think after watching that show."

"I know.  They're making us look like... like..."

"Losers.  They're making you guys look like a bunch of losers."

Ouch.  Thanks, Dad...

It's kind of true though, I can't lie.

But fuck it.  They're also making us look like a bunch of people who know how to drink, dance, enjoy life, play music, and have a good time better than anyone else on the planet.  Period.  And it's great seeing all the musicians I know and love so well finally getting a little recognition.

So yeah, overall, I give the show two thumbs up.  It's not perfect, but nothing is.  There are a few things that aren't quite right, mostly minor.  My biggest qualm?  That fucking street musician couple.  Seriously?  When have you EVER seen street musicians so well dressed and gorgeous all the time, and able to afford nice apartments in the Marigny, especially in New Orleans?  I can't even afford such nice clothes, and I have a fucking JOB.  Come on now, guys.  I thought we were going for accuracy here...

But I forgive you.  Can't wait for season two.

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