'The Wire' Episodes Ranked

by sam-mclatchie | created - 20 Mar 2019 | updated - 10 months ago | Public

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1. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Middle Ground (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The wire begins to yield information about the Barksdale organization. Stringer and Avon reminisce on how far they have come. McNulty finds the way to a key piece of the puzzle in an ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,540

Season 3 Episode 11

2. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: -30- (2008)

TV-MA | 93 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Carcetti maps out a damage-control scenario with the police brass in the wake of a startling revelation from Pearlman and Daniels. Their choice: clean up the mess...or hide the dirt.

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, Reg E. Cathey, John Doman, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 3,644

Season 5 Episode 10

SEASON 5 FINALE

SERIES FINALE

3. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Mission Accomplished (2004)

TV-MA | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon readies his troops for a seemingly endless war against Marlo. The detail works towards the top rungs of the Barksdale organization with the information garnered from the wire. While ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,878

Season 3 Episode 12

SEASON 3 FINALE

4. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Cost (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon, Stringer and Wee-Bey discuss how best to deal with Omar after the attempted hit on Avon, deciding to let him think they want peace, whilst secretly planning to kill him. As such, Omar... See full summary »

Director: Brad Anderson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,365

Season 1 Episode 10

5. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Final Grades (2006)

TV-MA | 79 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

In the Season Four finale, the bodies from the vacants pile up while Burrell offers his support to Daniels and admonishes Rawls for crossing him. A distraught Bubbles finds himself at his wit's end after his revenge plan backfires.

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 3,255

Season 4 Episode 13

SEASON 4 FINALE

50th Episode

6. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Cleaning Up (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Kima slowly recovers in the hospital. Stringer changes operations in the pit and the towers, rendering the wiretaps and clones useless, and prompting Burrell to begin dismantling the detail... See full summary »

Director: Clement Virgo | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,215

Season 1 Episode 12

7. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: That's Got His Own (2006)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

On the trail of missing bodies, Freamon turns to a higher authority after being rebuked by Landsman. Carcetti finds his promises of prosperity undermined by the school debt, forcing him to ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,611

Season 4 Episode 12

8. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Wire (2002)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon takes care of Omar's man Brandon but Wallace, who saw Brandon in the arcade, isn't too comfortable when he sees what they've done to him. Avon gives D'Angelo and Wallace a bonus for ... See full summary »

Director: Ed Bianchi | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,145

Season 1 Episode 6

9. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Boys of Summer (2006)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

In the Season Four premiere, four boys from West Baltimore play out their summer vacation in the streets. Meanwhile, Marlo has solved the problem that baffled Stringer Bell: how to maintain... See full summary »

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,311

Season 4 Episode 1

SEASON 4 PREMIERE

10. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Hunt (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

While Greggs' life hangs in the balance, the entire department attempts to hunt down Savino. When Wallace flips, willing to testify that Stringer, Wee-Bey and Bird killed Brandon, Daniels ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,989

Season 1 Episode 11

11. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Sentencing (2002)

TV-MA | 66 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Due to the camera at Orlando's, the detail gather enough information to arrest Avon and many of his people, but, with Wallace dead, they are unable to bring charges against Stringer, who's ... See full summary »

Director: Timothy Van Patten | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,145

Season 1 Episode 13

SEASON 1 FINALE

12. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Pager (2002)

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon Barksdale is becoming paranoid and thinks he's being watched. He's also worried his phone is being tapped. He also thinks there's a snitch in D'Angelo's crew and he's told not to pay ... See full summary »

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,970

Season 1 Episode 5

13. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Late Editions (2008)

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

With Steintorf ordering Rawls to initiate 'creative' remedies for the rising crime rate, Freamon's vigilance pays off with a promising lead, sending Sydnor and the department into overdrive.

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, Reg E. Cathey, John Doman, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,552

Season 5 Episode 9

14. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Reformation (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Brother Mouzone returns to Baltimore on a mission of revenge and casts a wide net in his search for Omar. Colvin manages to put off a Sun reporter inquiring about Amsterdam. Pearlman and ... See full summary »

Director: Christine Moore | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,322

Season 3 Episode 10

15. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Soft Eyes (2006)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Herc's soft-duty job with the mayor takes an unexpectedly hard turn. Despite the potential damage to her career, Pearlman provides Freamon and Sydnor with subpoena ammunition for their 'grizzly bear' hunt in City Hall.

Director: Christine Moore | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,176

Season 4 Episode 2

16. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Game Day (2002)

TV-MA | 57 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

D'Angelo speaks to Wallace, who tells him he wants to go back to school and get out of the Game. However, Malik 'Poot' Carr (Tray Chaney) discovers Wallace has started using cocaine to help... See full summary »

Director: Milcho Manchevski | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,985

Season 1 Episode 9

17. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Bad Dreams (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail makes a desperate move. Nick's deceit is in the open, as Sobotka is overwhelmed by bad news. The Greeks confidently ease out of a brief encounter with the detail and Omar's ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 3,021

Season 2 Episode 11

18. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Home Rooms (2006)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

With his lead dwindling, Royce resorts to extreme measures to stall Carcetti's momentum. At Bodie's corner, Michael proves adept as a runner, with Bodie and Marlo taking notice. A re-up bodega is put under surveillance by Omar and Greggs.

Director: Seith Mann | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,210

Season 4 Episode 3

19. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Unto Others (2006)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

With a bounty on him, Omar calls in a favor to Bunk. The election over, Royce and Carcetti make peace and contemplate their futures. At school, Prez tricks his students into learning math. Finally, Greggs uses 'soft eyes' at a crime scene.

Director: Anthony Hemingway | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,111

Season 4 Episode 7

20. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Not for Attribution (2008)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Carcetti's master plan for the police department is leaked to the press, sending the brass into a panic. Marlo turns to Proposition Joe to help with an enviable problem. Whiting and Klebanow drop a bombshell on the newspaper staff.

Directors: Joy Kecken, Scott Kecken | Stars: Dominic West, Reg E. Cathey, John Doman, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,110

Season 5 Episode 3

21. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Buys (2002)

TV-MA | 55 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

After two weeks on the job, the team still doesn't have a photo of their principal target, Avon Barksdale. Freamon has a solution when he hears Avon was a Gold Gloves boxer. In the ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Medak | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,210

Season 1 Episode 3

22. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Lessons (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

McNulty uses his children to tail Stringer after a chance encounter in a local market, with one of them getting his license plate. As the detail discuss the implications of the pit ... See full summary »

Director: Gloria Muzio | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,893

Season 1 Episode 8

23. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Misgivings (2006)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Acting on Clay Davis' advice, Burrell seeks to burnish his reputation by ordering the department to double their street arrests. The mandate does not sit well with McNulty, who sets his ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,250

Season 4 Episode 10

24. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Port in a Storm (2003)

TV-MA | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail has a setback. Russell and Bunk revisit Philly, looking for evidence. Brother Mouzone talks with Stringer Bell regarding their agreement, leaving Bell to contend with Avon ... See full summary »

Director: Robert F. Colesberry | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,838

Season 2 Episode 12

SEASON 2 FINALE

25. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: One Arrest (2002)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Burrell reluctantly sides with Daniels in the disagreement with Rawls, giving the detail more time to make a case against Avon, despite his fears the operation is beginning to sprawl. ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,920

Season 1 Episode 7

26. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Margin of Error (2006)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

With Election Day approaching, the three mayoral candidates make last-minute appeals. Carcetti wrangles for votes as he responds to a potentially devastating smear. Norris and Greggs get a ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Attias | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,222

Season 4 Episode 6

27. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Storm Warnings (2003)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail uses satellite technology to its advantage. Bodie is unhappy that Proposition Joe's people are selling on his turf. Valchek visits the FBI in an attempt to get real results on ... See full summary »

Director: Rob Bailey | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,713

Season 2 Episode 10

28. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Slapstick (2004)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Responding to an officer's call for help, McNulty and Prez turn up the wrong alley with unanticipated results. Cutty is surprised to find help from within Baltimore's power structure for ... See full summary »

Director: Alex Zakrzewski | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,315

Season 3 Episode 9

29. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Corner Boys (2006)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

To monitor the pulse on the street, Carcetti makes the rounds with members of the force. While Proposition Joe shows off his vocal range, Chris shows Snoop how to expose, and dispose of, ... See full summary »

Director: Agnieszka Holland | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,163

Season 4 Episode 8

30. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Transitions (2008)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Campbell tries to smooth out the transitions in the police department. The newspaper scrambles to confirm surprising news from City Hall, but lose out to the TV media in scooping a high-profile Grand Jury appearance.

Director: Daniel Attias | Stars: Dominic West, Reg E. Cathey, John Doman, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,168

Season 5 Episode 4

31. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Target (2002)

TV-MA | 62 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Baltimore Det. Jimmy McNulty finds himself in hot water with his superior Major William Rawls after a drug dealer, D'Angelo Barksdale who is charged with three murders, is acquitted. ... See full summary »

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 4,263

Season 1 Episode 1

SEASON 1 PREMIERE

SERIES PREMIERE

32. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Dead Soldiers (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The brutality at police headquarters continues over the perceived failure of department commanders to rein in the city's crime stats. Another hit by Omar on the Barksdale stash houses goes ... See full summary »

Director: Rob Bailey | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,334

Season 3 Episode 3

33. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: A New Day (2006)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

After flexing his muscles around the city, Carcetti faces his first dilemma when a group of ministers protests Herc's mistreatment of one of their own. Randy gets the cold shoulder at ... See full summary »

Director: Brad Anderson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,322

Season 4 Episode 11

34. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Straight and True (2004)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Johnny pressures Bubbles to stop snitching for the detail. Cutty lies to his grandmother about going straight. McNulty realizes pursuing Barksdale and Bell is a losing cause, so he turns ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Attias | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,324

Season 3 Episode 5

35. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Detail (2002)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Lt. Daniels puts his team together but the extra help he's asked includes several less than stellar officers. It also includes McNulty, who is obviously in the doghouse. When one of the ... See full summary »

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,432

Season 1 Episode 2

36. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: React Quotes (2008)

TV-MA | 57 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Marlo forges an alliance with a drug connect, who shows him a new communications trick. McNulty's case gets increased attention from the newspaper, in large part thanks to the addition of Templeton to the reporting team.

Director: Agnieszka Holland | Stars: Dominic West, Reg E. Cathey, John Doman, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,092

Season 5 Episode 5

37. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Homecoming (2004)

TV-MA | 57 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Major Colvin instructs his men to use brute force to get the message out to street dealers about his free zone. Avon Barksdale and Stringer Bell discover that real estate development has ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Libman | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,314

Season 3 Episode 6

38. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Took (2008)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

An unexpected call puts Templeton back in the spotlight--and gets McNulty more attention than he expected. Bunk bucks at Landsman when ordered to help with the force's most recent red ball.

Director: Dominic West | Stars: Dominic West, Reg E. Cathey, John Doman, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,071

Season 5 Episode 7

39. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Moral Midgetry (2004)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Prez impresses the detail with what he's found out from Bodie's cell phone, information that sends McNulty and Greggs on a road trip. Colvin sees the benefits of his plan working. Carcetti ... See full summary »

Director: Agnieszka Holland | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,441

Season 3 Episode 8

40. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Know Your Place (2006)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Poot returns to the corner after a stint in prison--and is welcomed back. Carcetti engages in a testy budget battle with City Council President Campbell, promotes Daniels, and hits a snag in his efforts to relieve Burrell of his duties.

Director: Alex Zakrzewski | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Frankie Faison, Aidan Gillen

Votes: 2,104

Season 4 Episode 9

41. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: All Prologue (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Trying to let go of police work and return to his marriage, McNulty gives up on identifying his Jane Doe. The detectives look into Sobotka and his money. For his union, Sobotka tries to ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,749

Season 2 Episode 6

42. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Stray Rounds (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Bodie's disastrous sales efforts result in a tongue lashing from Stringer Bell. Ziggy pulls Johnny Fifty into a new caper that makes the Greeks pay big money. McNulty goes undercover in a ... See full summary »

Director: Timothy Van Patten | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,474

Season 2 Episode 9

43. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Old Cases (2002)

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Bodie walks out of detention pretending to be a janitor but Patty is recovering in hospital and is pleased that his injuries will result in a medical pension. Avon Barksdale puts a contract... See full summary »

Director: Clement Virgo | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,091

Season 1 Episode 4

44. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: All Due Respect (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Omar continues his bold strikes on the heavily guarded Barksdale stash houses. McNulty launches his own investigation into last year's prison suicide of D'Angelo Barksdale. On the streets ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,351

Season 3 Episode 2

45. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Hamsterdam (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Greggs and McNulty recruit Bubbles to gather street intelligence on the Barksdale gang. Cutty seeks out the Barksdale gang after he loses his taste for the straight life. Bunk feels the ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,323

Season 3 Episode 4

46. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Dickensian Aspect (2008)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

8.5