HBO - The Wire - In HD this season? No. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 40 Old 08-29-2006, 02:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi folks,

I've searched and couldn't come up with anything on this. Does anyone know if HBO is finally broadcasting this season in HD? I mean, if it's good enough to come back for the 4th season, isn't it good enough for HD?

Best I can tell, it looks like it's still going to be in SD? What's the deal? Do they think it looks more 'gritty' in SD?

Thanks for any info.

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post #2 of 40 Old 08-29-2006, 03:28 PM
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I believe this has been discussed here previously and the answer unfortunately is no hd. Can't think of any reason they would do that other than cost. Makes no sense really, but that's business for ya.

Does anyone know if this is the last season?
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post #3 of 40 Old 08-29-2006, 05:08 PM
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There was a special on a couple of weeks ago about the making of the upcoming season. The highlights and interviews were in widescreen.
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post #4 of 40 Old 08-30-2006, 06:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hunter65 View Post

There was a special on a couple of weeks ago about the making of the upcoming season. The highlights and interviews were in widescreen.

Widescreen previews are always a good sign. It worked for Entourage. I think I heard on one of the specials that this is the last season.
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post #5 of 40 Old 08-30-2006, 07:21 AM
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Last evening I was checking my to-do list on the TIVO to ensure The Wire was going to be taped on the HD channel - only to find it not listed on the HBOHD channel. HBO2 was carrying it. I couldn't figure out what was going on, never dawned on me till right now that it wasn't going to be in HD.

NUTZ.

FX drives me insane, too. So many really good shows on FX - Shield, Rescue Me, Nip/Tuck - all great candidates for HD. Nope.
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post #6 of 40 Old 08-30-2006, 07:36 AM
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I'd really like to know by Monday. Comcast is showing episodes this season six days in advance of their usual Sunday night telecast, via On Demand. On Demand shows are not usually in HD. So, if The Wire is in HD, I'm waiting the six days, if not, why wait?
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post #7 of 40 Old 08-30-2006, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by masoo View Post

I'd really like to know by Monday. Comcast is showing episodes this season six days in advance of their usual Sunday night telecast, via On Demand. On Demand shows are not usually in HD. So, if The Wire is in HD, I'm waiting the six days, if not, why wait?

HBO VOD shows are never in HD.

I am suspecting that this season WILL be in HD. The promo shows (all in SD) have been showing their clips widescreen letterboxed. The show was never widescreen or letterboxed before.

Maybe HBO finally got the idea that HD home video (Blu-Ray or HD-DVD or whatever) may eventually bring them a premium in the home video market (the price of the Sopranos is $30 higher for the HD set). If they don't shoot in HD, they can't eventually sell it in HD....
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post #8 of 40 Old 08-30-2006, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by scott_bernstein View Post

HBO VOD shows are never in HD.

I understand that, which is my point. I'll wait until Sunday if the show is in HD, but if it's not in HD, why wait six days to see the same non-HD version?
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post #9 of 40 Old 09-10-2006, 07:06 PM
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Apparently it is not in HD. I find that almost offensive.

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post #10 of 40 Old 09-10-2006, 07:25 PM
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I'm very disappointed it's not in hd.
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post #11 of 40 Old 09-10-2006, 08:05 PM
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It's the best show on television, one of a handful of the very best shows in the history of television, the visuals match the gritty reality of the setting in which the series takes place ... and all you can say is you're very disappointed it's not in HD, or worse, that you're offended? I hope you're kidding.
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post #12 of 40 Old 09-10-2006, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott_bernstein View Post

If they don't shoot in HD, they can't eventually sell it in HD....

Why does it have to be shot in HD? The Wire looks to me like it's filmed, and film is HD by nature, right? Heck, they're running Hogan's Heroes and Star Trek in HD now. Isn't it a question of whether it's transferred to HD for broadcast?
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post #13 of 40 Old 09-11-2006, 06:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by masoo View Post

It's the best show on television, one of a handful of the very best shows in the history of television, the visuals match the gritty reality of the setting in which the series takes place ... and all you can say is you're very disappointed it's not in HD, or worse, that you're offended? I hope you're kidding.

get off your high horse. i love the show i want to see it in hd. what do you want me to say?! all the bs you just spewed out?
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post #14 of 40 Old 09-11-2006, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by masoo View Post

... the visuals match the gritty reality of the setting in which the series takes place ...

The "gritty reality" would be much more convincing in HD. Lower resolution and window boxing does not add "grittiness" it just results in a duller, fuzzier picture.

All HBO subscribers have every right to be upset about this, and I hope that those opinions are voiced to HBO management. For any show shot on film, there is really no excuse for a non-HD transfer. HBO does it for every other hour-long drama they produce. Why not the most critically acclaimed show?

For those of us accustomed to watching all major network and cable programming in HD, it is an insult to not deliver this show in HD on a premium channel that we pay for.
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post #15 of 40 Old 09-11-2006, 08:30 AM
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If you're not happy end your HBO sub.

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post #16 of 40 Old 09-18-2006, 03:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiomagnate View Post

Widescreen previews are always a good sign. It worked for Entourage. I think I heard on one of the specials that this is the last season.

Actually it got picked up for a 5th and FINAL season next year. I read this on HBO.com
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post #17 of 40 Old 09-18-2006, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by masoo View Post

It's the best show on television, one of a handful of the very best shows in the history of television, the visuals match the gritty reality of the setting in which the series takes place ...

I totally agree. David Simon and Ed burns definitely have a good thing going in The Wire. The discussionon this thread confirmed my suspicions that even though Time Warner (Redondo Beach, CA) here lists it as being shown in HD that it really isn't because it's not widescreen. But it certainly 'appears' to be sharper than the non-HD hbo channel. Why is that? The same thing with Bill Maher's show. Both shows have vertical black bars. Very frustrating considering how much we spend on these services.

Why is it showtime can broadcast 'Brotherhood' in WS (another show I like) but HBO won't do the wire?
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post #18 of 40 Old 09-19-2006, 12:55 PM
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As a Bawlmer person now living in NYC, I almost threw something at the T.V. when on the first episode of the new season, of their most critcally aclaimed show this season, The WIRE was not in 16:9.

Oh, it *is* in HD, I can tell from the clarity, but unbelievably it is not in 16:9. So I get those damn sidebars - instead of it filling the whole screen. I mean a small station like TNT can do "The Closer" in HD, 16:9 so it fills the whole screen and HBO can't do THe Wire?

ooohhh bad bad choice. And it's not like this show is questionable, it's in its 4th season and is their one show getting all the rave reviews. Please god don't tell me Lucky Louie is in HD/16:9.
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post #19 of 40 Old 09-19-2006, 08:01 PM
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First and formost, unlike TNT-HD, HBO is keeping the original aspect ratio for their TV series. (Yes, HBO crops the movies to 16:9 but that's not what this is about) TNT-HD on the other hand just streches everything they can get their hands on. Also about these standard definition 4:3 shows looking sharper, HBO is upconverting them to 1080i.

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post #20 of 40 Old 09-20-2006, 06:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesd3rd View Post

Why is it showtime can broadcast 'Brotherhood' in WS (another show I like) but HBO won't do the wire?

'Brotherhood' is a show produced and broadcast in HD. 'The Wire' is not, for whatever reason.... perhaps they're just trying to keep it consistent with the other seasons. Perhaps they're just too cheap (a billion in profit just doesn't go as far as it used to, you know ).

All HD is native 16x9. But not all 16x9 presented shows are HD; some are upconverted. It's the upconversion that makes HBO's SD shows sometimes look HD. But if it's presented in 4x3, you can be sure it's not native HD (unless it's 'Hogan's Heros' on HDNet) regardless of how good it looks to you.
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post #21 of 40 Old 09-20-2006, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Britbiker View Post

Oh, it *is* in HD, I can tell from the clarity, but unbelievably it is not in 16:9.

Actually, it's NOT in HD whatsoever. Doublechecking last night, it is obviously not in HD as there is no clarity or definition of, say, the hair on characters' beards, the bricks on the buildings (they had clear jagged edges), and other minute details.

Yes, anything SD will look better when pumped over the HD channels, since the HD channels are allocated (approx) 6x the bandwidth of the SD version of the same channel, so there will be more depth and fidelity to the original picture (as well as less compression artifacts).
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post #22 of 40 Old 09-20-2006, 08:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scott_bernstein View Post

Actually, it's NOT in HD whatsoever. Doublechecking last night, it is obviously not in HD as there is no clarity or definition of, say, the hair on characters' beards, the bricks on the buildings (they had clear jagged edges), and other minute details.

Yes, anything SD will look better when pumped over the HD channels, since the HD channels are allocated (approx) 6x the bandwidth of the SD version of the same channel, so there will be more depth and fidelity to the original picture (as well as less compression artifacts).


THANK YOU! It's NOT in HD this season so can we close or move this thread?
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post #23 of 40 Old 02-07-2007, 03:30 PM
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I accidently stumbled across this thread. The reason Season 4 wasn't, and season 5 won't, be in HD is because of an artistic choice by David Simon and the rest of the creators. They didn't want to make a change in the middle of a five season story and wanted the entire thing to be consistent.
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post #24 of 40 Old 02-08-2007, 03:53 AM
 
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Yes. Makes sense to me. I own a series of four prints. They're all implemented in the same medium (paint on wood). Imagine how silly it would look if the fourth one was watercolor on paper?
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post #25 of 40 Old 01-07-2008, 07:43 AM
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No HD starting this new season either...that is disappointing, but the PQ was actualy pretty good for SD.
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post #26 of 40 Old 01-07-2008, 09:48 AM
 
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Given that they said before last season that they wanted to do the entire five season run with a 4:3 aspect ratio, it isn't surprising that this last season won't be 16:9 either.
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post #27 of 40 Old 01-16-2008, 12:47 PM
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The background on this...

from here

The Wire is shot entirely with Panavision cameras. David Insley let us know that, "These later episodes of the show are shot Super 35, 3-perf, and that saves a lot of money because that means we're shooting about three quarters of the film we used to. But we're only using the 4 x 3 part, so we're losing the edges of the 16x 9, but it's less than we were using when it was 4-perf, so (the image is) somewhere between a Super 16 image and a standard 35 (mm) image."

Some dialog looping (ADR) is done in Baltimore, but more often in New York. Foley and final audio mix are also done in New York.

"4x3 feels more like real life and real television and not like a movie."

And perhaps the final contrast to the rest of high-end episodic television, The Wire for each of its five seasons has been produced in good old fashioned 4 x 3 standard definition. DP Dave Insley recalled, "The reason the show has stayed 4x3 is because David Simon thinks that 4x3 feels more like real life and real television and not like a movie. The show's never been HD, even 4x3 HD and that (SD) is how it is on the DVDs. There is no 16x9 version anywhere." As a viewer with an HD set I will point out that like much of SD television that makes its way to HD channels, it appears that HBO utilizes state-of-the-art line doubling technology. It may still be standard definition, but line doubled it looks considerably better on a high definition set than it would on a standard definition set.

Luke
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post #28 of 40 Old 01-23-2008, 05:03 AM
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When standard DVDs are gone the way of LP records, when most DVD releases are in survivor HD format, in what format will The Wire be available on then?
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post #29 of 40 Old 01-23-2008, 06:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c627627 View Post

When standard DVDs are gone the way of LP records, when most DVD releases are in survivor HD format, in what format will The Wire be available on then?

If Insley gets his way, probably 4:3 SD.

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post #30 of 40 Old 01-23-2008, 08:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke_Y View Post

"4x3 feels more like real life and real television and not like a movie."


It's his right to do as he wishes with his creation but give me a break on the above quote. Real life isn't contained in a 4:3 box, and what do "real life" and "real television" have in common?

Regarding consistancy, plenty of shows have gone HD part way through their run. Many older shows started in b/w, and switched to color when it was feasible.

One last comment. Why use widescreen previews for a 4:3 show?

Art
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