During the New Orleans Mardi Gras, the second line marches behind the main line parade, consisting of neighbors, loyal fans, and first time participants swept up in their enthusiasm for the music and the spectacle. The Second Line follows the sprawling, multi-layered HBO series Treme by co-creators Eric Overmyer and David Simon.
The series begins three months after Hurricane Katrina, not a natural catastrophe in David Simon's view, but the "worst engineering disaster in American history." Through inter-cutting stories of survival and perseverance in the New Orleans neighborhood of Treme, the oldest African-American neighborhood in the U.S. and an area of inestimable importance in musical culture, the series offers atmosphere, vivid incident, epiphanies for those who search, and music, music, music.
Built like the jazz it showcases, Treme defies simplistic analysis. We'll try anyway. Based upon my informal degree in all things David Simon and built upon avid study of his prior television work — Homicide, The Corner, The Wire, and Generation Kill — this column will recap Treme with an eye toward the success of the series in evoking and expanding its larger themes: persistence and recovery in one of America's great cities through its culture.
You Must Start All Over Again.
That was so me Mardi Gras before last.
Mardi Gras: It ain't necessarily so.
In other words, more like the "zzzz" train...
We don't get much call for Sazeracs around here.
“How do you get to sleep at night, man?!” "I drink.”