The Wire, the HBO cop drama that was so much more, aired its final episode, “30,” on March 9, 2008. Despite Christopher Wallace never seeing a single frame of the show, the two will forever be linked be for not only their final day of life, but also the manual that Biggie gave us, unfortunately posthumously, “10 Crack Commandments” from Life After Death.
The Wire (available to stream anytime on HBO Now) was ultimately the story of Baltimore in its entirety, but at its core, it was a show about cops trying to lock up drug dealers. Five years before The Wire debuted on HBO, the Notorious B.I.G laid out a manual for drug dealing, over production from fellow legend DJ Premier. Inspired by an article in the issue of The Source that his mother had in the “Juicy” video, B.I.G. set out to give aspiring dealers the rules to the game, and in true Biggie style he seamlessly weaved the rules into a three minute lesson that could have accompanied a power point presentation and performed in a classroom (or one of Stringer’s dope dealer meetings in the funeral home).
Unfortunately for many of the characters in the semi-fictional Baltimore of The Wire, not everybody listened, but because Frank knew his stuff, and because The Wire was rooted so deeply in reality, every single one of these commandments showed up throughout the series’ 60 episodes.
Here is The Wire, as told by Biggie Smalls’ “10 Crack Commandments.”