Treme : Season 1

  • Network: HBO
  • Series Premiere Date: Apr 11, 2010
Season #: 1, 2, 3, 4
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 116 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 97 out of 116
  2. Negative: 10 out of 116

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  1. RickO.
    Apr 20, 2010
    10
    Finally, an artwork that captures the incredible musical, mystical quality of this great city.
  2. May 18, 2012
    10
    Mark Perigard of the Boston Herald accuses the pacing of Treme as being "lazy." I believe Mr. Perigard has missed out on the most beautiful aspect of Treme: the pacing is the city itself. What do citizens do, waiting for a miracle to restore their lives back to normal, drinking, playing music, sharing intimate slow moments in the passing of time in a city that is itself an anachronism.Mark Perigard of the Boston Herald accuses the pacing of Treme as being "lazy." I believe Mr. Perigard has missed out on the most beautiful aspect of Treme: the pacing is the city itself. What do citizens do, waiting for a miracle to restore their lives back to normal, drinking, playing music, sharing intimate slow moments in the passing of time in a city that is itself an anachronism. Treme is nearly a perfect analog for life. The forgotten, overlooked joy and dispair as they interplay in the most disastrous of circumstances: "we're all going crazy, and having a good time." The acting is on mark to a line, casting tremendous. Did Mr. Perigard know that modern New Orleans Jazz fame has its roots in high school marching bands, now blowing through mouthpieces of instruments their schools can't afford to buy. The helping of skilled lawyers and musicians to pull their people up from the muck, literally and figuratively, through their generosity, foul mouthed honesty, and real humanity, calling a spade a spade. Boston is not New Orleans. Simon's approach to taking us there is that of allowing us to sit, to dwell, to marvel in what could be mistaken for mundane, but is in reality, sublime. Expand
  3. Feb 22, 2014
    8
    An almost perfect series. A study of tradition and culture and family in The City That Care Forgot (and almost got wiped off the map). While Simon's 'The Wire' was 'all the pieces matter', this show, as one character puts it, is 'about the day to day' in the months and years after Katrina. Excellent performances by Clarke Peters, Wendell Pierce,John Goodman, Melissa Leo, Steve Earle, etcAn almost perfect series. A study of tradition and culture and family in The City That Care Forgot (and almost got wiped off the map). While Simon's 'The Wire' was 'all the pieces matter', this show, as one character puts it, is 'about the day to day' in the months and years after Katrina. Excellent performances by Clarke Peters, Wendell Pierce,John Goodman, Melissa Leo, Steve Earle, etc but also from many of the small part players, a lot being local and many playing themselves post-Katrina. It DOES require some knowledge of all that happened during and right after the hurricane (Spike Lee's docs 'When The Levees Broke' and 'If God Is Willing And The Creek Don't Rise' are good primers if you were living under a rock in Aug of '05). And there are so many local references that, if you like the show, you'll be raiding iTunes and Wikipedia and your local grocery store soon after. But the more you watch and the more you understand the more you are rewarded by this show. And the music, the music, the music!
    As for its -2 in flaws, it takes about three or four episodes to get into it. I nearly gave up on it due to events in the second episode, but if you can get past them you're good. Then there's Season 3. Simon likes to lace his New Orleans stories with true events, recreating them for the show and blending in the fictional characters. But in season 3 fact sticks out from fiction like a sore thumb for about two thirds of the season and some characters turn into Basil "This Really Happened" Exposition. Plus it appears the budget was cut then (there is still no soundtrack for seasons 3 and 4 as I write this) and many of the wonderful small part actors are missing. BUT Simon makes up for that in season 4 by bringing almost all of them back.
    All in all a great series despite its flaws. It'll leave you with a song or two in your heart and in your head.
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  4. DavidN.
    Apr 21, 2010
    10
    Treme gets New Orleans right. Simon's wise and novelistic approach is perfectly suited to this most blessed and cursed city. Instinct, deep research and beaucoup talent bode well for the show's future.
  5. Jul 27, 2011
    9
    I loved "The Wire" and Simon has delivered superior TV again. He must have loved Dickens as a kid because no-one else on TV does character development, or sinuous story lines better. I'm not sure just why he's so good at examining the "Black" culture in all it's rich complexities, it comes across as authentic, helped by rich dialog, and fantastic actors. Khandi Alexander blows me away!I loved "The Wire" and Simon has delivered superior TV again. He must have loved Dickens as a kid because no-one else on TV does character development, or sinuous story lines better. I'm not sure just why he's so good at examining the "Black" culture in all it's rich complexities, it comes across as authentic, helped by rich dialog, and fantastic actors. Khandi Alexander blows me away! What a powerful performer. I read it was a slow mover but I was hooked early, having learned from "The Wire" that the delight comes in watching diverse characters develop. The music throws in an essential flavor that suffuses the show with energy. Expand
  6. Sep 10, 2011
    10
    I love this show. It talks about real people, real music and real life. It teaches about New Orleans. It shows the mingle of art and life in New Orleans. Well done.
  7. AlwynJK
    Apr 14, 2010
    10
    Excellent show, highly recommended!!
  8. AlexanderL.
    Apr 18, 2010
    10
    Viewing only the first episode so far, I can say that I am more excited about this show than any other right now. I have a feeling this could be just as good as 'The Wire" if not better.
  9. Sep 18, 2010
    10
    One of the best shows on TV. The characters and storylines are perfect and the music is exceptional. Khandi Alexander deserved an Emmy for her portrayal of LaDonna, and the rest of the cast is terrific. Absolutely cannot wait for Season 2, I miss hearing that great jazz already.
  10. AaronS
    Apr 15, 2010
    10
    David Simon and Co. have another potential winner on their hands with 'Treme'. On the basis of the pilot this series has a LOT of potential. And like 'The Wire's' Baltimore, 'Treme's' NOLA will prove to be as fascinating a 'character' in its own right. Perhaps an even greater one. I look forward to spending time with this show.
  11. Jun 26, 2012
    9
    David Simon creates the best tv shows. The Wire and Generation Kill were awesome. Treme does not disappoint. It is very true to New-Orleans. It's a form of real tv if real tv was real and was about interesting people. Khandi Alexander is amazing. Steve Zahn is awesome. Things are quite crazy in New-Orleans but you see why people love it.
  12. Apr 8, 2013
    8
    For lovers of good music especially Jazz, you can't miss "Treme" sometimes you feel a nagging slow, but the characters are endearing and the people of New Orleans so excited to party all the time
  13. Jul 26, 2013
    9
    There has not been much buzz about this show but it is great. The producers work in some of the New Orleans music scene which is great. They also have a sub plot about a restaurant. All in all it keeps your attention and it looks like it is all filmed on location.
  14. Oct 19, 2013
    10
    A unique series that has an unusual blend of real people (musicians) mixed with actors portraying fictional characters. The music of the show is nothing short of amazing. One other unique trait of this series is that the plot does not drive to "hook" you into watching another episode right away all episodes stand well on their own, no games are being played to trick you into watchingA unique series that has an unusual blend of real people (musicians) mixed with actors portraying fictional characters. The music of the show is nothing short of amazing. One other unique trait of this series is that the plot does not drive to "hook" you into watching another episode right away all episodes stand well on their own, no games are being played to trick you into watching another until you are ready, which makes it one of the few shows you can savour over a few weeks or months. Expand
  15. Dec 26, 2013
    9
    This show just like The Wire" follows the exact same line of writing, acting and overall feel of the show and thats down to David Simon and the way he writes and shoots a tv series. And its all of these things that make this show great, i know alot of people dont like the slow pace and the music but the music is a huge part of New Orleans if not the biggest part and the slow pace is justThis show just like The Wire" follows the exact same line of writing, acting and overall feel of the show and thats down to David Simon and the way he writes and shoots a tv series. And its all of these things that make this show great, i know alot of people dont like the slow pace and the music but the music is a huge part of New Orleans if not the biggest part and the slow pace is just how a real drama series should be, it shouldnt be like every other drama on every other network.

    Its sad that this show goes the same was as The Wire as in low ratings but critically acclaimed by every reviewer out there so hopefully like The Wire it will get a life of its own after the show has ended.
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  16. Apr 30, 2015
    8
    Simon gets an automatic 8/10 rating from me, no matter what. That's how you get to roll after giving us The Wire; one of the greatest television shows ever made and a show that is even more relevant in 2015 than it was 11 years ago. This show could literally be eight hours of Clarke Peters, Steve Zahn, and Wendell Pierce talking about the weather and it'd still be worthy a six or seven.
  17. May 19, 2015
    10
    With all four having come and gone, I am convinced that the first season of Treme is the best. Perhaps because it's closer to the trauma that informs the narrative. Perhaps because of the novelty of a series that cuts between conventional dialogue scenes and musical performances. Perhaps for purely sentimental reasons.

    Treme is an easy show to criticize. Its pace is glacial, and unlike
    With all four having come and gone, I am convinced that the first season of Treme is the best. Perhaps because it's closer to the trauma that informs the narrative. Perhaps because of the novelty of a series that cuts between conventional dialogue scenes and musical performances. Perhaps for purely sentimental reasons.

    Treme is an easy show to criticize. Its pace is glacial, and unlike The Wire, its not just light on action, it's light on drama. I'll be the first to tell you that not a whole lot happens. It's more just getting to know the people. And its overflowing with treacly sentimentality, treating New Orleans the way that rabid fans of anything are wont to do.

    It's watchable simply because its beautiful. The locations, the characters, and the hints of story that do work their way in, are sometimes politically interesting but always aesthetically powerful.

    Unlike later seasons, this one has a satisfying capstone ending, and by all means I encourage not only starting but sticking with this show, especially now that you can view it more quickly through streaming services or on DVD.
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Metascore
88

Universal acclaim - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 32
  2. Negative: 0 out of 32
  1. Reviewed by: Paige Wiser
    63
    As a series, Treme is a tough slog. I was by turns confused, bored and sad.
  2. Unlike "The Wire," the pacing is lazy. Many of the moments seem authentic, but to paraphrase director Alfred Hitchcock: A good show is life minus the boring parts.
  3. 75
    By the third episode of the three that HBO sent, the show had begun to find a rhythm, and the sometimes sprawling narrative (which will unfold over 10 episodes in the show's first season) had begun to gel in a promising way.