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

Generally favorable reviews- based on 106 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 88 out of 106
  2. Negative: 10 out of 106

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  1. 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, 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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  2. 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 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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  3. 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 watching another until you are ready, which makes it one of the few shows you can savour over a few weeks or months. Expand
  4. 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.
  5. May 25, 2013
    6
    Created by the same team that brought us The Wire I was certainly looking forward to watching Treme. I have now watched the entire first season and Treme does reproduce much of what made The Wire so great namely a well written script, realistic plot development, interesting characters and some fantastic acting.
    As with The Wire however, Treme can also be slightly slow in places but, where
    as The Wire always had the constant conflict between and amongst the criminals and law enforcement to retain viewer interest during slower periods, there is no over arching story within Treme that is able to recreate what kept me hooked throughout the five seasons of The Wire.

    As a result (and I almost hate myself for saying this) I found it incredibly difficult to get into this series and, despite all the positives I mentioned, I will be unlikely to tune into the second season.
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  6. 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
  7. Mar 29, 2013
    0
    0 This is the most boring show I have seen in quite awhile, The acting is terrible, there is a lot of really good music but it doesn't seem to fit (it is in the background of insignificant dialogue) and worst of all, the film is shot almost completely IN THE DARK for most of the film. What is that about? I couldn't make out any of the actors features.
  8. 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.
  9. 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. 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
  10. Feb 2, 2012
    1
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Season One of Treme combines the weaknesses of Season 5 of the Wire (in the words of Seth Bullock: David Simon succumbs to his "goddamn temper" and settles political grudges) with the pretentiousness of ...well...a variety of boring and self-important shows. I'm a liberal. But I find Simon's moralizing about Katrina to be annoying and (worst of all) old news. The political dialogue on this show might have been torn from a liberal blog....from 2006. In other words: anyone who was paying attention has heard this song and dance before. The only redeeming feature of the first season was John Goodman's suicide. I guess I could give this show points for killing off the most cartoonish character? The worst part of this season was it's overbearing way of shoving New Orleans down our throat. Yes. We get it. Despite our best attempts, we will never love New Orleans the way that a broke hipster doofus white guy loves it. One final point: the music is pretty good. It would be the saving grace of this show, but the way they use it is actually a negative. It doesn't drive the plot forward. It almost seems ancillary. In other words: this show feels like a musical. During the musical numbers, the plot doesn't move forward. All and all, this show is as bad as it gets. I say that as someone who doesn't bother to even rate stupid network procedurals...though they're probably a bit more watchable than this trash. Expand
  11. 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.
  12. 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! 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. Collapse
  13. Jul 15, 2011
    6
    As always with HBO shows, my expectations were very high. The setting was exiting, so was the cast; with a lot of familiar faces from "The Wire", possibly the best TV series ever.

    The pace of the show is very slow, which is always a high risk. It requires not only patience from the viewer, but also very high quality acting, writing and aesthetics. You cannot hide behind thrill and
    suspense, to cover other weaknesses. But on the other hand, the ones that have succeeded with this formula, are the best of TV history, in my opinion ("The Wire", "Sopranos", "Six Feet Under").

    I was willing to give it some time, as I needed to get into "The Wire" or "Six Feet Under". And I did watch the entire first season, still undecided on whether I liked it or not. Because the show has great, believable portraits of the city of New Orleans, it's unique culture, and how it's people struggle to get their city back on it's feet; but there seemed to something not quite right.

    Four episodes into the second season, I've finally had it. Half of the show now, is pretty much live concerts. We got it, New Orleans has a vibrant flair and a great music scene. Give us the stories! You got a show with great actors, and good writers too. The characters have the complexity I'm looking for in a show like this, the stories seem authentic and believable. So why are you wasting our time with never-ending music sessions? As it is now, one might as well watch a travel channel special on New Orleans. I don't need to see endless scenes from bar-room concerts, or marching bands. Give me stories, and the development of them! It's really a pity, because there is enough potential here to make a great series. Maybe the episodes should be cut down to 30-40 minutes?
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  14. Mar 13, 2011
    0
    I tried to watch this show wanting to lke it but just could not. I was bored and finally just gave up. I am wondering who gave it 10's and wrote the reviews. Doesn't seem like an average television watcher to me..too well written. Maybe people that work for the show?? They have been known to do that.
  15. Feb 22, 2011
    1
    So I spent an hour and a half of my life watching Treme yesterday. In retrospect, there are a million ways I could have better spent my time.

  16. 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.
Metascore
87

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.