Critics dubbed The Wire one of the best shows on television ever. (TIME included.) Its portrayal of Baltimore's decline, told from the perspective of police, gangs, schoolkids, journalists and politicians, gained zealous fans during its run from 2002 to 2008 on HBO. Emmy voters did not agree, giving the show only two nominations for writing. Some blamed the show's low ratings, others blamed complicated plots, some spoke of a bias against the primarily black cast and others blamed Hollywood's inability to relate to Baltimore's drug scene. No matter the motivation, the Emmys firmly ignored a show that was one of the highlights of the 2000s.