What’s Goin’ On

Once Upon a Times Square

New series centers on 42nd St. in the seedy '70s


HBO's new series, "The Deuce," takes a trip back in time to the not-so-good old days of New York's 42nd Street and Times Square in the 1970s, when hookers and porn ruled what is now a family-friendly pedestrian and shopping plaza.

Premiering September 10, the deep dive into the seedy side of the street is "transfixing, nourishing entertainment," says Vanity Fair. "It's the most amiably sleazy workplace drama you'll see this year."

James Franco tackles the dual role of Brooklyn twins, one an upstanding family man, the other a gambler whose losing streak gets him into trouble with the wrong kind of people. Maggie Gyllenhaal stars as the hooker with a heart of gold and no pimp.

Created by "The Wire" duo of David Simon and George Pelacanos, "The Deuce" offers an inside peep at the sex trade with "a more nuanced approach," Vanity Fair observes. "We see its obvious dangers and injustices, but also the ragged sense of community that can develop in any dire circumstance by sheer dint of human nature."

Photo courtesy of HBO