July 13, 2015 12:39 PM EDT

It comes as no surprise that the trailer for Show Me a Hero, the six-part HBO miniseries created by David Simon and Paul Haggis, looks very, very promising. Simon, after all, gave us The Wire, considered by many to be one of the best shows in television history. Though Haggis’ 2004 Best Picture winner Crash may not be widely considered a standout in cinematic history—well, at least the themes at play in the series are decidedly up his alley.

Show Me a Hero stars the buzzworthy Oscar Isaac as Nicholas Wasicsko, the young mayor of Yonkers, N.Y., during a time of escalating racial tensions in the late 1980s. Wasicsko’s efforts to develop public housing in a predominantly white, middle-class neighborhood are met with heated protests, forcing the mayor to navigate the tricky path between justice and politics.

The series, co-starring Catherine Keener, Alfred Molina and Winona Ryder, is based on Lisa Belkin’s 1999 nonfiction book, from which the show takes its name. To avoid spoilers, perhaps refrain from Googling the name “Nicholas Wasicsko.”

Show Me a Hero premieres on Aug. 16 on HBO.

Write to Eliza Berman at eliza.berman@time.com.

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