Aug 06 2012
This has been my favorite season of Breaking Bad in a few years now, I think. Why? Because I have no idea what’s going to happen next.
Each year before this, there’s always been a bad guy. A wall to climb, a hurdle to jump, and surely Walt, our hero, would do it. But now? He is the villain, and everyone else must climb over him. But that couldn’t possibly happen, could it?
The lack of an outside villain is something new for the show, and may go against traditional models of TV plotlines by making the hero the bad guy. What it does however is create a sense of tension where you can’t possibly predict what happens next.
Further still, the conflict that does exist doesn’t even seem to really be in Walt’s business. He and Jesse are on the best terms they’ve ever been on. He and Mike don’t see eye to eye, but they’re not sparring with each other in a dangerous way.
Pride before a fall.
Rather, Walt’s battles are now twofold. He has to deal with Hank’s investigation which is closing a noose tighter around Madrigal’s neck in a way that could probably lead back to him. I thought that was going to manifest itself with the tracker found on the methylamine, but that was explained away by the end of the show as a ploy. But even with that, Walt presses on.
The main conflict is now Walt vs. Skylar, and I can’t say that’s something I ever saw coming. She was onboard with the whole meth thing after a little while, and seemed like she was going to be an asset to his business. But now after realizing the kind of danger that the drugs bring, and what Walt is capable of doing, it’s scared her straight.
Her behavior has been downright bizarre the last few weeks. She’s been borderline comatose since the season began, but she finally snapped out of it long enough to tell Walt what she really thinks. I think part of it was real shock, but events like her pool episode were orchestrated to try and get the kids away. But when Walt presses her (in a really great scene incidentally), she breaks and admits she doesn’t actually have a plan. She can’t outsmart Walt.
Fact: It’s impossible for you to drown yourself (without weights tying you down). Your body simply will not let you.
But let’s not forget that Walt is being unreasonably stupid these days. He’s always been careful to fault, but now that he’s killed Gus, the confidence fairy has sprinkled her dust on him and he feels invincible. The first five minutes of the show were a dubstep scored Chrysler ad where he leases the brand’s entire SRT class so he can look more like a badass drug dealer. Because that’s a good idea. And promising Skylar that there’s never going to be any danger again now that Gus is dead? Yeah, I’m sure being a meth kingpin will never have any downside to it. You didn’t think if you started pumping out blue meth again that wouldn’t attract some attention?
I didn’t realize that these past five seasons of the show have taken place over the course of a single year. As they said in the show, it seems way longer than that, but I guess if we looked back over the timeline of events it would all add up.
What happens next? I forgot about the first few minutes of the season where we saw Walt with hair toting a light machine gun. What the hell is going to happen from now until then where things are going to escalate to that point? I thought throughout this season we were going to be seeing more scenes from the future, but I guess not.
And what’s the deal? Are there seriously only two more episodes in this season? I hate, hate, hate when shows do this. Air all your episodes, in a row. Especially if you’re a cable show with 10 or 12 episode seasons. I believe Breaking Bad is stopping at eight eps for now, but I have no idea when it’s coming back after that, which is exceedingly lame. I know it’s 16 episodes for this final season, but there’s no good reason they couldn’t have aired them all in a row.
More Unreal Posts
- Breaking Bad Review: “Hazard Pay”
- Breaking Bad Review: “Buyout”
- Breaking Bad Review: “Say My Name”
- Jesse Pinkman: Ever Since I Met You
- Breaking Bad Review: “Hermanos”