Given that this is my last passion blog of the semester, and due to the fact that “Breaking Bad” ended nearly two months ago, I will forego my usual character or theme analysis in exchange for a review of some of my favorite moments, episodes, and the like. So, without further ado:
Favorite character other than Walter White:
Badger: no one can not like this lovable, yet entirely incompetent, drug peddler. Whether he’s messing up a new batch of meth, getting shot by a ten year old on a bike, or being arrested for the umpteenth time, Badger is always doing something wrong. However, we applaud his effort and humility in face of failure. Further, these shortcomings often serve as dramatically effective comic relief in between important sets.
Dead Freight: This episode more closely resembled a high-drama action movie than a television show. In it, the usual cast assembles to steal tons of methlyamine off of a moving freight change. Unlike other episodes, the entire 45 minutes is essentially one scene, that maintains its tension throughout. It’s an impressive feat of directing, cinematography, and acting combined to form my favorite episode.
Without question, the death of Gustavo Fring was not only the most intense, harrowing moment in the show’s run, but, in my opinion, it was one of the most gripping moments in television history. Here’s the YouTube clip:
I think one thing that often got overlooked in “Breaking Bad” was its cinematography. The show’s dramatic storytelling would be nothing if the show wasn’t shot the way it was. This clip is a perfect example. Right before he dies, Fring looks composed and stiff, as he always does. However, as the camera pans across his body, we quickly see the right half of his face is completely decimated. It’s a dramatic, memorable moment, aided drastically by the way it was shot.
“I am the one who knocks,” Walter White. I appreciate this quote not for its meaning within the plot, but because of the deep, philosophical influence it connotes. On its surface, the quote shows Walt is a man in total control, aware of the danger around him, but totally unfazed. On a deeper level, however, this quote puts White in the realms of other great, historical philosophers. In fact, there’s this cool website that shows how other famous authors, thinkers, and scholars would have delivered this speech (http://www.mcsweeneys.net/articles/walter-whites-i-am-the-one-who-knocks-speech-as-written-by-other-authors).
In all, I’ve enjoyed writing about “Breaking Bad”. While my interest in this blog has waned the past weeks, I believe it has been a good experience as I’ve come to more fully appreciate such an impressive television series.