Four years ago I made a deal with one of my best friends. If he would sit through Lost, I’d watch Breaking Bad all the way through to the end. At the time I thought I was getting the easier end of the deal; l had planned to sit through the two seasons available and then weasel my way out of the rest. After all, how good could a show about a cancer stricken teacher dealing meth really be? Now that I’ve watched, re-watched, analyzed, and debated this show to its deepest core, I’ve never been more satisfied with a trade in my TV watching life.
Breaking Bad sets the standard for slow burn character drama thanks to its impeccable cast, creative slate of directors, and unmatched writing team. It is constantly taking risks and breaking rules of conventional TV and is unafraid to let its characters face the truly dire consequences for their decisions made season to season.
Walter White’s decent into his own ego and depravity is masterfully handled by allowing his heart and morality to be whittled away bit by bit instead of rapidly or dramatically. This show doesn’t take shortcuts and it’s not afraid to push the limits on just how dirty its hands can get. Despite being brutally dark for most of its 5 seasons, this is a show that has some spot on humor with the unforgettable Walter White pizza throwing and essentially anything related to Saul Goodman making for some really memorable laughs.
Every episode of Breaking Bad is one to remember, but episodes like One Minute, Fly, Salud, Crawl Space, Blood Money, To’hajiilee, and Ozymandias will carry moments so iconic and full of impact that I will take them with me to my grave. This is a show that is full of moments that most shows spend their entirety trying to achieve.
Tomorrow night Vince Gilligan and his creative team are sticking to their guns and taking this show out just when they mean to. The show feels lean, mean, and complete which is unheard of even among the best cable networks. This finale and the consequences awaiting Walter White have been a long time coming, and I for one can’t wait to see just how much damage Breaking Bad can do before hanging up Heisenberg’s hat.
Farewell Breaking Bad; you’ve made me contemplate my own morality and understanding of how and why people make terrible decisions all while being one of the most heart wrenching and glorious rides ever to grace television.