Reviews: Breaking Bad

Pointing out the (fairly little) negative

The series quickly grew out of the little stagnation it was stuck in in season 1 (the pilot kinda bored me, but I stuck through because it was recommended by a close childhood friend) into a full-blown masterpiece. The acting, the music, the scenery, everything was absolutely spot-on. The only thing wrong with the series was that the Big Bads kept coming pretty much out of nowhere, with a fairly tenuous connection to previous events; it worked for Dragonball Z because it was a shonen anime focused on action and fighting, and (in a way) in Neon Genesis Evangelion because the Ďvillainsí were not the focus of the series at all, but this series fleshes out every character, and it felt a bit too much like it was flushing them out too. I was disappointed that the Neo-Nazis got all the attention in season 5; Iíd hoped for, say, Gusí wife to appear and receive a prominent role that season, but that never happened. Also, contrary to common opinion, I didnít care all that much for the finale and felt that it made fairly little sense.

Ah well. All in all, it was an amazing show and I loved it, but itís not my favourite.


Reviewing Bad

When Breaking Bad was on, you would be hard pressed to find a TV series more engrossing and blood pumping. Striking, experimental, and definitively hardcore, it is five and a half seasons of Crazy Awesome that just keeps getting Darker and Edgier with every passing moment.

As the main page says, after being diagnosed with lung cancer, Walter White decides he can use his genius level knowledge of chemistry to manufacture highly pure crystal meth in order to support his pregnant wife and handicapped son. Teaming up with his lowlife former student, Jesse Pinkman, Walter initially tries to operate as quietly and cautiously as he can... which lasts about five minutes. Things get crazy. Everything goes wrong.

This show is about Character Depth more than anything else, not about the crimes but about how the consequences affect those involved and what choices they made led them there. No matter how flashy Walt and Jesse may look committing crimes, it is overshadowed by their complex personalities and the decadent realm of corruption they are sinking into.

Walter and Jesse are unforgettable. Walter is a true Badass Mad Scientist and incredibly fascinating. His evolution from Insufferable Genius to Magnificent Bastard is as exciting as it is disheartening. You will be as infuriated as you are impressed by him. This is the role that has deservedly placed Bryan Cranston amongst today's best actors. Aaron Paul as Jesse is even more surprising. Presented as a total case of This Loser Is You, yet through solid Character Development and acting he becomes as important if not more important to the show than Walter. His journey is something to behold as well. Describing any other awesome characters would take another 400 words because there's so many.

Though it seems grounded in reality and definitely IS taxing for moral minds, it heavily indulges in fun symbolism, slapstick/black comedy, outstanding visuals, editing, writing, directing, music, and a Rule of Cool that kicks in at all the right moments. Intense, funny, poetic, and maddeningly cool, Breaking Bad is the real deal. Unfortunately, it's current popularity and overhype has made it seem less awesome somehow. (Will explain in the comments, if necessary)