Monday, August 2, 2010

Thoughts / Breaking Bad

"A struggling high school chemistry teacher, Walter White (Bryan Cranston), is diagnosed with terminal stage three lung cancer, and resorts to selling drugs to provide for his pregnant wife and handicapped son. On a ride along with his DEA agent brother-in-law Hank (Dean Norris), he sees a former student of his, Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul), fleeing the scene of a meth lab. He contacts Jesse and devises a scheme to cook and distribute methamphetamine in order to pay for his treatment and leave his family financially stable." - Wikipedia

During the summer of 2009, my cousin and I did a little camping in another family member's back yard. We pitched our tent and proceeded to run an extension power cord from the house to our freshly built sleeping quarters. We then began hooking up his PC... in the tent (That's how we roll). "Have you ever heard of Breaking Bad?" he asked. We watched all 7 episodes of the first season on his computer and then followed it up with some unrelated HD nature documentaries.

I enjoyed Breaking Bad at the time, but must have forgotten about it because it was about a year later until it came up again. I was in the middle of Lost's final season and while listening to a Lost related podcast (Behind the Cutting Edge), they mentioned a Breaking Bad podcast they were also doing. I proceeded to download the first and second season of Breaking Bad, following up each episode with the corresponding podcast to listen to afterwards.

It wasn't until 3/4 of the way through season 2 that I became hooked. When I found out (Through the Behind the Cutting Edge Podcast) that the Breaking Bad episode titles for season 2 were hints to what was going to happen in the finale, I knew I had to own this show on DVD. Season 2 had 4 episodes with strange introductory sequences, mostly filmed in black and white, that were slowly revealed as the season went on. It wasn't until the finale episode I believe, that it all became clear. I immediately went to Amazon.ca and purchased season 1 on DVD for about $20, quite the sale even though season 1 consists of just 7 episodes. (shortened from the expected 9 episodes because of the writers strike in 2007-08) The show is now currently prepping for season 4 to begin this fall of 2010. I have now found my replacement for the TV series Lost.

This show has an excellent group of writers and cast members, not to mention everyone else involved in the making of this series. from Heisenberg to Gus the chicken man, the characters created for this show are exceptional. I would definitely consider Heisenberg and Walter to be two different characters, despite obviously being the same person, although at where we are at the end of season 3, I don't think there's much of a difference anymore. Early on however, Walter White had to keep up two separate appearances. Heisenberg being of confidence and intimidation and Walt being a passively quiet family man. Part of me wants to see the return of Walt the family man, but that wouldn't be nowhere near as exciting as what we've been watching lately. It is exciting however, watching Walt try to balance his two opposing personalities. The hard-ass drug dealer or the father and husband? I am considerably stoked to see what happens next as we go into season 4 this fall. I have so much more to say about this show, but I'll save it for when Season 4 starts. Thanks for checking this article out.



A few noteworthy things...   (found on Wikipedia)

- Breaking Bad has received critical acclaim in addition to two Emmy Awards for its first season. It won the award for best editing, and Bryan Cranston won for best actor in a drama series. Breaking Bad in 2008 also won a Peabody Award for excellence in television broadcasting.

- The second season opener was watched by 1.7 million people, up 21% from the previous season

-  The second season received Emmy nominations for Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (Bryan Cranston) and Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series (Aaron Paul). Cranston also won for Outstanding Lead Actor

-  The third season premiere was the highest rated episode in the series' history; having been watched by 2 million viewers, with an additional 1.1 million watching while the episode was re-aired later on the premiere night