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12/27/2012

Breaking Bad Season 1 reviewed


Ah, the hilarity. I have avoided watching Breaking Bad for as long as I did because I didn't trust the hype around the serial drama. There is this big glorification fuss about it that I turn up my nose at, especially in light of the fact that it revolves around the world of drugs, drug production, cartels and drug use. Not wanting to be the judgmental police here, but I find coolness hypes involving criminals annoying. Like not turning around when something explodes behind your back, that kind of thing; just stupid, especially when utilized to portray degrees of "badassness" in characters.

I knew beforehand that the series has some of that- but I also knew myself well enough to expect that once I get sucked into a new and exciting world, there is hardly a way out except to watch it, all of it. I didn't like 24 all that much, and still I couldn't bring myself to stop watching it. Now, that Breaking Bad is in its fifth and final season, hubby and I bought the first season on Blu-ray.

Teacher goes meth cook: The journey of W. White aka Heisenberg

It is an extremely odd series, especially the first couple of episodes. Odd in the sense that it wants to be different, dark and edgy, and it only partially succeeds in being that. The pilot was good, plausible, intriguing and it introduced the show and cast well enough. The events leading to the meltdown of its main character, Walter White, chemistry teacher, and the one breaking bad are reasonable, albeit laid on a little thick. The acting is really good, exceptional on Cranston's and Paul's part, and over time some of the episodes develop a bone-chilling dark humor that is rare on TV; plus the science MacGyver alcove complements the format.

The moral implications of becoming a criminal however, well, they are not dealt with to my full satisfaction. I get it, the writers can't let their characters mull over every impossible decision they have to face, lying, cheating, breaking laws to cover up tracks and all that. And yet I expected them to come up with a little more than the usual "If I don't do this, they will find out" -justifications. Especially because shining a light on the various aspects of morality is the supposed flagship of this series.

Following this, I'll give Season 1 a C+. It makes some efforts, but it is not quite there. I am completely aware that TV series rarely arrive at their full potential in season 1. I'll give it more time (and buy and watch seasons 2, 3 and 4 in the meantime).



Breaking Bad from Nlp Edit on Vimeo. The teaser for the first season.