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The parallels of good and evil.
on October 13, 2011
The best television dramas of all time don't TELL you what is good or bad, or WHO is good or bad - they let people be people, and then you form your own opinions of the characters. From the Sopranos, to the Wire, to the Shield, and now Breaking Bad. And honestly, I think this may surpass them all, even the Sopranos.
Meet Walter White. Well, if you're already on Season 4, I assume you know his story. From dorky chemistry teacher/car wash worker to million-dollar methamphetamine cook, the transformation is unbelievable, yet believable at the same time. You know his story, how he got here, and it all seems to fit. The writers have made it clear for a long time that Breaking Bad was similar to Scarface - that Walt is comparable to the transformation of Mr. Chips to Scarface, and this season shows that perfectly.
Walt has and still believes coming into season 4 that he is doing this all for his family. But is he? How far will he go? And is this all for money, or something else? We get to see many ethical dilemmas and inner moral battles in most of the characters this season - Walt, Skyler, Jesse, Mike, Hank, Marie and even maybe a small glimpse into the past of chicken man and meth king-pin - Gustavo Fring.
Each episode gets more and more dark (did you think it was possible?), and Walt continues to surprise the audience with strange decisions and a terrifying look into the path he is going down. If you look back at season 1 episode 1, before the meth and cancer, that angry, tortured individual was already inside of him. That results in the question: was Walt ever even really that good of a guy? He hasn't changed as much as you may think, but his anguish, pain, and stress is amplified by about 200x. And as expected, the end of each episode is usually a major cliff-hanger, and you'll be begging for more.
The acting is nothing but simply perfect. Bryan Cranston as Walt will make you laugh, cry, or even get angry with him. Giancarlo Esposito as Gus becomes a huge player this season, and he should be up for an Emmy. The glazed, empty, evil look in his eyes is terrifying, and there aren't many boundaries he won't cross to get what he wants.
This is definitely the darkest, thought-provoking, best acted show on television at the moment, and maybe ever. If you haven't watched it, start from the beginning and follow Walt's odd and morally perplexing adventure into the life of a meth cook.