Created on: February 24, 2013 Last Updated: February 25, 2013
Now in its fifth (and what will be final) season, “Breaking Bad” has been a wildly successful series for the AMC cable channel. The series and its actors have won 35 awards to date, including seven Emmys, while being nominated for more than 100 awards. The American Film Institute has called “Breaking Bad” one of the top 10 television series, and the Saturn Award, Writers Guild of America and TCA all agree based on their own accolades of the show.
Breaking Bad storyline
Ironically, at the center of the series is Walter White (played brilliantly by Bryan Cranston), a New Mexico high school chemistry teacher diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. To ensure the financial security of his family, his wife Skyler (played by Anna Gunn) and teenage son with Cerebral Palsy (played by RJ Mitte), White decides to switch to a more financially lucrative profession.
His fearlessness in the face of his impending death from cancer frees him from the normal societal constraints. Instead of meekly accepting his fate, Walter White, along with a former pupil, Jesse Pinkman (played by Aaron Paul), gets into the world of methamphetamines, and White eventually finds himself in the role of drug kingpin, quite unwittingly. This, of course, is not without its own hazards.
In Season 5 of the series (the first half of which has recently concluded), the plot focuses on Walter White’s actions in continuing to build a drug empire of his own, following the death of Gus (Gustavo) Fring, who had used his fast food chain as a cover for his drug empire. There is also increasing tension between Walter and his wife, as she struggles to accept Walt’s new role.
The end of the line
The season 5 finale (which is also the series finale) will come about in the summer of 2013, when the last eight episodes are shown. While there has been some speculation that the series may continue beyond this, creator Vince Gilligan has largely shot this down. Rumors have also surfaced that there may be the possibility of a movie based on the series (although Gilligan has suggested that the rumors may be coming from Cranston).
It seems more likely that Gilligan will create a spin-off, based on Saul Goodman, the corrupt lawyer played by Bob Odenkirk, based on comments he made at the 2012 Comic-Con. Part of the impetus driving the end of the show is the feeling that the character Walter White has only so much more darkness he could sink into, “only so much criminality and immorality he could succumb to,” in the words of Vince Gilligan. While Gilligan has taken Walter from “Mr. Chips to Scarface,” in a very unusual twist for television, he does not want to risk ruining what he has created by prolonging it.
Moreover, it seems that Gilligan wants viewers to see the moral consequences for Walt. Said Gilligan, “I feel some sort of need for biblical atonement, or justice, or something. I like to believe there is some comeuppance, that karma kicks in at some point, even if it takes years or decades to happen.”
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