Breaking Bad Season Two Starts

Breaking BadBreaking Bad is about choices, consequences, and regret. Breaking Bad is about the importance of learning and the application of wisdom. The second season of Breaking Bad starts at 10pm Sunday March 8. If you have not seen the first season yet, you’ve still got time to catch it on On Demand. The pilot episode from season one is available on AMCTV. The basic plot line has mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher Walt White, played by Bryan Cranston, getting into the drug trade with an assist from an overgrown juvenile delinquent former student Jesse Pinkman, played by Aaron Paul, but the clever and beautiful cinematography and the deft characterization and plotting in the writing and the pitch perfect acting all come together to make Breaking Bad so much more than just a fish out of water story. Not that the fish out of water aspect doesn’t get some terrific laughs. Don’t worry because, in addition to ruminations on the meaning of life and self-determination, Breaking Bad also features funny parts, explosions, and fight scenes. Additionally, Emmy winner and CSI alum Michael Slovis does an incredible job as director of photography with the look and feel of the show.

Some of the most entertaining moments are when the expectation is that one character will handle a situation and it turns out that someone else is better suited. But, when you think about it, the less obvious character really does have the better skill set. Jesse is charismatic, intelligent, and witty at first glance, but he is weak and having blown off school has limited his options, even as a meth dealer. Walt is retiring and seems more weak and less charismatic at first glance, but he has a more iron core, the sense of responsibility which comes from his loving if overbearing family, and the strength, freedom, and feeling of being on one’s Breaking Badlast chance which come from knowing that his lung cancer is probably a death sentence. A lot of it is contextual. A head shaved for chemo can look small and tragic in one context and badass and not to be trifled with in another. Actor Bryan Cranston, once best known as Hal on Malcom in the Middle, won the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for his nuanced portrayal of Walter H. White. As things play out, one realizes that Bryan Cranston’s Walt once had a promising and potentially lucrative research career. In the first season, we don’t know yet whether his partners did anything off or if he walked away to start a family or otherwise take the path to a very ordinary life. So, even before finding out he was most likely dying, Walt felt that melancholy creeping sense of being at a stage of life where the questions start sounding less like “what if” and more like “if only”. In a way, the story is about a mid-life crisis ratcheted up to maximum volume, but communicated in a manner which is sympathetic, poetic, and ultimately empowering.

Jesse might be a little lazy and not know his chemistry as well as would be ideal for the local methamphetamine aficionados and he might not be the best at standing up to alpha personalities except in an ineffectual smartass fashion, but he is young and there is clearly potential there. Aaron Paul, as Jesse, and Bryan Cranston play off one another well. The only things I’ve ever seen Aaron Paul in are an episode of CSI and Sleeper Cell where he played Teen #1, but he has guested on like half the shows on television and most notably has an important recurring role on HBO’s Big Love and is appearing in Last House on the Left, directed by Wes Craven which opens this coming week. With Jesse’s character the show becomes not just about middle-aged regrets, but about all the little choices we make all along and all the little deaths by regret we experience. Having the spectrum of Jesse to Walt makes the story very universal.

You can check out Walt, Jesse, Walt’s overbearing but loving wife frustrated writer Skyler White, Skyler’s competitive shoplifter sister Marie, Marie’s super-overbearing macho but well-meaning DEA agent husband Hank Schrader, and Walt and Skyler’s son Walter Jr. who, despite having cerebral palsy, seems far more well-adjusted and content than many of the other characters, on Breaking BadAMC March 8 Sunday at 10pm or later on On Demand. X-Files alum Vince Gilligan created the offbeat Breaking Bad and is credited as having both written and executive produced 20 episodes of the show, so I’m guessing we’ll get to enjoy a third season as well. The other executive producer on the show is Oscar-winner Mark Johnson who has worked on such a large string of hits and great movies that it almost seems like overkill, including Galaxy Quest, Diner, Kafka, Rain Man, Donnie Brasco, Home Fries, Narnia, the list goes on.

AMC stands for American Movie Classics because they got their start inexpensively licensing old classic films, but, wow, when AMC decided to get into producing original television, they kicked things off producing two of the best shows ever made by any network with Mad Men and Breaking Bad. I can’t imagine a more impressive start. AMC produced some of the best shows on television last year.


Posted by on March 8, 2009. Filed under Blue Blood. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Blue Blood
Trappings | Personalities | Galleries | Entertainment | Art | Books | Music | Popcorn | Sex | Happenings | Oddities | Trade/Business | Manifesto | Media | Community
Blue Blood | Contact Us | Advertise | Submissions | About Blue Blood | Links | $Webmasters$
Interested in being a Blue Blood model, writer, illustrator, or photographer? Get in touch