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Old October 4 2013, 01:06 PM   #856
TheGodBen
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

ThunderAeroI wrote: View Post
Let's say I know nothing of Breaking Bad. What would be the quintessential episodes to watch that cover the most of the meta arc?
I agree with everyone else, episodes shouldn't be skipped. Not just because you'd be missing important story development, but because Breaking Bad is the story of the descent of one man from a good guy to a villain. The transformation only works because it's gradual and spread out across 62 episodes. If you start skipping episodes then the whole central concept of the show wouldn't be nearly as effective.

Mr Light wrote: View Post
I might argue that you could skip from the pilot to first appearance of Saul/Gus/Mike and not miss much.
He'd miss the events surrounding Krazy 8, the Gray Matter backstory, the beginnings of Hank's investigation, Walt going on chemo, the Tuco arc, the invention of blue meth, Hector Salamanca, Jesse meeting Jane, Skyler working for Beneke, Hank's PTSD, and Walt and Jesse's attempts to build their own distribution network. All of these elements go on to play a part in the show after the introduction of Saul, many of them being quite important.

On the whole, there's very little fat on Breaking Bad. The only thing that comes to mind is Marie's kleptomania.
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Old October 4 2013, 01:10 PM   #857
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

This show is one long movie cut into 62 parts.
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Old October 4 2013, 01:14 PM   #858
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

I dunno, the entire plane storyline was kind of its own thing. To me the show's plot (not necessarily the character arc mind you) was about the conflict with Gus and the aftermath of it. And I was never particularly enthralled by S1-2. It was Season Three where it really took off for me.
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Old October 4 2013, 02:53 PM   #859
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

I agree seasons 1-2 aren't as high quality as seasons 3 and later. But without the period of the show where Skyler doesn't know yet it's not as powerful when she does know. Without the period where Walt was struggling to start up on his own, in season 3 he's just Gus's bad hiring decision, and it doesn't make any sense when he protects Jesse. Without Walt struggling to avoid getting violence into his business there's no shock when he gets deeply into the violence.

Gus was the beginning of the great part of the show, but it was great because it had themes established in season 1-2 to build from.
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Old October 4 2013, 03:34 PM   #860
Agent Richard07
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

I thought that the first two seasons were fantastic. We got to see a teacher and neighborhood dad break into cooking meth with a former student and getting in over his head. That was some good stuff right there. The cartels and superlabs from later seasons were just a natural progression of that foundation.

Harvey wrote: View Post
The only episode that really could be dropped is "The Fly," from season three.
That was the first episode I thought of. Then I got to your post.
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Old October 4 2013, 05:03 PM   #861
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

ThunderAeroI wrote: View Post
Let's say I know nothing of Breaking Bad. What would be the quintessential episodes to watch that cover the most of the meta arc?
All of them. This series is like a Lego set, all the interlocking pieces fit together with precision. There are no fluff storylines or useless characters.

Sorry to disagree, Harvey, but "Fly" establishes
And that's pretty important, considering what was said from Walt to Jesse in Ozymandias.
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Old October 4 2013, 05:44 PM   #862
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
Gus was the beginning of the great part of the show, but it was great because it had themes established in season 1-2 to build from.
QFT

Pull one thread from this show, and it is not the same show
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Old October 4 2013, 06:50 PM   #863
Emh
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
Evil Headhunter wrote: View Post
I rewatched "Felina" again tonight and I noticed something cool: When Lydia tells Walt he has two minutes to talk, he gets exactly that. Same thing happens when Skyler tells Walt he has five minutes (sans the Holly visit).
You put a clock on it? Wow!

A very engaging interview with BB writers Peter Gould and Thomas Schnauz on NPR's "Fresh Air" today:
http://www.npr.org/2013/10/03/228813...theres-no-more
I listened to this on my way to work this morning. Great conversation about the writing process for Breaking Bad.
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Old October 4 2013, 06:53 PM   #864
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

Initially, Walt's murder of Jesse was the logical conclusion of his choices. But the writers realized they had inadvertently created a yin to Walt's yang, making the series more than an antihero fantasy. In the long run they were quite right, but it did distort the structure of the series for quite some time. A plane blowing up overhead just wasn't the same payoff as Walt killing Jesse would have been.

Later, the series was distorted by the magical powers of Super Bad Ass Gus Fring. Obviously some people loved Gus, a man so bad you could root for Walter White instead, but he really was not good for the series. This is a good point to regret again Breaking Bad's artlessness in dealing with Latino characters. Fring's success in poisoning everybody at a party exactly at the same moment, so quickly they didn't have time to shoot him, was really a moment that deserved a hearty guffaw.

If anything can be skipped, it is the final episode. Granite State showed Walt getting away with it and Granite State showed Walt did it all for nothing important in the end. I suppose if you dislike downers this is unsatisfying, but unlike Felina it was plausible and thematically true.

Skimming around I see that someone called Emily Nussbaum also had the thought that the finale should have been a deathbed delirium.
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Old October 4 2013, 07:30 PM   #865
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

Eh, maybe Walt shouldn't have succeeded at everything in the last episode but it definitely shouldn't have been deathbed-delirium. Copouts like that are a stupid way to end a show.

And if Walt lost, it should have been a likable villain who won, not the Nazis. For example, if Mike hadn't been killed earlier he could have ended up with Walt's money and it would have been satisfying. Or it could have worked as a Chinatown style ending where the well intentioned plot fails because that's just not the way things work.
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Old October 4 2013, 08:02 PM   #866
Robert Maxwell
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

I read something that made the finale not out to be a dream or a fantasy, but essentially Gilligan giving fans two endings: you can have your downer ending with "Granite State," and your fantasy pro-Walt ending with "Felina." Pick whichever one you prefer as your personal "true" ending. I can go for that.

Hell, the way "Granite State" closes, playing the theme song and showing a glass literally half empty/half full pretty much leaves it up to the viewer to decide what becomes of Walt after that. It's a perfect ending all by itself.
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Old October 4 2013, 08:23 PM   #867
Harvey
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

billcosby wrote: View Post
ThunderAeroI wrote: View Post
Let's say I know nothing of Breaking Bad. What would be the quintessential episodes to watch that cover the most of the meta arc?
All of them. This series is like a Lego set, all the interlocking pieces fit together with precision. There are no fluff storylines or useless characters.

Sorry to disagree, Harvey, but "Fly" establishes
And that's pretty important, considering what was said from Walt to Jesse in Ozymandias.
Oh, I know. That's why I said it had an important moment in it, but other than that, I think I might consider it expendable. If I had to let go of an episode.

The Lego set comparison is pretty apt, really. This isn't like Babylon 5 -- there aren't any early, shitty episodes that hardcore fans insist you have to watch because one scene will set up a plot device that will be important two seasons later. Breaking Bad is a tightly written, serial narrative which builds the story and develops the characters every week. It's also consistently excellent throughout its run. Sure, you could take out a few episodes and it would still make sense, but why would you want to?
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Old October 4 2013, 08:31 PM   #868
Harvey
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

stj wrote: View Post
A plane blowing up overhead just wasn't the same payoff as Walt killing Jesse would have been.
The end of season two was written (and shot) at the beginning of season two. Jesse's death -- intended for a season one episode that never filmed because of the writer's strike -- wasn't planned to be Walt's doing. He was going to be killed in a drug deal gone wrong.
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Old October 4 2013, 09:41 PM   #869
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

TheOneWhoKnocks wrote: View Post
marillion wrote: View Post
^^ Plus, after spending time in Vermont, he NEEDED a green chile fix... Who wouldn't?
That was the most unrealistic part of the show, who the hell comes back to New Mexico and his first thought is "Denny's?" That wasn't even the good Denny's Frontiers is two blocks down and a million times better
Right.. New Hampshire..

I would imagine that the Frontier is SO busy all the time, that filming there would have been problematic... That said the Grove is always pretty busy too... Maybe they just didn't want to deal with the hassle...

Love me the Grove.. It's very hipsterdouche, but the food is amazing.. Especially the english muffins... SO good!
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Old October 4 2013, 10:05 PM   #870
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Re: Breaking Bad Final Half Season

I just said Frontier because it was close proximity to where they shot for the show.
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