By: Jamie Samuelsen
I feel like I need to start this post with a spoiler alert.
If you’re not caught up on Breaking Bad, stop reading. Immediately.
In this day and age of DVDs, DVRs and On Demand there seems to be a two to three week silent period before you’re allowed to comment on a TV show. I once tweeted out a major plot development at the tail end of Season 4 (Spoiler Alert – Gus died) and many of my Twitter friends (including Fox 2’s Dan Miller) wanted to kill me, either with a box-cutter, ricin or Lily of the Valley (And if you don’t watch Breaking Bad, that last sentence will make no sense.) I was defiant at first that I was in the right. But now I can admit that behavior was unacceptable.
There are seven episodes remaining in this amazing show after a great premiere episode on Sunday night. It’s exciting and sad at the same time. We want to see how the show ends, but we desperately don’t want it to end. Some shows run their course so that by the end, they’re limping to the finish line (24!). Other shows feel like they have so much more to give (The Wire). Put Breaking Bad into the second category. But perhaps the story of Walter White has reached its conclusion. How much more evil can he get? And how much longer can he evade his brother-in-law Hank and the DEA?
Nobody seems to know how this show can possibly end. And nobody knows if it’s possible to satisfy all the viewers. Most shows fail in this attempt. “Sopranos” fans are still angry about the cut to black as Tony and his family met for dinner. “Seinfeld” remains the single worst finale I’ve ever seen of a beloved show. But some shows can get it right. “Friday Night Lights” had a brilliant finale (and if you’ve never seen FNL, do yourself a favor…rent it…tonight!)
I don’t have a clue where show runner Vince Gilligan will take us. But here are a few theories. If you’re a Breaking Bad fan – I’d love to hear your theories as well and maybe we can exchange thoughts as the series winds down.
1) I think Jesse is going to flip on Walt and go to Hank or the Feds. His downward spiral into depression is getting a little tough to watch. Something has to be left for him to do. And given the fact that he was last seen throwing his “blood money” out the window of his car, he’s clearly living a rather reckless life. He doesn’t care anymore, so he might be willing to confess if it makes him feel like he’s atoning for his sins. If he ever finds out that Walt tried to kill Brock, then all bets are off.
2) I think Jesse is the one who vandalized the White home and spray-painted “Heisenberg” on the walls. It’s like the story out of Detroit this week where someone painted “Rapist” on the apartment building of a suspected rapist because they felt that the police weren’t doing anything about the threat to their neighborhood.
3) Hank will “Break Bad” this season in his obsession over how to pin all of the crimes on Walt. You can already see his dark side coming through. Walt is smart enough to stay one step ahead of him the same way Gus was able to stay ahead of him. So Hank will resort to immoral tactics to try to bring down Walt. It will either land him in trouble with his bosses or kill him.
4) The Walt/Hank showdown will end up with one of them dead. I think Walt will kill Hank. This is why Walt is on the run in the flash-forward. This is why Walt has a heavy assault rifle. He’s preparing for the possibility that dozens of law enforcement officials will be coming after him and he has to be prepared. (Then again, he also might be preparing himself to deal with Lydia’s people who are obviously displeased that the quality of crystal meth has declined since Walt stopped cooking.)
5) I think Walt dies eventually. If he lives, there will be the sense of wondering what he will do next. And yes, there will be some people clamoring for a movie. Plus, Gilligan has always said that the story of Breaking Bad is the story of turning “Mr. Chips into Scarface.” Well, we all know how Tony Montana’s story ended. Walt was a character we rooted for in Season 1 and will end as a character we’re rooting for die at the end of Season 5. Walt’s killer? Jesse is the first character who comes to mind. But that does seem a little too convenient.
Those are my theories. I reserve the right to revisit and revise them after next week’s episode. And I’ll write a new post after each new episode right until the very end.
What are your theories? And what did you think of the premiere? Email me – firstname.lastname@example.org.