I now understand all the acclaims this show has received from the general public, critics and award-giving bodies. “Breaking Bad” , which stars Bryan Cranston is a modern take on man’s immortal dilemma between self-doubt and life choices. My only issue was, watching the whole series for almost a week ( all 5) is not exactly healthy and productive to my well-being. Sure it rendered me in awe; the exciting, on-the-edge-of-your-seat plot-twists , finely-written scripts, well made stories and and pace, and the remarkable acting chops of major characters. Those nights I stayed up, constantly in a zombie-like state of numbness and repetitive movements ( mostly, sitting down on my ass for a long period of time and only getting up per episode to do some humanly functions), was so worthy of the short- lived inconvenience.
The whole point of the entire series is the existential classic question: “To be or not to be?”. I read once (in a horoscope) the adage “It is Money not Love that makes the world go round”, and it always stuck to my mind ever since. Call it greed or whatever. Then I kept on hearing the lines “…no matter what we breath/we still are made of greed/this is my kingdom come” from the song “Demons” by Imagine Dragons. Money is the root of all evil, from my habitual sputtering of quotes and sayings for every occasion. In the beginning, the lead protagonist, Walter White leads a respectable and honest life but money, precisely the lack of it, became an issue that gnawed in his mind and left him troubled and anxious. As the head of the family with a newly-recognized crippling disease in the form of Lung Cancer, which led him to ponder the gravity of his situation. He simply can’t leave his family in debts when he is already unable to work and the medical assistance he would require when his family is barely getting by. We see him working as a Chemistry teacher in a local high school and as a cashier, forced to wash cars in car wash shop. His solution came in the form of Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) a former student, now a local drug dealer. He then used his Chemical expertise and as the series progresses, we find Walter White as a brilliant man in his chosen field that his products are the most sought-after drug in the streets because of its purity and signature color. Eventually he began to use an alias,”Heisenberg”, in his dealings. Along with his partner, who supposedly runs the business aspect while he creates, Walt and Jesse’s team were now successful that they move notches and are now involved in a cartel in Mexico and are doing business with a big-time drug dealer, distributing their products across the border and in neighboring states. From a second-hand RV, where they first made their product, to a super-lab in a warehouse in the city, their business venture is expanding but not without the troubles and setbacks that goes with their shady dealings. For one, his brother-in law, a drug enforcement agent, is hot on the trails of this “Heisenberg”, and second, his wife is beginning to suspect something.
It’s engrossing, as the story evolves and we witness Walt as a humble, normal guy to a villainous and manipulative man standing up to his decisions and doing EVERYTHING for self- preservation. Audiences like me can’t help but admire his guts and brilliance. His morality may be in question here but whatever wrong he has done is almost justifiable. For me, the show is like Game of Thrones meets House of Cards, the theme being POWER. I’m certain there are a lot of great television shows out there (along with the crappy ones), but Breaking Bad is one of the best there is. If one wants an entertaining, intellectual but funny piece of TV, this one fits perfectly.