As I’ve stated before, I grade Breaking Bad on a curve. Even a “bad” episode of Breaking Bad is a million times better than any episode of Two And A Half Men, or 99% of other shows on TV. There is no “bad” episode of Breaking Bad, anyway. There are only episodes ranging from “good” to “holy fucking shit, that was incredible.”
(Catch my write-up of the season premiere here.)
Even after last week’s season premiere, it was unclear what path Breaking Bad would take in its fifth and final season. “Live Free Or Die” was all about cleaning up Season Four’s messes, and “Madrigal” does a little of that before heading in an entirely new and surprising direction.
(Catch up on Season Four here.)
After a rollicking Season Four in which Breaking Bad became, quite deservedly, one of the buzziest shows on TV, the Season Five premiere had a lot to live up to. While a few threads were left unresolved in “Face Off,” in many ways, things were tied off much more neatly than we’re used to from this show. All the most menacing villains were offed in one fell swoop, meaning that vice grip of tension Vince Gilligan held us in over the last season or so was finally relaxed. Now, we can breathe.
Yeah… that was a long time ago. Those were the days before internet streaming and BluRay, so a lot of the material is dated. Funny how things change. The following column captures the shift in the last decade between TV being strictly appointment viewing to the ability to watch your shows whenever and wherever you want.
So here it is.