This goes without saying, but: SPOILER ALERT!
The world saw the end of a great television series yesterday. The finale of AMC’s methamphetamine drama Breaking Bad appears to have overwhelming fan approval. I feel that it was very well done. I think I shed an invisible tear and all. But just a few niggling points stuck in my craw about the end of Walter White’s run as the blue meth kingpin Heisenberg.
1. The cops were absolutely useless. Walt escapes a near-miss with the police just once. After that he was able to drive all over Albuquerque, sneak in to see Skyler, peek in on Walt Jr., meet with Lydia in public at a diner he previously frequented, and gather the tools for his ultimate kill– all without being recognized or tailed? He shows up at his old home and there’s no surveillance? He was supposed to be the subject of a nationwide manhunt and he gallivants throughout town unimpeded. I know he needed to be able to do this for the climax of the episode, but really though?
2. The bows were tied wonderfully, but a little too neatly. Walt’s final triumph was thrilling to watch and I would have been disappointed if his plan had any hitches. But Lydia gets the ricin treatment. The Neo Nazi scumbags get the hand-rigged Gatlin gun. And everybody catches the fade they deserved, just as Walt designed. But how in the world does Walt MacGyver just know how to set up a rotating Gatlin? And I still cannot figure out how he got the ricin in a sealed sugar packet.
3. Skyler did not kill/slap/beat Marie. I think everyone was rooting for the downfall of Marie, if only just to silence her annoying little mouth. She had to have been the show’s best worst character, a former kleptomaniac sitting on moral ground so high that she tries to kidnap her sister’s baby. Just once, I wanted Skyler to do more than take Marie’s lip about the White family: I wanted her to shove a fist in that purple-loving harpy’s gullet! Alas, it was not to be. Vince Gilligan let Marie go out doing what she always did. Jabbering and gossiping and trash-talking. But Skyler herself looked too beat down to give one, anyway.
Breaking Bad is hands-down the best television series I have watched since I discovered The Wire (which is the greatest TV series of all time, don’t argue with me). I will miss the complex progression of Walter White from sickly chemistry teacher to fedora-wearing Heisenberg.
Did you catch the finale? What did you think about the ending?