I love, love, love the series Breaking Bad, so much so I’m hailing its praises in a second post to satiate my curiosity as to why it is that we root for Walter White the drug producer – a drug maker for crying out loud! Still, why do we love him? My second question is, is he really breaking bad or is he systematically doing some mend work, in himself and in the fabric of our broken and falling apart society? So lets’ enjoy TV instead –shall we, because we can.
I know nothing of drugs, and I’m boring that way. Someone who never did drugs, don’t envision starting the costly and unsanitary hobby now in my really late thirties. And, who can tell you that the closest I ever got to drugs was possibly the time I inadvertently and by mistake brushed up against a drug addict while in the produce aisle ,at the supermarket, as we were going for the same bell shaped tomato. I really wanted to make a salad for supper that evening—the junkie declared the bell shaped tomato was Jesus. Salad! Jesus! Salad, Big-Guy!– the produce clerk had to come and break it up— We both walked away from that tomato, that day. But that’s it– otherwise – I’m boring. You see my dilemma and why I have to live vicariously through all episodes of Breaking Bad where Walter White’s main character lives out the most outrageous and completely deliberate plans to stay financially afloat in this ever-sinking economic world. Drugs is only the secondary issue here. Round these parts, drugs are just the conduit to Walter’s bad –which needs breaking then setting right.
This modest teacher, husband, father turned sick guy and good to no one without insurance has to protect his family somehow… bread winner/ bad breaker –same thing. What’s so bad about that—so far-nothing? Its just that what starts out as easy money while putting his chemists smarts into little plastic baggies and producing the much coveted white stuff (which may as well be icing sugar to me $2.99 for 15 kilos at Shaw’s this week—a lot of frosting!).. overnight turns into “ hey, if I can make a hundred easy dollars – I can make a hundred thousand easy dollars. And, well… everything is the matter with that –shocking, gross injustice and go-for-it-on-our-behalves-Walter, because lets be honest, who wouldn’t take this mission on while playing in Hollywoods’, backyard where there’s only Hollywood jail to contend to.
Walter, now sick guy, makes the leap from thinking of his family’s future through a little elicit and shady money making practice –you know to pay off the mortgage, college fund for the kiddies, nest-egg thinking—no one gets hurt. To saving his family from angered and jaded feeling, scumbag drug lords(the real bad guys who deal drugs to get money, a little like Walt but different, and whose panties get wedged so far up their butts with sheer and poignant and ouchy –envy for Walt’s magic recipe. They now want to kill his family, composed of a blond lady Nice n’ Easy #14, a handicapped teen and a wee little baby. He has to protect them at any cost, at a hundred million dollar cost. He can, he must, he will. Ohhhhh! my drughero! Now, he’s become so bad – he’s good at making us love him for it.
Why I root for Walter White is really telling about me – about us all if we root for him, and we should all be rooting for him –in unison. But quietly, keeping it down to a low roar however, we don’t want neighbour Officer Joe O’Reily listening in on all the ‘happy’ going on in our apartment. Shhhhh… I feel so vicariously bad and vindicated as I’m watching BB –that I want to smoke my popcorn and inject the Pepsi I’m sipping or own and operate a really mini meth lab myself… kidding… about all those things, of course. I’ll just sit here quietly, and revel in the powerplayer of the century- WW instead. Walter is good guy who’s forced to do some bad, bad things. He’s at gunpoint when he does those bad, bad things—but he, himself is pointing the gun to his head. Drama!
Walt is living the American dream— awake. Thus, converting the dream into biting realism or a really intensely and brilliantly scripted nightmare. In fact, Breaking Bad is the meeting point at which the sleeping dream seizes and slapping reality stomps right in and directs the show from here. In our own lives we’ve come to this particular juncture many-a-times ourselves in less lucrative ways. We relate to Breaking Bad because its our own personal push reaching shove and how we deal – not drugs, but how we deal any which we know. Confronting and combatting our own demons using our natural resources to get through and hopefully make sense out of senseless.
Walter accomplishes this feat by making money out of someone else’s hardship but the hardship here is already and unfortunately a sinking ship. And so Walter decides every time, as anyone would if we were asked to decide quick, that since there is only so much air time to repent and come clean, that there is no time to waste and off with his head while he fights the good fight and for the greater good who deserves a chance. It’s a jungle out there, survival of the fittest becomes a mind game. Harsh, but we’re not watching Gilligan’s Island when watching Breaking Bad. Although we could say its Vince Gilligans’ Island— creator of the show.
If you look up “Breaking Bad” in the dictionary, it ought to be in there by now, it means smooth. I’m gonna do it, I am going to rate this series, because its my post so I can do what I want… I’m going to give Breaking Bad two unbroken and pretty thumbs up.