Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Impossible Choices? The Conservatism of "Breaking Bad"
Truth-Out ^ | August 30, 2012 | Michael Corcoran

Posted on 08/24/2013 2:39:14 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued

"Breaking Bad" is a fascinating show. But efforts to compare it to "The Wire," which systematically analyzed American institutions and the American experience, are misguided. "Breaking Bad" is fundamentally a conservative show that is all about the individual.

This Sunday (September 2) AMC will air the final episode of part one of it's fifth and final season of "Breaking Bad," an immensely popular and critically acclaimed show about a down-on-his luck high school chemistry teacher who, after being diagnosed with terminal cancer, starts a life as a crystal methamphetamine manufacturer. The high praise of the show is largely warranted: the premise is fascinating, the photography and acting is superb and the drama intense. Some have even dared to suggest that "Breaking Bad" represents the best that modern television has to offer, even surpassing HBO's the "Wire" as the greatest show of its time.

(Excerpt) Read more at truth-out.org ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; US: New Mexico
KEYWORDS: breakingbad; bryancranston; lospolloshermanos; vamonospest
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-95 next last

1 posted on 08/24/2013 2:39:14 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: fieldmarshaldj; AuH2ORepublican; Impy; GOPsterinMA; randita; Sun; LdSentinal; ExTexasRedhead; ...

I wish I had watched this show. I haven’t see it yet and encourage comment from those who have. The story of a meth dealer does not sound like a show with a conservative message, but it’s worth noting that a number of mobsters from the 1950’s and 1960’s were staunch Republicans.


2 posted on 08/24/2013 2:41:21 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued (The War on Drugs is Big Government statism)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

The article is a year old, just in case some people miss that.


3 posted on 08/24/2013 2:43:21 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Who knew that one day professional wrestling would be less fake than professional journalism?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

“staunch Republicans”

or they just wanted to pay less taxes?


4 posted on 08/24/2013 2:43:34 PM PDT by GeronL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Talisker; discostu

This again.


5 posted on 08/24/2013 2:43:49 PM PDT by Borges
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

It’s a great show. I haven’t gleamed any political message from it though.


6 posted on 08/24/2013 2:45:39 PM PDT by Impy (RED=COMMUNIST, NOT REPUBLICAN)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued
I can't wait to find out what Walt plans on doing with the M60 in the trunk of the Caddy he purchased at Denny's on his 52nd birthday.


7 posted on 08/24/2013 2:46:05 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Who knew that one day professional wrestling would be less fake than professional journalism?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

I doubt Walter White pays any tax on his drug money.


8 posted on 08/24/2013 2:50:59 PM PDT by Waryone (Anyone who advocates excusing Rubio's lying, traitorous behavior is GOPe.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

You should sign up with netflix and watch it from the beginning. It is great.


9 posted on 08/24/2013 2:57:41 PM PDT by gorush (History repeats itself because human nature is static)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

We watched it from the beginning on Netflicks. We are waiting for the Netfliks final addition. We like watching one segment after another without the commercials.


10 posted on 08/24/2013 3:00:12 PM PDT by wintertime
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued
I read this last year - what tripe. Bad is phenomenally engrossing, especially for us chemistry majors.

The writer of this dreck blames capitalism on the downfall of Baltimore. Yeah right.

11 posted on 08/24/2013 3:02:45 PM PDT by corkoman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

I can’t watch the show myself. Too much language, realism in violence, and extremely intense situations for me. But my husband and son absolutely love the show.

Walter is a prideful man who though down on his luck (he develops cancer, his wife is expecting, his teenage son has cerebral palsy), will not take help from anyone — not friends, certainly not govt. He is almost like a modern day moonshiner fighting against the revenuers. One of which happens to be his brother-in-law.

If you are up to stomaching realistic gore and violence, creepy and extremely intense situations, you may enjoy it as much as the rest of my family.


12 posted on 08/24/2013 3:04:24 PM PDT by Waryone (Anyone who advocates excusing Rubio's lying, traitorous behavior is GOPe.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

I actually have watched Breaking Bad since Season 1. The premise of Malcolm in the Middle’s dad being a meth dealer seemed pretty far fetched at first. Wow was I ever wrong. Cranston’s three consecutive emmys are well deserved.


13 posted on 08/24/2013 3:06:24 PM PDT by catfish1957 (Face it!!!! The government in DC is full of treasonous bastards)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

Less tax or fewer taxes.


14 posted on 08/24/2013 3:10:28 PM PDT by arthurus (Read Hazlitt's Economics In One Lesson ONLINE http://steshaw.org/econohttp://www.fee.org/library/det)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: E. Pluribus Unum

That M60 weighs 20lbs with a loaded mag. Walt is not planning to carry that thing into battle. Must be part of a plan for a ‘last stand’. Its just the best show on TV. Along with game of thrones.


15 posted on 08/24/2013 3:11:34 PM PDT by corkoman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued
Breaking Bad is a much better show than The Wire. As far as the show having messages, political or otherwise, it has one fundamental message which is that acting bad is not consequence free. The consequences may take years to catch up with you, but catch up with they will.

Or put another way, there's a freight train of karma coming at Walter White and there is nothing he can do to step out of its way.

16 posted on 08/24/2013 3:12:08 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

It’s absolutely fascinating. Walter White’s decent into evil is magnificent acting by Bryan Cranston. Of course it’s also filmed in Albuqeurque, and I know most of the places where it was shot.


17 posted on 08/24/2013 3:12:27 PM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued
Breaking Bad Seasons 1 thru 5
18 posted on 08/24/2013 3:14:18 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: catfish1957
Cranston’s three consecutive emmys are well deserved.

Agreed. But I've never figured out his compulsion on both shows to romp around in his Jockey shorts.

19 posted on 08/24/2013 3:17:46 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: arthurus

both


20 posted on 08/24/2013 3:22:40 PM PDT by GeronL
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: Waryone

Sales tax for every legal product he buys?


21 posted on 08/24/2013 3:23:05 PM PDT by 3Fingas (Sons and Daughters for Freedom and Restoration of the Republic)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Bernard Marx
But I've never figured out his compulsion on both shows to romp around in his Jockey shorts.

Just keeping it real. The producer and him come up with it. Tighty-whiteys lent more realism than boxers they thought.

22 posted on 08/24/2013 3:24:12 PM PDT by BipolarBob
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

Hard to believe he was the dentist on Seinfeld who became Jewish just so he could tell better jokes.

23 posted on 08/24/2013 3:24:51 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (21st century. I'm not a fan.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

I wouldn’t exactly call it a conservative show but there has been some real genius behind the writing and casting.

Taking Hal from Malcolm in the Middle and slowly twisting him into this conniving, manipulative, murderous drug lord took a true craftsman. You couldn’t have made the show with anyone other than Brian Cranston.


24 posted on 08/24/2013 3:25:51 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

It’s a very entertaining show, but I don’t see much that is conservative about it. I think most of us here on this site (a conservative site if there ever was one) would not choose to start a meth business if we were diagnosed with terminal cancer. That seems like something a liberal would do even if he did not have cancer.


25 posted on 08/24/2013 3:26:43 PM PDT by 3Fingas (Sons and Daughters for Freedom and Restoration of the Republic)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: catfish1957

I call it Breaking Hal.


26 posted on 08/24/2013 3:28:10 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: BipolarBob

LOL - I’m a tighty-whitey man myself.


27 posted on 08/24/2013 3:34:39 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

28 posted on 08/24/2013 3:35:55 PM PDT by JoeProBono (Mille vocibus imago valet;-{)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: vbmoneyspender
Or put another way, there's a freight train of karma coming at Walter White and there is nothing he can do to step out of its way.

I don't see him escaping the karma so much as I see him running from it and just barely staying ahead of it so far. Every bad decision he's made has been an act of desperation to escape karma but have only built a bigger heap of bad juju.

Jessie is trying to escape his Karma by a more traditional means of atonement.

My personal opinion of what's coming is that Walter is going to win the lottery with the ticket he's using to remember where he buried the barrels of cash.
29 posted on 08/24/2013 3:37:24 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued
I resisted watching this show, despite the great reviews and word of mouth, precisely because of the subject matter. Wasn't interested in a "drug" story.

However, a couple of years ago, hubby and I were bored with nothing but summer fare, and we decided to try Breaking Bad. If we didn't like it, we would stop watching. Well, we got hooked. The great thing about Netflix is that you can watch whole seasons. So, I would recommend the show. Bryan Cranston's performance is really good and tells me that this guy is just a great actor, when I had thought of him as simply a comedic actor -- good; but, not until I saw this show did I realize his depth.

Give it a go, it you don't like it, stop watching. But, I'll bet you get hooked just like everyone else.

30 posted on 08/24/2013 3:41:02 PM PDT by LibertarianLiz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

I was a bit late to the party on Breaking Bad but that only means I got to power watch the first three seasons in about three weeks on Netflicks, which was awesome. Best drama on TV without a doubt and one of my favorite shows of all time. I thinks it’s better than “The Wire”, which is not a criticism of “The Wire” (I loved it) but high praise for BB. Cranston is just awesome. And his writers give him an excellent script to work with. There are few actors who can do side splitting comedy and high drama with equal skill and Cranston is one of them.


31 posted on 08/24/2013 3:42:00 PM PDT by circlecity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: wintertime
We like watching one segment after another without the commercials

So do I and my hubby. We lucked out and our cable company, about a month ago, had available the first half of this last season. So, we caught up and are now watching the final episodes as they are shown weekly. We record them, and then just zip past the commercials.

32 posted on 08/24/2013 3:43:25 PM PDT by LibertarianLiz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Waryone
extremely intense situations

The stand-off between Hank and Walt in Walt's garage, a couple of weeks ago, was the most intense few minutes of television I have seen in quite a while.

33 posted on 08/24/2013 3:45:02 PM PDT by LibertarianLiz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

Haven’t seen the show, but it doesn’t really surprise me. Vince Gilligan did a lot of writing for the X-Files and a lot of subversively conservative themes wound their way into the story arc. There’s a fascinating assessment of the phenomenon here:

http://takimag.com/article/the_truth_about_the_x-files/print#axzz2cvfw6rgC


34 posted on 08/24/2013 3:47:26 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Qui me amat, amat et canem meum.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: E. Pluribus Unum

I’m guessing it has something to do with Todd’s relatives.


35 posted on 08/24/2013 3:47:26 PM PDT by Future Snake Eater (CrossFit.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

I MISSED LAST WEEKS SHOW!!! DOES ANYONE HAVE IT RECORDED???

CAN I COME OVER????


36 posted on 08/24/2013 3:48:15 PM PDT by Mr. K (Lies, Damned Lies, Statistics, and then Democrat Talking Points.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: LibertarianLiz
There is a theory bouncing around the internet that the final scene of the series is Walt waking up from surgery and realizing it was all a dream.

If that is how the show ends I am personally going to see to it that Vince Gilligan gets "a vacation in Belize...!"

37 posted on 08/24/2013 3:48:31 PM PDT by Mad Dawgg (If you're going to deny my 1st Amendment rights then I must proceed to the 2nd one...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: Mad Dawgg

I want him to wake up as Hal from Malcolm in the Middle.


38 posted on 08/24/2013 3:51:58 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: Mr. K

Last weeks episode should run again on AMC right before the new episode tomorrow.


39 posted on 08/24/2013 3:54:47 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: Mr. K

http://www.solarmovie.so/tv/breaking-bad-2008/season-5/episode-10/


40 posted on 08/24/2013 4:04:02 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: wintertime

BB is one of the best shows I’ve ever seen.

Netflix has up to ep8 S5.


41 posted on 08/24/2013 4:05:13 PM PDT by bicyclerepair (Inbred, pedophile-worshipping, misogynists (mozlums) offend me.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Waryone

My son was begging me to watch it, but he got me actually started on episode one when I was newly pregnant. I could get through a few episodes, but wasn’t really enjoying it, and came to the “bathtub episode” where I had to STOP WATCHING. Lol. We picked up again after the baby was born, and I got totally hooked. Now I’m watching this last half season live.

The show is extremely well written, acted, edited, and shot. The state of New Mexico should get a Best Supporting Actor nod. Amazing characters and more addictive than the Heisenberg Blue Meth.


42 posted on 08/24/2013 4:09:40 PM PDT by Yaelle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Clintonfatigued

Loved The Wire, guess I’ll have to give Breaking Bad another chance.


43 posted on 08/24/2013 4:10:14 PM PDT by exPBRrat
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: vbmoneyspender

Say my name.


44 posted on 08/24/2013 4:11:37 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: gorush; Clintonfatigued

I agree.

To be appreciated it must be watched from the beginning. It is very convoluted with plots and sub plots and subsub plots. I have watched it more than once to develop an understanding of what actually took place.

The conservative aspect are the family life of the two sisters. Walt and Skyler pretty much have an average middle class family. He is a chemistry teacher. In Albuquerque. Aside from being the most wealthy and capable meth cook and dealer, Walt is a down to earth great middle class guy. His wife Skyler struggles constantly to be a mom and a wife.

Skyler’s sister is a wonderfully written flake who has purple everything except kids. Her husband id the DEA agent in Charge for New Mexico.

The tension between the sisters and the brothers in law that are actually great pals make for great drama

Unlike the various bad guys against whom Walt is pitted, he is smart. He uses his intellect and education to prevail.

Jessee provides a window into the American seamy culture of poorly educated but middle class young men that deal drugs. Jessee is a tragedy. He is a criminal with misplaced honor.

The worst character is the lawyer. He plays all side against the middle and is a totally disgusting but skilled individual.

Breaking Bad reveals a very wide cross section of America

The best episode is called Face Off, a genuine life and death encounter between two powerful men. It is a great tragic comedy scene .

I’ll miss this Sunday but will tape it.

My question is why did Walt return to a fenced in weed over grown former home with all his hair (chemo treatment for his cancer was hard on his hair) and retrieve a vial of sarin powder he synthesized to kill his arch enemy.


45 posted on 08/24/2013 4:17:02 PM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Travon... Felony assault and battery hate crime)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: cripplecreek
Another show that is really fun to watch is Strike Back on Cinemax. It's politically incorrect in that it paints the West's special forces as the good guys and the Middle Eastern terrorists as the bad guys.

My favorite line from last season was an episode that took place in Alergia. The good guys were getting help from a local Berber woman in tracking down an Arab carrying nuclear triggers. They were holed up with a couple of Algerians on a farm and surrounded by the terrorists who were trying to kill them. During downtime, one of the Algerians is critical of the Berber woman for helping the special forces guys and says to her: "They just use you and move on." She then turns to the Algerian Arab and says to him, "At least they leave. We've been waiting a thousand years for you to leave and you still haven't."

Smack. Pow. Zing.

http://www.solarmovie.so/tv/strike-back-2010/

46 posted on 08/24/2013 4:28:16 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: exPBRrat

The Wire. The Shield. Breaking Bad are my favorites in that order .


47 posted on 08/24/2013 4:31:34 PM PDT by Blackirish (Forward Comrades!!!!!!!!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: cripplecreek
My favorite scene from last week was when Saul Goodman's black bodyguard and white do-whatever-Saul-tells-him-to-do employee go to retrieve Walt's stash of cash from the storage unit where the money is located at. When Saul's black bodyguard sees the money neatly stacked in a bed-size rectangle, he insists on laying down on the money just to see what it feels like and he then convinces his compatriot to do the same.

That scene was classic Breaking Bad.

48 posted on 08/24/2013 4:41:48 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: vbmoneyspender

Yeah that was typical of the odd moments of humor in the show.


49 posted on 08/24/2013 4:45:21 PM PDT by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 48 | View Replies]

To: Future Snake Eater; corkoman
And/or Lydia.

She's one of the scariest bad guys I've ever seen. That scene of her leaving the underground lab in her high heels with her eyes closed was priceless.

Next question. What will Walt do with the ricin?

50 posted on 08/24/2013 4:52:57 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Who knew that one day professional wrestling would be less fake than professional journalism?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-95 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson