All ‘Breaking Bad’ Things Must Come to a (Hopefully Good) End

I love Breaking Bad. When I started watching it on Netflix I blew through all of the episodes in probably a week or two. Its intense and compelling story of meth cooking and drug dealing is itself a drug, and I’m an addict.

This is why I was so bummed when it didn’t win any Golden Globes this past weekend. Bryan Cranston, especially, I thought deserved to win best actor in a television drama series. Granted, I haven’t really watched Homeland (don’t kill me) or any of the other shows with actors up in this category except for Mad Men (and mm, Jon Hamm – I would have been okay with his beautiful mug winning too), but I still find it hard to imagine that anyone could have done anything better than Cranston’s gritty, complex, and oddly endearing performance.

With only half a season left, Breaking Bad is soon sadly coming to an end, but I think it is a testament to Vince Gilligan’s expertise at what he does that this series does have an end in mind. Rather than just trying to take the show as long as he possibly can, stringing us all along, it’s actually going somewhere. This is an important thing to keep in mind for anyone who is devising, writing, running, directing, or producing a television series. In the end, you don’t want to leave things hanging or bore your viewers with an aimless overarching narrative. Despite the serial nature of the medium, you still have to have a complete story and a conclusion in mind.

In this article Vince Gilligan discusses the difficulties of concluding the series. It’s definitely an interesting read. Let me know what you think of his comments and his process. How do you think it should end?

Ten Things on Vince Gilligan’s Mind As He Writes the Final Episodes of Breaking Bad
Denise Martin @ Vulture

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We’re not gonna please everyone, we’re not gonna please everyone … This is what I keep telling myself so I can sleep at night,” Vince Gilligan laughed last month, even though he wasn’t exactly joking. When he spoke to Vulture, he was putting the finishing touches on the story for the third to last episode, getting very close to tackling the series finale (the show’s last stretch of eight episodes airs on AMC later this year).

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‘Once Upon a Time’: The Show I Love to Hate

With Once Upon a Time returning to TV this Sunday, I have to admit, I am filled with antici…

…pation.

This show has some of my favorite writers on its staff, including the incomparable Jane Espenson, yet despite a great team and a fascinating premise, I still find myself eagerly picking apart every episode as it airs, finding its weaknesses and the parts that don’t make sense. It seems that, ever since the mysterious twists and turns and big reveals of the first season, this Lost-style narrative structure (stemming, no doubt, from the creators of OnceLost writers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz) isn’t really working anymore. Check out this PopMatters review on why this might be and let me know if you agree. TV writers in particular can learn a lot from both the strengths and the shortcomings of the popular show.

‘Once Upon A Time’: We All Love It, But Why?
Liz Medendorp @ PopMatters

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After the winter finalé of ‘Once Upon a Time’, I am left with both hope and skepticism. While this latest episode managed to retain a sense of cohesion and resolved a few of the perplexing concepts of the plot, quite a few issues with this popular series still remain. Despite some mediocre acting, a scattered and sometimes illogical trajectory, an overwhelming abundance of characters and unclear character motivations, ‘Once Upon a Time’ still keeps me coming back for more. But why? What is it about this world of fairy tale (and Disney, and Arthurian, and Gothic novel) characters that remains so compelling?”

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