For the last three weeks or so I’ve been kinda binge-watching Breaking Bad again, which, like so many other people, in my view is the only cool way to watch the series. I haven’t touched it in pretty much exactly a whole year after my run last year and while I remembered most of the story, I had completely forgotten some of the details and misremembered others.
Getting the story straight and discovering new tiny bits and pieces with every re-watch is actually fun and one of those things I enjoy a lot even with series like Babylon 5 or the various Star Trek ones and I’ve been watching many of those for the last 20 years multiple times a year! I already look forward to starting my first full watch-through of The Next Generation which I haven’t touched yet aside from the short peek at the sample episodes back then. Shall be interesting to recognize new visual details that you couldn’t make out in the old mushy VHS quality version.
Speaking of leaving things untouched this time around I also watched the second half of the 5th season of Breaking Bad for the first time because it only came out in January here in these parts. I only read the synopses that floated the Internet at the time and in a way I wish I hadn’t. No, not so much that I’d already knew the storyline, but more like being disappointed. The fanboys gave it such a massive build-up, it simply left me with a feeling that there would be something missing when I actually got to see it.
Don’t get me wrong, the series is still in its own way brilliant and the quality excellent and I hope they can snatch another few Emmys this evening, but if only… My biggest grief is that just like with so many other series a lot of things feel rushed and forced as if they really were bent on tying up ever knot. In particular I found it more than just a bit unbelievable how Hank suddenly realizes that Walt is at the center of it all after being completely ignorant of it (despite many clues right in front of his eyes). That seemed too sharp a turn and then from there things just go downhill a bit too quickly and the characters lose their feeling of reality because some actions seem irrational.
Personally I prefer the lighter mood of the earlier seasons, anyway. There are, however, some really funny moments in all that grimness. That incidental comment about “three hours of something called Babylon 5” with Walt sitting in the back of a car was just pure gold for insiders. My neighbors must have thought I’m completely whack-o when I burst into a loud laugh at 2 in the morning.
Character wise Jesse still is kinda annoying and Skyler is a bitch, but I also found many of Walt‘s rationalizations and lies getting quite on my nerves. It’s too bad they’re killing of Hank all too quickly like they did with Mike. Those were actually people you could root for and they would have deserved a better ending…