Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Breaking Bad Review 401:Box Cutter

   Again, this is another post I was writing before my computer broke down. I apologize for the wait.

  AMC has a long and successful track record when it comes to television programs.
Mad Men, The Walking Dead, The Killing,these are some of their more famous offerings. I myself am partial to Mad Men. But,perhaps their best is a little show called Breaking Bad.
  At first,it doesn't seem like much. No moving corpses or hard-drinking advertising icons. And the plot is deceptively simple: a dying chemistry teacher manufactures drugs to make money for his family. There is much more to it than that,but that's the basis for the whole show.
   Watching Bryan Cranston on Malcolm in the Middle for years,you would never know he is such an amazing actor. As the teacher,Walter White, he makes you sympathize with his situation even if you don't agree with what he's doing. And as it goes on,you definitely will not agree with what he does.
   Before this premiere,I finished the season three boxset. It was mostly great,it dragged
 somewhat at first, but it had an amazing ending that cemented my resolve to watch the new season. And so, I saw it on this past Sunday night hoping it would be as good as the previous three seasons. I can say I was not disappointed.
   It started with a flashback to somewhere before Walt started using the new lab,when Gale (one of the lab assistants was still alive.I think the worst part of the episode was the fact that Gale is dead. It's worse because of how he was the one that convinced Gus (their boss) to hire Walt and his lab partner Jesse in the first place. The actor that played Gale was very good. After that, it jumped forward to the moment when Gale was shot. The pan up to the tea kettle with the bullet hole was particularly effective.
   After Jesse got back to the lab, not a whole lot happened. There was some really good acting by Cranston, especially when he's pleading for his life. Jesse didn't say much,but I suspect he is suffering from a major case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
   And then Gus came. The meaning of the title,"Box Cutter",was not apparent at first. Gale opening the lab equipment with one seemed unfitting to be an episode title. But when Gus came, I knew he was pissed. He didn't even have to say anything. Just him walking around getting dressed up in a lab suit,wordless, was one of the most terrifying things I've seen all year. And that wasn't the worst part.
   After he started looking in drawers,it came to me what he was searching for. I didn't know what he would do with it,though. He then walked over to one of his workers,Victor. Before tonight,the worst thing I saw on television this year was the penultimate episode of House,the one where he cut open his own leg in his bathtub. There are many programs I watch that have a lot of gross-out moments,Bones and The Walking Dead come to mind,but the episode of House takes the cake.
   When Gus slit Victor's throat with the box cutter,and all the blood came shooting out,I was speechless. And I wasn't the only one. Gus just washed his hands, took off his lab suit,and told them to go back to work. That's all. I wish to be the first to say, "Giancarlo Esposito for Supporting Actor, Drama" at next year's Emmys.
  I guess that's everything. If there's more,I'll put it in my next review.

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