‘Breaking Bad’ Discussion: ‘I Did It For Me. I Was Good At It. And I Was Really…I Was Alive’

Throughout television history there have been a handful of shows that have had highly anticipated series finales. MASH. Cheers. The Sopranos. Seinfeld. Lost. Etc. And while more viewers may have tuned in to each of those finales than tuned in to Breaking Bad last night, I don’t think any finale put a bow on a series as expertly as Vince Gilligan and his staff put a bow on the show we’ve come to love so obsessively last night. Great television shows rarely have great endings. Breaking Bad had a great ending.

It was so great, in fact, that I couldn’t sleep last night thinking about it, and when I did sleep I had dreams about it. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one.

So let’s get right to it, shall we? Here are a few notes I made during last night’s Breaking Bad about characters, scenes, etc. I found interesting for one reason or another.

– Besides us all being left to wonder if Huell is still sitting alone in that safehouse, there were really no loose ends left dangling. All roads converged seamlessly. Walt figured out a way to get what was left of his fortune to his family. We got treated to one last bit of Badger/Skinny Pete comic relief. Walt took out the entire Nazi crew with yet another brazen scheme that would make MacGyver green with envy. The ricin finally found its way to a more-than-deserving recipient in Lydia via her precious Stevia (more on that in a sec). Walt freed Jesse. Todd survived the gun blast only to have Jesse squeeze the life out of him. Walt got to see his family one last time and leave directions to where Hank and Gomie’s bodies were buried. And he died in a lab, the place he loved being more than anywhere else. Perfect. It was goddamn perfect. Anyone who tries to say otherwise — like bloated windbag Jason Whitlock, who’s probably just pissed he didn’t get cast to play Huell — is probably trolling.

– Allow me to gloat for a minute:

I’m going to go ahead and make a prediction right now: it’s Lydia who will get the ricin, and it will be delivered to her system via the sweetener that she puts in her precious tea. Here’s why: In that diner scene a waitress comes over to take Lydia’s order, Naturally, she orders tea, as she always does (and, as some commenters have noted, we almost always see Lydia playing with her tea, indicating some sort of significance and maybe foreshadowing something). Specifically, she says this: “Chamomile tea with soy milk, please. And I’ll need more Stevia.” There’s no reason for the added line about Stevia into that scene. It’s there for a reason, and to me, it’s clearly setting something up. It has significance. And ricin looks like it’d blend in flawlessly with Stevia.


– Of course, the Marty Robbins cassette in the glove compartment of that Volvo had significance in Felina — here, enjoy his “Feleena.”

– Walt stopping to use a payphone at Canoncito Gas — an actual chain of gas stations in New Mexico named after a ghost town — just further proves my long-held theory that the only people who use payphones anymore are criminals. And Walt posing as a New York Times reporter trying to get access to Gretchen and Elliot for a story on them was a stroke of genius, as was his plan to use them as the go-between to get his remaining money to his family. Badger and Skinny Pete 4-EVA!

– “Damn man couldn’t he at least throw a brother a bone?” — Badger.

– A question I had that was never answered during the show was why did Walt leave the watch on the pay phone? Vince Gilligan explained this on the episode of Talking Bad that aired after the finale. Apparently there was an “artsy-fartsy” reason and a real reason. The “artsy-fartsy” reason: Walt wanted to cut ties with Jesse, who gave him that watch, for good. The real reason: in the flash-forward at Denny’s that opened season five, Walt wasn’t wearing a watch, so they had to get rid of it for continuity reasons.

– If there is one question some people will have its what will become of Jesse. My prediction: he adopts Brock and opens his own woodworking shop. It was good to see him finally smiling again. Our own Danger Guerrero was also certainly pleased.

– Also re: Jesse…seeing his kill Todd was immensely satisfying. I love that Gilligan had him survive the gun blaze so Pinkman could be the one to off him. F*ck Todd.

– Here are my three favorite moments from last night…

3. Walt going out in a lab, a meth lab, no less…

2. Walt’s plan to take out a gang of Nazi meth-slingers working to absolute perfection…

1. Walt emerging from the delusional fog he’s been living in and finally coming to grips with the truth…

– As we noted last night, that was “Baby Blue” by Badfinger that played as the episode closed last night.

– I predict that Flynn’s camo pants will not spark a fashion trend.

– Even Warren Buffet is a Breaking Bad fan.

– I wonder how the Stevia people feel about the product placement they received in the show? (I emailed the company last night but have yet to hear back from them.) I bet it sends sales soaring through the roof.

UPDATE: The Stevia people have spoken…

– Now we know why they made the episode 75 minutes long…to get more commercials in there. AMC was reportedly asking for 300k-400k for each 30-second spot.

– Anyone know the significance, if any, of this particular number sequence?

– Good to see Gus and Mike back together again on Talking Bad last night.

– Speaking of Talking Bad, I love Jimmy Kimmel and all but did we really need him there last night? He seemed sort of in the way. The final one should have all about the cast and the creator of the show.

– I wonder if Todd ever got to hit it?

– This show has been an incredibly fun ride and I’m sad it’s no longer going to be around for us to obsess over on this site. So no, thank YOU, guys!

Your thoughts are welcome in the comments.

(GIFs via Chet Manley. Memes and screenshots via Daily Breaking Bad)