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August 29, 2014

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Breaking Bad: Seven Thirty-Seven (season premiere)

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 9th 2009 12:26PM
Breaking Bad Cast
(S02E01)
Three hundred and sixty-four days after the first season finale, the second season of Breaking Bad finally began last night (Damn you, writers strike!). While we only got seven episodes last year, the show still made a huge impact on the television landscape, primarily by being just amazingly produced and acted. The action and tone pick up here as if we've never been away, and despite a year since new episodes, it feels like only last week that we first saw Tuco go ballistic and viciously beat his own man.

Of course, if it had been last week then I doubt we'd have rewound the scene and replayed it in its entirety. Still, it was a nice reminder of just how crazy and unpredictable Tuco is. And it was the problem of Tuco that pretty much drove the entirety of the main plot tonight. It says something as to how perfectly disturbed Raymond Cruz portrays Tuco that despite being in the episode only during two sequences, his presence hovered over every moment.

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Fire up the bunsen burners, Breaking Bad renewed

by Jason Hughes, posted May 7th 2008 9:27PM
Breaking BadAll I can say after word came out today that they AMC renewed Breaking Bad is FINALLY! What the hell took so long? Every bit as critically acclaimed and amazing as the already renewed Mad Men, this meth and cancer dramedy defies description and blows away expectations. After the strike-shortened seven episode first season, AMC has committed to a full thirteen-episode run for its sophomore effort; no word yet on when the new season will film or air.

Bryan Cranston is a veritable tour de force in the role of Walter White, the high school chemistry teacher who begins producing meth to procure the funds necessary for his family to get by after he dies. Aaron Paul is equally strong as his half-witted cohort in crime, and the two of them are the grimmest comedy duo since ... well, maybe ever. Each week the series surpassed expectations by getting better and better, and that was only seven weeks. I can't imagine nearly twice that!

[via Ain't It Cool News]

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Breaking Bad: A No Rough Stuff Type Deal (season finale)

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 10th 2008 8:42AM
Breaking Bad: A No Rough Stuff Type Deal
(S01E07)
Well, I have to say that while this finale did establish a certain status quo, albeit a highly precarious one, it was by no means a satisfying series ender. Thus, I fully expect that AMC will renew this amazing show for a second season post haste. Did you here me, AMC? Whatever you need to do to secure these actors and get this ball rolling. And maybe give us at least 13 episodes next time, eh?

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Breaking Bad: Crazy Handful of Nothin'

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 3rd 2008 12:53PM
Breaking Bad - Crazy Handful of Nothin'
(S01E06)
I hadn't even realized how quickly this season has gone by until the closing moments told me that next week was the season finale. That's way too soon, and yes I understand there was a pesky writer's strike which played havoc with production schedules. But Breaking Bad is just too good of a show that's just starting to find its groove. Bryan Cranston just constantly blows me away with his performance, and Aaron Paul continues to find ways to turn what could be a very one-dimensional, archetypical street thug into a complex personality.

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Breaking Bad: Gray Matter

by Jason Hughes, posted Feb 25th 2008 10:41AM
breaking bad
(S01E05)
This episode served as a bridge in our larger story to the next chapter of both Jesse and Walt's lives. In the previous installment, Walt withdrew from the sordid world of drug trafficking and focused on his family, revealing his cancer and looking at the varying options available to him. Meanwhile, his erstwhile partner Jesse had a bad drug reaction and sought refuge in the home of his parents, which didn't turn out as well as he had hoped. Here they both continued their efforts to move on with their lives, to varying degrees of failure.

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Breaking Bad: Cancer Man

by Jason Hughes, posted Feb 18th 2008 12:41PM
Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman(S01E04) This episode was about calming down and reassessing one's life and family. We got to see Walter open up and share his cancer with his extended family, albeit reluctantly and only done really because Skyler couldn't handle it alone. Walter, in fact, remained incredibly stoic, silent and passive about his impending fate. He also stayed true to his original vision, which was not to leave his family with a mountain of debt.

As for Jesse, we finally got to meet the rest of the Pinkman clan and they're nothing like you'd expect - or they're exactly like you'd expect - and yet somehow they appeared to have a profound influence on where Jesse's life is heading and what he wants to do about it.

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Breaking Bad: ...and the Bag's in the River

by Jason Hughes, posted Feb 11th 2008 10:03AM
Breaking Bad: ...and the Bag's in the River
(S01E03)
"I thought we were going to Cold Stone Creamery." Walt, Jr. with Hank

With this episode we come to the conclusion of what would be considered the "First Act" of the Breaking Bad saga. I have to say that I was very impressed with this conclusion, and with the opening arc. Cranston continues to dominate the screen with his tragic portrayal of a desperate man who's health is clearly failing more and more with each passing moment. Hard decisions are made, and the hardest and best decision he's made yet looks to be the one the episode ends on.

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Breaking Bad: Cat's in the Bag...

by Jason Hughes, posted Jan 28th 2008 4:45PM
Breaking Bad -
(S01E02)
"Is this going to be on the murder?" -- question asked by a student in Walter White's class, or at least how he heard it.

Things are starting to unravel fast for our "odd couple" of meth makers. Last episode left them with two dead bodies in the back of a wrecked RV filled with meth ingredients. How could it get worse? Well, what if one of those dead bodies isn't so much ... dead that is? The boys haven't sold any drugs yet, Pinkman's house is falling apart and White's marriage may not be far behind. Cranston's getting well deserved raves for his stellar performance, but as with most buddy comedies, and let's face it this is becoming a very dark comedy, it takes two great actors to pull it off, and Aaron Paul's Pinkman is an amazing foil for Cranston's White.

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