It’s official. Breaking Bad now ranks among the greatest television shows of all time. For some people it will be their arguable favorite. All what’s for sure, is that basically anyone who watches, loves it. It’s just that good. It’s a masterpiece of television.
“Felina”, is the anticipated final chapter in the life on Walter White. If you haven’t watched the episode, don’t keep reading. Go watch the episode first then come back. The review will still be here.
This episode was written and directed by Vince Gilligan. This is his work, and he wanted to end things on his own terms, with his characters. Oh boy, what an ending it was. It may not be the way I would have ended things, but hell if I wasn’t wholly satisfied with this finale. “Felina” was Walter White’s swan song, and it was beautiful.
Right from the opening scene of Walter entering the snow covered car, patiently awaiting the cops to pass by, to the final shot of Walter’s body lying dead on the meth lab floor. Born in a meth lab, dye in a meth lab. It was a fitting, full circle ending. This episode’s direction was of the absolute highest caliber. Little things that Gilligan does, like panning the camera ever so slightly for a sweet reveal in Skylar’s kitchen. Or focusing on the little details like Lydia’s sugar packet. Everything that happened in this episode was pitch perfect, including the great selection of music. What also made this episode grand was its sense of minimalism. Shots have room to breathe. Walter moves almost like a ghost through some scenes. A man who has accepted his fate, accepted his selfishness, his faults and lies. Everything about this episode screams for redemption and, in a lot of ways, Walter gets a little bit.
I don’t want to get super detailed in this review. The ending of a show as colossal as Breaking Bad is more about the feeling it evokes rather than the specific events in the episode. Not that those events aren’t important, but Breaking Bad just resonates long after the episode and series has ended. It stands high alongside shows like The Sopranos and The Shield as brilliant character studies that simply got everything right. Breaking Bad is probably the most influential show of it’s time. Elevating it to the level of true art as opposed to simple television.
“Felina”, and Breaking Bad in general may not be the most surprising show on television. I think most fans probably saw certain things coming, like Jesse killing Todd. Or if you go back to season 4 when everyone knew Gus Fring would be killed. What makes Breaking Bad so outlandish is it’s unique ability to keep us on the edge of our seats even when we have a damn good idea of how it will play out.
It’s easy to say now that Breaking Bad is one of the best television shows ever. With a finale like this, there is absolutely nothing keeping me from recommending this as on par with the other television greats. If you have a friend that hasn’t watched the show yet, do them a favor and get to convincing! Breaking Bad is monumental, and I am both happy and sad to see it go. It is going to be quite sometime before we see another Walter White, if ever.