Walter White and Jesse Pinkman had me spellbound till the credits rolled on the last episode of season five. And unlike the last episode of Dexter, which I couldn’t even bring myself to watch because I knew it was going to be a MASSIVE FAIL, the Breaking Bad finale was so good – it inspired memes like this:
While I know there are tons of articles on the interweb that give profound insights into this incredible production, these are my personal ones (I hope you can relate to them in some way).
Kick your ego in the bucket before it kicks you in the face. Walter White couldn’t let go of his meth cooking alter ego because it made him feel powerful. The only problem was that when it came down to it, WW was willing to sacrifice his family, and everyone he cared about for that feeling. The kick in the face moment was when he finally realised that everything he’d ever done wasn’t “for family” but for himself – which leads me to my next lesson.
Being selfish never just involves you. Walter White was undisputedly selfish; a quality trait that landed his loved ones in a sludge bucket of misery from start to finish. If you’re concerned chiefly with your own personal profit or pleasure, just remember that it’s usually at someone else’s expense; I’ve been on the receiving end of this very recently and it was the pits. So if you’re a part of generation YOLO and have “no regrets” tattooed somewhere on your mind or person, it might be time to rethink your outlook on life – maybe start by sending out a mega watt apology to every person you’ve used and abused along the way.
Money isn’t everything. WW had all the money him and his family (and their family) would ever be able to spend in their lifetime. He degraded himself to get that money, and in the end it cost him EVERYTHING. But besides the ways in which this beautiful pile of moola was gained (blood, dignity and WW’s soul), what made it even more vile was the fact that it couldn’t be spent. In the end, that money was about as useful as this list of the 25 most useless inventions ever (who the f*** needs picnic pants?!).
Trust is something easily lost, but difficult to regain. One of the saddest aspects of Breaking Bad for me was the dissolution of the relationship between Jesse Pinkman and Walter White. Throughout the series you see that these two character care deeply for each other – though neither one of them ever truly believes that fact because of the multiple situations where they screw each other over. At a certain point you realise that there’s no going back for them. They’ve crossed a line with each other that they should never have crossed. It made me realise that the most important relationships in my life are bound by trust. It also made me realise that there have been times in my life where I’ve compromised that trust for reasons that aren’t justifiable or even worth mentioning. The hydraulics of a bridge is complicated – think about that the next time you throw a hand grenade at one.
The ends don’t always justify the means. This one I got from the producers of Breaking Bad, and it is gold. To give a bit of a back story to this point, it needs to be said that what WW craved most as a character was recognition as an important, influential man. The producers eventually came to the conclusion that the end of their bullet ridden drug fest would be when Walt had the revelation that everyone else had right in the beginning: that everything he’d ever done, he’d done for himself. It’s a bitter pill to swallow, but Walter White as a character is irredeemable. The only reassurance that any of us can get from the protagonist of this much loved series is that in the final moments of the last episode, he is no longer lying to himself. So in closing! While most of us won’t go on a blood spilling, meth cooking, psycho rampage to gain recognition, we should all contemplate whether our achievements are preceded by actions and decisions that are validated.
If you haven’t watched Breaking Bad, I’d say be sure you’re in a good space before you do. This series is absolutely brilliant – but a bit of a downer. To use Jesse Pinkman’s favourite catch phrase, yeaaah bitches. You’re in for the ride of your life.