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Where Bad Should Have Broken Off

(Warning: the following post contains spoilers from the final eight episodes of Breaking Bad, including who dies and content from the series finale. Proceed at your own risk.)

The ideal series finale for Breaking Bad (in my humble mind) would have been “Ozymandias”, the third-to-last episode of the series. Let me be clear: I don’t think the actual series finale “Felina” was a bad episode, but there was a lot of standing around and staring. And by now, Walt going Scarface on Uncle Jack and his gang was a foregone conclusion. We all knew why he had to get his keys back.

This season was supposed to be a payoff for Bad‘s long-hanging plot of what would happen if/when Hank found out Walt cooked meth. Once that plot was wrapped up, there was not any story that could top that, other than Walt’s family being in danger. Jesse joining with Hank forced Walt’s fall, and Hank’s death was when Walt lost his family as the cumulative payment for his lies and pride. We didn’t need to hear Walt tell Skylar “I did it for me” because it had already been spelled out.

Instead, Walt annihilated a faceless gang we barely knew, and in the last two episodes, Skylar was in some vague “legal trouble” because Hank was missing and presumed dead. They were  consistent with what the series has been throughout. Yes, it’s great that Walt rescued Jesse, and the final scene in the lab was priceless and summed Walt up completely. But the scene where Walt gets in the van to disappear into the sunrise, the dog walking across the road after the van passes? That’s the last scene of Chuck. That’s The Office characters reflecting on being part of the documentary. It sums the series completely, and it’s a shame that it could not have been the last scene of Breaking Bad.

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