Author Topic: Breaking Bad- Season 4  (Read 25697 times)

Mister Six

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #30 on: July 21, 2011, 11:40:14 AM »
Reminds me of the bit where Chalky strangles a man to death in Boardwalk Empire - that scene goes on for a good couple of minutes, and really gets across how horrific such a death would be (and how ).

They're all assholes, isn't that the whole point?

Nah, Hank's a thoroughly decent bloke. He's loyal, brave, looks after his family and always does the right thing. He also shows more disquiet at killing a man than Hank does (he also doesn't allow it to turn him into a monster, which is what Jesse appears to be doing right now). The show kind of tricks you into thinking that he's a bullish dick, but that's only because Walter's so weak by comparison in the early episodes. If you look at what Hank did and does, you can see his basically a good bloke.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #31 on: July 21, 2011, 06:38:54 PM »
He's got idiotic old-world ideas about morality though, which makes him an asshole. No bigger an asshole than anyone else, but an asshole still.

Little Hoover

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #32 on: July 21, 2011, 07:14:20 PM »
Most of the families have fairly typical conservative american values, they'd probably be infuriating in political discussions, but that doesn't make them assholes.


I assumed Gus was also pissed off at Victor for attempting to make the meth himself, he's basically fucked up a huge supply for them as the damage can't be undone, although I don't suppose that would have been quite enough reason to kill him.

actwithoutwords

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #33 on: July 21, 2011, 11:51:12 PM »
I don't think being a good guy and being an arsehole are mutually exclusive. Hank is one of the most moral characters in the show (despite beating Jesse half to death that time). Nonetheless he's a total blowhard macho man, and thus arsehole is hardly too far off the mark. He has just been redeemed by how venal everyone else is. I watched the first episode again recently and Hank is a bit of a bully towards Walt.

I agree with the criticisms of Gus' drawn out entrance and exit. It was a nice idea, but just a bit over the top. It took me out of the action and reminded me that I was watching a TV show. Which Breaking Bad is usually pretty good at avoiding.

actwithoutwords

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #34 on: July 26, 2011, 02:46:12 AM »
Erm, is it just me or is episode 2 actually a bit shit? Flashy annoying direction, horrible on-the-nose dialogue, minor plot points infused with melodrama, and pretty stupid 'funny' bits. Early season episodes that go nowhere in particular are fair enough, but that didn't feel like a Breaking Bad episode at all. Zero subtlety in either direction or writing. The unnecessary Saul advert, which I'm pretty sure just repeated a flight disaster joke that had been already done, was indicative of how lacklustre it was. Liked Walt getting punched in the mouth though. Seemed an appropriate response to such an ill-conceived plotline. This show would usually have Walt mounting a campaign over a period of time to suss out Mike's loyalty and plant seeds of doubt. Not just blurting out immediately that he wants to kill both of their boss. Is Walt an idiot now or something?


EDIT: Oh, worst bit of the episode: the musical maelstrom stopping dead when Walt put his Heisenberg hat on. *puke*
« Last Edit: July 26, 2011, 03:01:18 AM by actwithoutwords »

Moribunderast

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #35 on: July 26, 2011, 08:01:15 AM »
Glad it wasn't just me thinking that, actwithoutwords. I haven't really been able to get into this season at all so far, which is disconcerting because by season 3 I had this show pegged as Sopranos-level great. They've relied very heavily on the "over-the-shoulder while somebody walks to a TENSE confrontation" shot recently and they repeated it again this week with Walt approaching Gus' house. The party montage at Jesse's had me wondering what the fuck I was watching and both the Hank and Skyler subplots are completely joyless (and not in a "wow, so bleak" way) and bordering on tedium already.

I haven't felt excited about this season yet and compared to the fiery opening of last season, it's seeming quite a gulf to me.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2011, 10:07:07 AM by Moribunderast »

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #36 on: July 26, 2011, 09:35:12 AM »
I felt it was an acceptable enough episode although it really didn't develop much given it was on for 45 minutes. The scene at the bar was probably the most interesting bit in terms of where things could head, but as a whole, it trundled along doing nothing much.

Less of Jesse's friends please. Less of Skyler unless she's actually going to further the story significantly. Less of the apparent attempts at fan-pleaser sequences ('HEY LOOK, WALT'S GOING TO BE A BADASS!!').

Other than that, continue.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #37 on: July 26, 2011, 10:51:19 AM »
It was very much a gateway episode - it needed to get us to where we're going this season, rather than tie up the cliffhanger of last season. And, as expected, we see that the plot points for this season will be:

Jesse's inability to deal with killing Gabe
Walt wants to off Gus before he does the same to him
How will the above sit with bodyguard blokey (whos omnipresence is starting to get a bit silly)
Skyler becoming more savvy and, likely, less prepared to put up with things not going her way - that car wash guy won't get away with that
Hank & Marie's relationship falling apart - the Angel & LaGuerta of Breaking Bad

Less of the apparent attempts at fan-pleaser sequences ('HEY LOOK, WALT'S GOING TO BE A BADASS!!').

If he was going to be bad-ass, I would absolutely be pleased, but he's just so ineffectual and unable to defend himself in every situation that its kind of silly to expect it at this point. He was more bad-ass in season 1.

hpmons

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #38 on: July 26, 2011, 01:13:15 PM »
EDIT: Oh, worst bit of the episode: the musical maelstrom stopping dead when Walt put his Heisenberg hat on. *puke*

OH GOD YES.  Hated the Jesse scenes too (and the whole zombie conversation, wow its, like, they're referring to things I've heard of, omg).

Other than that I wouldn't say it was terrible.  Walt going to that guy was pretty clumsy and too stupid for him though, but it was an alright episode.  Sub-par for Breaking Bad I guess.

both the Hank and Skyler subplots are completely joyless (and not in a "wow, so bleak" way) and bordering on tedium already.

I still think the Hank subplot is fine, though if they continue in this way it won't be.  I really don't want to see a couple's relationship slowly deteriorate because they don't know how else to fill an episode, and currently it doesn't relate to anything else (and I doubt it will in the future).

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #39 on: July 26, 2011, 01:43:57 PM »
I'm guessing when the contents of Gabe's lab book come to the attention of the DEA, clues to capture Heisenberg will inspire Hank out of bed and he'll come into his own. A season full of him being mean to Marie won't be great but I think his character will soon move out of that situation, possibly putting an end to Marie's involvement completely in his relatinoship. The promo shots of this season had Hank in a wheelchair so he must be moving toward that?

I don't especially want another season full of Jesse being unable to deal with things. I know his character has fewer directions to travel down than Walt's but it does feel like we've seen this side of him before.

Space ghost

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #40 on: July 26, 2011, 01:45:33 PM »
Hank's wife is going to have an affair with the physical  therapist. Imo of course.

also was that Gene Hackman selling the straps?

Little Hoover

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #41 on: July 26, 2011, 01:49:11 PM »
Yeah I think these first two episodes have been very slow and just starting to set things up, they've both been fine, yet at the same time, it does almost feel like you could have squeezed everything in these first two episodes into one. I'm sure they're gradually building towards something, but I just hope things start to happen more by episode 3.

Space ghost

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #42 on: July 26, 2011, 01:52:36 PM »
We're only wishing for rapid exposition because the characters have been built up so well over the previous three seasons, a big content spunk now would only be premature.

dr_christian_troy

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #43 on: July 26, 2011, 01:53:00 PM »
Hank's wife is going to have an affair with the physical  therapist. Imo of course.

also was that Gene Hackman selling the straps?

It was none other than Jim Beaver, star of Supernatural and Deadwood - the latter being an appropriate link to a particularly 'Western' feel about the episode. The clinky-clunky piano motif when Walt wore his Heisenberg hat was used previously to creepy effect when approaching Gus in the desert in the Season 3 finale. I didn't think it was bad at all - the 'calm before/after storm' episodes are standard throughout the series. A constant foreboding of imminent doom in the calmness of episodes like this one break the tension up perfectly, all with intent, and as far as I'm concerned, with great effect.

The Wire Nazis will be overtaken by the Breaking Bad Gestapo soon, oh yes

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #44 on: July 26, 2011, 02:25:29 PM »
Prior to this one starting, I'd watched and really enjoyed all of Weeds, and was a little worried that it might have marred my appreciation of Breaking Bad somehow, but these two episodes have laid that fear to rest. Given the breakneck pace that the previous series moved at, I'm fine with them slowing things down for a bit and no doubt things will gather momentum soon enough.

I don't especially want another season full of Jesse being unable to deal with things.
The way he looked on as Victor bled out, it seemed to me that perhaps he's heading in the opposite direction. Maybe killing Gale was the final straw for him.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #45 on: July 26, 2011, 05:07:28 PM »
Bit surprised at the negative reaction. I thought the slow walk to Gus's being punctuated with the phone call was a neat and sinister moment.

I think Walt was direct with Mike because now was the only time to do it- he obviously saw a flash of understanding during the murder and wanted to capitalise on the connection quickly. He, quite sensibly, wagered that it wouldn't be reported to Gus, and even the kicking he got for his troubles probably seemed a fair price.  Now he knows where he stands and will have to try something else.

I thought the Skylar plot was a bit silly- I can't imagine him having ever met her.

actwithoutwords

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #46 on: July 26, 2011, 05:08:28 PM »
As I said, the slow build up isn't a problem. All the previous series had lulls which magnified the eventual ramping up of events. What surprised me was the general style of the episode, both in writing and direction. It just felt wrong. The party scenes in Jesse's house in particular as Moribunderast mentioned. And some of the direction of Walt's scenes seemed OTT. It felt like a more 'standard' type of TV show. The wacky zombie discussion was total clich├ęd bullshit that is the exact type of thing the show has avoided so far.
Anyway, I might be too quick to jump on a bad episode. I just realised half-way through that I was genuinely not enjoying it. Which never happens. The over-done Gus stuff in the (otherwise great) first episode combined with this is making me slightly concerned that it's getting overcooked. More indulgent and less raw than before.


EDIT:
One other bit that pissed me off. Did Walt seriously think he was going to kill Gus in the lab? Gus has appeared in the lab precisely once as far as I can remember, in the last episode for quite a special reason. Why did he seem so surprised that Gus didn't turn up? Lazy writing. Also, he is regularly frisked when he meets Gus. The idea that having a slightly smaller gun would work is somewhat silly.

I think Walt was direct with Mike because now was the only time to do it- he obviously saw a flash of understanding during the murder and wanted to capitalise on the connection quickly.

He only decided to go to Mike after Stupid Plan A: kill Gus when he magically turns up at the lab, Stupid Plan B: kill Gus by telling Mike he wants to have a chat with him, and Stupid Plan C: murder a drugs kingpin in his own house, didn't work.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2011, 05:31:24 PM by actwithoutwords »

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #47 on: July 26, 2011, 05:53:54 PM »
Apart from some of the jesse scenes being a bit odd and silly, like the bit with skylar last series where she sings 'happy birthday' to her boss. I though the rest of the episode was great. Walt knows that Gus could take him out whenever he wants and so obviously wants to strike first, so no surprise he's getting straight down to it.

Jamie Oliver is fat

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #48 on: July 26, 2011, 08:49:49 PM »
How will Walt shift the product though?

Will scary bodyguard man have Gus' contacts?

Tiny Poster

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #49 on: July 26, 2011, 08:55:09 PM »
Hasn't he already made enough money to retire?

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #50 on: July 26, 2011, 09:28:37 PM »
Sorry, wasn't following properly.

I'll use this post to thank whoever it was that recommended this show on this board. I'm still yet to see it mentioned anywhere else.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #51 on: July 27, 2011, 12:30:52 PM »
I'll use this post to thank whoever it was that recommended this show on this board. I'm still yet to see it mentioned anywhere else.

Um, I write episode reviews of Breaking Bad for Den of Geek, as well as having written a lengthy article on why it's scandalously underappreciated in the UK.

I wouldn't be as gauche as to link to it though, obviously.

Mister Six

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #52 on: July 27, 2011, 02:18:41 PM »
Would you be so gauche as to send me an email with a link, then?

Bit worried that this season is moving too slowly. As much as Vince Gilligan goes on about how Breaking Bad likes to spend time with the things that other shows rush by, I think the pacing so far has been way too slow. Especially for a series whose first two seasons absolutely roared by. I appreciate that they want to mix things up a bit, but having the characters sitting around by themselves looking miserable is not gripping TV, no matter how many interesting angles you shoot it from, and I'm not getting a handle on exactly where this series is headed.

By this point in season one they'd killed three men. By this point in season two Hank had shot Tuco. By this point in season three we'd met The Twins. What have we had so far? Some hints that Jesse's turning feral, some nastiness with Gus and not a lot else. They need to get the DEA into play ASAP.

Ginyard

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #53 on: July 27, 2011, 02:57:49 PM »
It has been a slow start but I've found Hank's plight rather moving, and obviously tragic. Karma for kicking Jesse half to death? Maybe. But he's always been a good man, aiming to protect and uphold the law. He takes the bullets and is crippled while his brother-in-law is the man upright and mobile, plotting the death of the big cheese. Seeing him indulge in his mineral collection as a means to blot out the misery is a nice touch  -  rather Walteresque, in fact.
His story has also pulled his wife's character out of the second dimension to the point that I don't mind it when she appears. It sometimes used to feel like Days of our Lives whenever her and Skylar were together before.

The Gus moment was a tad overlong, and it was pretty obvious what he was going to do, so the shock wasn't as considerable as it could have been. What I did enjoy about that sequence was Mike's reaction (with the consequent epiphany that the actor who plays Mike also played one of the henchman that Eddie Murphy beat up in Beverley Hills Cop). But it wasn't terrible.

The second episode only jarred with me because Walter seems to have divorced from any sense of logic in his mission to kill Gus. His planning went out the window and he seemed pretty out-of-character. The party didn't bug me; on the contrary, Jessie's bozo mates were enjoyably light relief. Plus that party girl had a great arse! The Skylar stuff was ok  -  in fact I don't think I thought much about it until I read this thread and saw the reaction to it. But I agree that its a series that is on the doorstep of becoming formulaic. It needs to belt off down an overgrown lane and reveal something new.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #54 on: July 27, 2011, 11:14:21 PM »
Would you be so gauche as to send me an email with a link, then?

Bit worried that this season is moving too slowly. As much as Vince Gilligan goes on about how Breaking Bad likes to spend time with the things that other shows rush by, I think the pacing so far has been way too slow. Especially for a series whose first two seasons absolutely roared by. I appreciate that they want to mix things up a bit, but having the characters sitting around by themselves looking miserable is not gripping TV, no matter how many interesting angles you shoot it from, and I'm not getting a handle on exactly where this series is headed.

By this point in season one they'd killed three men. By this point in season two Hank had shot Tuco. By this point in season three we'd met The Twins. What have we had so far? Some hints that Jesse's turning feral, some nastiness with Gus and not a lot else. They need to get the DEA into play ASAP.

There were plenty of nothing episodes too. The whole point is that you never know when tons of things are going to happen, and how. The show is teasing the audience with stuff like walters walk towards gus' house.

Mister Six

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #55 on: July 28, 2011, 01:43:03 AM »
There were plenty of nothing episodes too. The whole point is that you never know when tons of things are going to happen, and how. The show is teasing the audience with stuff like walters walk towards gus' house.

Yeah, but the 'nothing episodes' usually came later in the season, as a way to catch a breath after a series of gripping events. Putting them right at the start, when they ought to be establishing future plot threads for the season, feels like a misstep.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #56 on: July 28, 2011, 10:10:56 AM »
I think people are being a bit hasty to judge here. I agree the second episode was weak by this show's standards, but the first episode had things to tie up from the previous season, and I enjoyed the way they did it with a slow, tense and alsmost entirely silent episode. It also included the death of what was becoming (or could have become) a fairly major character, so certainly wasn't without incident.

As long as the next episode starts getting things moving then I don't see a problem with one episode to tie up the previous season's cliff hanger and one slightly meandering episode to show us where all the characters are.

Bennygaylord

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Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #57 on: July 28, 2011, 02:02:02 PM »
Party girl did have an amazing arse aye. Someone post pictures of it.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #58 on: July 28, 2011, 02:31:51 PM »
They need to get the DEA into play ASAP.

I agree that's the obvious next step. I think in the context of the wider season, we'll be less harsh on episode two, so long as it sets up the general direction. I predict a quicker episode three.

Re: Breaking Bad- Season 4
« Reply #59 on: July 28, 2011, 03:49:52 PM »
http://i.imgur.com/NcJoY.jpg 

Is this Walter in disguise at the party?