The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

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The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby malosaires » Wed Aug 07, 2013 2:47 am

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The Killings of Walter White


(Link: Part 2)


For the last two years, I have been watching and re-watching “Breaking Bad,” and I have marveled at the story, the acting, the cinematography, and the overall experience that these elements create. I’ve been especially fascinated by the change that has taken place in Walter White, and the way in which the narrative elements convey that change. Recently, I started contemplating how many people Walt had killed over the course of the show. I noticed that while his methods got increasingly brutal, the rationales behind Walt’s killings changed only slightly throughout the show. Yet these slight changes define the progression of Walt as a character, and demonstrate at every meaningful point how far he has strayed from his former self.

There are only two killings in the show’s first season, however much of the first season is built around them, as they help define Walt’s character as the series begins. The first occurs when Walt has a gun pointed at his head, and is an act of pure self-preservation, without any premeditation or aggression. Walt’s partner, Jesse, has brought two dealers to their cook site to buy their meth, but the deal goes south, as one of them, Jesse’s former partner Emilio, believes Walt to be a DEA agent. They prepare to kill Walt and Jesse, but Walt offers to teach them his recipe in exchange for their lives. When he has them in the lab, Walt creates a toxic gas, runs outside, and locks them in to suffocate them, killing Emilio.

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Walt does not see him die, but is visibly shaken by the experience, this being the first time he has ever taken a life. He saw the drug trade simply as a way to make money for his family for after he was gone, and the fact that he has become a murderer makes him physically sick. He is so disturbed by what has gone on that he intends to leave the drug trade entirely. As he is starting up the rolling lab again, Walt tells Jesse that once they get rid of the corpses, they will never see each other again. However, a groan from one of the bodies changes this plan quite a bit.

The gas should have killed both of Walt’s attackers, but leaves one, Domingo, aka Crazy 8, alive. The would-be drug lords lock him up in Jesse’s basement, chaining him to a support beam with a bike lock. Walt is tasked with killing Domingo, losing the coin flip on who only has to dispose of a dead body.

Walt spends several days avoiding killing Domingo, trying to find some logical reason for keeping him alive. This is difficult, as Domingo has every reason to kill him, and will likely kill his family afterwards, since Jesse told him everything about Walt before their meeting in the desert. Walt talks to Domingo, gets to know him as a person, and is, at one point ready to let him go, thinking he has earned Domingo’s trust. He then discovers, to his dismay, that Domingo has grabbed a weapon to stab Walt as soon as he is free, and then presumably kill his family. Realizing this, Walt kills Domingo, strangling him with the bike lock.

These incidents do a lot to set the tone of the show, but they also give us a great deal of insight into who Walt is at the beginning of this moral dissent. Walt is a decent man, who, out of a sense of nihilism and desperation, has entered into a world where he does not belong, and whose values are not his own. After he has strangled Domingo, Walt collapses on the ground, tears in his eyes, whispering, “I’m sorry.” He wanted desperately to free Domingo, to be given any logical reason not to have to kill again.

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"I'm sorry. I'm so sorry."


When the deed is done, Walt intends to leave the drug trade, but after he decides to seek chemotherapy, mounting bills and his own pride push him back into the lab. Yet without the means of distribution, Walt and Jesse are forced into bed with an even more dangerous dealer. And when that dealer demonstrates how readily he will take a life, more killing looms on the horizon.

To Be Continued...
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Re: Breaking Bad: Season 1 *SPOILERS*

Postby Typical Michael » Wed Aug 07, 2013 3:38 am

I think my favorite part of season one was the body in the bathtub. I hadn't ever seen anything like that on what I would consider *network* TV before, as in, a channel for which I didn't have to pay extra. Also, a friend of mine told me that the "cook" recipes are about 85% accurate. I am not sure how true that is, but for a show this quality, I believe it.
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Re: Breaking Bad: Season 1 *SPOILERS*

Postby w00 » Wed Aug 07, 2013 3:53 am

Typical Michael wrote:I think my favorite part of season one was the body in the bathtub. I hadn't ever seen anything like that on what I would consider *network* TV before, as in, a channel for which I didn't have to pay extra. Also, a friend of mine told me that the "cook" recipes are about 85% accurate. I am not sure how true that is, but for a show this quality, I believe it.

Can you describe the scene? I've never seen the show.

Malosaires did a pretty compelling write-up though!

Oh, and I read (on Slate.com?) that they bring in chemists etc. as consultants to make the show as accurate as possible, without giving away too much on how-to-commit-crimes.
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Re: Breaking Bad: Season 1 *SPOILERS*

Postby malosaires » Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:39 am

While Walt was tasked with killing Domingo, Jesse had to dispose of Emilio's body. Walt sent Jesse out to get a plastic container they could put him in so they could dissolve him in Hydrofluoric acid. Jesse was unable to find a large enough container, so after Walt has left, out of frustration, he drags Emilio upstairs, puts him in the tub, and pours in the acid. When Walt gets back, and Jesse is downstairs, this happens(minus the music).



Oh, and this happens in the second episode.
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Re: Breaking Bad: Season 1 *SPOILERS*

Postby HarpingCarp » Wed Aug 07, 2013 6:29 am

Typical Michael wrote:Also, a friend of mine told me that the "cook" recipes are about 85% accurate.


Suuuuuuure, a "friend".

Guys, have you noticed Mike hasn't been around much lately? He did say he got a "job"... and now there's this "friend" who knows about cooking meth.

Coincidence? I THINK N- *gets shot and dissolved in acid*
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Re: Breaking Bad: Season 1 *SPOILERS*

Postby Typical_Brother » Wed Aug 07, 2013 7:09 am

HarpingCarp wrote:
Typical Michael wrote:Also, a friend of mine told me that the "cook" recipes are about 85% accurate.


Suuuuuuure, a "friend".

Guys, have you noticed Mike hasn't been around much lately? He did say he got a "job"... and now there's this "friend" who knows about cooking meth.

Coincidence? I THINK N- *gets shot and dissolved in acid*


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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby Edgar Cabrera » Wed Aug 07, 2013 12:56 pm

Oh snap! It's the Typical_Brother again!

I'm looking forward to when Walt encountered the B---- in Apartment 23. No wonder why she's so jaded.

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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby JamesT » Wed Aug 07, 2013 1:49 pm

Wait wait wait, from the sounds of it you're saying the main character does some pretty nasty stuff! I always assumed Breaking Bad was a light hearted comedy about a boot camp for troubled teens! I really got to catch up on television...
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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby NisiOptimum » Wed Aug 07, 2013 2:14 pm

JamesT wrote:Wait wait wait, from the sounds of it you're saying the main character does some pretty nasty stuff! I always assumed Breaking Bad was a light hearted comedy about a boot camp for troubled teens! I really got to catch up on television...


No, no you're thinking of The Wire. 5 juvenile delinquents learn about love and personal responsibility at tight-rope walking camp. Best thing David Simon and the Disney Chanel have ever done.
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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby FaceTheCitizen » Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:21 pm

...
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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby 52xMax » Wed Aug 07, 2013 9:21 pm

Those shows sound a lot similar to Dexter, an animated series about a forensic scientist who does all sorts of wacky experiments at his lab, and no one knows about it except for his sist... damn, those two shows are actually very similar now that I think about it.
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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby HarpingCarp » Wed Aug 07, 2013 10:09 pm

52xMax wrote:Those shows sound a lot similar to Dexter, an animated series about a forensic scientist who does all sorts of wacky experiments at his lab, and no one knows about it except for his sist... damn, those two shows are actually very similar now that I think about it.


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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby Typical Michael » Thu Aug 08, 2013 2:57 am

This was season 1, right? Holy Crap.

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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby AboveGL » Thu Aug 08, 2013 5:34 am

This is a superb write-up, malos.
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Re: The Killings of Walter White: Season 1 (SPOILERS*)

Postby Craic- » Thu Aug 08, 2013 1:41 pm

Sometimes, peculiarly perhaps, I like finding out what happens in a series or film, imagine it, then go and watch it. I watched Breaking Bad episodes one and two last night in my cabin, immediately after reading this article, and boy was that bath scene grim. Great stuff though, and great write up! After all this time from people bugging me to watch it, it was your good work malosaires that turned me. Now if I need any future turning - be it sexual orientation or driving cattle - I know who to turn to.

I've said "turn" too much.

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