September 28, 2013

Breaking Bad - Granite State

“Ozymandias” was beautiful; cinematic. It got me so amped up for the final two episodes. I couldn’t wait. Then we had the huge come-down. “Granite State” was not horrible, but it was bland. The entire episode felt like it was just laying there on the screen asking you to care about it, but doing nothing to elicit the feeling. I didn’t hate it, but overall it was my least favorite episode of this 5b season.

I might view “Granite State” unfavorably just because of how great the directing was last week. Rian Johnson took the great Breaking Bad storyline and created art. “Granite State” not only had a much weaker storyline in my opinion, but it was completely devoid of the artistic flourishes that make Breaking Bad so interesting.

September 24, 2013

Breaking Bad - Ozymandias

I was busy last week and I didn’t get a post up about “Ozymandias”. Now that we have seen “Granite State” it seems pointless to write at length about it. “Ozymandias” was directed by Rian Johnson and it was one of the best hours of television I’ve ever seen. I love Breaking Bad and this might have been the best episode in the entire series.

I really have no negatives with “Ozymandias”. The cold open was amazing. It felt so strange to see Walt and Jesse out in the desert on their first cook. Everything was so simple back then. It was great to see them acting like “friends”. I was amazed to hear that sequence was the very last thing they shot on the entire series. They needed the actors to grow their hair back and for Walt to shave his goatee, so it was the very last thing they shot. I would have thought they shot that way back in the pilot and was saving it. It bookended the series beautifully.

September 12, 2013

Breaking Bad - To'hajiilee

More than anything else, this is a list of disconnected thoughts. Based on some of the things I write, it might seem like I didn't like this episode all that much. I actually did. It was intense, but there were a few uncharacteristic moves that I found off-putting.

Breaking Bad is one of the best written and well-acted television shows in history. They have never relied on tropes or gimmicks because they have never needed to. This past episode had more of that “junk” than the entire series to this point.

Huell is usually a man of few words, but in this episode he gave Hank the exact data he needed in order to make the fake photo. In the process of the show it seemed believable for the most part. The interaction with Huell seemed contrived, but not horrible. I'm not sure what it was, but I didn't think he was legitimately distressed when he saw the fake dead Jesse photo. Then he proceeds to spill the beans, which I found confusing right at first. But then I understood that he was supposed to be genuinely under duress. After the episode was over I realized the information Huell gave to Hank was unprompted and oddly specific; giving them the exact amount of detail they needed to get the fake money photo. Hmmmm…..

September 7, 2013

Breaking Bad - Rabid Dog

I’m going to start out by saying that I enjoyed “Rabid Dog”, but I feel like it is the weakest episode of the season so far. I don’t have a good reason for saying that, it just felt like it focused on a lot of the same character beats as the last episode. I’m not saying it was a bad episode, but it definitely felt like they pumped the brakes a little bit and slowed things down. The way “Confessions” ended it felt like we might be getting things rolling and I was ready for a frantic pace to the finish.

We start out the episode with Walt breaking into his own house looking for Jesse. There is a very tense sequence as Walt stalks through the house checking all the rooms, only to find out Jesse isn’t there. We don’t know where he is until act two of the episode when we see Hank come in and take Jesse away right before Walt shows up. It was a little strange to go back in time; something Breaking Bad hasn’t done very often, but in this scenario it worked well.

September 5, 2013

Bullet Journal Analog Note System

I am a note taker and a list maker, but my analog notes are an unorganized mess. Bullet Journal is not a product, but a system for keeping your notes organized. I’m not sure if it will work for me, or if I’ll have the discipline to keep up with it, but I’m going to try it out.

For the list-makers, the note-takers, the Post-It note pilots, the track-keepers, and the dabbling doodlers. Bullet journal is for those who feel there are few platforms as powerful as the blank paper page.

Even if you don’t care about organizing notes, the website is pretty awesome. It’s design alone is worth checking out.

➔ Bullet Journal: An analog note-taking system for the digital age

September 3, 2013

Breaking Bad - Confessions

Going into these last eight episodes Breaking Bad is my favorite television show of all time. This title was previously held by LOST, which totally broke my heart in its final season. I had a little bit of concern that I had built Breaking Bad up so much that is couldn't do anything but let me down. “Confessions” was proof that the Vince Gilligan and the other writers knew what they were doing. This was an amazing episode. I can only hope the last 5 are as good as “Confessions”.

First off, the “confession” was nothing close to what I thought it would be. I loved the call back to the pilot episode. If you don't remember that, Walt thinks he is going to be caught so he records a confession video back then, starting it off the exact same way. I genuinely thought Walt was going to confess everything he did in that video. When he handed over to Hank I didn't know what was going on. Then when Hank & Marie stood there and watched it I was floored. I doubt Walt had been planning this, but it sure did work out well.