Breaking Bad, the hugely popular cable series that lasted five seasons and pulled us in and out of the gut-wrenching ordeals of High School chemistry teacher, turned meth cook, Walter White, is back for more bad. Slated to have a spin-off television show entitled, Better Call Saul, casting will commence as early as the end of March, 2014, for the new AMC television show.
In the cable series, Saul was the shady lawyer who was happy to aid and abet the shenanigans of Walter and Jessie, for a hefty sum, while keeping them from the watchful eye of the police. He provided legal advice to protect them during their illegal activities. In the end, everything went south and Saul was running as fast as the meth cooks he had been protecting.
The new television series would be a prequel to the Breaking Bad cable series, giving a background look into the lives of the main characters. Several actors are currently being approached. Aaron Paul has already said he would love reprising his bad boy role as Jessie Pinkman for, at least, a few episodes, and in fact, is already talking with producers. Paul, whose character was basically the assistant, aka sidekick, to his High School chemistry teacher’s venture into the world of meth manufacture, stated that it would be fun to be a part of this prequel and re-create Jessie Pinkman before he ever went into business with Mr. Walter White. The show would have a much more lighthearted mood. Sort of like going back to his high school days when all he had to worry about was passing his chemistry final. Besides, said Paul in a recent interview, director Vince Gilligan practically handed him his acting career on a silver platter when he auditioned for the part, and that is enough of a reason to want to be a part of anything Vince does.
Bryan Cranston, is definitely on board with his Breaking Bad alter ego, Walter White, street name Heisenberg, and has agreed to come back for more bad with a few appearances on the new series. A major part of the cable show’s success and tremendous appeal was Cranston’s ability to create a character who was so wholly dedicated to his family. So sincere in wanting to take care of them. You could not help but love him and root for him, despite his illegal dealings. He cared only for his family’s well being and that overrode all of his bad law-breaking choices. As a viewer, you wanted him to succeed, but also, you hoped he would reform.
Diagnosed with cancer, Walter White discovers that he has the skills and the intelligence to make meth, and to make money. A lot of money. Given only a few months to live, his plan is to make the meth and make a few million dollars to leave to his wife, his son, and his daughter. He wants nothing more than to know they will be taken care of after he dies. A noble purpose served by illegal means. Then Walter goes into remission. By then he is deep into cooking; he cannot stop.
He already has more than enough money, but the allure of the blue meth, the money he could still make, and so easily, is too seductive, and he succumbs to the temptation of continuing in his new career. Having hooked up with a discreet, savvy distributor, he keeps a low profile. But even after he has delivered on his contract with his dealer, Gus, he is helpless to turn down another contract, another three months of cooking, and he accepts this one last contract. Gus, with his team of hard-core street boys, is an outwardly cool drug dealer, but in the end, he wants Heisenberg dead. That’s when Walter’s life is thrown into chaos.
The new prequel would highlight life before the downfall. As with all bad choices, there is always a heavy price to pay, and Walter pays it in spades.
The spin-off of Breaking Bad is scheduled to debut in November 2014. The show’s creator, Vince Gilligan, is expecting that some of the other cast members will want to come back for the television series, but nothing is confirmed.
Now that we know we could love Walter and Jessie while they were the cooking meth duo, getting a glimpse into all their lives from the early days will bring us all back for more Breaking Bad.
By Christine Schlichte