So Far This Week… April 30th, 2014

Holy crap! Get ready to have your socks knocked off; this week brings in a lot of great news tidbits.

This Sunday is May the Fourth!  Hush Comics is lucky enough to be running a panel at StarFest to commemorate the holiday.  Come see us at 10 AM!

This Saturday, May 3rd, is FREE COMIC BOOK DAY! Head to your local comic book store for free issues of some of the biggest (and smallest, in the case of Mouse Guard) stories in the industry. Many local shops are holding insane sales for books, so it’s an amazing opportunity for new fans to dive in head-first to the comic book world. Don’t believe me? Just take Levar Burton’s word for it.

For more information on which books are available, this is your one-stop shop (figuratively, I mean, you still have to go to the shop to get the books. duh.). Also, Denverites, visit the Mile High Comics’ Jason Street Mega-Store for some awesome festivities on  Saturday.

If you’re like us, you like to occasionally use the ComiXology to supplement the physical copies of comics you buy at your local stores… RIGHT?? Well, since the acquisition by Amazon, there have already been some swift changes to the storefront. If you’re as confused as we are, check out this informational article.

Today marks the return of the Amazing Spider-Man to the comic book world. After over a year of Otto Octavius as Spider-Man (it’s complicated), Peter is back in command and with a new lease on life! And just in time for the movie, Amazing Spider-Man 2, to hit theaters.

Gwen Stacy herself challenged Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon to a lip-sync battle, which is quickly becoming my favorite recurring bit on the show. Emma Stone destroys Fallon – all she does is win, win, win.

Before last week’s episode of Game of Thrones, “Oathkeeper,” a trailer for the upcoming series called Leftovers. I’m still not too sure what it’s about, but I’m interested enough to check it out when it airs June 29th.

Speaking of Game of Thrones, the upcoming video game by Telltale Games is getting some narrative assistance from the story creator’s right hand man, Ty Corey Franck as a story consultant. With games like The Walking Dead and Wolf Among Us, I’m sold with anything Telltale puts out.

Marvel is not just trending, but making it a priority for gender equality in their books. Our article on what Ms. Marvel means to us (and the world) is just the start. Now that Elektra, Black Widow, Captain Marvel, She-Hulk, X-Men (all female cast) and the aforementioned Ms. Marvel have solo titles, it’s time for another leading lady to get her own series; Storm debuts this summer, written by Greg Pak – an interview from C2E2 can be found here.

Not even a year after the series’ Felina, and we’re still mourning the legendary Breaking Bad. Fans should check out this 8 minute-long tribute (seriously, whoever made this should win a freakin’ award) to the Heisenberg; while you’re at it, read our Breaking Bad Week articles. You’re God Damn Right.

Image Comics (The Walking DeadSagaDeadly ClassBlack Science…..) is trying to get some much-deserved cred with Humble Bundle, a site that lets users choose how much they pay for these works (sorry, there is a minimum payment lol). Here are some more details on the deal.

2014 is the year of the Bat…man 75th Anniversary, and July 23rd has been officially dubbed Batman Day! To celebrate, go to your local shop and pick up a FREE issue of a reimagined Detective Comics #27; Batman Day also coincides with the release of Grayson #1 and Robin Rises: Omega #1. Ah, it’s a good time to be a Bat.

The DC New 52 run of Batman has been arguably the best comic out since it went to print in 2011. A line of Greg Capullo-inspired action figures will be released soon (Batman and Talon coming this month). I want to buy an army of Talons, but I will likely settle for two.

Saturday morning cartoons meets Sunday night slow jams! Check out this awesome rendition of the classic Ducktales theme song.

Spider-Man is definitely the topic of choice this week, but DC and Warner Bros. can’t let Marvel steal all the shine. Zack Synder has been announced as the director to a Justice League movie to be released after Batman vs Superman.

Classic Frank Miller graphic novel, Ronin, is getting picked up by the SyFy channel. Hell yes.

Just in time for Star Wars Day, the initial cast for Star Wars: Episode VII has been released. What do you think?

To continue to expand upon its appeal to fourteen year old boys (just a good ribbing from a PlayStation person), X-Box One has launched WWE Network on consoles.

The Disney-Marvel connection will be in full effect this fall when Disney Infinity brings the big guns to its platform for its second iteration, Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes. I haven’t gotten a chance to play the game, but it seems like a great game for kids.

DC’s adult alter-ego game, Injustice: Gods Among Us, is rumored to be getting a sequel out next year. I’m not too sure how a new installment will be justified, but I’m excited, nonetheless. We’ll have more news on that as it develops.

Village idiot Joe Dirt may be getting a sequel. Yeah, that’s where we’re at with comedies…

Weekend Wrap-Up…April 6, 2014

You join us here on a Sunday afternoon, sans-Walking Dead. But rejoice! Season 4 of Game of Thrones is here to fill that gap in your life. Check out this titillating preview.

In other Game of Thrones news, Natalie Dormer (Joffrey’s wife, Margaery Tyrell) has posed for GQ in a very risqué way, luckily for us.

More Throny madness! Gwendoline Christie (Brienne of Tarth) will be playing Commander Lyme, commander of the rebellion and leader of District 13, in Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1.

The Heisenberg himself, Bryan Cranston, has signed on to write a memoir about his time filming Breaking Bad. If you’re like us, you will buy one hundred copies, build a fort out of them and scream at everybody who passes to “get out of your territory.” The book is due out next fall.

If you haven’t made time to go see Captain America: The Winter Soldier, it’s not too late. Wanna hear about how awesome it is? Check out our mostly spoiler-free review here.

Arrow just got a whole new level of crazy last week. Summer Glau’s character isn’t what she appears to be. That is, unless you’ve seen this Twitter picture of her in Ravager gear! Ravager is Slade Wilson’s daughter, and one bad B. Summer Glau is usually as deadly as she is beautiful, so I can’t wait to see her tear up Starling City.

Michael Bay’s TMNT (sigh…) has chosen to replace two of its voice actors. The new Leonardo and Splinter voices have been awarded to Johnny Knoxville – yep, the guy from Jackass – and Tony Shalhoub (WingsMonk). I swear, you can give yourself an aneurism worrying about this movie, but it’s best to just let it happen.

To celebrate Batman’s 75th anniversary, Cartoon Network will be airing an animated short, made by the master himself, Bruce Timm. If you don’t catch it tonight, I’m sure that it will be YouTube gold by this time tomorrow.

DC Animated’s next film, Son of Batman, is one of my most anticipated things of 2014. Check out this new clip that features Batman putting the hurt on Killer Croc. The movie comes out May 6th.

If you’re looking to blow some money, the Limited Edition Season 4 Blu-Ray set (wow, that’s a mouthful) for The Walking Dead has been announced and is now available for pre-order. Fans of the show will recognize the walker on the cover as “Tree Walker,” the walker Herschel convinced Carl not to put down.

Michonne and Rick are having a baby! Just kidding… Danai Gurira revealed the “news” to Jimmy Kimmel earlier this week.

Spiderman 2099 is back! The futuristic web-head made some guest appearance in Superior Spider-Man, but Miguel O’Hara will be getting his own series this July.

The Big Bang Theory is planning a Star Wars Day episode.  And Bob Newhart is going to be Sheldon’s Jedi Master.  Hmmmm….

Will Chiwetel Ejiofor be James Bond’s new nemesis?  We approve, but only if he dies a good death.

Ridley Scott + Halo + Digital Movie Short = Nerd Heaven?

There have been some new casting decisions made for Better Call Saul.  Several lawyers and a few criminals.  But really, we just care about Mike.

Kid President is getting his own show.  Unfortunately, its on a network no one has.  But good for that little fella!

The Volume 3 release of Batman: Death of the Family will come with Joker mask.  Yeah, that one.

Have you seen the new trailer for Lucy?  It has ScarJo and Morgan Freeman.  Sold.

Yeah, and there is that Gremlins remake.  Is nothing sacred?!

written by Sherif Elkhatib and Adrian Puryear

Weekend Wrap-Up…March 23, 2014

March Madness is in full effect right now! The Quicken Loans $1B challenge for the perfect got eliminated before the first round was even over. How busted are your brackets?

So, The Boondocks are coming back for Season 4 – starting on April 21st. There’s a catch though – the show will be without creator Aaron McGruder. This will be the final season, and likely the last time we’ll get to see Huey, Riley and Grand-dad in this medium. McGruder seems to have been supportive of the new season via social media, but will the magic be lost without him? We think not.

This is no penny stock scam; The Wolf of Wall Street is being released on Blu-Ray and DVD on Tuesday, March 25th. If you’re still having doubts, check out our review here.

Far Cry 4 sits at number three on my most wanted video-game list (right after Arkham Knight and Watch Dogs). More announcements have been made; the game will take place in the Himalayan Mountains, complete with rideable elephants and Yeti hunting! It will be released next year.

Set your DVRs to record, people! Bryan Cranston AKA Walter White AKA “Heisenberg. You’re god-damn right” is going to be on The Colbert Report on Monday night.

Community‘s Alison Brie will be producing a TV Land show Teachers, based off the web-series of the same name. Watch a couple of them and you will be sold, especially if you’ve worked in the education industry.

The man, the legend, Chris Claremont will return to X-Men writing duties with Nightcrawler #1. The book debuts April 9th.

Turtles in Time is back, this time, as a mini-series by IDW Comics. A common Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme has been sending them back in a certain time period to tackle new problems. The mini-series will be drawn by Ross Campbell, who drew the recent Northampton arc. So excited!

Keep an eye out for our The Walking Dead “Us” review later tonight. We’re all one step closer to Terminus.

So Far this Week… February 26, 2014

With the expansion of Hush Comics, we have decided to give bi-weekly news updates.  Anything we find news-worthy will be posted here bi-weekly.  Have anything to add?  Post it in the comments!

Arrow and Survivor come back tonight. About damn time! This week, we say hello to the Clock King.

Breaking Bad is finally completely available to stream on Netflix, in all it’s tragic glory. We laughed, we cried, we dressed up as meth cooks; it was the best. Open up our reviews or “Breaking Bad Week” articles while you enjoy the end of the decades’ best show.

Also in BrBa news, The Heisenberg himself, Bryan Cranston, is moving on to become a serial killer in the upcoming movie Holland, Michigan, acting along-side Naomi Watts. I’m instantly sold with anything this man does, so it will great seeing him back on the big screen.

The makers of Batman: Arkham Origins might not care about your glitchy game, but they do want you to enjoy the new “Cold, Cold Heart” DLC, released April 22nd and centered around a battle with Mr. Freeze.

Hideo Kojima has just collectively shoved everybody off the fence when it comes to buying Metal Gear SolidGround Zeroes. When the game is released on March 18th, next-gen gamers will be able to purchase Ground Zeroes for $10 less.

A gentleman and an entertainer, original Ghostbuster Harold Ramis has passed away, after complications from an auto-immune disease he had been with for years.

I’ve given it five episodes before I spread the good word, but FX’s Chozen is the real deal. Give it ten minutes, and I swear he will be your favorite white, gay rapper ever.

The upcoming Joseph Gordon-Levitt led Sandman movie has found a writer in Jack Thorne, who has written several British shows – including Skins and Shameless.

Adam Driver has been cast as a villain in Star Wars: Episode VII. Yup, the guy from HBO’s Girls. I hold judgment, though, and take it as a sign that we are one step closer to an Episode VII release.

Jason Momoa, who Thronies (men who love Game of Thrones) might know better as Khal Drogo, actually turned down the part given the role of Drax the Destroyer in Guardians of the Galaxy to avoid being type-casted as the big, brooding alien – similar to his role in Stargate: Atlantis. His loss.

The track listing for the soundtrack to the movie Divergent has been released. If you like Ellie Goulding, sprinkled in with some alternative and Hip-Hop, then you should love it. It’s still not on par with the Hunger Games movies’ soundtrack.

Written by Sherif Elkhatib and Adrian Puryear

Breaking Bad Review – “Felina” S5E16

I say this in all seriousness, if you are a fan of the series and have yet to watch the finale, do not read until you have watched the episode.

bloodmethtears

It is our great delight to be writing our 100th post on the series finale of one of the greatest television shows ever made, Breaking Bad.  It is also bittersweet.  BrBa has been an inspiration to us here at Hush Comics to pursue our passion of pop-culture as well as any writing we do for our personal pleasure.  Now that it is really over, it is a little overwhelming that this chapter is closed.

At the beginning of the episode, Walt enters a Volvo that is unlocked.  Apparently, people in New Hampshire do not fear meth kingpins stealing their cars.  After he finds a screwdriver in the glove compartment, he unsuccessfully tries to start the ignition.  It is so bitter cold, and his coughing is much worse, so it is near impossible for his hands not to shake while he tries.  For a brief moment, police lights can be seen flashing past the snow-covered car he is sitting in.  He whispers to himself, “Just get me home.  I’ll do the rest.”  Walt has a definite plan in mind for what is going to happen in Albuquerque.  He takes the screwdriver to pull down the sun-visor and the keys fall into his hands.  When he starts the car, the song “El Paso” by Marty Robbins, whose cassette fell out of the glove compartment, plays.  The song refers to the narrator’s love, Felina.  You can read the lyrics here.

Walt arrives in New Mexico with the stolen Volvo and gets gasoline out in the desert.  He grabs some of his cancer medicine out of the trunk that is full of money (we assume he went back for the money still left in the cabin).  He then uses a pay phone to call someone named “Susan” claiming to be David from the New York Times.  He has already convinced her that he is writing an article on the Schwartz’.  The woman easily gives him their address after claiming he needs to get a photograph of them for the article.  Walt then looks down at this wrist, takes off the watch Jesse had given him a year earlier for his 51st birthday, and leaves it on the top of the pay phone.  As said on Talking Bad by Vince Gilligan himself, this was originally done for continuity purposes, as Walt is not wearing the watch in the flash forward scene at Denny’s.  But the “artsy-fartsy” explanation is that he is done with that part of his life, knowing what he is going to do in Albuquerque.

Gretchen and Elliott arrive home.  They are bickering about the difference between pizza and Thai food.  Their home’s entrance is so grandiose that they don’t even notice that Walt is waiting for them in the shadows.  As they enter their home, Walt follows them.  It is so creepy the way he easily allows himself into their house, just by hiding in the shadows.  The shot of him gently touching the wall was a brilliant showcase of Walt realizing what could have been his, had the circumstances been different.  He finds their collection of photos and picks up one of he and Elliott back when days were better.  Gretchen and Elliott make reference to having not been to Napa Valley in two years, which has been too long.  Ironically, our story started exactly two years ago.  Gretchen goes to turn on the fireplace and when she turns around, she sees Walt and screams.  Walt acknowledges the Schwartz’ and compliments their home.  Walt hold up the picture of he and Elliott and remarks on their view of the Sangre de Cristos Mountains.  This may be a geography error, since we assume they live in Santa Fe, and the Sangre de Cristos are in our home state of Colorado.  But the reference to the mountains named after the Blood of Christ are more important here.  The blood of Christ will play a major role in the following moments of the episode.  Walt compliments Gretchen on how she looked on Charlie Rose, giving a nod to the fact that Walt regrets not being with her in the end, perhaps.  He then asks them to walk to his car to show them something, a very eery invite from a man wanted in multiple murders.  Elliott raises a small knife at Walt, to which he responds with one of his final great Heisenberg lines, “Elliott, if we’re gonna go that way, you’ll need a bigger knife.”  Elliott promptly drops the knife.

Back at the Schwartz house, Gretchen and Elliott stack piles of cash on their coffee table.  Walt informs them the total is nine million dollars.  When they want to know where it came from, Walt demands they give the money to Walt Jr. on his 18th birthday, which is less than a year away.  He instructs them give it in the form of a trust fund.  It really is the smartest way to ensure his family gets some money.  He knows any other way and the government will take the money.  He also knows that the only people who won’t steal his money are the people who have more money.  Elliott and Gretchen reluctantly shake with Walt on the deal.  To ensure they will do as he has asked, he sends a signal out the window to two people who then set laser guns aiming for the couple.

gretchen and elliott

He tells them it cost him 200,000 dollars to hire the “two best hit-men west of the Mississippi.”  It seems so laughable he would use that term.  Only cowboys in old movies say west of the Mississippi.  Also, a thought ran through our heads… the two best hit-men cost ONLY 200,000 dollars?!  And then the way Walt touches their shoulders as he threatens them and Gretchen’s reaction made me root for the Heisenberg master mind behind this act. Notice that he also mentions that if they don’t give the money to Jr., that they could be anywhere and be shot.  He says Prague in a number of places he lists; Prague is the largest city in … the Czech Republic.  He ends his speech by telling them, “This is where you get to make it right.”  Walt clearly feels that they did him wrong and by giving the money to whom it belongs, they will redeem themselves.

Walt drives away from the house and the two hit-men run to Walt’s car.  Badger and Skinny Pete reveal themselves and hand their regular laser pointers to Walt.  When they question the morality of what they just did, Walt hands them their share of the $200,000.  Immediately, they say they are feeling better about what they just did.  Walt questions Jesse’s two best friends about the blue.  They genuinely think that Walt has continued to stay in the game.  Walt gets visibly upset that Jesse is still cooking; meanwhile, Skinny Pete and Badger are stunned he isn’t in Alaska, but proud of him for cooking, yet upset that he isn’t giving them any.  Aww.. I’m gonna miss those nerdy meth-heads.

Jesse is in a wood-working shop making a box.  He is being careful with his craftsmanship and takes a moment to sniff the final product.  He cares about the art, just as he once did with the meth.  Is Jesse like Jesus, a carpenter? Well he snaps back to reality when he realizes he is caught on his chain in the meth lab.  Walt is at Denny’s and we are in the scene we started the season in.  He arranges his bacon into the “52” and then goes to get his ricin.  He stands in his now empty living room and remembers when it was full of life at his 50th birthday party.  Hank tells him he should go on a ride along to get some “excitement in his life” and Walt responds “someday.”  Two years later, Walt has gotten most of the excitement he will ever get in his life.

Lydia enters the cafe in Albuquerque wearing her Christian Louboutin heels, rolling her very expensive luggage, and very unsuspecting that Heisenberg has been sitting there waiting for her.  She orders her standard chamomile tea with soy milk and looks for her package of Stevia in the sugar caddy.  I think everyone was rooting for the fact that this package of Stevia was different than most and just praying that bitch would get the ricin treatment.  Todd comes and sits down, attempting to compliment Lydia on her shirt..er… blouse.  She not so slyly slides the bag of money to him under the table, just as she had done with Walt at one point.  Walt then pulls up a chair to sit with them at their table.  I like this Walt.  He is so cavalier, he does not give a flying fuck if people are afraid of him or that he is just out in the open.   He seems to think that the methylamine is running low and can teach Todd a way to cook without it.  As he goes into a coughing fit, it is hard to believe him as a viewer.  We do know the truth, but it would seem that in real life, Walt is dying.  He says he needs money and Lydia, being afraid of being caught by the police, offers to have Walt talk to Jack.  When the waiter comes, Lydia shoos him from the table.  She asks for more Stevia.  Todd and Lydia agree they are not going to do business with him.  But little do either of them know, Walt has done his business with them both.  Lydia pours the Stevia in her tea and stirs her poison right into her drink of choice.  Being a schedule-oriented person isn’t always a positive thing.

Mmmm Mmmmm.. Ricin!
Mmmm Mmmmm.. Ricin!

In the New Mexico desert, Walt uses his science skills to build a motorized device to set the famed M-60 on.  It was so great to see the use of science and logic by Mr. White.  And it made me root for him again.  I don’t want to.  He is an evil and terrible man.  But we know he is going after the Aryan’s.  And we know he is smarter than they are.  And we just want him to beat them so badly.

We cut to a very small town home.   It has familiar furnishings: the painted photographs of Skyler and Walt Jr., the couch with the knitted afghan draped over the back, the china cabinet that used to sit in the living room of the White residence and the large wooden spoon that used to hang on the dividing wall in the kitchen.  The phone rings and Marie leaves a message asking Skyler to pick up the phone.  Noticeably, Marie is wearing white, much Skyler does in season 5b because the life has been sucked out of her. Skyler is smoking as Marie tells her that Walt is back in town, as the car he stole was found at Denny’s.  Marie says that Carol, their old neighbor, or was it Becky, saw him at the house and he looked like the Unibomber.  There are calls about his “manifesto” being made to several different agencies.  It is hard to believe that Walt is making these calls, as he seems preoccupied, but it is plausible because it would throw the police off so he can carry out his plan. Marie’s house is being watched as is Flynn’s school.  Skyler is warned that her house is probably being watched, too.   Marie says that she knows watching the houses is what Hank would do.  As annoying as she can be, she is still a good wife to Hank.  She then goes on and on about how dumb Walt is and how he isn’t a mastermind.  Blah Blah Blah.  But he is.

The next scene is one of the most beautifully shot out of the whole episode.  Behind the wooden post, Walt stands waiting for her to finish her phone call.  Skyler lets him know he has five minutes.  He is wearing his favorite outfit, a green button-up with khakis and his beige jacket.  Skyler lights up a second cigarette, her great coping mechanism, commenting on how Walt looks, terrible.  The camera pans and we can see Skyler’s face reflected in the microwave with the smoke flitting over it.  I wish Vince Gilligan had never admitted it was a happy accident because the symbolism of her fading away in the smoke was the perfect touch on this good-bye.  Walt tells her that he wanted a proper goodbye, not their last phone call.  Calling your wife a stupid bitch probably isn’t the best way to end things. She asks if he is turning himself in and he says, “They’ll be coming to me” solidifying the hope that the gun is going to do some serious damage.  Skyler expresses her fear of the people who came and threatened the family. Walt assures her that they aren’t coming back, after “tonight.”  “What happens tonight?” Haven’t we all been wondering that for years now?  Walt hands her the lottery ticket with the coordinates of the desert on it.  He tells her what to say to the DEA.  He tells her what really happened to Hank and Steve and that they are buried where the money used to be.  Walt tells her to use the ticket to get herself a deal with the prosecutor.  Walt and Skyler’s next exchange is the best of the episode and could be added to the best quotes list.

“Skyler, all the things that I did, you need to understand..”

“If I have to hear one more time that you did this for the family..”

i was alive

It is the first time Skyler ever gets the truth from him.  And it was the first time Walt admitted it to himself.  As the camera pans back, the wooden pillar divides the two, showing the wedge that has always existed between the two.

walt and skylerWalt then asks to see Holly.  How gut-wrenching to see this man rub his child’s head for the last time, knowing that he never really was a part of her life.  Cops are waiting outside of the town house.  Flynn exits the school-bus, noticeably not the Dodge Challenger.  Walt watches Flynn enter the home through the glass of a nearby window. It seems so gutsy of him to be out in the open with the police nearby looking for him specifically.

Walt pulls up to the Aryan’s headquarters for his meeting with Jack.  Kenny comes out and admires the Cadillac that Walt picked up at the Denny’s lot from Lawson.  Kenny directs Walt to the “clubhouse”, but Walt carefully parks his own way, despite Kenny’s protests.  The Aryan’s come out to greet Walt in a not so friendly way and take his keys and wallet.  They ask him to lift his shirt to show he isn’t wearing a wire.  I was surprised that Walt wasn’t more emaciated.  He asks for his things back, but they don’t budge.  A lookout is told to stay outside.  Inside, Jack comments on Walt’s hair, and Walt’s things are thrown onto the pool table.  Walt asks if Jack knows why he is there, but declines to do business with Walt.  Jack lets Walt know that Lydia sends them small amounts of methylamine and the system is fine. Todd tells Walt that he shouldn’t have come back, referring to him as “Mr. White” still.  As the men decide to take Walt outside to murder him, Walt brings up that he knows Jesse is still alive.  Instead of killing him, he is now their partner.  It is a little unclear whether Walt truly thinks he is their partner or prisoner.  Either way, the use of the word partner sets Jack off.  Jack wants to know where “the rat” is.  A good reference for how many viewers have been feeling about Jesse because he has been a snitch.  Todd tells him he is finishing a batch and goes to get Jesse.  Jack makes his fatal flaw by being an arrogant son-of-a-bitch.  He is going to prove “how wrong” Walt is.  This is a proven way to die in recent history with Walt, but to each is own.  Jack then says that he will put a bullet in Walt’s head.  Todd and Jesse come back to the clubhouse and in the time the rest are waiting, Walt makes a move for his keys, clearly the trigger for the machine gun waiting in his trunk.  Just when the door opens, he his able to grab his keys. Jesse comes in full view of Walt, and, out of the two, is the one who looks truly terrible.  His face is badly scarred, his hair is long and matted and he looks very scared.  He looks at Walt as Jack mockingly calls him his partner and then quickly looks away.  In the background, Kenny reclines in a massaging chair, making for very annoying noises.  Walt lunges at Jesse landing on top of him on the ground.  To the Aryan’s, he looks mad, but really he is the sacrificial lamb to save jesse from what is about to ensue.  He pushes the remote for the keys and the machine gun goes off.  In one of his most epic moments, the Heisenberg sets off the machine gun that kills all but two of the Aryan gang.  The whole scene seems to last forever as the M-60 goes off, and in the process seems to hit Walt. The bullets go back and forth and as the gun stops, there is a line of bullet holes along the homes exterior.  In the ceiling to floor shot inside, we see Kenny’s dead body still being bounced on the recliner, calling back to Jesse’s hydraulics’ in the season 2 Tuco shootout. Walt rolls off Jesse and Todd goes to look outside, because lets face it, he is NOT SMART.

mr white gun in your carHe calls “Mr. White?!” and Jesse comes up behind him strangling him to a slow and miserable death with the chains he’s been locked in for months, finally breaking his neck.  It was so reminiscent of how Walt killed Krazy-8 in season 1.  If you weren’t screaming “Yeah, Bitch!” and clapping, you’re a robot, and an evil one at that.  Walt picks up a gun and approaches Jack.  Jack puts a cigarette in his mouth and tells Walt that if he kills him he’ll never find his…. BAM.  Walt shot him in the head first.  The blood splatters on the camera and we know that this isn’t about Walt’s money.

jack dies He turns and faces jesse.  Walt slides the gun to him and Jesse aims it at his head.  When Jesse hears him say “I want this,” he drops the gun and tells him to do it himself.  As Jesse said in “Confessions” he will never do what Walt tells him to again, and he doesn’t.  A ringtone calling “Lydia, oh Lydia” is heard and Walt approaches Todd’s pocket.  Walt answers telling Lydia that he has poisoned her using her own Stevia and his ricin.  She is left alone in her room with her sick face and humidifier.  Walt exits the house and looks on at Jesse.  They give each other a small nod, the yep only desperados can give each other.  Jesse gets in Jack’s car and speeds away, half crying, half laughing.  As he drives away, Walt opens his jacket, showing the blood from the wound he did receive in his side.

jesse free

Walt then enters the meth lab. He taps the pressure gauge.  He walks and finds a gas mask.  He is reminiscing on the one thing he was perfect at in his life. He looks at his reflection in the pressure cooker, as he has done so many times in his time as The Cook.  In that reflection, we see the cop cars approaching.  He touches the cooker and as his hand slips away, his bloody handprint is left.

blood on the cookerHe falls to the floor and we see his blank, dead stare.  He lays dead with his arms out and the police slowly surround him as the song “Baby Blue” plays.  Was Walt Jesus, as he posed like in the final scene?  Hardly.  Remember, Mr. White is the Devil.  But the way he died, it was on his own terms, and he was able to save the only family he had left.  A friend of ours mentioned that Walt looked more like Leonardo DiVinci’s Vitruvian man.  Walt is every man and every man is Walt.  We are all capable of being heinous people, yet we are also capable of being our best selves.  Dying in the meth lab after saving Jesse, letting Skyler off the hook and giving his money to Walt Jr. was Walter White at his best self.

walt is dead

It’s hard to grade perfection, but we will give what is the only grade to give:

Hush Comics gives Breaking Bad’s“Felina” an A+.  There was no other way for the great Heisenberg to die but than to die in a meth lab. There was no other way for Todd to die but for Jesse to choke the life out of him.  Bringing the episode full circle, from the classic green shirt to allusions of the past.  It was the perfect end to a very imperfect chapter in the lives of those effected.

written by Adrian Puryear and Sherif Elkhatib

Breaking Bad Week: Series Defining Episodes

Breaking Bad has been a series to help define modern television.  It is one of the smartest series to exist to date.  The writing is impeccable, bringing a myriad of literary techniques to the screen.  Not only is the dialogue memorable, but so is the vast amount of symbolism.  The character development is of such high caliber that it becomes obvious how the characters changing has also influenced the show changes.  With that being said, we felt there were certain episodes that changed the course of the series in the most dramatic ways.  Here are our Series Defining Episodes:

7. Blood Money

“Tread lightly.” The quote still sends shivers down my skin. This is the turning point of the series; Hank had just gotten the epiphany (or rather, the epoophany) that Walt had been the Heisenberg all along. Instead of quietly searching through the evidence for any proof, or telling anybody at the DEA, his pride leads him to confront Walt after Walt asks him about the LoJack he sloppily placed on the Chrysler 300. He decks Walt in the face and lets out all his anger to him. We can see the hurt and anger in Hank’s face, but Walt is still calm and in command. He advises Hank that he needs to drop the case, because he has no idea what the Heisenberg is capable of. It sets the rest of the season in motion, and truly marks the beginning of the downfall of the empire – all ironically when Walt is finally out of it. It’s also the end of Jesse and Walt’s relationship. Jesse knows that Walt killed Mike, the only true father figure to him through the series, and we realize that Walt has no power over anybody anymore. He pleads Jesse to believe that his hands are clean, because he needs him to.

IMG_2688

6. Face-Off

Gus Fring represented a new type of “bad guy.” Unlike Krazy 8 and Tuco, Gustavo Fring didn’t have to be the villain. Gus gave Walt several opportunities to be a good asset to the business, and Walt was the one that proved to be the the sloppy, unpredictable one. It’s a theme that is consistent through The Walking Dead comics – it’s the realization that maybe our protagonist isn’t a good guy. A lot of fans were polarized by this because Gus Fring (an oddly charismatic character) didn’t have to be the villain, but Walt’s arrogance and greed put Gus in a situation with no choice in the matter. Walt poisons a little boy and throws Jesse right into the fire to save his own ass. He even literally uses Hector Salamanca to do his dirty work in killing Gus. “Face Off” marks Walt’s fall into villainy. While he does what he does out of the fear of his family’s safety, Walt proves that it’s little more than a pissing contest to him, telling Skyler “I won” after the deed was done.

Dafuq??
Dafuq??

5. One Minute

This episode is about much more than Hank’s parking lot stand-off with the Salamanca cousins. It marks the turning point for when Hank stopped being a jerk off and became a hero that we all rooted for. Hank Schrader was simply caught in the web that Gus Fring and Walter White had weaved for him. Hank was the sacrificial lamb Gus gave to the cartel hitmen, Marco and Leonel Salamanca, or so it seemed. The episode really showed us that Gus Fring is not simply your neighborhood “Chicken Man.” He is a manipulator, and with the botched attempt at agent Schrader’s life, he causes the death of a major cartel capo. More importantly though, this episode marks Hank’s true cross into lawlessness. The beatdown that he gives Jesse can be interpreted as his frustration that a junkie got the better of him, and not as much being about Marie. As we see later in the series, Hank hates to lose and will bend the law pretty far to make sure that he doesn’t. “One Minute” also captures the tragedy of Jesse; while Jesse undergoes even more tragedy, he never words his feelings quite as honestly as in this episode.

Well, this sucks.
This is how an average day at Wal-Mart ends.

4. Phoenix

“Phoenix” was defining in so many ways.  Walt just missed the birth of his daughter.  He claims to be doing everything he does for his family for the entire series, but it is a rare occurrence when he is actually there for his family.  Missing Holly’s birth continued Walt’s dead-beat daddy routine.   Walt Jr. sets up a website for Walt’s cancer treatment, savewalterwhite.com.  It highlights Jr.’s kind heart and what he thinks of his dad, or probably the man he used to know.  But as so well stated in this episode, Walt is not the man he used to be.  He mars the point of Jr.’s website and allows Saul to use it as a money laundering technique for the meth business.  Walt will continue to ruin nice things for the sake of the money he makes.  Most importantly, “Phoenix” defines the series because of what happens to Jane Margolis, Jesse’s girlfriend.  In the duration of the episode, Jane lies to her father about using again, lies to him about seeing Jesse, blackmails Walt into giving Jesse his fair share of money, and helps Jesse shoot up a combo of meth and heroin.  She shoots up the mixture herself.  Walt goes to Jesse’s house while the two are both passed out due to the drugs.  Walt tries to wake up Jesse, seemingly to talk about his drug abuse, and in the process of shaking him, causes Jane to roll onto her back.  She begins to vomit and choke.  Walt looks on at her with his hand covering his mouth.  He knows he has every opportunity to roll her on to her side, but instead he chooses to let her choke and die on her own vomit.  This act, or rather, lack of act, set in motion not only the pain that Jesse endures from Walt, but the fact that Walt is willing to let go of anybody as long as it benefits him.

I only set my DVR to 60 minutes...
I only set my DVR to 60 minutes…

3. Dead Freight

“Dead Freight” is the episode that really changed the game.  Not only was it masterfully pieced together, it influenced the rest of the series up until the tonight’s finale.  With a serious lack of methylamine, Walt, Jesse and Mike devise a plan using Lydia to get what they need.  According to Lydia, there is “an ocean” of the methylamine in trains that run in the northern part of New Mexico.  The three men plan to  rob the train, replacing it with water to make up for the weight difference when the train is weighed.  With Todd, the worker from Vamanos Pest, in tow, they are able to stop the train with a road block.  Todd is at the top of the train with the hose to release the water, Jesse is on the bottom of the train to release the methylamine, Mike is radioing Walt to tell him what is happening at the front of the train and Walt is counting off the gallons.  The train starts moving with Todd still on the top and Jesse still on the tracks.  In the end everything goes off without a hitch.  Except that Walt made it clear to Todd that no one can know what they did.  So after their short celebration, they turn and see a young teenage boy on his motorbike.  Todd without hesitation raises his gun and shoots the boy, killing him.  The episode ends there, with Jesse screaming “No!” but the effects of that one action have continued to take their toll.  Jesse got out of the meth-game because of it, Todd has been revealed to be an even bigger piece of trash since, Walt killed Mike, and Hank is dead.  And it all leads to Walt’s stupidity of trusting Todd at the train heist in the first place.

dead-eyes Opie son of a bitch
Dead-eyed Opie son of a bitch

2. The Pilot

In a 45-minute period, we meet a normal high school chemistry teacher, Walter White, who turns into a meth cook.  We saw his life quickly spiral out of control in one episode.  He is diagnosed with cancer, turns 50, quits his part-time job, goes on a meth-lab bust with his DEA brother-in-law, reunites with an old student of his, and decides to cook meth with said student, Jesse Pinkman aka Cap’n Cook.  Walt and Jesse cook meth together, and Jesse takes it to his friend Krazy-8, who was part of the meth bust Walt was a part of.  Krazy-8 is upset with Jesse about the bust for leaving his cousin, Emilio to be caught by the cops, so he questions the high quality of the cook.  Jesse is forced to take the two druggies out to the desert to the RV he and Walt bought to cook meth in.  Jesse lets Walt know they are in danger, promptly trips and Krazy-8 and Emilio beat him up badly.  Then they force Walt to teach them how to cook the meth he made.  Instead, he uses red phosphorus to kill them.  Or at least just Emilio.  There are so many decisions made in this episode that could have avoided the decay of this man everything he touches.  Without being on the car ride with the DEA or seeing Jesse, or decided to cook meth at all, Walt may be dead because of cancer, or he may be alive and just in debt.  But for such a prideful man, we know that he couldn’t live with constantly being at the bottom of the food chain.  His pride alone set in motion the consequences of the rest of Breaking Bad.

My life after Breaking Bad
My life after Breaking Bad

1. Ozymandias

If you’re a family member of Walt’s, sorry, you don’t get any free trips to Belize. After several offers to off his brother-in-law, Walt’s twisted sense of morality keeps him from taking out his one real threat to him and his empire. Picking up at the end of the shootout that began in “To’hajiilee,” we see a very weak Walter White pleading the Uncle Jack and the Aryans to spare Hank’s life (oh, and Gomey’s dead already). This is the same man who was a hardened criminal that ordered Jack to murder ten men in prison. In a panic, Walt offers Jack and crew $80 million to turn their back. The Aryans counter Walt’s offer by killing Hank and taking all of him money for themselves. Walt’s two treasures are his family and his money – and in just one segment, they are both stripped from him. It’s not as satisfying as I thought it would be, and is instead terrifyingly tragic. In a panic to make his family disappear with the remainder of the cash that Todd convinced Jack to leave him with, Skyler deduces that Hank is dead and that it is Walt’s fault. When Skyler and Walt get in a tuft over the kitchen knife, Walter Jr. becomes the man that must protect the family from the man that protects this family (cue Inception music. Baauumm!). Not to mention Walt’s ultimate sacrifice of absolving Skyler and saying goodbye to baby Holly, who he realizes he does not even know due to his exploits of the Heisenberg. Plot aside, there is so much symbolism in this episode, most of it stemming from the first cook. The call-backs to the Pilot remind us of a simpler time, a simpler lie. Walt has been broken by Hank’s murder, and in turn, his wife and child have abandoned him. “Ozymandias” does a superb job of making a full-circle to the beginning of the series. Not too be hyperbolic, but this is one of the best episodes of any drama. Ever.

Tonight is the last episode of the Breaking Bad.  How will our lives go on?  There is nothing on cable as high of caliber of writing.  Vince Gilligan, sir, you spoiled us.  Thank you for such a rollercoaster of emotion through your writing.  “Felina” an anagram for finale and the chemical symbols for Iron, Lithium and Sodium or as the internet has deemd it, Blood, Meth, Tears will surely by the final piece of the puzzle of “Growth, Decay, Transformation.”  Be sure to read our recap and review later tonight.

Written by Adrian Puryear and Sherif Elkhatib

Breaking Bad Week: Funniest Moments

Tomorrow is it, guys  The world will finally know what happens to the shells of humans we know on Breaking Bad.  It’s bittersweet.  But before tomorrow gets too heavy, we wanted to feature the funniest moments in the series.  It’s true that the first season had more funny moments than the rest, but that dark comedy did come all the way through season 5, which was much needed for a show with meth as the main premise.  Saul has been our comedic relief since season 2, but our tops feature Walt and Jesse, because they are equally funny people.  We dare you to try not to laugh.

7. Walt Throwing the Planter at the Glass Door.  Kinda…

In episode 3.04, “Green Light” Walt has just found out about Skyler’s affair with her boss, Ted Beneke.  Being the dangerous man he is, Walt decides to take matters into his own hands and show Ted what a man he is.  So he marches right into Ted’s building, gets past the receptionist, and then unsuccessfully tries to throw a planter through Ted’s office window, all while Skyler is yelling from the top of the stairs.  This is the same man who bravely walked into Tuco’s place of business and declared being the Heisenberg.  Now he’s just throwin’ planters.  Oh, Walt.

walt and the planter
What are you looking at?

6. Helicopter, Bitch!

When Jesse tries to get a job in episode 1.05, “Gray Matter”, he quickly realizes that with his lack of experience and education, he makes more as a criminal.  He decides to bring his friend Badger to the RV to teach him how to cook the meth he and Mr. White have been making.  It quickly becomes obvious that Badger is a better meth user than a meth maker, making Jesse look like Walt.  In all of Badger’s shenanigans, he picks Jesse up in the narrow RV, spins him around and yells one of the best “bitch” moments of the series:helicopter bitch

5. Jesse Trying to Test out the Plastic Tubs.

In episode 1.02, “Cat’s in the Bag…”  Jesse and Walt must deal with disposing of the body of Emilio after killing him in the pilot episode.  Per the coin flip, between murdering Krazy-8 or disposing of Emilio, Jesse wins.  He chooses to dispose of Emilio.  Walt instructs Jesse to go get special plastic tubs to be able to pour hydroflouric acid over his body in order to decompose it.  Feeling sick yet?  Well thats ok, because when Jesse goes to get the plastic tubs, he decides to test them out in the store.  And makes a fool of himself.  It’s hard not to laugh at his logic at the hardware store despite the dark content.

jesse in the tub

4. Awkward Family Dinner with a Guest.

In 5.06, “Buyout”, Jesse comes over to Walt’s home to discuss selling their methylamine after the murder of Drew Sharp.  When Skyler arrives home early, she insists Jesse stay for dinner.  Skyler is upset with Walt as usual, and makes the dinner with Jesse as uncomfortable as possible for Walt, but in turn it becomes even more uncomfortable for Jesse.  His coping method to get through the dinner is to really enjoy his glass of water.  I mean really enjoy it.

3. Oooooh, Wire!

In 2.09, “4 Days Out”, Jesse and Walt go on a long trip to cook the most meth they could at that point in time.  After Jesse leaves the keys in the ignition of the RV, the battery is dead.  In Walt’s attempt to teach Jesse a chemistry lesson, he shows Jesse how to build a battery out of the materials they have.  The moment proves that Jesse didn’t always think logically.

Walt: “And now, what shall we use to conduct this beautiful current with, hm? What one particular element comes to mind, hm?”

aaaa wire

Walt: … Copper.

2. Wipe Down This!

In the Pilot episode, we meet Walt who works full-time as a teacher and part-time as a cashier at a car wash.  He is a man who is typical, middle-aged man.  He doesn’t make a lot of money and is trying to support his pregnant wife and disabled teenage son.  When he gets his cancer diagnosis, he is even more down on his luck.  So it’s easy to imagine, that he would be easily angered.  When his boss at the car wash asks Walt to wipe down the cars, Walt has the best resignation speech in history:

1. Is That a Pizza on Your Roof?

In 3.02, “Caballo Sin Nobre”, Walt has long been kicked out and she has known he’s a drug manufacturer.  Her actions cause a rift between she and Jr.  Jr. packs his bags and goes to Walt’s new condo.  Walt then brings Jr. back to the house with a forgiveness pizza so they can have a family dinner.  After Skyler denies Walt from entering the house, he leaves the porch with the box of pizza in his hand.  In a fit of rage, the greatest meth maker in all of Albuquerque shows her who is boss by doing this:

What a badass, Walter.

Stay tuned for tomorrow!  Not only will we be posting our Series Defining Moments.  And as you well know, tomorrow is the premiere of “Felina,” the last episode of the series.  We will post our thoughts on it as soon as possible!  Thanks for reading!

written by Adrian Puryear