With "Ozymandias", Breaking Bad reaches its absolute apex, a gathering of all the worst things that could possibly happen for the series's main characters and the perfect analysis of Walter White's character. To me, this isn't merely the best episode of the series these 45 minutes of utterly tragic intensity, having my heart continuously palpitate, are what I consider to be the best thing to be ever put on screen in any medium.
In a non-stop fashion, Looper's writer/director Rian Johnson shocks the audience with gut-wrenching, jaw-dropping, and unforgettable scenes, not leaving you any time to breathe deeply and not stopping to bother you after the ending credits roll. The screenwriters of this series have proved to be one of the most talented in their business over the course of almost five seasons up to that point and in "Ozymandias", they have all the accumulated problems ingeniously falling to pieces. In one way, it's torturing to watch all the worst case scenarios arise, but it's also fascinating because of how greatly made it is. The acting is a new career-best for virtually everyone involved and the departments that don't receive their due respect too often, such as the cinematography, the editing, or the incidental music contribute a major share to the phenomenal final good as well.
I'm completely stunned at how fantastic "Ozymandias" is and I can't think of any other episode of a TV series or any other film that emotionally affected me to the extent Vince Gilligan and his crew managed to do with this episode. Breaking Bad has had its weaker moments in previous seasons and may not be everyone's cup of tea, but with "Ozymandias", it suddenly becomes a must-see for anyone who gives anything about great film- or TV-series-making.
Amazing episode, although I find it odd that so many reviewers here didn't catch onto the fact that Walt called his wife a "stupid bitch" because he was trying to protect his family.
He consciously kidnapped the child so that the police would arrive at the house and tap the phone. He then called, knowing that they were listening in (and asking "are you alone?" to make the police believe he was being honest), and then tried to give the impression that he had held his wife under duress the whole time. He pinned all of the blame on himself to save his family, and it draws such a strong connection to the first season, where he explains that family is everything. Shrouded in guilt and blood, he's returned to his original values.
I will be hard pressed to find such a whirlwind of a show when I'm done with this. Truly incredible!
What I liked- Gomez and Hank dying, Walt telling Jesse the truth about Jane, the ending, Walt taking off with Holly, Holly's "mama" line, "What the hell is wrong with you? We're a family!", Walt's phone call to Skyler, Jesse seeing the picture of Brock and Andrea in the meth lab.
PERFECT episode. The best of the show. Sad and dark as ever. If you're a fan, have tissues because you will cry your eyes out
I followed Breaking Bad to Season 2 and gave up after that Season 3 premiere till people started raving about this particular episode, so I pulled through and went through extreme highs (Season 4 Premiere) and extreme lows (Blood money) until I FINALLY reached this episode.
was incredible about this episode exactly? You see this stuff happen in every other western or TV Dramas, what's the difference? Maybe it's because I couldn't care less about the characters but I'm just really underwhelmed by the whole show and this episode doesn't change anything!
Hank could've been used for so many other things than just a pawn to Walter's character and a plot device! Dissapointed.
Wow, with a capital W. Amazing episode and and amazing tv show. You could have fooled me if you would say, that this would have been the finale. But I'm so glad there are still 2 to go. After Lost I never feeled so fullfilled after watching tv. This TV show is definetly going to be a every year returning TV show for me. Where others have failed to still let their fans stuck till the end with great writing this one has clearly hit the spot. Sorry for my Grammar. I'm Dutch ;)
For me, this was the darkest episode in television history. I haven't been so disgusted/disturbed with something from a fictional television series since the episode where Walt let Jane die. It was just one thing after another at a hundred miles per hour. It's tough not to fall when you're on the edge of your seat for an hour. I just kept thinking "No!" several times throughout. Despite my feelings of disappointment, disgust, and a shattered heart, I loved this episode and the only bad thing I have to say about it is that the next two episodes have a high bar to meet.
Amazing , just amazing , I think this episode has established a new standard to be followed in any coming TV show.
Amazing 45 minute full of emotions , actions , great performances, unexpected events all in one episode.
Bryan Cranston truly a brilliant actor who can easily reveal a set of contradictory emotions in just one scene .
Every scene in this episode deserve it own review starting from Hank death and Walter trying to save him because he is FAMILY , to the knife scene .
And then the phone call which was truly heartbreaking because it showed us that Walter has disappeared totally in the deep darkness , Walter tears as he saying those words to his wife and taking all the blame on everything.
Those tears were like he is saying goodbye to his family and his old life , a broken man tears that he has lost everything he care about .
"The Lie that started it all" gave us a sense of calm before the scene transitioned to the horrific reality of Hank and Gomie's final minutes. Reality pervades, as it has done in Breaking Bad, and in a lesser show, Hank may have escaped. What is important is Hank's refusal to beg is in direct contrast with Walt's pathetic begging at gunpoint by Mike some time ago, so when Hank dies he is truly the hero of the piece. What he has set in motion has heralded the beginning of the end of Walt, and ending that is now clearer and darker all at once.
Last week's dazzling cliffhanger opens in this week with a snapshot back to simpler times in Season 1 with Walt just beginning to cook (same spot of the shootout, remember) and lying to Skyler about being home late complete with witty Jesse/Walt banter. When we flash to the present Gomez lays dead and Hank has a bullet in his leg and is then held at gunpoint by Jack and his boys while Walt pleads for Hank's life. Hank tells Walt that Jack will kill him despite his pleadings that Hank "is family" and the bit about Hank calling Walt "the smartest person he ever met" made me sad for the doomed DEA agent who only minutes previous had been on Cloud 9. I knew Gomez would bite it and drawing out Hank's to have Walt beg some more was great dramatic material. It was also very redemptive for Walt to beg for the life of a man who wants to see him burn so badly, even offering all of the buried money for Hank's life. Walt even throws Jesse into their clutches (as I predicted they would with my flashforward prediction of the machine gun being for Jack and to save Jesse from forcible cooking) with Todd torturing him and then chaining him up in the meth-lab before Walt finally calls-back to when he watched Jane overdose and he chose not to save her. But Walt's defeated look just lying there next to Hank's body after the fact while Jack dug up his money really let the trauma sink in. Jack allows him to keep one barrel (not such a bad guy after all) and it was in fact Todd's idea to not having Jesse offed but I'm not sure his sunburnt and detained fate is that much better than being dead. Walt drives away with the barrel but not before running out of gas (the opening cast credits playing at the 20 minute mark showed how committed to the drama the writers and director Rian Johnson is) and he purchases an elderly American Indian man's pickup for a big wad of cash. He now has 10-11 million dollars and wants his family to go with him. But not all goes to plan at all as Marie goes to the carwash where she gets Skyler to tell Flynn everything (which he of course doesn't believe) and gives her some perspective on how she's just as bad as Walt for turning a blind eye to his operations. When they arrive home Walt is there packing up frantically and Flynn and Skyler demand an explanation as to why he's not in custody. His thin lie about having "negotiated" was so implausible and it was good that the characters caught onto it right away. But Skyler pulls a knife on him and cuts him and they get into a bit of a wrestling match as he tries to get the knife away from her. She demands that he leave without them. I just wish that Walt had explained instead of insisting on it, I mean they clearly already know that Hank had him in custody they aren't going to trust him based on what Flynn had just learned. But Walt saying "We're a family" and "what the hell is wrong with you?" truly show how much his sense of family has turned against him for his sins and how everything that he was fighting for has crumbled around him. He takes Holly and leaves, even having Flynn call the cops on him before going. His phone call to Skyler was almost written by male fans on forums for the show about how dumb she is. But I think she finally got wise to the real impact of what Walt was doing. He wasn't hurting anyone before but if he inadvertently had anything to do with Hank's death that would be her tipping point so I absolutely believe that she would go so far as to pull a knife on Walt in that instance. Her character makes sense to me as someone trapped by circumstance and simply bides their time and goes along because they don't see any alternative. There are a lot of real life relationships that I see like this so seeing Skyler finally turn on him (again I guess) was gratifying as it pushed Walt over the edge too. Him devolving into calling his own wife "a stupid bitch" and how ungrateful she has always been parallels strongly with his phone call with Jesse last week about how ungrateful Jesse is. The cops listening means that Walt had to run, and the adorable Holly doesn't even want Mr. Heisenberg changing her diaper so he leaves her in a firetruck and gets picked up in the same red van that Jesse turned away from only a few episodes ago. So now we know where the flashforward gets us, it tells us that Marie, Skyler, Flynn, and Holly will possibly never be seen by Walt again and that the house is condemned (meaning that Flynn possibly tags the Heisenberg on the wall) and they probably change their names and run. But there is no evidence linking Walt to Hank or Gomez's death. He didn't even say anything beyond "you'll never see them again" over the phone so beyond taking his own daughter he's not wanted. Not we'll see what lies away in New Hampshire and what circumstances arise that call for an M60 to be bought. But this episode was a superior culmination of all that has been built up to in the 5 years the loyal fans have stayed with this show and how meticulous payoffs happen so greatly (been waiting for the Jane one since Season 3 where he came close to confessing in the Fly episode also directed by Johnson) but hopefully the risin will poison someone and he will rescue someone as we see what awaits Walter White in lieu of his fleeing and turnign 52. Hopefully we see Saul at least once more before the end but only two episodes left, the title Ozymandias fit perfectly as did the rest as this will possibly go down as one if not the best episodes of Breaking Bad in its entirety.
There is no words to describe this episode. I was shock, I laugh, and I was sad too. All this mix of emotion just for one episode and it's not even a finale.
Other than that, I don't know how everyone feel about Walter, but I still love him. Even with Hank dead and everything else he has done so far, I'm sad for him. Seeing his family doing that to him after everything he did for them was just heartbreaking. I know it was awful everything he did, but he did it with the best intention, his family.
I just watched the episode and i'm still in shock. I have a couple of ideas of what will happen next but I'm still not sure, I guess anything could happen at this point. (And yes, my grammar is not that good, french is my first language so no hate please)
I have no doubt in my mind that this was one of the best episodes in television history. Breaking Bad has had incredibly tense sequences and episodes before, but this has to take the cake. Almost the entire episode operates on a buzzing dread, as lives end and the future Walt had pictured crumbles before him.
Opening with a flashback was a smart way to ease into the episode, and also provided a painfully lighthearted look at the way things were. We get to see the dynamic Jesse and Walt had at the beginning of their meth operation, and while there was a taste of Walt's lying ways, things between him and Skylar were loving and genuinely happy. Flash back to the present, and everything Walt had held dear is slipping from him.
Hank is shot in front of him, knowing more than Walt that you can't talk your way out of everything. Jack and his crew get Walt's money, the thing he's been working towards for all of this time - the thing he's used to justify his behavior. Jesse is taken - not before Walt finally admits to him that he saw Jane die. The way the writers manage to tie up loose ends is impressive as hell.
Walt pushes the barrel through the desert like a worker bee, clinging to the last remnants of his justification. But Skylar turns on him. Hank is the last straw. Walt Junior is a completely different person now that he knows the truth, and turns on his dad, who he'd always believed was a stand-up guy. Walt, raspy-voiced, tries to remind them that they're "a family". And as they look at him with terror in their eyes, he finally faces what he's become.
I don't think television can get any darker than this. But it also can't get any better written, shot, or acted. This was a masterclass, and I can't wait for the final two episodes of this landmark series.
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