Sunday, March 21, 2010

Breaking Bad Season Three: Beware of Actual Drama

As of this writing, we are roughly an hour away from the beginning of season three of Breaking Bad, the best dramatic series on the AMC network that isn't Mad Men. This puts it at second place among all current televised dramas across all networks, and whatever is third best is so far behind the first two as to be barely perceptible.

In addition to its excellent casting and superb acting, Breaking Bad's screenwriting sets itself above the usual run of filmed drama by daring to follow through on the grounding premises of its story, even as dark and unsettling as they are. I have deliberately avoided any news or gossip that might betray the forthcoming trajectory of the story, so I am pleased to have no spoilers to offer, but suffice to say this is a series that would, and very well might, dramatize the death of a central character. Or then again, maybe it wouldn't and won't -- the interesting thing is that for Breaking Bad, so unlike the usual run of filmed dramas that trade in putting its protagonists in profound peril, this is a genuine question.

Do watch, but be forewarned: the viewer will experience actual drama.

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