In case you have broken legs or are allergic to joy or something and you can't leave your house this beautiful weekend, we suggest you catch up with Breaking Bad in time for the third season premiere on Sunday.
Let's just put it up front: I know we had a big old BB takeover on this here webbersite just yesterday, but this has nothing to do with that. I genuinely happen to like something that our ad people took money from. Why do I like it so much?
Well, it's smart and exciting and moving without showing any of the pesky nuts and bolts of what make a show smart and exciting and moving. You know how on Mad Men sometimes, just sometimes, you can almost see the writers straining to get that story arc so perfectly crafted? That doesn't happen on Breaking Bad, probably because by design it's smaller, lower to the ground, scruffier. It's a show about a guy dying of cancer who starts cooking meth to leave his family with some money and is therefore about big things like Death & Dying and The Drug Trade In the American Southwest, but it's also maybe the most quietly pro-family (in the good way) show on the air. It's got a deep and satisfying and thoroughly realistic humanity to it that makes you feel like you're watching friends, people you know. Which makes it all the more shocking when the drugs and the guns and the bodies start piling up.
And the acting. Ohhh the acting. Bryan Cranston is doing something you never would have guessed he could do if you only watched him on Malcolm in the Middle. He's so nimble and quick on his feet, nothing he does feels like an actor Choice, it's seamless. Anna Gunn, late of Deadwood and playing Cranston's wife, is so magnificent yet grounded — she does for the put-upon wife character what Meryl Streep did for the bitchy boss character in the shoe movie. Gunn makes something new and fresh and exciting every step of the way. And Aaron Paul, Sarah's husband on Big Love, is basically every smart but incapable stoner boy you knew in your hometown. But it's not a boring kind of relatability, it's lovely and familiar and oddly comforting.
I'm not going to catch you up on any plot details because I don't want to spoil anything. But go rent the first two seasons and join the meth party on Sunday. I hope I'm not steering you wrong like I may have in urging you to watch this most recent and disappointing season of Big Love. The critics are liking the new BB episodes so far, so hopefully it'll deliver.
OK, that's it. Just think you should watch it. It's pretty great. Oh, and check out Justified. That premiere was pretty good this week, right?