Viewers of the Mad Men
season 5 finale on Sunday were treated with a special surprise: AMC's first sneak peek at Breaking Bad
's final season (premiering July 15). Though it's only a brief clip, those 15 seconds of Walter White (who's primed to return this season as "The King"
) and snarky lawyer Saul Goodman are pure gold for those of us who cannot wait for the return of the intense AMC drama. Watch the clip below:
Though we don't know much in terms of plot from the promo, it seems season 5 picks up pretty much where the explosive season 4 finale ended. Walter (played by Bryan Cranston) still has the same bandage on his nose - but as to why even Saul (played by Bob Odenkirk) is wanting out of their corrupt endeavor, only time will tell.
[Warning: season 4 spoilers ahead!]
Giancarlo Esposito, who played Walter's nemesis Gus Fring, confirmed the timing to The Wrap
, saying, "Season 5 takes up right where we left off. Literally, right after Gus' death." Esposito continued on to say he imagined Breaking Bad
creator Vince Gilligan made this decision so that the narrative would "be in real time." As to whether his character could possibly return in season 5 in a flashback, Esposito merely said, "If I were in his position, I would more than likely explain some back history of Gus."
But in terms of Walter's continued demise into the ultimate villain, do fans really want to see the once-mild-mannered chemistry teacher spiral into immoral oblivion? Would that provide the "satisfactory" series ending Gilligan is striving for? In an interview with Zap2it
Sunday, Cranston explained it was this drastic transformation that appealed to him from the start. "The idea that a man can go from being a good person to a bad person was intriguing to me," said Cranston.
"Television, historically, has always been the same," continued Cranston. "You see characters you like; you latch onto them. You like them. You want them to be that way, and you invest in them to be a certain way. Now they've invested in me at the beginning of the series, and we're evolving, changing, forcing the audience to follow us. And yet, they're hating what I'm doing and what I've become."
But, according to the man behind Walter White, "with the right set of conditions, anyone can change," and that's the journey that has so captivated fans--whether they understand or abhor Walter. Cranston also revealed that the beginning of season 5 will be "more intellectual" than past seasons.
What do you think? Is there some hope for redemption for Walter White in the final season? Or will The King, like in the promo video, have the final word?
(Image courtesy of AMC)