“Breaking Bad” has often been described as one man’s journey from Mr. Chips to Scarface. The premise of the show is that over the course of the series, terminally ill chemistry teacher turned meth manufacturer Walt White will go from protagonist to antagonist. Given that the series creator Vince Gilligan has stated that the show will probably run for five seasons, Walt should be heading deep into villain territory. With the fourth season premiering Sunday, July 17th, the question on everybody’s mind is how far will the Emmy-winning show go? Gilligan and the cast are reluctant to divulge spoilers, but at the show’s Los Angeles premiere, they shared five key elements of the fourth season.
Watch A Sneak Peek Of The Season Premiere:
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Someone Will Die In The Premiere
Before the end of the first episode, a significant character will die. But who? All Gilligan will reveal is, “Maybe one person, maybe more than one. You never know. I don’t want to ruin it for anybody. So I’m going to leave it at this. Episode 1 is not the first episode you should let little kids watch. It’s really intense. It’s really dark. It’s a hard one to watch.” This begs the question: which episodes of the TV-MA rated show are child friendly? Answer: none.
You May Hate Walt By the End of the Season
“It’s super important to me that people stay interested in Walt. It’s not quite as important to me that people continue to root for him,” Gilligan reveals. Ignoring all the conventional wisdom about television audiences preferring likable characters seems like a risk, but Gilligan is committed to his vision of the show. “We’ve got to be truthful to that self-imposed mandate. If we’re going to be courageous about it, then what we need to do is continue to travel the path regardless of the outcome regardless of the consequences.” To Bryan Cranston, who has won three consecutive Emmys for playing Walt, the character is not so much changing as embracing his id.”Walt is devolving more into this crazy world. He’s embracing who he is as a criminal. He had to do that in order to stay alive. Otherwise, if you don’t get street smart, you’ll be dead.”
Walt Will Grow Closer to His Family
When Walt’s wife Skyler (Anna Gunn) learned that he was manufacturing meth, she ended their romantic relationship and embarked on an affair with her boss. “Walt’s relationship with his estranged wife Skyler couldn’t have got much worse than it was last season, six months ago or a year ago at least,” Gilligan observes. This season, things are slightly more harmonious. “I think you might see a little change in their relationship this year. There might be a thawing between Walt and Skyler. Will that last? Who knows?” Gilligan hints. As for Walt’s relationship with his son, Walt Junior, his portrayer R.J. Mitte reveals, “Me and my father are definitely really involved. You’ll be surprised how close Walt is to his family.”
Hank Battles Back From His Injuries
Lat season, Walt’s brother-in-law Hank, (Dean Norris), a DEA agent who has come dangerously close to discovering Walt’s lucrative drug dealing business, was partially paralyzed in an accident. Season three finds him struggling to recover. Norris shares, “He has to deal with his rehabilitation. He has to learn to walk again essentially. It’s really frustrating, extremely. It doesn’t wear well with his wife. It’s hard on his home life. But it’s more of the spirit of the show. It’s more of the spirit of the character. Their love survives. I can say that. And he’s back in the saddle.”
The Show Is Going to Get Even Darker
How much darker can a show that has already featured exploding turtles and twin assassins get? According to the cast, pitch black. Aaron Paul, who plays Jesse, shares, “It gets darker and darker as each season goes on. It makes sense for the story. It’s not dark just to be dark. So Jesse goes dark.” Jesse is not the only character who will be tainted by Walt’s continued moral decay. “It really is going to hit home. It’s going to get close and scary for the whole family… You’re going to see how close everything is to collapsing on itself,” says Mitte. “There isn’t an end to the rabbit hole and once you fall in it, you fall in it. You never know how hard and how deep it will be until you hit bottom. If you grab on and feel your way out, you will see how dangerous the drug world is.”