Breaking Bad’s racial politics by Todd Van Der Werff:
This pattern repeats throughout the series: Walter steps in with his justifications for his actions, only to have someone else point out how ridiculous he sounds. When that happens, he escalates the situation even further, simply because he can’t handle being exposed for who he truly is. If those other antihero shows played off the thrill that results from being able to do anything or take whatever one wants, then “Breaking Bad” is increasingly about how unpleasant that actually is in real life.
Emily Nussbaum: Last Night’s mind-bending phone call on Breaking Bad:
But what was truly fascinating about that phone call was that if it was trolling the Bad Fan, it was also trolling me: the sort of feminist-minded sucker who took the speech at face value, for nearly an hour, until I suddenly realized, in a flash of clarity, that it was a fake-out for the police. (Skyler realized long before I did.) Once my analytical skills flared back into being, I was stunned by the moment’s effectiveness. I mean, on one level, that speech was just what it looked like: Walt venting every toxic feeling he’d ever had about his wife. On another level, it was the opposite: it was Walt pretending to be an abusive husband, as a gift to Skyler. It was an apology to her, as well as an attempt to get her off the hook legally, to honor Holly saying “Mama.” Walt’s language was pretty much a PowerPoint presentation of abuser behavior, designed to make Skyler’s case in court proceedings. And yet it still had the sting of catharsis, letting Walt say what he felt: that Skyler is a whiner, a nag, a drag, responsible for anything that happened to her. Like the Bad Fans who roam the Internet (and even some Good Fans, who can make a more reasonable case for disliking Skyler), he relishes calling her a bitch.
The sunsets are rosy, or blood orange, or sometimes a shocking lavender; the night is pitch black, punctuated only by Cassiopeia. This palpable strangeness, the juxtaposition of extreme mountainous beauty with a noir, dull flatness, is always the big surprise to newcomers. Upon arriving in Taos, all Georgia O’Keeffe could think to say was, “Well, well well … no one told me it was like this.”