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Warning: Breaking Bad finale spoilers ahead. Turn back if you haven’t seen it yet!
With Breaking Bad finished, fans of all shapes and sizes are weighing in with their thoughts on the finale and what Walter White’s last stand symbolizes.
Case in point: Author and comics scribe Warren Ellis wrote a guest column for Vulture focusing on the rebirth of Walter’s criminal alter ego, Heisenberg. Ellis credits this transformation with Walt’s nearly superhuman actions in the Breaking Bad end-game:
He fully commits to being Heisenberg. And that’s why, in this last hour, his schemes finally work. They don’t work because he’s dreaming it. They work, without backfiring (almost), this time, because Walter White isn’t getting in the way of Heisenberg. He is, at last, the Bad Guy, and his final act is as operatic as that of Al Pacino’s Scarface, a film referenced in the series. “So say good night to the bad guy. The last time you gonna see a bad guy like this again, let me tell you.”
Why does that ricocheted bullet get him right at the very end? Because, faced with Jesse, he throws his old partner to the floor and clear of the fusillade. That’s something Walter White would do, and so Heisenberg gets killed for it. What keeps him alive is being a fictional supervillain. What kills him is being human.
Meanwhile, Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof penned a very different reaction to the Breaking Bad finale. In a guest column for The Hollywood Reporter, Lindelof uses Breaking Bad to talk about his own experiences ending Lost and the vitriolic comments he receive to this day. According to Lindelof, the end of Breaking Bad opened his eyes and led him to make an offer:
I’d like to make a pact, you and me. And here’s your part: You acknowledge that I know how you feel about the ending of Lost. I got it. I heard you. I will think about your dissatisfaction always and forever. It will stay with me until I lie there on my back dying, camera pulling slowly upward whether it be a solitary dog or an entire SWAT team that comes to my side as I breathe my last breath.
And here’s my part: I will finally stop talking about it. I’m not doing this because I feel entitled or above it — I’m doing it because I accept that I will not change hearts nor minds. I will not convince you they weren’t dead the whole time, nor resent you for believing they were despite my infinite declarations otherwise.
Let this be our pact. And I’ll just have to trust you on this — I don’t have Badger and Skinny Pete pointing lasers at your chests to keep you honest. And the truth is, there’s no way everyone is going to read, let alone agree with this deal.