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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Breaking Bad - we are a part of the DVD nation




















Got a cheap eBay box-set of the first series of Breaking Bad - the latest must-see, 'water cooler' show from the States, which even 99% of Americans have never seen.

Watched it all in a few hours today and have to admit, it's pretty damn good. It's been out for a couple of years on US cable but nobody has picked it up over here yet.

The basic premise is that a meek, world-weary, double-jobbing, high-school chemistry teacher discovers that, as he turns 50, he has terminal cancer and, through a series of incidents, resolves to make some serious money to leave to his pregnant wife and mildly disabled son in the inevitable event of his death.

The problem is that he goes about this by setting up an ad-hoc crystal-meth lab and then needs to worry about how to distribute the product, and how to interact with some very heavy-duty drug dealers...

The lead is played by Bryan Cranston (probably more known for his comedic skills as the father in Malcolm in the Middle. I think he has won best Emmy lead male actor for Breaking Bad in both 2008 &  2009.

Anyhoo - it's not quite The Wire or The Sopranos from what I've seen so far, but definitely worth watching out for. A little bit reminiscent overall of some Tarantino stuff and, at times, the Michael Douglas everyman role in Falling Down; there is even a McGyver moment!.

Hopefully TG4 will pick up on it, but you can pretty much guarantee that it will be shown at a post-post-post watershed hour, probably 1:30am:-( in the same way as classic American TV like Larry Sanders, OZ, The Wire and initially Seinfeld have always been treated on this side of the pond.

So, as with the Wire, it will only get its due credit 2 years later, when the show is over and word of mouth gets around and the Guardian TV critics and Charlie Brooker have orgasms about it, inciting millions to buy the box-set on DVD.

They never did that with Little House on the Prairie or the Cosby Show (or Fair City!)...

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