Breaking Bad Season 5 - cast

If you haven’t already figured it out, Sunday’s Breaking Bad panel at San Diego Comic-Con was fantastic. Bryan Cranston in a Bryan Cranston mask, the first few minutes of the new season screened, it was an hour jam-packed with awesome.

Besides those two standout moments, there was also a fantastic conversation between moderator Chris Hardwick and creator Vince Gilligan, Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul, Anna Gunn, Dean Norris, Bob Odenkirk and RJ Mitte. Hardwick revealed the final eight episodes of the show will be followed by Talking Bad, a recap show he’ll host to help us digest what we see in each episode. Plus, the team talked about how one major death was imagined differently, the tone on set and their level of satisfaction with the ending. Below, check out the 12 things we learned about Breaking Bad and watch an excellent five season recap video.

Just like the panel itself, here’s the recap video to start. It’s nothing but spoilers.

Here are the 12 things we learned:

1. Chris Hardwick will host Talking Bad after Breaking Bad starting August 11

After each episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead, Chris Hardwick hosts a recap show called The Talking Dead. Now, for the final eight episodes of Breaking Bad, he’ll do the same thing. The comedian assured fans, though, that it’ll have a much more serious tone from the zombie show.

2. Walt’s turn to the dark side happened early

Everyone argues when Walter White actually broke bad and, for Cranston, it happened early. He said he simply thinks the first episode, when Walt decided to cook meth, was the moment. From there, he just kept getting worse.

3. Jane’s death was different

Another key moment in the devolution of Walter White was when he let Jesse’s girlfriend, Jane (Krysten Ritter), die. Cranston points this out as another major moment, but explained the first version of the scene had Walt physically push her onto her back. The executives, though, felt that action was too evil too early in the series so it was adapted to what we eventually see.

4. The set is a funny place

Though it’s a very serious, dark show, Aaron Paul said the set is incredibly loose and comical, mostly because Cranston is so immature (like this for example).

5. Bob Odenkirk doesn’t improv

Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk) is a hilarious character. However, despite the actor being so gifted at comedy, he revealed nothing on the show is improvised. Gilligan said comedy is much harder to do than drama so, he cast the actor because he knew he had perfect timing that would translate very well.

6. “Build a robot” was an afterthough

In season 2, when the RV breaks down, Jesse suggests they build a robot to fix it. A hilarious moment. Apparently, they had finished 16 hours of shooting when the focus puller of all people suggested the throwaway line. Cranston and Paul loved it, faked a problem, then shot it last second. Show history is made.

7. The pizza on the roof happened in one take

After rigging the roof of the White house to manipulate Walt throwing a pizza from the driveway onto the roof, Cranston asked if he could do one for real. And boom, they nailed it on the first take. Just for fun, they tried to do it again, but could never replicate it.

8. The show evolves

Gilligan admitted when he casts someone who really does great at their job, he adds more to their character and it changes the show. Two examples he gave are Mark Margolis as Hector Salamanca (originally he was just a one or two episode character) and Dean Morris as Hank, who was given much deeper character moments.

9. The Lily of the Valley reveal was a bit of a cheat.

One fan asked Gilligan how and when Walt poisoned the little boy with the lily of the valley in his backyard. The creator said he imagined Walt snuck into his school or something, and put it onto his juice box. He also admitted if he was to do that, it would have been a very, very tight timeline and probably near impossible.

10. Walter Jr. is unrealistic

RJ Mitte said when he watches the show back, he’s pretty sure Walt Jr. would have picked up on something about the evil deeds of his family by this point.

11. Anna Gunn smokes and is fine with her character

One of the best early Skyler moments in the series was her smoking while pregnant. Gunn revealed that, when they were shooting the scene, she wore the fake belly outside and actually lit a cigarette. This understandably got tons of dirty looks from bystanders. She also said she’s fine with people hating her character because though Walt is an anti-hero, people do cheer for him. So she’s her own kind of a counterbalance to that. A hateable hero.

12. Gilligan is happy with the ending

When asked if he was happy with the ending he and his writers created with the show, Gilligan said this.“I am satisfied by the ending. I hope you will be, too. My writers and I, and everyone in front of the lens and behind it I think is feeling pretty good about it.”

Breaking Bad returns for its final episodes on August 11.

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