Compiling a list of Breaking Bad’s greatest moments so far is a daunting task. There are just so many outstanding scenes that it is remarkably difficult to limit them to ten. The show has managed to visually stun audiences, provide payoff on excellent character development and defy expectations countless times. Numerous critics have praised it as one of the greatest television dramas ever, and it is constantly building to the shocking moments that have come to define it.
[Spoiler warning for Seasons 1-4!]
1 – Exploding severed head on a tortoise
It might seem minor now but this was the first really crazy thing on Breaking Bad. Seeing a DEA informant’s severed head wander across the screen on a tortoise and then explode establishes the threat of the cartel on multiple levels.
2 – The death of Jane
For a while, Walter White is able to logically justify his horrendous actions. His inaction as Jane dies, choking on her own vomit, in Season 2’s ‘Phoenix’ is an indication of the type of man he is transforming into.
3 – The plane crash
Linked to Jane’s death is the plane crash caused by her grieving father, and indirectly caused by Walt. This provides the conclusion to Season 2 and is thematically important because it shows us how Walter’s decisions can have deadly and unforeseeable consequences.
4 – Skyler confronting Walt about his drug dealing
Remarkable due to how much silence dominates the scene and how terrific the actors are, the moment when Skyler confronts Walt about how he made his money is a turning point early in Breaking Bad’s incredible third season.
5 – The car park shootout
Probably one of the most tense scenes in the entire history of television, the car park shootout at the end of ‘One Minute’ sees Hank narrowly escape the two ruthless assassins tracking Walt, but not without severe injuries.
6 – Walt helps Jesse avenge Combo
Jesse learns who is responsible for Combo’s death and decides to take revenge. His poorly planned attempt is suddenly interrupted by Walt, though, who runs over the men in his car and shoots the survivor in the head. Instantly, he (and the audience) realise just how far he’s prepared to go.
7 – Jesse shoots Gale
In order to keep both himself and Walt alive, Jesse kills Gale. This move means that Gus has to rely on his former meth cooks and that he cannot get rid of them yet, saving their lives for at least the time being.
8 – Gus threatening Walt and his family
Things were never going to be easy, though, and Gus spends most of Season 4 attempting to eradicate the reckless Walter White. One of the most chilling moments is when Gus threatens Walt’s family, promising to kill his wife, his son and his infant daughter.
9 – The poisoning of Don Eladio and the cartel leaders
Proving just how in control he is, Gus poisons Don Eladio and all of the remaining cartel leaders in Season 4’s ‘Salud’. Shortly after this feat, though, Mike is shot and Jesse has to kill his attacker in a tense escape.
10 – The death of Gus
The culmination of Walt’s development so far (and after a long period of hesitation during the fourth season), sees him orchestrate the death of his employer. This really shows us what Walt will do to gain the upper hand, as he appears to fully become his alter-ego Heisenberg.
What’s your favourite moment in Breaking Bad? Let us know below…