Category: Breaking Bad

AMC sets 'Breaking Bad,' 'Hell on Wheels' return dates

Breaking BadThe last season of AMC's "Breaking Bad" begins this summer, but the network is attempting to get the most bang for its buck by airing the final episodes in two segments, with the final stretch not arriving until next summer.

The first run of eight episodes begins July 15. The next group of eight episodes will premiere sometime during the summer of 2013. Keep in mind, that won't be a new season, just the second half of the same season.

Following the fourth season finale last year, which featured longtime villain Gustavo "Gus" Fring getting half his head blown off, expectations are high. How will series creator Vince Gilligan wrap up the series?

Costar Aaron Paul raised those expectations even higher in March when he tweeted, "Just read the first episode of breaking bad S5 and words can not express. ... is about to get crazy. Get ready my friends. Love you Vince!"

He continued, "The teaser alone in episode 1 S5 will have you screaming more then when someone got blown up last season."

AMC also announced the premiere date for its latest unscripted series, "Small Town Security." The series follows the exploits of a small, family-owned private security company in rural Georgia. The first season runs for eight half-hour episodes beginning on July 15, following "Breaking Bad."

The second season of "Hell on Wheels," the post-Civil War drama about the construction of the first transcontinental railroad, begins Aug. 12. The second season runs for 10 episodes.


"Breaking Bad" wraps most-watched season

'Breaking Bad' characters endorse in real school election

Aaron Paul on 'Breaking Bad's' July return: 'wear your diapers'

— Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: Bryan Cranston in "Breaking Bad." Credit: Lewis Jacobs / AMC.

'Breaking Bad' characters endorse in real school election

Breaking BadThe student body elections are happening Tuesday at Crossroads School in Santa Monica, an elite private school that celebrities' children attend. And in case anyone is wondering, Walter White, the meth-dealing criminal mastermind in "Breaking Bad," thinks you should vote for Maxwell Ulin for student body president. White's partner in crime, Jesse Pinkman, agrees.

Of course, Gustavo "Gus" Fring, rival drug kingpin and Walter White's mortal enemy, thinks you should vote for Summer Kennedy.

Until some enterprising young student figures out how to get President Obama to weigh in on the elections, it will be hard to top the dueling video endorsements recorded by actors Giancarlo Esposito, Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston (who appeared to be in costume on the set of the AMC series' fifth season).

In the short clip, Cranston urges viewers not to "make the same mistake" Fring made (he was killed in the series' season finale) and to put their vote behind Maxwell Ulin.

Aaron Paul appears briefly uttering a very Pinkman-like "Sorry, Summer. It's just business."

The video by Esposito was made private on Facebook and is therefore unavailable for public viewing, according to a former Crossroads student who called attention to the Cranston video on Reddit.

Ulin hasn't been shy about soliciting video endorsements for his campaign. He also got an endorsement from Robert Andanto, a former Crossroads curriculum coordinator who is now a documentary filmmaker.


Sympathy for Gus: Giancarlo Esposito talks 'Breaking Bad'

Aaron Paul on 'Breaking Bad's' July return: 'Wear your diapers'

Anna Gunn ready to start production on 'Breaking Bad' Season 5

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: Aaron Paul, left, and Bryan Cranston in "Breaking Bad." Credit: Ursula Coyote / AMC

Aaron Paul on 'Breaking Bad's' July return: 'wear your diapers'

'Breaking Bad'
The fifth season of AMC's tense-a-thon "Breaking Bad" will begin airing in July, and according to costar Aaron Paul, who plays troubled meth dealer Jesse Pinkman, it promises to waste no time.

"Just read the first episode of breaking bad S5 and words can not express," Paul wrote on his Twitter page on Saturday. "... is about to get crazy. Get ready my friends. Love you Vince!"

Vince is series creator Vince Gilligan.

He continued, "The teaser alone in episode 1 S5 will have you screaming more then when someone got blown up last season."

That is a reference to the final episode of Season 4, which featured meth king Gustavo Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) getting blown up, then walking away with half his face missing. As jaw-dropping moments go, it was one of the series' biggest.

But Paul didn't stop there, offering fans one final warning: "Breaking Bad will return to your Television sometime in July. Make sure u wear your diapers because I'm pretty sure u will ... yourself."

This is supposed to be the series' final season. But with 16 episodes, it still may be broken in half to form two mini seasons. So it's unclear exactly when series star Bryan Cranston will finally complete his transformation from mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher to Scarface -- he doesn't have far to go. 


Memorable TV quotes of 2011

"Breaking Bad" wraps most-watched season

Anna Gunn ready to start production on 'Breaking Bad' Season 5

-- Patrick Kevin Day

Photo: From left: Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul and Vince Gilligan shooting Season 4 of "Breaking Bad." Credit: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times.

Anna Gunn ready to start production on 'Breaking Bad' Season 5

Anna gunn breaking bad
Anna Gunn has watched some pretty amazing things go down in playing wife to meth maker Walt White on AMC's "Breaking Bad." But at the Screen Actors Guild Awards on Sunday, she said she now felt she could bring a level of "cool" home to her family.

"I'm starstruck!" she said. "One of the cast members from 'Glee' came up and said he liked MY work!"

Which plucky star was it? "Darren Criss. My daughter is going to flip out. She will flip out!"

Gunn said production for the fifth season of "Breaking Bad" will start this month, with eight episodes slated to shoot. The highly anticipated final season will be broken  into two shortened mini-seasons. The last batch of episodes will probably shoot in winter 2013, she said.

"It's been an incredible ride," she said. "And you wouldn't think so with such an unusual story line like ours."


Full Showtracker coverage and recaps of "Breaking Bad"

"Breaking Bad" wraps most-watched season

"Breaking Bad" finale recap 

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Anna Gunn. Credit: Ursula Coyote/AMC.

'Modern Family,' 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' and cable dramas top DGA noms

Curb Your Enthusiasm nabs multiple DGA noms
Will "Modern Family" and "Curb Your Enthusiasm" cancel each other out?

The comedies received double nominations in the comedy category when the Director's Guild of America's television and commercial nominations were announced Tuesday. The final slot went to NBC's "30 Rock."

Cable dominated in the drama field, with individual episodes of "Game of Thrones" (HBO), "Homeland" (Showtime), "The Killing" (AMC), "Breaking Bad" (AMC) and "Friday Night Lights" (101 Network) in the running.

Competition-based shows governed the reality front. NBC's "The Biggest Loser" and "Fear Factor" are up against CBS' "The Amazing Race," Fox's "Master Chef" and Food Network's "The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs."

In the daytime serials category, ABC's "All My Children," which ended its run in September after a 41-year run, earned two nominations, as did the network's other sudser "General Hospital." They'll compete against ABC's other canceled soap, "One Life To Live" -- which ends its run this week to make way for the lifestyle show "The Revolution" -- and CBS' "The Young and the Restless," and "The Bold and the Beautiful."

The winners will be announced at the 64th Annual DGA Awards Dinner on Jan. 28 in Los Angeles.

Here's a full list of DGA nominees.

 -- Yvonne Villarreal 

Photo: "Curb Your Enthusiam's"Larry David. Credit: HBO

Memorable TV quotes of 2011

Some of the sharpest lines of 2011 came from scripted and unscripted TV shows as varied as "Keeping Up With The Kardashians" to "Breaking Bad." They were funny, hurtful, sinister...and utterly entertaining.

 "I am not in danger, Skyler, I am the danger... I am the one who knocks!"

-- "Breaking Bad's" Walter White (Bryan Cranston) to his wife Skyler (Anna Gunn) after she tells him she's fearful that a hitman will come to their house and kill him.

"No one will probably care about you. Let's be honest."

-- "Keeping Up with the Kardashians'" Kris Humphries to fiance Kim Kardashian during an argument when she protests that moving from Hollywood to his native Minnesota after they start having children will damage her career.

"It was already in the glass. Not in the jar."

-- "Justified's" Mags Bennett (Margo Martindale) to a man she's poisoned with the "apple pie" moonshine she's poured into his glass from a large jar

"The things I do for love."

-- "Game of Thrones" Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) to his sister Queen Cersei as she shoves young Bran Stark out of a high window in an abandoned tower after the boy spots the siblings having sex.

"You look really familiar."

-- Ray Romano's character to Patricia Heaton's Frankie in "The Middle" when he spots his former "Everybody Loves Raymond" co-star during a camping trip.

"Wow, you're on fire tonight. What are you closing with--blackface?"

-- "Whitney's" Alex (Chris D'Elia) to his girlfriend Whitney (Whitney Cummings) after she commits a rash of disastrous missteps at a classy wedding

"A comedian can spend his whole life digging through the comedy mines for sound bites he can use to sustain his family. Sometimes a fellow can lose hope, and then Rick Perry gives you 53 seconds that can change a man's life. Oh lordy, I give you this thing I found...the Dope Diamond!"

--Jon Stewart of "The Daily Show" on the infamous moment in a Republican presidential debate when Texas Gov. Rick Perry forgot the third agency he would ban from government, below

What are yourTV favorite quotes of the year? Let us know in the comments.


Robert Lloyd's Top New TV of 2011

2011 Best TV Meltdowns: From 'winning!' to whining

-- Greg Braxton

2011's most gruesome TV deaths: The good, the blood and the ugly

On TV in 2011, the blood flowed on series such as "Boardwalk Empire" and "Breaking Bad"
The year 2011 may have been a groundbreaker -- as well as a neck-cruncher and arm-smasher -- when it came to showing TV characters being offed in creative, gruesome ways. The blood flowed not only on CBS procedurals such as the "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" franchise and "Bones," but on prestigious series such as "Boardwalk Empire" and "Breaking Bad." Some of the carnage was so extreme that even viewers who are usually strong of stomach found themselves covering their eyes during several of these horrific scenes.

1. "Breaking Bad," "Face Off": Drug kingpin Gustavo Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) caused a lot of mayhem for enemies -- and friends-- on the AMC drama. But Gus really went out with a bang in the season finale when he was blown up in a bomb explosion in a nursing home. The blast tears half his face off, but he still has enough sense of style to straighten his tie before collapsing.

"Breaking Bad" runner-up -- "Box Cutter": Gus slashes the throat of an accomplice with a box cutter.

2. "Game of Thrones," "A Golden Crown:" A drunken Viserys (Harry Lloyd), who is jealous when his pregnant sister Daenerys (Emila Clarke) becomes popular with the Dothaki tribe, pulls a sword on her and threatens to cut out her child if her husband, Khal Drogo (Jason Momoa), does not conquer the Seven Kingdoms and win him a crown. Khal responds by giving him a true "golden crown," pouring a cauldron of molten gold on his head.

"Game of Thrones" runner-up -- "Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things":  Ser Gregor Clegane (Conan Stevens) pierces the neck of an opponent during a jousting match.

On TV in 2011, the blood flowed on series such as "Boardwalk Empire" and "Breaking Bad"
3. "Boardwalk Empire," "Gimcrack and Bunsum": Gangster Jimmy Darmody (Michael Pitt) holds down a veteran of the American Indian wars who had earlier struck him with a cane, as accomplice Richard Darrow (Jack Huston) scalps him.

"Boardwalk Empire" runner-up "Gimcrack and Bunsum": Sheriff Eli Thompson (Shea Whigham) loses control and kills a man by bashing his head in with a wrench.

4."Dexter" -- "Get Gellar": Dexter and Miami Metro homicide detectives discover the body of a professor who has been killed by a serial murderer staging religious slayings. The body, which is on the stage of a lecture hall, has been drained of blood. When the detectives start to investigate, they trip a booby trap that opens up a huge container above them and rains blood and guts all over them.

5. "Sons of Anarchy"-- "Fruit for the Crows": Outlaw motorcycle gang member Juice (Theo Rossi) shoots an attacker point blank in the face several times, shattering the man's skull.

What were your favorite TV deaths of 2011? Tell us in the comments below.


Robert Lloyd's Top New TV of 2011

Mary McNamara's Top TV of 2011

-- Greg Braxton 

Upper photo: Gustovo Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) puts on plastic garments before slashing the throat of an accomplice in "Breaking Bad.' Credit: Ursula Coyote / AMC

Lower photo: Michael Pitt, left, and Richard Easton in "Boardwalk Empire." In a scene from the episode, Pitt's character holds Easton's character down as he is being scalped. Credit: Macall B. Polay

Golden Globes: Bryan Cranston says nomination is like 'bumping into an old friend'

Bryan Cranston

They say true friends can go weeks without seeing each other and, then, when they finally meet again, it's like no time has passed. Oh, to be Bryan Cranston and be able to claim such a friendship with award nominations.

When discussing his nomination for actor in a drama, Cranston was more than happy about catching up with his buddy, the Golden Globes.

"It’s like bumping into an old friend who you’ve passed on the street," he said. "It's like, 'Hey! Oh, my God, let’s dance.' I guess it's better and less sad than if you were standing on the street waiting and waiting for your old friend who you've lost touch with."

PHOTOS: Golden Globe top nominees

The nomination is Cranston's second for his role as Walter White, a chemistry teacher turned meth -maker, on "Breaking Bad" — he received a nomination in 2010 in the same category.

He did, though, express disappointment that the critically acclaimed AMC series wasn't recognized in the drama category.

"You become so partisan about the shows you do, you know," he said. "I wish it would have been recognized. But there's all kinds of things that you hope for. But you embrace the good, and we've had a lot of good."


Golden Globes: Cable shows dominate TV nominations

Golden Globes: Who got snubbed?

Golden Globes: 'Homeland' creators discuss the show's nominations

Golden Globes: Zooey Deschanel on 'New Girl' nom--'It's like cake and ice cream'

--Yvonne Villarreal

Golden Globes: Who got snubbed?

Steve Carell

Geesh! Guess being the the world's best boss just doesn't mean anything anymore. The nominations for the 69th annual Golden Globe Awards were announced Thursday morning, and we couldn't help but notice Steve Carell was missing from the list of lead actors in a comedy category. It was Carell's last shot to be recognized for his role as Michael Scott, the goofball boss on NBC's "The Office"; he left the series last season.

And getting nudged out of the drama category was Showtime's "Dexter" and critically acclaimed series "Breaking Bad." Instead, Ryan Murphy's serial horror-drama "American Horror Story" nabbed a slot in the drama category.

"I was very surprised," said "American Horror Story" co-creator Brad Falchuk. "When was the last time you saw a horror show on TV? When you do something like this, you're taking a big risk. We didn't know if people would embrace it."

PHOTOS: Golden Globe top nominees

The freshman series joins fellow cable newbies "Homeland"  and "Boss" in the drama category that will have them compete against HBO's "Boardwalk Empire" and "Game of Thrones." That said, in a more general view, broadcast networks got snubbed in the drama category all together.

But they had a better turnout in the comedy or musical series category, with nods going to Fox's "Glee," which has experienced a ratings drop-off this season, and ABC's "Modern Family." Newcomer "New Girl," also on Fox, also helped represent — though, it seemed it would be at the expense of "Parks and Recreation" and "30 Rock."

Over on CBS' "The Big Bang Theory," Johnny Galecki became a first-time nominee over costar Jim Parsons, who is an Emmy darling these days.

In the actress in a drama category, things got campy with the inclusion of Madeleine Stowe, who stars in ABC's soap "Revenge." Another unusual nominee was Callie Thorne, who appears in USA network's "Necessary Roughness." They'll compete against Claire Danes ('Homeland"), Julianna Margulies ("The Good Wife") and Mireille Enos ("The Killing").

And we can't help but wonder why the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn., given their clear admiration for "Homeland," didn't think to give a nomination to Mandy Patinkin. Maybe next year?


Golden Globes: 'Homeland' creators discuss the show's nominations

Golden Globes: The complete list of nominees

Golden Globes: Cable shows dominate TV nominations

 — Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Steve Carell as Michael Scott in "The Office." Credit: NBC.

TV actors take on drama and comedy


Actor Garret Dillahunt is solemn as he reflects on his acting career, picking at the knee of his jeans as he composes his thoughts on his road from "Deadwood," where he played a throat-slashing geologist who preyed on prostitutes to his turn as the boorish patriarch on the Fox comedy "Raising Hope." And yet his seriousness is offset by the fact that, minutes earlier, he goofily strolled into the dressing room  on the Chatsworth set of "Raising Hope"--for the interview--on a scooter.

It's the sort of light-switch shift that has worked in the 46-year-old actor's advantage in moving from comedy to drama and back again.

"It's just what I wanted to do," Dillahunt said. "A good thing about doing this for a while is that it becomes your thing--you get a reputation for being versatile. I like the thought that people might think of me for a wide roster of roles. Even if it's a mistake, I like having the shot."

Being a skilled actor in one performance arena is already a difficult endeavor. But the rise of cable television,and the big four networks becoming less cookie-cutter, has provided actors an opportunity to play against type and branch out into other genres.

Bryan Cranston went from a buffoonish dad on "Malcolm in the Middle" to a cancer-stricken, meth-producing dad on AMC's "Breaking Bad." John Goodman's surly role as Dan Conner on the long-running sitcom "Roseanne" has since been followed by more serious turns, including his role on HBO's "Treme." And there's many actors like them, known for one role in one genre and trying to branch out: Kelsey Grammer, Ted Danson, and Edie Falco, to name a few.

Continue reading »

Bringing the pain: Top TV dramas have a blood thing going on

A savage scene in "Breaking Bad"

Many of TV's most popular series, such as "The Walking Dead," "True Blood" and "Dexter," are known for high drama and high body counts. Spatter and gore are essential — and expected — parts of their DNA.

But extreme, sometimes unflinching acts of graphic, stomach-churning violence have also been spilling over into an unexpected arena: TV's elite dramas. "Breaking Bad," "Boardwalk Empire," "Sons of Anarchy" and other shows praised for their complex plots and high production values have lately displayed a new level of savagery.

For more on this trend, read this feature and let us know what you think.


Did British documentary pay for Murray's costly defense?

Nathan Fillion, a pop culture king beyond 'Castle'

— Greg Braxton

Photo: Gustavo Fring (GIancarlo Esposito) dons plastic overalls as he prepares to slash the throat of an accomplice with a box cutter on AMC's "Breaking Bad." Credit: Ursula Coyote/AMC.




Tweeters Digest: Dead TV characters edition

Giancarlo esposito gus fring

What might our favorite killed-off TV characters say if they had access to Twitter in the great beyond?

Gustavo Fring, “Breaking Bad” (@GusPollosHermanos)
I sold Satan a bag of blue crystal meth. Welcome to my new Pollos Hermanos underworld franchise.

Laura Palmer, “Twin Peaks”  (@prettycorpseshavemorefun)
Bob wants to kill me — again! That’s all he EVER wants to do. LOL! This is so soooooo boring!!!!

Khal Drogo, “Game of Thrones” (@DothrakiKhal)
Death not stop Drogo, son of Bharbo. Khal rise from grave and slay girly-men who kill him with words. Drogo will be last barbarian standing.

Gary Shepherd, “Thirtysomething” (@shaggyghostprofessor)
I can’t answer a ‘yes or no’ question in 140 characters and neither can anyone else from the best show ever about existential Caucasian whinging. I’m outta space already? Whatever.

Miss Ida Blankenship, “Mad Men” (@SterlingCooperHellcat)
My only regret is that I never got to make whoopee with Mr. Draper. Then again, maybe I did and I just forgot. Wouldn’t be the first time.

What would your favorite killed-off characters tweet? Leave your best ghost impersonations in comments below, in 140 characters or less.


From 'American Horror Story' to 'Ghost Hunters, ' spooks haunt all corners of television

TV ghost gallery

Photo: Giancarlo Esposito plays Gus Fring in "Breaking Bad." Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times


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