Breaking Bad: See it if you can handle the violence
Years before Breaking Bad came on the air, there were two shows that were influential in its formation: the Homicide: Life on the Street Subway episode, and the X-Files Drive episode. All three shows are interconnected. Vince Gilligan wrote the X-Files episode of Drive as well as Breaking Bad. Vince Gilligan borrowed heavily from Subway to make the X-Files episode Drive, and that in turn was a huge influence on Breaking Bad.
Drive and Subway:
- The majority of the episode focuses on intense dialogue between one man trying to save another.
- Lange/Crump are trapped in dire, near-death circumstance.
- Changing their circumstances puts them in worse danger.
- Lange/Crump are angry, distrustful and out of control at first.
- Lange/Crump seem doomed.
- There is a grotesque element to the plot: exploding head, man pinned under subway.
- There is a flare of hope right before the tragic end.
- This is not Lange/Crump’s fault.
- Police initially aren’t sure who was responsible for the crime.
- Mulder/Pembleton walk away deeply saddened.
Drive and Breaking Bad:
- Same intense writing by Vince Gilligan.
- Crump/White are dying (at least initially, in White’s case).
- Crump/White are in a race against time.
- Crump/White are in dire circumstances to save themselves or their families.
- Crump/White make morally questionable judgments.
- Crump/White will kill in desperation.
- Crump/White have an unstoppable energy.