*Potential Breaking Bad Spoilers. You’ve been warned.*
I recently started re-watching Breaking Bad and I was struck by 2 things – why does Walt almost instantly take on an almost father figure to Jesse and why does he seem to hate his family so much?
Right from the get go, Walt protects Jesse. I get that once they’re in business together, he has an interest in keeping him loyal for legal purposes and he needs him for street distribution. But why does he protect him so fiercely? He goes after Tucco when Tucco beats up Jesse. He vouches for him to Gus. He goes to the drug house after Jane’s death to help get him out of his addiction. (I’m only just now finishing season 2 and I binged watched the show the first time through, so my memory of seasons 3 and 4 is hazy at best) Even at the very end, he ends up tackling him to the ground and ultimately (unintentionally) takes a bullet for him.
Most of the time Jesse seemed to be a screwup. He failed Walt’s chemistry class, sassed him, messed things up, was nearly caught in the initial raid in the pilot episode. Walt almost seems to care about Jesse more than his own family. Speaking of which, he sure seems to hate them. There are very few instances of him being loving and sincere with Skyler. He doesn’t seem to interact with Walt Jr. much. He is hot and cold to Hank and doesn’t interact much with Marie. And why? Sure we all have fights and disagreements with family but this is a little much. All they seem to do is care. It seems like he wishes they just wouldn’t care about him.
I suppose at the end of everything, he really just loved making his meth. It made him feel powerful and it was more of an application of his skills, more so clearly than teaching. Of course he’s clearly not the best teacher either… Knowledgable, sure, but from what little of his pedagogy we see, it’s pretty bland. Anyway – thems my thoughts.
Sidenote: Everyone in this show has really interesting voicemails. Also, when they’re packing up dead Jane at the end of season 2, the father is standing there watching them move her around and putting her in a bag. It’s only once she’s finally in the bag that a paramedic says, “Sir, you may not want to be here for this.” For what? Zipping up the bag? Because he probably wanted to watch you man handle the corpse of his little girl but watching you zip her up was too much?