• Network: AMC
  • Series Premiere Date: Jan 20, 2008
  • Season #: 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5
Metascore
85

Universal acclaim - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 19
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 19
  3. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    80
    It's a mildly unsettling mentality, to be sure, but thus far Bad's mercurial formula adds up to one really good trip.
  2. Bryan Cranston's Walter remains one of the best-played characters on television, and he's surrounded by a strong cast that, knowingly or unknowingly, plays off his desperation.
  3. There's no question about the quality of this relentlessly suspenseful drama about former high school chemistry teacher Walter White (Bryan Cranston), who turns to drug dealing to raise money for his family after he receives a terminal cancer diagnosis. Whether viewers can stand the nerve jangling they're in for as season two begins will be decided on an individual basis.
  4. 80
    Breaking Bad works as an unabashedly bold story about a man in extremis, told with the iconographic and ironic sensibility of Quentin Tarantino.
  5. The first three episodes of Season 2 that AMC sent out continue that level of achievement with no evident missteps.
  6. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    100
    Breaking Bad is extraordinary, and if the rest of the season matches Sunday, an Emmy nomination for best drama seems certain.
  7. 63
    The rest of Breaking Bad doesn’t consistently reach the level of Cranston’s performance. But for some, his depiction of Walt’s earnest desperation may be enough.
  8. A drama on the order of "The Sopranos" or "The Shield," it's not about things--and people--getting better so much as it is about the struggle for survival. And like "Weeds," it's a show that might, if anything, have a little too much to say about the times in which we live.
  9. Smart but never slick, funny but never glib, dark but never (praise all saints and angels) noir, Breaking Bad is actually not another addition to the Brotherhood of the Made Guy formula, it turns out to be the formula's antidote.
  10. Breaking Bad is tougher to watch than Showtime's "Weeds," about a suburban-mom drug dealer, or "Dexter," whose serial killer wields his bloody blades with good intentions. But the rewards of Breaking are great.
  11. 80
    In the fine supporting cast, Norris' blustery brother-in-law grows increasingly important. Yet it's still Cranston's show--he also directed the season premiere--and it's a landmark performance.
  12. Breaking Bad is not an easy show to watch. [But] this is the Cranston show, and for those of us who still see reruns of “Malcolm in the Middle” and the red-faced, eye-bulging slapstick that Cranston was put through on that show, he is quite a revelation on Breaking Bad.
  13. 80
    Breaking Bad has so many redeeming qualities, from its low-key, almost mean-spirited sense of humor to its stark, artistic shots of the Albuquerque sky to the patient pace with which its story unfolds, that it seems a shame to miss any of it just because we're accustomed to more sugary, cheerful tales.
  14. There is a genuine suspense and thrill to the show now, but it succeeds largely as a treatise not on the tragedy of cancer but on the sheer monotony of it, the relentless waiting around.
  15. Breaking Bad is indeed so flat-out superb it appears to be operating at a different level than just about everybody else save AMC's own "Mad Men" and maybe a couple of shows over at FX.
  16. Reviewed by: Michael Starr
    88
    IF tomorrow's second- season premiere of Breaking Bad is any indication, the show's fans, who've been waiting a year for its return, will be dutifully rewarded for their patience. And if, like me, you didn't watch Breaking Bad last season, tomorrow's episode will suck you right into the weird, horrific, off-kilter world of Walter White.
  17. Reviewed by: Michael Murray
    88
    Breaking Bad is at its most entertaining when it's taking us into the drug culture of the street.
  18. Reviewed by: Ken Tucker
    100
    For all its bleakness and darkness, there's a glowing exhilaration about this series: It's a feel-good show about feeling really bad.
  19. Reviewed by: Sarah Hentges
    90
    Again, Breaking Bad promises to be quite a ride.
User Score
9.4

Universal acclaim- based on 1170 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 74 out of 74
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 74
  3. Negative: 0 out of 74
  1. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    You cannot predict Breaking Bad... it's impossible. Actually, I've just told a lie, and for that I apologize. You can predict Breaking Bad; in fact Breaking Bad is so predictable it's embarrassing. Before any given episode has started you can safely predict that what you are about to see is 45 minutes of television that is, in this reviewers opinion, faultless. 45 minutes of outrageous situation comedy with hilarious consequences, 45 minutes of gut wrenching and heart felt emotional drama, 45 minutes of impeccable acting from its two leads, who's on-screen chemistry (excuse the pun) has garnered them with a total of 4 Emmy's, and 45 minutes (im about to come back full circle here) of impossible to predict story lines that make the twists and turns in shows like Lost and Fringe genuinely feel like amateur hour. Season 2 doesn't let up for one second. There is no 'filler' here, none whatsoever. And in all honesty, hand on heart, having thought it through thoroughly, looked back at my favourite (almost immoveable) series from shows that are close to my heart, I might have to declare Breaking Bad season 2 as the best season of a tv show I have seen to date. I know that's a bold statement, but having sat through all 13 exquisitely put together episodes, it just makes sense to have that opinion, it really does. Full Review »
  2. Sep 5, 2011
    10
    This season in particular has 13 must watch episodes. The unpredictability of the story is front and center in season 2. If you like dark and intense, then this show has everything that you are looking for. I recommend it to everyone I know, for good reason. Full Review »
  3. Sep 14, 2011
    10
    S01 was great, but things get WAY better on the second one. You can see that from the first two episodes. Much more intense and serious. TV at its best. Full Review »