If you read “The Genesis forÂ The Gospel According to Breaking Bad,” you know that this book began as an inquiry into a quote from show creator Vince Gilligan regarding his beliefs in heaven and hell. As the book progressed, I realized that many more questions followed. In addition to the numerous questions I present in my (likely vain) attempts to guess the show’s ending, deeper questions revealed themselves as to why I was so taken from this show from the very beginning.
Here’s an excerpt from the first chapter, “My Name is Walter Hartwell White.”
What is it about this innocent everyman who turns to making and distributing meth that so engages me? What is it about his former student and current apprentice Jesse that makes me root for him to be the one redeemed in the end? Why do the intricate plot lines, so gorgeously shot and meticulously, patiently set in motion, cause me to question what Iâ€™d do in similar situations? How do such grand, ancient themes like justice, vengeance, pride, and death find their way into a 21st century black comedy drama set in Albuquerque, New Mexico?
How can something as bright as ‘the gospel’ shine forth in such a dark show?
Ed Ditto, whose ebook on ebook formatting was instrumental in regards to my ebook, asked me a question I expect to receive at least a few more times. [ref]I’d been corresponding via email with Ed in trying to figure out a footnote formatting issue. He responded quickly and graciously and helped me get on the right track. If you’re interested in what the issue was, he wrote “A simple yet interesting Scrivener hack” about it.[/ref]Essentially, he wondered whether devout Christians watchÂ Breaking Bad. I replied that I know I’m effectively aiming at a narrow niche. I also related that I think there’s merit to seeing the chemical reactions, as it were, when two seemingly disparate topics are mixed together.
Lastly, I relayed that the “darkness” ofÂ Breaking Bad often has nothing on the darkness that pervades many of the stories of the Bible. While the actions within the world ofÂ Breaking Bad and the actions within the ancient biblical world are quite different, people’s motivations for nefarious deeds have never changed. Pride, greed, and lust, just to name a few, are timeless yet devastating character flaws we all share.Â And God was and is able to useÂ all of that to bring about something much better.
Madeline L’Engle said, “Maybe you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light.” The gospel hides withinÂ Breaking Bad. You just have to know which questions to ask.