Six years after its perfect-blue finale and four years since the inception of prequel series Better Call Saul, we are once again about to delve headfirst into the world of Breaking Bad, with sequel movie El Camino hitting Netflix in October. With whisperings of a potential film being in the works since the original series ended, the trailer has finally dropped, with a teaser promising to explore what happened after the death of television’s most prolific anti-hero, Walter White. Or, more specifically, what happened to his protégé Jesse Pinkman, after a bloody finale which left him as one of the very few survivors.
If you are wary of spoilers I would tread carefully, but it has been six years for you to have watched this classic. When we last saw Jesse Pinkman, he was driving away at speed in the titular El Camino, tears in his eyes and screaming. With relief? With rage? It’s still open for interpretation thanks to some incredible writing by Vince Gilligan and Aaron Paul’s masterful portrayal. As he drove away from a white supremacist group that had become the major antagonists of Breaking Bad’s final season, having been forced to cook meth for them after a number of deadly events, he left his former business partner, teacher and perhaps even one time friend, Walter White, dead among the chemical vats. Bryan Cranston may have garnered the most accolades for majority of Breaking Bad’s run with his viscerally complex performance as White, but Jesse shared just as much complexity, growing from a drop-out drug dealer to the compass that drove much of Walter’s narrative, for better or worse.
This teaser that has tantalised us with Pinkman’s return features his friend and fan favourite, Skinny Pete, as seedy as ever and reprised by Charles Baker, in an interrogation room. It seems that in spite of the havoc caused by the duo, Skinny Pete is just as loyal an ally as ever, refusing to rat Jesse out the authorities. It would be easy to do, if anyone knew where he was lying low. As Skinny Pete puts it, we have no idea where Jesse is or what he’s been up to. “He could be North, South, West East, Mexico… the Moon.”
On a personal note, Breaking Bad is the series that made me realise that I wanted to be a screenwriter. With it already proving a narrative of cinematic proportions, I look forward to seeing what the writers of such tremendous television have cooked up next.
El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie will premiere on Netflix, October 11th.
Words by Jack Roberts