'Breaking Bad' finale gives fans closure

From left, Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) and Walter From left, Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) and Walter White (Bryan Cranston) in a season 5 episode of "Breaking Bad." Photo Credit: AMC

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A TV classic wrapped Sunday night leaving nothing to doubt -- no questions, no ambiguity, no fade to black. "Breaking Bad's" finale was all about closure -- emphatic, operatic closure -- for characters as well as fans, which was why this hugely dramatic and satisfying end was also just a touch melancholic, too.

To recap, and spoilers be damned: Walter White (Bryan Cranston), one of TV's great protagonists/antagonists, died in "Breaking Bad's" closing minutes -- by the bullet (in all probability) fired by the Rube-Golbergian contraption that involved a jerry-rigged M60 that leveled Uncle Jack's (Michael Bowen) gang, and gave Walter the revenge he has sought for about half of this final season.

Jesse (Aaron Paul)? He garroted his tormentor and captor, the malevolent Todd (Jesse Plemons) who met a demise that about eight million fans had actively, fervently sought. There were other major pieces of closure also neatly tied: Lydia Rodarte-Quayle (Laura Fraser), the meth queen-pin, met her gruesome end via a ricin tablet that Walter substituted for her beloved Stevia (a creature of habit, Lydia always put it in her chamomile tea.)

And of course, this last piece of business: Walter created a fund for his family, to be distributed by his former girlfriend, Gretchen (Jessica Hecht) and Elliott (Adam Godley), the principals of a major firm Walter had helped to create years earlier, Gray Matters Technology. The finale, which ran about 70-plus minutes, ended with the track of the old Badfinger song, "Baby Blue."

But the greatest moment of this great finale had to be when Skyler (Anna Gunn), Walter's wife, asked him why he became a meth lord in the first place. Said Walter: "I did it for me. I was good at it, and . . . I was really alive."

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