Today the Internet seemed to be overflowing with various theories about the Breaking Bad finale, basically meaning a lot of serious minded TV watchers went into the realm of rabid pop-culture fanatics: fan fiction. Predicting the end of Breaking Bad is sort of a futile effort. The pleasure of the show has been that viewers could put their faith in the hands of Vince Gilligan and his team and they never disappointed us while constantly surprising us.
Plus, it's not like Breaking Bad is some sort of mystery. Nothing has to be solved. And it's not like you can predict a work of fiction. We could find out on the last scene that the whole world is in Baby Holly's snow globe or Walt Jr. sees dead people. All it takes is a few strokes of Gilligan's pen.
Of course, that hasn't stopped plenty of people from speculating. NPR's Linda Holmes set up a blog called "Claim Your Cockamamie Theory" for the singular purpose of allowing people to share their, well, cockamamie theories. The Huffington Post's Mike Ryan got various entertainment writers to share their theories. The predictions are fun to read—and everyone seems to have a good attitude about this—but this is basically fan fiction. Here are some examples:
The Maybe Believable Fan Fiction
Some of the predictions are pretty rational. Take Lane Brown from New York's take at the Huffington Post. He writes, in part:
So the only satisfying ending for Sunday's finale is one in which Jesse kills Walt, preferably via some Rube Goldberg machine whose components include a box cutter, an ATM machine, and an exploding turtle. First, though, Walt will free Jesse by slipping the ricin capsule into Lydia's tea, melting Todd in a lab explosion, and shooting up the Nazis with his M60.
Alan Sepinwall has a pretty simple, and maybe possible, idea at the Cockamamie Theory blog:
The ricin is for Walt. He takes care of business with the Nazis, consumes the ricin, then turns himself into the authorities, cutting a deal that will keep Skyler out of prison. Once the deal is completed, he dies in jail a few days later, with everyone assuming it was the cancer that got him.
The Reddit Fan Fiction
In my perfect fantasy, Todd drags him into the meth lab and Jesse removes his shirt to reveal he is now as buff as Batman and proceeds to titan-punch Todd into the ground. Then the camera is angled to represent Jesse's fist pounding directly into Todd's skull. With each punch it flashes back to Jesse's four months after Andrea's death, in which he went full Iroh (ALWAYS go full Iroh) and spent the entire time working out in his cell. Pushups, pullups, shadowboxing, ect. After Todd's head is pulp...the machine gun fire begins.
The Really Really Serious Fan Fiction
Over at Previously.TV (via Time) Andi Teran does some serious close reading on the title of the finale, "Felina," noting that it could point to Marty Robbins' song "El Paso." Teran wonders who the "Felina" of the finale will be, ultimately landing on Marie Schrader.
This is a totally crackpot theory, but what if "Felina" is Marie (Betsy Brandt)? In Sunday's episode, Marie stares out the window of a police vehicle. She's in protective custody, being driven home in the wake of Hank's death, only she doesn't get to go home and is whisked away when her escorts discover that her house has been broken into. If anyone on Breaking Bad has truly lost everything as a result of Walter White's choices, it's Marie. She's lost her husband, her sister, and now her home. She is alone, swathed in black, and no longer comforted by the warm violets of her environs. Interestingly, in desert gemology, the color purple signifies purpose. And if anyone deserves a shot at Walt -- possibly more than Skyler and Jesse -- it's Marie, the only utterly blameless victim in this whole mess. Also, not that I have that much time on my hands, but what is Marie's maiden name? LAMBERT. Will she be the Felina kiss of death?
The Crossover Fan Fiction
Over at the Cockamamie Theory blog, Joe Tone figured how to make the most out of the fact that Jesse Plemons—the psycho Todd on Breaking Bad—played Landry on Friday Night Lights:
Tyra shows up looking and her bra strap is showing and Landry gets all distracted, allowing Jesse to make a run for it. Coach Taylor, who'd heard about Lance/Landry breaking bad, shows up from Philly in hopes of saving him, but he gets distracted himself, by Pinkman's surprising speed and agility. (He needs a kick returner.)
He quickly discovers that Pinkman only finished two years of high school and thus has two remaining years of eligibility, and with Julie Taylor waving tentatively from the car, Pinkman agrees to make the drive to Philly.
Just then Mr. White shows up, and immediately feels threatened by Coach Taylor's mentoring of Pinkman. But after a long talk, it's discovered that Mr. White happens to have a convoluted hypothesis about offensive football involving the use of two quarterbacks and no offensive lineman. Intrigued, Coach Taylor invites him to Philly to serve as an offensive consultant, and the five of them -- Coach Taylor, Julie, Pinkman, Walter and a clearly perturbed Mrs. T -- make the long drive to Philly, where they live happily ever, at least until Walt designs an undetectable PED and derails everything.
The Funny Fan Fiction
Dave Itzkoff of the New York Times in his prediction for the Huffington Post hits this one out of the park. His theory ends:
The screen fades to black, then fades up again on the title card: SIX MONTHS LATER. We find Walt a changed man, now a driver's ed instructor at a public high school where no one knows of his past identity as Heisenberg. We find him on the training course with his favorite student, a spiky-haired, trash-talking pipsqueak who naturally reminds him of Jesse.
Try as he might, this new student can't seem to drive the training car correctly.
"Mr. White," he says. "Why won't this bitch accelerate?"
"That," Walt answers, "is because you're braking. Bad." He looks directly into the camera, smiles and gives two thumbs up.
Executive Producer Vince Gilligan. Roll credits.