'Breaking Bad' season finale

Thursday, 06 October 2011 12:00 AM Written by 

BB_s4_finaleAMC's fantastic "Breaking Bad" ends its season Sunday (10 p.m.) with another intense hour that maintains the show's status as one of the few TV series that's yet to jump the shark.

"The title of the episode is 'Face Off' and that's strangely appropriate and that's about all I can say," executive producer Vince Gilligan, who wrote and directed the episode, teased in a teleconference this week.

The episode completes the season's arc of taking Walter White (Bryan Cranston) to complete bad guy status. Sometimes "Breaking Bad" ends its season on a cliffhanger, sometimes it doesn't. Gilligan said it's all about coming up with the most entertaining ending.

"We work from that desire outward and we just try to come up with a moment that will leave people talking," he said. "It's showmanship, trying to keep things interesting as possible so folks have a reason to tune in next season."

When they do choose to end on a cliffhanger, they always have the next step in the story figured out.

"We never commit to [cliffhangers] until we know a way out," Gilligan said.

Read more after the jump. ...

"Breaking Bad" is poised to wrap up its run after an additional 16 episodes that may be broken into two short seasons on AMC. Gilligan said he's happy to have a finish line to work towards.

"This show will best be served by its creators knowing when it will end," he said. "If we have any hope of working toward a satisfying conclusion, we need to know exactly when our last episode will be. I feel blessed to have that knowledge and now it's on me and my writers to come up with a satisfying ending, and if we fail we have no one to blame but ourselves."

Gilligan said he does not yet have a final image or scene in mind.

"I wish I did," he said before reversing course. "Then again, I don't wish I did because that leaves a lot of room for invention. There's a lot of invention left to be done with 16 more hours to fill and honestly I don't know exactly where it's going to wind up. I think that's a good thing. When we're back in the writers' room in mid-November we'll do it the same as always and build the season brick by brick and very carefully pick our way through the story. ... I have hopes and dreams for the characters. I know the questions I want to answer that the audience probably wants answers to as well but we're going to find it as we find it."

Come back to Tuned In Journal Monday after the season finale airs for reactions to the season ender.

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