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09-24-2013, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Kriss E View Post
Walter cares about his family, that's it, that's all. In no way does this make him any lesser evil. There are psychopaths that care about their families too.

He's selfish, egotistical, sad, depressed, unhappy man, who also happens to be in a midlife crisis as he gets cancer.
Every decision he takes since getting it worsens his life. Every single one. Many of them are conscious decisions.

You can't say that you're gonna push someone, after doing it, that person takes out a gun, so you take out your gun and shoot him, then claim that it's all the other guy's fault.

You're right, he's often stuck in a corner, but most of the time it's because he put himself there.
His ego always gets the best out of him. Always.

You sympathize with Walter because the show is based around him. Nobody is evil 24/7. So you see how all he wants is to provide for his family. It's constantly reminded to you that he's doing this for his family as it is talked about and they're present in every show. That doesn't make him less evil.
Just like people actually like Tony Soprano.
It's all about the image they wan to portray. They want to show that Walter is a family guy, and they do it very well, but the guy is still evil.
Calling him 'evil' is too black-and... um... white for me. Walter White had no idea what he was getting himself into and became a product of his considerable survival instincts. It wasn't like he entered into the drug world thinking, "I'm prepared to kill people". He was totally naive to the violent path he was walking. Once he gained traction in that domain, yes, his ego kicked in big-time, and he became comfortable using violence as a tool of the trade. But that doesn't make him any more evil than Mike, Saul or Jesse, all of whom regretted violence but employed it anyway. Mike killed plenty of folks, Saul was happy to provide the personnel and Jesse shot his share of people, too. Conscious acts of evil. Walt isn't more evil than them, or Tony Soprano, or the entire cast of Game of Thrones for that matter. Walt is just really good at it.

The best characters often do evil without ever actually becoming evil. The characters from Game of Thrones have offed more people than Walter White, but in that context it seems appropriate. We accept good-guys like Rob or Ned or Calissee beheading people because that's how the moral code works in that context. Walt's no different than them; he's figured out how to survive the moral code of the drug world by doing what's necessary. But that doesn't mean he enjoys doing evil. He's no good-guy, but he's no sadist, nor is anywhere close to the cold-blooded cipher of Todd. As you said, Walt is mostly sad, unhappy and regretful -- hardly the emotional makeup of evil.

For me, Walt's character represents a great philosophical question: How much do you define a person by the intentions versus the results? There's really no right answer, but it's a cool question.

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