There's something uniquely pleasurable about watching characters evolve during the course of a series. Even if the entire drama takes place within the course of a year, as is the case with "Breaking Bad," characters can change quite a lot, both for good and bad, as characters from this drama amply illustrate.
SkylerFew would deny that in the beginning of the series Skyler was definitely not one of the most appealing or sympathetic of characters. Her constant haranguing of Walter was easy to dismiss as just the antics of another shrewish female character. However, after she became aware of Walter's double dealings, she began to truly evolve as a character and come into her own. Now that she has finally come to grips with just how much of a monster Walter has become, she also knows that she and her children might be in danger. The question is: how can she overcome Walt? Or can she?
MikeFrom his rather obscure beginnings as a clean-up man for Saul (such as getting Jesse out of that nasty bit with his deceased girlfriend), Mike has grown into one of the most fascinating and engaging characters in the entire series. The fifth season in particular has allowed us some glimpse into how he works, though he still remains something of an enigma. However, if the first few episodes have been any indication, the fifth season is going to be Mike's chance to shine, and I, for one, hope that we get to see a lot more of him before the end of this first half of the final season.
JesseWhat to say about Jesse? Of all of "Breaking Bad"s characters, he seems to have done the most growing. Of course, that's because he has also been through more than most of the other characters, excluding Walt. He has seen his girlfriend die beside him, watch Gus take down most of an entire cartel, and had to let his new girlfriend go in order to protect her and her son. Although he has plunged into some of the same depths as Walter, it doesn't seem to have entirely destroyed his soul. Yet it remains to be seen whether he will be able to emerge from this whole situation intact.
"Breaking Bad" has, throughout the episodes of its final season, managed to showcase this amazing depth of character. We can hope that it will continue to do so as the season hurtles toward its mid-point finale.