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NPR 4 THE METH: We Hear It Even When U Can’t

Illustration by KEN TAYLOR

FRESH AIR

In the 2008 pilot of AMC’s Breaking Bad, high school teacher Walter White fails to interest his chemistry students in the study of change. But over the course of the series, Walt himself came to exemplify radical change, using his knowledge of chemistry to become a master meth cook, and transforming himself into a notorious outlaw who was willing to kill, when necessary, to keep his operation running. Acting is also about change and transformation, and Bryan Cranston is a master. While Breaking Bad fans were watching him portray Walter White in the final episodes of the series, Cranston was already undergoing another transformation — playing President Lyndon B. Johnson in the play All the Way, which opened in Boston last fall and on Broadway earlier this month. Cranston tells Fresh Air‘s Terry Gross about the end of Breaking Bad “It’s bittersweet because it was an extraordinary time in my life,” he says. “It changed my life, and I’ll forever be grateful for that. I’m also happy that it ended when it did because the effect that that had was so wonderful that everybody comes up to me and says, “I wish there were more. I want more, I want more.” And that’s always a much better position to be in than having people say, “I want less, I want less of you! Is that show still on the air?” MORE

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