Episode: "Seven Thirty-Seven" (Season 2, Episode 1)
As they say, less is more, and when it comes to Breaking Bad's episode openings, the show's creative team takes that old adage to heart. Case in point: "Seven Thirty-Seven," which begins with a minimalist black-and-white shot of a backyard, one with a pool. As it turns out, it's the White family's backyard, and in their pool floats, randomly, a badly burned pink teddy bear, the left eye missing. The image is haunting, strange, and tantalizing. Why's the bear's face all torched? How'd it get into the pool? Does Walt Jr. play with dolls?
Teased throughout season two, the answers to those questions are ultimately darker than anyone could've anticipated. They're also proof that, seemingly unlike the writers of inferior shows like The Killing, the Breaking Bad team begin seasons with full-fledged story arcs all figured out, so much so that they can tease the season's morbid punchline in the season's first image. —MB