Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Breaking Bad: Is Gus Fring a Stereotype?

The television show Breaking Bad is about a high school chemistry teacher in New Mexico named Walter White who has been diagnosed with cancer. Not knowing how he would be able to pay for it, or leave any money for his family if he ends up passing away, he starts a life of cooking and selling meth. Throughout the story he meets many diverse characters. Some of theses characters can fall into the trap of having stereotypical, but the characters are so round and multifaceted as to not be stereotypical.
An example of a deep character in the series is Gus Fring, a black man who is the very top of the drug operation in New Mexico and Walter’s boss. He is very stern and strict and even resorts to murdering one of his most trusted employees to try and scare Walter and his assistant straight. One the surface that may look like a typical brute stereotype of a black man, but if you look into his motivations for his actions you can see he is much more careful and calculated than he lets on. Ever since Walter is first deffered to Gus, he was told how careful of a man he was. His highest priority is keeping his industry running without any kinks or chances of exposure. He is very intelligent and deliberate looking deeper into his character, which is contrary to most stereotypes of black men in America. From a Mexican drug peddler who just wants to care for his disabled uncle to a white drug addict with deep morals struggles and care for children, the show Breaking Bad has many characters that may seem stereotypical at first, but turn out to be very dynamic and round, transcending the grip of racial stereotypes.

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