It is a man’s own mind, not his enemy or foe, that lures him to evil ways

          – Buddha

What do a teacher who broke bad and a group of plane crash survivors have in common? The uncanny ability to captivate millions of people;l forcing them to question their deepest fears, desires, and existence while keeping them on the edge of their seats in a state of shock and panic with flash forwards, flashbacks, and titillating suspense.

Airing from 2005 to 2010, Lost captivated an average of 15 million viewers each season. Lost-season1Oftentimes the audience became deeply frustrated with this show, saying: “Lost has become lost in its own storyline.” The show begins with a plane crash, leaving the surviving passengers of Flight 815 on a deserted tropical island. Their survival is threatened by a number of mysterious entities, including an unseen creature that roams the jungle and the island’s malevolent inhabitants known as The Others. One fan or “Lostie”, Tony Monsanto, describes the show: “Lost was about people who do not fit into society, they really have no family or place to be  accepted. They were lured to the island, and given each other so when they reached the afterlife they would have families. I loved it.”

Teachers hold the stigma of being good samaritans, almost martyrs for children and humanity. It is not everyday we witness a teacher choosing to live a life of crime  and  violence for the sake of their family and ultimately, their ego. Breaking Bad is the story of Walter White, a struggling high school chemistry teacher who was diagnosed with lung cancer. He begins to produce and sell methamphetamine, in order to secure his family’s financial future before he dies, teaming with his former student, Jesse Pinkman.  

With mindless reality shows at every turn, it is easy to believe this world is populated with dimwits. However, it is enlightening to have a popular outlet that forces us to stop and examine the universal karmic cycle of human life. Breaking Bad personified our fantasies of making quick money, yet showed us the true nature of how life works. Everything has a price; what we do now will be paid for later.    

The whimsical nature of our ethics is portrayed to us through these two TV shows. Lost coerced their audience to keep the faith that all questions will eventually be answered. Breaking Bad proved to us that no matter how sympathetic a person or character is, their wrongful deeds will  eventually be punished, perpetuating the life lesson that good will always win out in the end.        

Irene Rodriguez