Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar' Twist And Enigmatic Ending Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar' Twist And Enigmatic Ending Review: 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1' Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Philip Seymour Hoffman, And More Review: 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1' Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Philip Seymour Hoffman, And More Steve McQueen's Next Film Will Be About Paul Robeson Steve McQueen's Next Film Will Be About Paul Robeson Watch: First Trailer For 'The Age Of Adaline' Starring Blake Lively, Ellen Burstyn And Harrison Ford Watch: First Trailer For 'The Age Of Adaline' Starring Blake Lively, Ellen Burstyn And Harrison Ford Listen Up, Christopher Nolan Defends Sound Mix On 'Interstellar' Listen Up, Christopher Nolan Defends Sound Mix On 'Interstellar' Official Soundtrack Details For Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' Revealed Official Soundtrack Details For Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' Revealed Casting: Shailene Woodley Joins Oliver Stone's Edward Snowden Pic, 'True Detective' Adds Pair & More Casting: Shailene Woodley Joins Oliver Stone's Edward Snowden Pic, 'True Detective' Adds Pair & More Rare Pics Of James Remar In James Cameron's 'Aliens' Before He Was Fired Rare Pics Of James Remar In James Cameron's 'Aliens' Before He Was Fired Watch: 40-Minute Discovery Channel Special 'The Science Of Interstellar' Narrated By Matthew McConaughey Watch: 40-Minute Discovery Channel Special 'The Science Of Interstellar' Narrated By Matthew McConaughey 'X-Men: Apocalypse' To Focus On Romance Between Jennifer Lawrence's Mystique & Michael Fassbender's Magneto 'X-Men: Apocalypse' To Focus On Romance Between Jennifer Lawrence's Mystique & Michael Fassbender's Magneto 20 Comic Actors And Their Best Dramatic Roles 20 Comic Actors And Their Best Dramatic Roles Review: 'Dumb and Dumber To' Starring Jim Carrey And Jeff Daniels Review: 'Dumb and Dumber To' Starring Jim Carrey And Jeff Daniels Listen: 45-Minute Talk With Christopher Nolan, Plus The Big Twist From Steven Spielberg's 'Interstellar' Script And More Listen: 45-Minute Talk With Christopher Nolan, Plus The Big Twist From Steven Spielberg's 'Interstellar' Script And More Review: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway & More Review: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway & More 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies' Will Conclude With A 45-Minute Battle Sequence 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies' Will Conclude With A 45-Minute Battle Sequence Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes

'Breaking Bad' Star Anna Gunn Addresses Misogyny Behind Audience Hatred Of Skyler Plus 4-Hour Interview With Vince Gilligan

The Playlist By Charlie Schmidlin | The Playlist August 26, 2013 at 8:56AM

With last night's episode of “Breaking Bad” drawing the acclaimed show even closer to its visible end, it is a point of pleasure for creators and fans alike to witness beloved characters entering their final scenes, and also reflect upon their series-wide arcs. As Walt's wife Skyler, Anna Gunn has continually surprised in this regard, reacting to her husband's shift into drug kingpin by turns with anger, frustration and sympathy. The response from viewers has been more one-note however, and in a recent op-ed by the actress, Gunn examined her character's vitriolic feedback and what those comments have exposed about the show's dynamic.
5
Breaking Bad

With last night's episode of “Breaking Bad” drawing the acclaimed show even closer to its visible end, it is a point of pleasure for creators and fans alike to witness beloved characters entering their final scenes, and also reflect upon their series-wide arcs. As Walt's wife Skyler, Anna Gunn has continually surprised in this regard, reacting to her husband's shift into drug kingpin by turns with anger, frustration and sympathy. The response from viewers has been more one-note however, and in a recent op-ed by the actress, Gunn examined her character's vitriolic feedback and what those comments have exposed about the show's dynamic.

Written for the NY Times, Gunn's op-ed lays out the actress' feelings of creative fulfillment as Skyler on the show, but also relays a worrying observation over the course of its five seasons. “My character, to judge from the popularity of Web sites and Facebook pages devoted to hating her, has become a flash point for many people's feelings about strong, nonsubmissive, ill-treated women,” she writes. “As the hatred of Skyler blurred into loathing for me as a person, I saw glimpses of an anger that, at first, simply bewildered me.

On the show, Gunn charts Skyler's journey upon learning Walt's secret as “outraged by the violence and destruction of the drug world, fearful for her children's safety, disgusted by the money Walter brings in and undone by the lies and manipulation to which he subjects her.” She then views these actions through the show's perspective of Walt as empathetic protagonist, which in turn places the obstinate Skyler as its antagonist—an unbalanced set of standards when it comes to their judgement.

“As an actress, I realize that viewers are entitled to have whatever feelings they want about the characters they watch. But as a human being, I'm concerned that so many people react to Skyler with such venom. Could it be that they can't stand a woman who won't suffer silently or 'stand by her man'? That they despise her because she won't back down or give up? Or because she is, in fact, Walter's equal?”

Gunn's argument doesn't forgive Skyler's actions—viewers would be lying if they said her actions on the show never made their blood boil. But those instances are the result of many talented people's work, and Gunn is conveying her frustrated experiences as the face of all of them. You can read the full piece over on at the NY Times, and for a truly in-depth look at the show and its characters, check out an epic 4-hour interview from August 2011 with creator Vince Gilligan, as he discusses the journey of “Breaking Bad,” his childhood in Virginia, and his 144-episode stay on “The X-Files” (where he first met Bryan Cranston) (via Dangerous Minds).

This article is related to: Television, TV News, Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad, Vince Gilligan


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates