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Movie Mom

What the Colors of the Clothes on Breaking Bad Tell You About the Characters and Story

posted by Nell Minow

PrintI love stories like this wonderful analysis by John LaRue about the way the costume designers on “Breaking Bad” use the colors of the characters’ clothes to tell you what is going on.

There are a lot of patterns that emerge, so much so that each character has an identifying color.

After Walt’s cancer diagnosis, his colors become stronger, and eventually go black. When the cancer returns or when he’s defeated, the drab khaki returns. The closer he gets to Gus, and the stronger his ties to blue meth, the more blue shows up in his barcode.

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Skyler starts out blue, but turns dark once she starts to figure out Walt’s secret. Her timeline turns deep blue, almost purple, as her flirtation with Ted grows, and then it turns green once she discovers Walt’s stash of money. The more complicit she becomes in Walt’s criminal activity, the blacker her timeline gets to the point that it’s pitch black in season 4.

Fascinating!

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