Tuesday, 19 November 2013

The Kite Runner and Breaking Bad

Being a fan of both the novel The Kite Runner and the television series Breaking Bad I noticed many similarities between the main characters, Amir and Jesse Pinkman. I saw these similarities after finishing the novel and then watching season three of Breaking Bad, as they both strive to redeem themselves after making horrible mistakes that will haunt them forever.

Now just to warn you now, I just started the 5th season, so there will be spoilers, but please no spoilers for me in the comments.

First of all, after having left his best friend in an alley to be raped by his bullies, Amir spends the rest of his life trying to redeem himself. Feeling very guilty for many years, Amir is finally able to redeem himself when he saves Hassan's only son, Sohrab, from the Taliban, and brings him back to live with him and his wife in America.

Comparatively, in season two of Breaking Bad, Jesse meets a girl, Jane Margolis, and they eventually start dating. Unfortunately, Jane was a recovering heroin addict, and because of Jesse's meth addiction, she started using again, and eventually overdosed and died. Because of this, Jesse was filled with enormous guilt as he felt it was his fault she died, as he could've prevented her from using again, and avoided her death. In season three of the show, Jesse meets another girl, Andrea Cantillo, at Narcotics Anonymous. He's finally able to redeem himself when he stops Andrea from turning back to drugs, to protect her six-year old son Brock, and by providing her with enough money to live a nice life, and allowing the two to live with him. Jesse is finally able to redeem himself since Jane's death.

Both Amir and Jesse have gone through rough times, and have let their loved ones get hurt, but they both strive to redeem themselves, as they don't want to live with the overwhelming guilt anymore. Because of their good hearts, they are able to get rid of the guilt, by preforming a good deed, and both characters are able to live happy lives in the end.


  1. Interesting comparison. I haven't yet watched Breaking Bad (it is on my list of tv shows to watch), but this post makes me want to watch it even more.

    I wonder, is doing one or two good deeds enough to actually redeem oneself?

    1. I believe so, depending on how much of an impact that good deed could do. For example, when Amir brings Sorhab to America with him, he spares him from living an awful life in Afghanistan and prevented further abuse from Assef and the rest of the Taliban.

      Also, when Jesse takes in Andrea and Brock, and prevents Andrea from turning back to drugs, he helps avoid Brock from going up in a bad environment. By doing this he also stops Andrea from ruining her life because of the drugs.

  2. I liked your blog post and can see your comparison. I have not yet watched the Breaking Bad series myself, but I do plan on it in the future since I have heard a lot about the series! After reading The Kite Runner and understanding your comparison, i wonder, how can someone truly redeem themselves, and release that guilt with a different scenario and different person? How can someone feel relieved and able to get rid of that guilty feeling if they haven't made right with the person they have done wrong?

    1. I noticed you pointed out not only that Jesse and Amir dealt with different people but they dealt with different scenarios as well. In my opinion, the scenarios were very similar. Amir was given a second chance to save a young boy from Assef who sexually abused the child, which was pretty much the same scenario he had with Hassan in the beginning which led to this guilt. Also, although I haven't watched the show, Jesse seemed to be faced with the same situation he had been in before Jane died. He is still dealing with a woman who is trying to quit drugs and its whether or not he is a positive or negative influence that supports whether she does or does not continue on the path of narcotic abuse.