An Ohio man has filed a class action lawsuit against Apple over the way the final season of hit show Breaking Bad was released on iTunes.
Noam Lazebnik filed the class action suit in San Jose, Calif. on Sept. 6 claiming that Apple had falsely advertised that the “Season Pass” purchased in the summer of 2012 would cover the entire fifth season of Breaking Bad. When the show resumed with with it is referring to as the second half of the season in Aug. 2013, Apple offered up these final eight episodes as a separate season pass and was again asking for $14.99 for standard definition and $22.99 for high definition.
Lazebnik bases his claims on the fact that the actors and creative team have constantly referred to the episodes from last summer and this summer as “Season 5” despite there being nearly a year between the two sets of episodes airing. “When a consumer buys a ticket to a football game, he does not have to leave at halftime. When a consumer buys an opera ticket, he does not get kicked out at intermission,” Lazebnik explained in his claim.
The splitting of seasons has become a common occurrence, and has led to the rise of split DVD and Blu-ray sets. As it stands, AMC, the network that airs Breaking Bad, is currently selling a set of discs it refers to as “The Fifth Season,” but it is in fact only the eight episodes from last summer and does not include the ones airing this year. It does not indicate on the package that it is only half the season, but it also doesn’t say anything about it being the complete season either. On the network’s online store it refers to the current episodes merely as “The Final Season,” and makes no reference to the number.
This seems to come down to confusion more on the part of AMC than Apple. Amazon is also selling the two sets of episodes separately for digital download, but is referring to the current grouping as “The Final Season” and “Season 6” in at least one place. If AMC hadn’t played games with the way the season was named, all of this could have been avoided. What impact all of this will have on the lawsuit is unknown, but it seems the anger may have been placed a bit better higher up the food chain.
Lazebnik Filed his claim in Calif. under the state’s consumer protection laws and is seeking either $14.99 or $22.99 per customer depending on which format they purchased.