Well, folks, Christmas has come early. And it’s come in the form of tonight’s Breaking Bad episode. Though I’m emotionally exhausted after having watched and processed the going ons, I’ll go ahead and say that it was simply the best Breaking Bad episode to date. And there are still three episodes left. Well done, writers. You’ve taken us to the brink, given us all that we can handle and still left us wanting more. What will happen to Jesse Pinkman? How did Skyler all of a sudden become a badass character? And what will Walter Jr. do now that he knows everything?
But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s start from the very beginning. A very good place to start. When we left our Breaking Bad cast, they were knee deep in a shootout with Todd’s “I’ll take it upon myself to disobey orders” Uncle Jack and our favorite DEA agent Hank Schrader. True, it was looking bad for everyone who wasn’t the allegianced gun-wielding-hooligans, but with Breaking Bad there’s always hope. Isn’t there?
We knew that someone was going down. Possibly multiple people, with only a couple of episodes left. The easy target was poor Hank. The do-gooders never get very far on Breaking Bad, do they? Well, neither do the bad-dooers, but it depends on how Walter is feeling that particular day. After a short flashback scene of a young Jesse, Walt and pregnant Skyler, Hank meets his untimely demise despite Walter begging for Hank’s life. Quite poignant considering that his next move is to out Jesse from his hiding spot and totally nod command a bullet through Jesse’s head.
What was intriguing was how little power Walt had over Uncle Jack, to kill Hank — and yet with Jesse, he held all of the power. Hank goes down in his DEA blaze of righteous glory, while Jesse gets saved by Todd, who comes up with this brilliant idea to question Jesse before they end his life. At first I thought this was super bad writing. A crappy transition and a bad excuse that Uncle Jack would have never gone for (I mean, he did just shoot a whole lotta strangers for no real reason). But then, we learn the meaning behind Todd’s plan and it makes more sense later on. Uncle Jack happily helps himself to, mmmm, almost all of Walt’s fortune. Walt is devastated by Hank’s death and finds himself one barrel of money strong as he plots his next move. Artistically, the buried money barrels are replaced with Hank and Agent Gomez’s bodies.
Walt picks himself up — visibly hurt by Hank’s death but caring not for Jesse’s existence — and rolls his sole money barrel to a working vehicle. But not before Walt tells Jesse that he watched Jane die and did nothing about it. Again, I wonder if this was the most apropos and best way to tie up that loose end, but whatevs. Walt tells Jesse and figuratively spits in his face as Jesse gets dragged to torture palace. Walt then drives to his house to pack up his life and head to…somewhere. Meanwhile, back at the car wash, Marie is stopping by to tell Skyler that the jig is up. Hank has arrested Walter and Skyler had better just come clean now to everyone, including Walter Jr.
Well, you can imagine how well that went over in the White family. Confused and angry, Skyler, Walt Jr. and baby Holly head back home where they run into Walt. And then a knife fight ensues. Yup, you heard me. A mutha effing knife fight. Skyler attacks Walt, Walt Jr. calls the police and Walt leaves the house with baby Holly in tow. Seriously, I’m still processing it. My pie hole remains agape. During all this, a beat-up Jesse is begging for it to be over (best acting eeeeever), but Todd has other plans. Todd needs Jesse to cook some meth, just like the old days. That means Todd make lots of money and wins favor with the fam. But what will Jesse do?! Does he have a choice? Not really. Is Aaron Paul actually a superhero in actor’s clothes? Yes.
Is anything possible? Yah goddamn right it is.
Well now Walt has stolen the baby and Skyler is standing in the middle of the street screaming. Walt gives Sklyer a ring to yell at her and call her a bitch. These are all true, however all Walt wants to do is make it seem as if Skyler is innocent. Of course he knows the police are there — Walt Jr. called them while they were all still standing in the house together. In a moment of absolute honesty, Walter is able to both say how he really feels to Skyler and not implicate her in anything whatsoever. Brilliant. Walt drops Holly off at the firehouse and then gets picked up by Saul’s man to go wherever he shall go. Hopefully it’s not a self-imposed trip to Belize.
Here’s the thing. Walt ended his conversation with Skyler in a whole “there’s still things I gotta take care of” kinda way. And if we know Walter White, we know he’s a thorough man. Is he going to off Jesse on his own, just to be sure? Will Jesse use everything he’s learned to get out of his crappy situation? What in the world is Skyler gonna do? At least we can be sure that Saul is going on to better things, his own show and all.
The bottom line is this. We may hate Walter White for the things he’s done. We may hate Skyler for being a stupid beeyotch who is super annoying. But we all realize that Walter has always done what he’s done…for his family. And Skyler too. The real conundrum has always been that part of his family was preventing saving his family. And that’s why Breaking Bad is genius. Now that Hank is gone (RIP), will Marie pick up the slack? I’m clearing my calendar for September 29th.