Breaking Bad: The Journey Journal

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Post by Flack » Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:06 am

S04E10 - "Salud"

Pre-show thoughts: "salud" literally means "health". Will we get an update on Walt's current condition? It's also a common toast. Is someone celebrating something? Is it a bad pun on "salad"? Probably not.

Jesse's rise in the organization puts him, Mike, and Gus on a small plane to Mexico where Jesse is to teach the cartel his (Walt's) secret meth recipe. The cartel think Jesse is a punk (a cook rather than a chef), but two or three times now Jesse has exerted dominance and initiative to impress his new bosses, and this was no exception. Jesse stepped to the face of the cartel's cooking crew and got them to back down. Was that a smile from Mike?

Walt Jr. lost his Dodge muscle car and instead for a PT Cruiser for his birthday. Skyler, like any mom would be, was bubbling for her son to see his present. Walt Jr. is disappointed in the car and barely tries to act otherwise. After Walt misses the unveiling of the car, Jr. drives over to his apartment only to find Walt out of it after mixing pain pills with beer. Walt, always dressed in his best tighty-whities, breaks down in front of Walt Jr. After talking about how he remembered his father in the hospital as a child and hoping that Walt Jr. won't remember Walt like he was last night, Walt Jr. (never one to mince words, especially with his mother) tells Walt point blank that he prefers the honesty of his father last night than the fake father he's had the last year. Ouch, ouch, ouch.

So, back to Mexico.

Jesse cooks a successful batch of meth (it appears the success rate is 96% pure) and learns that he is part of the deal -- Jesse will be staying in Mexico as the cartel's cook. Part of me says that this is something Gus would actually do, although I have a feeling that's not the full story.

This is the third episode in a row now with the Beneke bankruptcy, so I guess that's a "thing" now. Funneling it through Saul, Skyler takes some of the money she had stashed under the house in the crawlspace and gives it to Ted. Instead of paying off the IRS however, Ted decides to use the money to kickstart his business and get rid of that ridiculous Geo Metro we saw him in last episode and lease a Mercedes. I thought Skyler might drop a hint that the money came from her, but she's much more direct about the source of the money. Ted, in return, shows her the door. Ted seems hell bent on making Skyler squirm over this. He's not really ready to go to jail just to get her new business audited, is he? Too bad Mike's in Mexico.

Jesse, Mike and Gus end up at Don Eladio's pad, the site where Gus' partner was killed. Gus presents the Don with a rare bottle of alcohol. (Is that Jesse's hand made box he talked about to the group???) Gus drinks to show that the liquor is not poisoned, and then everyone joins in except Jesse (who Gus drink-blocked?) and Mike of course who is always on duty. But wait, it WAS poisoned! Gus is trying to puke it up in the bathroom and the cartel are dropping like flies! Holy shit, things just got real, yo!

Jesse, Mike and Gus make their getaway in one of the cartel cars out in the driveway, but not before engaging in a shootout. It looks like Mike's hit, Gus may be in bad shape by the poison (poor "salud" my friend) and Jesse's driving the getaway car.

This felt like the season closer, so much action, so much going on. I am going to push through now.
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Post by Flack » Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:21 am

S04E11 - "Crawlspace"

Pre-show thought: I'm assuming this references the space underneath the White's home, although perhaps Jesse, Mike and Gus may have to crawl through a tunnel or something to cross the border.

If there was any doubt that Gus is very methodical, thinks ahead and has connections, Jesse drives Gus and Mike to a hospital out in the middle of nowhere, set up in a dilapidated building. There's a humorous scene here where Gus' doctor knows Jesse's blood type, but Jesse isn't sure. Gus' network runs deep and wide, my friend.

Hank is closing in on Gus' operation, taking Walt with him every step of the way. First they stakeout the chicken ranch (which Gus had cleaned). Now the two of them are on the way to check out the laundry, something Walt cannot let happen (it could mean the death of both of them). In an last ditch attempt, Walt pulls his car in front of an oncoming car, getting t-boned in the process. That's one way to divert the situation! Back at Hank's house, Marie makes Hank promise he won't take Walt on any more police business; Hank responds with the fact that he just ordered a hand-controlled Tahoe.

Saul's "A-Team" (his bodyguard and his con-man) show up at Ted's house to force Ted to write a check to the IRS. We get the idea that these two aren't trained professionals, especially when Ted makes a break for it and they just stand there, watching him run. Ted trips over the same carpet he previously tripped on, hitting his head and knocking himself out. This'll make the wait until the check clears a bit more quiet.

As far as Walt is concerned, the clock appears to be ticking. Walt now knows that Jesse can cook without him. At different points now, Jesse and Walt have both owed their lives to the other one for saying they won't cook if the other one is killed. Jesse knowing how to cook definitely puts Walt's life in danger. This show is about Walt, which makes me worry for Jesse.

Feeling that there are no other alternatives at this point, Walt goes to Saul and asks for the number of the guy that will make them disappear. Walt gets the number and asks Saul to put in an anonymous threat to the DEA on Hank's safety, but asks for an hour head start. Saul's guy wants $500k to do the job. Walt runs back to the house to get the money, only to find that Skyler has given it all to Ted. At this point, Walter, deservedly so, has a breakdown in the crawlspace.

So many times in this show we've seen Walt take two steps forward and one, no, two steps back. The more he steps up, the harder he falls back. We're almost at the end of season four and Walt has, once again, nothing.

A man with nothing to live for is a dangerous man, indeed.

I AM THE DANGER. I AM THE ONE WHO KNOCKS ON DOORS.
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Post by Flack » Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:41 am

S04E10 - "End Times"

Pre-show thought: I can't think of anything, other than the obvious. This appears to be the beginning of the end.

Saul made the call. DEA Agents show up at the White household to escort them over to the Schrader's. Walt decides not to go, choosing to stay behind and deal with things. Skyler doesn't completely understand, but Walt is the target here, not Hank. He may be saving their lives. In the meantime the DEA set up a perimeter around Hank's house, complete with cars, agents, and snipers. Sweet.

Hank convinces Gomez to go check out the laundromat for him. Although he doesn't find anything, Gomez takes a bunch of pictures. Hank made a find with the pictures of Gale's apartment, so even though Gomez, his partner and a drug dog didn't find anything, it's possible Hank will in the pictures.

We all know that the quickest way to Jesse is through a kid, and now Andrea's son is suddenly in the hospital. The minute we hear the symptoms we think ... Ricin poisoning. Jesse checks his cigarettes and finds the poisoned cigarette missing. Would a six year old randomly pull out a cigarette, or did something more sinister happen?

Jesse goes to Walt's house (I incorrectly thought in search of an antidote) and ultimately confronts Walt about poisoning Walt. Walt eventually convinces Jesse that he would have nothing to gain by poisoning the kid, and figure out that Gus is the only person who would condone hurting a child. After several tense moments, the two of them appear to have at least temporarily buried the hatchet to join forces on a common goal that's been coming for a while. It appears as if the Dynamic Duo have declared war on Gus. It's End Games for someone, indeed.

The two of them devise a plan to get Gus to come up to the hospital and talk to Jesse. That part of the plan works and Walt is able to attach a pipe bomb to Gus' car, but when returning to the car Gus senses something (was someone watching the car?) and refuses to enter the car. Did Jesse say something to tip him off, or did he have a plant watching the car? (Mike's not back yet, is he?)

No stopping now. It's on to the season finale.

Random thought: I really don't care for Tyrus. I miss Mike's little bits of humor, as opposed to his overpowering dominance. Breaking Bad has done of good job of making this one bad guy that we see as a bad guy.
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Post by Flack » Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:48 pm

Flack wrote:S04E10 - "End Times"
That was actually S04E12.
"Jack Flack always escapes." -Davey Osborne

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Post by Flack » Tue Aug 21, 2012 9:22 pm

S04E13 - "Face Off"

Pre-show thoughts: I'm guessing Walt and Jesse will face off with Tyrus and Gus in this episode. And maybe someone's face will get ripped off.

It's been a few days since I watched this episode, so I'll just hit the highlights here.

Giving Tio/Hector a chance at revenge, Walt turns him into a suicide bomber and destroys Gus, Tyrus, and Tio all in one fell swoop. The way that this unfolded was go beautifully crafted ... this show is magnificent. Truly magic.

The whole side plot was Jesse, who got detained and questioned by local police after mentioning in the hospital that Brock might have been poisoned by Ricin. After a lot of drama we learn that Brock WAS poisoned, but ... and man if this doesn't tell us where Walt is mentally at this point ... he was poisoned by Walt in a (successful) attempt to get Jesse to turn on Gus. Simply masterful.

This brings us to the end of Season Four, and the end of episodes available on Netflix. I've got to start hunting down Season Five episodes online now.

So, where does this leave us?

With one season left ... Jesse and Walt have learned how to cook meth, have taken out other local dealers, taken out other local distributors, and have now taken out the biggest meth network in the southwest.

Other than Walt, Jesse, Skinny Pete and the Badger, everyone associated with meth that we have met in the past four seasons is now dead.

Unless I am missing something, the only obvious antagonists left for Walt are (a) Mike the Cleaner, (b) Hank, and potentially based on their previous squabbles, (c) Jesse. Obviously, Mike is not going to be pleased that his former employer is gone (I assume?). And that's an easy way to keep action/drama going. And Saul works with both Mike and Walt and Jesse, so ... that's going to be awkward. On a longer arc, I'm guessing this story won't be complete until Hank discovers Walt's secret. How that's handled is anyone's guess. And finally we have Jesse and Walt's relationship, which seems more on again/off again than two teenagers in love.

And then there's the issue of Walt's cancer. We don't really know how he's doing, only how he says he's doing.

Walt's got into the meth game to make money to leave to his family. I believe, between what he paid Saul and what Skyler paid Ted*, I don't think there's much left in the crawl space. And now we have a car wash that's losing money.

(*Can they get their money back now that Ted is dead? Does the IRS drop things like that?)

I will begin looking for torrents later this week and tracking down episodes.
"Jack Flack always escapes." -Davey Osborne

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Post by pinback » Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:18 am

Nicely done!

You can also "buy" the episodes online, but I know nobody does that.
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Post by Flack » Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:45 am

It's my birthday, so you can "buy" the episodes for me. :)
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Post by Flack » Thu Aug 23, 2012 9:29 pm

Well my birthday came and went and you did not buy me anything so I had to acquire them elsewhere. Maybe next year.

S05E01 - "Live Free or Die"

Well, well well, We start with a flash forward to Walt's 52nd birthday, on which he's buying himself a rather large rifle, with cash. That tells us a few things. Walt's going to live, at least for a while. He's also going to regain some sort of cash stream. And, he's going to have a need for a high powered rifle.

We pick up immediately where season four left off. With Hank "out of danger," Skyler and the kids are safe to return home. Skyler's scared, but not of any external threat. She's scared of Walt. If only she knew.

The conflict between Mike and Walt came quicker than I expected. It just hit Walt that Gus had cameras that were recording everyone involved in the meth operation, including himself, Jesse, and Mike. All the videos were being stored on Gus' laptop. (Does he not run encryption?) After Jesse (an ICP fan, no doubt) mentions "magnets," a plan is devised to attack the police's evidence room with a giant electromagnet. The magnet was ultimately able to penetrate the room, but we're not sure yet if it wiped the hard drive.

The first side arc was Beneke -- he's not dead, but he's gravely injured. After Skyler visits him in this hospital, he assures her that he won't talk. This felt like a way to wrap up that silly side arc. I hope so.

Twice in this episode we see Walt asserting himself. It would appear, that for now, Walt is the man.
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Post by Flack » Fri Aug 24, 2012 7:20 am

S05E02 - "Madrigal"

Show opens with a company executive in Germany about to be questioned by police. He chooses, instead, to take his own life by shocking his head with an AED (defibrillator).

(I took a first aid class a couple of years back and automatic defibrillators don't work that way. They have a sensor in them that monitors your heartbeat and won't discharge unless it detects an irregularity. Unless you are having heart issues, the AED will not shock you. That being said, (a) maybe they work differently in Germany, and (b) it's television, so who cares.)

Jesse has a meltdown moment over the missing Ricin cigarette, which we learned Saul had lifted from him. Walt makes a new fake poison cigaratte (stashing the Ricin away behind an electrical socket and replacing the poison with table salt) and then offers to help Jesse turn his house upside down to find the cigarette. Walt manages to plant the cigarette in Jesse's Roomba, where he ultimately discovers it. Jesse apologizes profusely to Walt for almost killing him and falsely accusing Walt of poisoning Brock with the cigarette (he actually poisoned Brock with the berries).

Hank isn't 100% yet, but his search for the blue meth has helped him return to work. Hank is being lauded for his work on the Gus case. His boss, on the other hand, is being forced out for ignoring Hank's suspicions.

A few episodes back I mentioned that I could see Mike getting his own spin-off show, but apparently that's just going to be a part of BB. A whole new subplot of 11 men who were on the Madrigal payroll has been introduced. The DEA has discovered and frozen Madrigal's offshore bank deposits, taking millions of these guys' "hush money." One employee, Lydia, is worried that without the hush money, one of them may talk. In a scene out of a spy novel, Lydia asks Mike to kill them all, an offer he flatly refuses. Lydia shops around her offer and finds someone to take her offer, someone who is no match for Mike and quickly receives four bullets to the chest for his efforts.

Turns out, Lydia was the main supplier of methylamine to Gus's operation, and after some "persuasion" by Mike, she will continue supplying it. With a new supplier, Mike, Jesse, and Walt agree to enter a three-way business.

Let the cooking begin.
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Post by Flack » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:17 am

S05E03 - "Hazard Pay"

Pre-show thought: I assume "hazard pay" refers to the money that was taken by the DEA, although I wonder about its double meaning. Maybe Hank will get paid for his injuries?

First up is Walt and Skyler. Walt has decided to move back in (again) and Skyler is none too happy about that (or anything else), saying that she fears for her and her children's safety. I'll talk more about this in a minute.

Lots more Mike in this episode. First, Mike visits all the remaining "trustees" shall we way, and assures them their hazard pay is coming. Later, after cooking their first batch as a new three-way team, Mike gives Jesse and Walt a lesson in Economics 101 as the three of them watch their piles of $300k+ dwindle as Mike pulls out stack after stack of cash to deliver to people down the food chain.

In this episode we see (albeit briefly) the return of Badger and Skinny Pete. Jesse uses them to buy some moving containers for their new mobile cooking plan, but they are noticeably shut out of Jesse's future plans, despite the two requesting to be included at any level.

So yeah, the new plan. Out with RVs and fancy underground labs. After visiting a few potential lab locations with Saul, the group hatches a plan to set up mobile labs inside homes being bug bombed. This is another one of those TV kind of moments, I think. There's a lot of hands being greased and a lot of trust going on to pull this off. I'm not sure Mike and Walt in reality would be willing to let that many people in on their cook location right off the bat, but whatever. It's working for now, until a homeowner notices the smell or they accidentally blow up someone's home.

My wife has watched a few episodes from season four and five with me and last night said, "this is just like a soap opera for guys, right?" I don't know if it's because of season five or because she said that, but I can see her point, especially with the Marie stuff and the Skyler stuff. Did Skyler have an affair or not? Will Marie steal again or not? Will Hank ever walk again without a limp? Who cares, let's do some meth, find some crank whores and get to cookin', people!!

Back to Skyler, her kids, and the breakdown for a moment. This is another "TV moment," but couldn't all this have been prevented if Walt had just told Skyler that Tio had killed Gus on his own? Or, at worst, that Tio wanted to kill Gus (which is true) and Walt simply hooked him up with the means to do so? Don't get me wrong, I loved the "I AM THE DANGER!" speech, but softening that outburst just a teensy bit would have made things better, no? Walt telling Skyler "it gets easier" did NOT help things.

In my Season Four recap I said that Walt's antagonists for the upcoming season would be Mike, Jesse, and Hank. I guess I missed the most obvious one -- Skyler. Hopefully they can work things out. Maybe they can team up and put a bullet in Marie's head for old time's sake.

"Just because you shot Jesse James, doesn't make you Jesse James." - Mike
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Post by Flack » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:41 am

S05E04 - "Fifty-One"

I have to say out of all the episodes I've watched recently, this one was the most depressing.

Including this episode, we've seen three of Walt's birthdays. His 50th, which had a bunch of people in attendance, his 52nd at the opening of Season Five, in which he celebrated by buying an assault rifle and having breakfast by himself at Denny's, and now, his 51st, in which Skyler tried to drown herself during dinner. HAPPY BIRTHDAY WALT!

Throughout five seasons we've seen Walt swing back and forth between "Mr. White" and "Mr. Heisenberg". After finding his hat in the back of the Aztek, Walt switches to full on Heisenberg mode, buying not one but two new cars (one for him, one for Junior) after selling the Aztek for $50 to his mechanic.

Skyler has of course picked up on this change and has now convinced Hank and Marie to watch the kids for the time being. Skyler's "drowning attempt" (I have read you can't really drown yourself, but kudos to Sky for trying) was really a cry for help to get the kids out of the house.

It seems to me that everyone would be happier if Walt moved back to the condo and visited the house x number of nights per week. Walt would be able to come and go as he pleased, Skyler would feel safer, and the kids would still get to see Walt when he came over. If my wife would let me have my own condo down the street I'd do it tomorrow!

Hank has now been promoted to ASAC, another word for HMFIC for the DEA. He won't be the one day to day working the Heisenberg case, but it's the promotion Marie always wanted without the move to DC. So now Hank will know everything going on in the DEA, and Walt will too as he just bugged Hank's office and computer.

There's a hiccup in the meth supply line as Jesse is sent to pick up the goods after the warehouse manager is picked up for questioning. Jesse retrieves the barrel, but Lydia notices a GPS on it. Good eye, Lydia! Mike is willing to reason with Lydia ... haha just kidding, Mike wants to shoot her in the face! Jesse puts the plan on hold long enough to discover that the DEA was actually behind the GPS. That's good new for Lydia's face.

Speaking of Mike, it sounds like the DEA is honing in on him being a connection to the Madrigal/Los Pollos underworld. Good luck trailing Mike. Last episode we saw how your average hit man did against him (bang. bang. bang. bang.). I'm guessing the average field officer doesn't stand a chance against the cool and calculating Mike.

Coldest moment of the episode? When Skyler says she is just waiting for Walt's cancer to come back. Skyler! How dare you talk like that after all the plastic surgery Walt paid for on your face!
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Post by Flack » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:01 pm

S05E05 - "Dead Freight"

Pre-show thought: Freight makes me think of shipping. Dead makes me think of bodies. Ruh-roh.

I mixed some of the happenings between the last episode and this one. I think Walt actually bugged Hank's office in this episode, but it doesn't matter. Skyler and Walt are still squabbling, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Skyler submits to Walt, telling him she will do whatever he wants her to do as long as the kids are out of the picture. For the time being, Walt seems okay with this. Mostly because AW YEAH HE'S OUT ROBBING TRAINS!

There's a train a' comin', a train full of meth chemicals that the team needs and this would be a pool's worth as compared to stealing it a barrel at a time. Mike and Walt (of course) are all for shooting the conductor, but this would tip their hat. Instead, Jesse formulates a plan that evolves into a good idea -- the trio will slurp the ingredients out of the train during a dead zone as identified by Lydia.

There's a lot of action in this one, and even though these guys are robbing a train for the purpose of stealing the ingredients to make meth which is a drug that ruins people's lives and kills them, I found myself rooting for them. Anytime a plan involves something ingenious (the giant electromagnet) instead of just shooting people, I find myself smiling.

So the plan is to cause the train to stop by parking a dump truck on the tracks, pull the meth ingredients out of the train, refill the container with water (so that the train weighs the same) and do all of this before being seen. And they do! It goes perfectly! It goes off without a hitch!

Then a little kid shows up on a motorcycle and one of the group's henchmen shoots the kid.

I haven't watched the next episode yet (I am one down from realtime at this point) but if Jesse has a gun on him that guy is in trouble.
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Post by Flack » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:42 pm

S05E06 - "Buyout"

I guess Jesse didn't have a gun on him, because instead of shooting Todd, the trio voted on whether or not they should kill him, fire him, or keep him on the payroll so they can monitor him. Fortunately for Todd, Mike and Walt voted for "C".

An offer suddenly presents itself to the group; a fellow cook in a neighboring state is willing to buy the group's stash of methylamine for $15 million (split 3 ways). For Mike and Jesse this seems like a win/win situation. They get rich and get out of the meth business at the same time. Later when asked, Walt says he's not in the meth business or the money business. He's in the empire business.

Shit, Walt.

One of the greatest moments in this episode was the dinner with Walt, Skyler, and Jesse. "These green beans are delicious, Mrs. White. How did you prepare them?" "They came from Albertsons." What a deliciously awkward scene.

Anyway, back to the methylamine. Walt, haunted by the Grey Matter fiasco (where he sold his shares for $5k to a company that's now worth $2 billion!), is not willing to do that again. He cannot sell his share of the methylamine, KNOWING that it's worth $5 million, with the knowledge that it could be turned into $100 million worth of meth.

Near the end of the episode, Mike restrains Walt (who was attempting to steal the methylamine) in an attempt to keep him around until the deal takes place. While Mike is away with Saul telling the DEA to back off, Walt frees himself and hides the methylamine. With a gun pointed to his head, Walt says he's come up with a win/win scenario. I guess we will find out what that is next week.

---

On multiple occasions now, Walt has told Skyler's secrets (like her affair with Ted), and yet she has so far not divulged Walt's secrets ... yet (Marie appears to be wearing her down).

It was a little heartbreaking this episode to hear Walt turn down the $5 million. It doesn't seem like there is any going back now. Old Gus, meet the new Gus.
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Post by pinback » Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:04 pm

You caught up awfully quick. Are you glad you did? Was it apparent to you that this is the greatest television show of all time, or were you too close to it?
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Post by Flack » Sun Aug 26, 2012 4:42 pm

pinback wrote:You caught up awfully quick. Are you glad you did? Was it apparent to you that this is the greatest television show of all time, or were you too close to it?
Yes and no, on the pace. Watching two episodes a day for 25 days feels like work for sure. On more than one occasion I dreamed about Breaking Bad and had to go back and make sure that what I had dreamed didn't really happen. On the other hand, especially on a couple of those season ending episodes, it would have killed me to wait an entire year to see what happened next. The problem is, it only takes a few bad or boring episodes of a show to get me to lose interest. I was really into the Big Bang Theory for a while and after like two or three boring ones in a row I lost interest. Same happened with The Office, for that matter.

I do certainly think it's a great show. I haven't seen The Wire or some of the other shows in the running, but it's certainly a few rungs up from most of the things I watch. Which, last night, was old WKRP reruns.
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Post by pinback » Sun Aug 26, 2012 5:45 pm

But the Big Bang Theory is the worst show of all time, so I don't see how that's relevant.
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Post by Ice Cream Jonsey » Sun Aug 26, 2012 6:03 pm

Well, Ben won't be able to see BB until Wednesday, so finally we will be able to talk about the episode without his half-breed interference.
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Post by Flack » Tue Aug 28, 2012 8:37 pm

S05E07 - "Say My Name"

So Walt's -- er, Heisenberg's -- plan was to muscle his way in to cook for someone else's distribution system. Makes sense. With Mike leaving, he's losing his. Just like when he capitalized on the rumor that Jesse had dropped an ATM on Spooge's head, Walt lets his competition know that he was directly responsible for Gus' death.

"You know who I am. Say my name," he taunts.

Poor Jesse. All he wants is his third of the money ($5m) that's rightfully his, but Walt won't give it to him. Like he always does, he belittles Jesse in an attempt to beat him down and make him submit, but this time it doesn't work. It appears that Jesse walks away from the operation. Some things are more important than money. I hope this is the thing that puts Jesse back on the right track. He's a good kid, that Pinkman.

That leaves Todd as Walt's new cooking partner. Todd's taking a lot of notes and looks willing to please Walt, but he's no Jesse in either the talent or personality departments.

The main story arc was Mike's. Mike got his $5m and, using a shiesty lawyer, continued paying the money to the nine principles to "make them whole". Unfortunately the lawyer got caught and flipped on Mike. A quick call from Walt let him slip away just in the nick of time, but a finally confrontation between Walt and Mike over the list of the 9 ended poorly for Mike with a bullet in his gut.

Goddamn Walt.

So, a few thoughts here.

One, at some point don't you think people will stop working for/with Walt once he gets the reputation of killing everybody he's worked for or with?

I'm not sure who or how it's going to go down yet, but the the noose is starting to tighten around Walt. Skyler's sick of him. Jesse's sick of him. Mike was sick of him. Hank ... Hank may know more than he's letting on. I'm not sure yet. Walt's running out of allies in a hurry. His only friend at the moment is Todd, a guy who shot a kid on the spur of the moment.

When I started watching Breaking Bad I assumed the story arc would be the life and death of Walter White. Season one started with Walt's 50th birthday, and in Season 5 Walt turned 51. Now, two assumptions here -- assuming that the pace of the show continues (that it doesn't jump years in the future) and assuming that the flash forward at the beginning of season 5 was on the level (with his 52nd birthday), then that makes me thing that the show will not end with Walt dying. It's possible that the season 5 opener wasn't really Walt's 52nd birthday, but it would be odd that he did the "bacon tradition" if it wasn't really his birthday. I guess assuming that we actually get to see what happened that day, we will have to move forward a year in the next, what, 9 episodes?

How bad is it that I'm wondering who is going to kill Walt at this point? It shouldn't be Jesse. I think he's too good for that. It's possible that Skyler might fully "break bad". Hank HAS to solve the case, but the question is, what will happen when the two of them finally face off?

Hell, maybe "Flynn" will just run him over and get it over with.
"Jack Flack always escapes." -Davey Osborne

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Post by pinback » Tue Aug 28, 2012 11:33 pm

Flack, would you say that with Season 5, the series has "taken a noticeable step down in quality"?
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Post by Flack » Wed Aug 29, 2012 2:38 pm

Hm, good question. I hadn't really noticed that. What I do see is that they are making a conscious effort on making Walt unlikable. Mike was a well-liked character, so to have Walt not just screw him out of escaping but to shoot him, that's (I think) not just a display of Walt's character (or a lack thereof), but also another way to turn the audience away from Walt. Same goes for the way he treated Skyler last episode. Basically he made her close the car wash (something she's trying to run!) so he could store his chemicals there. Hell, for that matter, the LEAST liked character right now (other than Walt) is Todd the kid shooter, who they just teamed Walt up with! So yeah, they are doing this on purpose.

I know not everything in the world relates to Star Wars, but I think it's worth saying that it's not Walt we hate, it's Heisenberg. Remember, we hated Darth Vader for three movies until the end of RotJ, when Luke took his helmet off and he got to see Luke "with his own eyes" (right before he started playing the harmonica). So there's always that possibility that they are building toward something in which we hate Heisenberg, but Walt -- the original Walt -- is redeemed.

This season is 16 episodes long so I suspect there will be some filler as they writers slowly move toward the grand finale.
"Jack Flack always escapes." -Davey Osborne

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