BREAKING BAD Recap: “Granite State”

by     Posted 1 year, 8 days ago

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There are two warring factions within Breaking Bad, the same way that there are two warring factions within Walt.  The show has been criticized at times for relying too heavily on plot points and coincidence (I mentioned a few weeks ago about the seemingly unlimited Deus Ex Machinas for Walt), which is at odds with the show’s incredible ability to create characters so real and so visceral that their lives and emotions affect us personally.  While the plots and schemes twist in a way each season beyond our ability to guess, there’s always something a little like a let down once the puzzle is solved.  And yet, what is left in its place, emotionally, is outstanding.  Hit the jump for more, and where “Granite State” feel on that spectrum.

breaking-bad-season-5-part-2-posterI think of Breaking Bad‘s plot-driven mile posts like Heisenberg.  It’s interesting, yet cold — a means to an end.  “Granite State” showed us how Walter White, New Mexico resident, became Mr. Lambert of New Hampshire (whose state motto, fittingly, is “live free or die”).  This mystery was a huge one that’s still not fully solved, but has driven much of the puzzle of the fifth season.  Wasn’t it always in the back of you mind when Walt almost got away with something, or looked like he could be killed?  There was a memory of him in a diner on his birthday, with a new identity and a trunk full of guns.  How did he end up there?

Turns out, how Walt got to that place isn’t particularly interesting.  He used Saul’s guy to spirit him away to a remote cabin and be responsible for his protection.  But what it meant, and where it led, was what we’re really supposed to be left with.  Not Heisenberg’s twisted trail, but Walt’s twisted soul.  After a month of solitude, Walt has had plenty of time to think and regret.  But his one life preserver — so he believes at this point, anyway — is the justification he has clung to all of this time.  As he told his son, what he does has been for family.  It has been to protect them and provide for them, no matter the cost.  His greatest fear — which Walt Jr. makes a reality — is that everything he has done will have been for nothing.

As Walt gives up on his life and phones the DEA, that other thing that keeps him going is reignited.  Walt’s pride overshadows everything.  It is what began all of this — his falling out with Gretchen and Elliot, who he believes stole his research and made millions while he was then left as a high school teacher, has eaten him away.  He turned away their help with his treatment because he made his own way — and we see where that got him.  But at this rock bottom moment, to see those two on Charlie Rose saying how he contributed nothing and meant nothing to Gray Matter, this is unforgivable.  If Walt can’t be justified, he will get revenge.  And in a way, isn’t that what this has all been about?

The character study and quietness of Walt’s move to New Hampshire as life continues to be horrible in New Mexico was great in so many ways, but there were two other important parts to “Granite State.”  The Jesse torture continues, which is one major criticism I had of last week’s episode in hindsight.  Jesse has paid for things one hundred fold that he never should have been held accountable for — he’s become the universe’s whipping boy.  Is all of this just to elevate his eventual escape and revenge?  How can those scales ever balance at this point, though?

Then of course there’s Todd, one of the creepiest characters I can remember ever being on TV.  He tortures Jesse, but brings him ice cream.  He keeps him alive despite knowing he sold him out, yet kills Andrea in front of him to teach him a lesson about trying to escape.  “Don’t take it personally,” he tells her, as if it will matter in another second.  His connection with Lydia remains, which means he sees fit to threaten Skyler and Holly while making sure Skyler denies having ever seen Lydia.  He respects Walt, but is fine with taking all of his money.

breaking-bad-granite-state-aaron-paulOf course, there’s a rabid desire to know all what all of this means and to have our answers, and in one week we will (or as many as we’ll ever get).  But let’s not focus too exclusively on just how Character A gets to Point B.  The real triumph of Breaking Bad is that after everything, we must all admit that we still see hope and redemption: not for Heisenberg, but for Walter White.  Despite everything, we still are clinging to this hope like Walt that please, God, don’t let this all have been for nothing.

Episode Rating: A

Musings and Miscellanea:

– So Saul seems gone for good, hopefully managing that Cinnabon in Omaha.

– “It’s over.” – Saul

– Walt can’t help scheming, even as he is planning to shed his current life.  He’s going to get his money somehow, because in what world can the Nazis win??

– The show did a great job of showing Walt’s desperation after a month without any contact whatsoever even in such a short amount of “show” time.  Also it explained another mystery of this season in an offhanded way — Walt’s house has become a tourist attraction, which is probably why it was burned (incidentally).  See, not very satisfying in a way, is it?

– Walt is gray.  His the White and Heisenberg mixed together.

– $10k for one hour of talk time makes Saul’s guy the most expensive prostitute ever, I’m betting.

breaking-bad-granite-state-anna-gunn– Tragedy upon tragedy when Walt Jr tells his dad to hurry up and die.  In the last few years in particular, Hank was more of a dad to “Flynn” than Walt was, another source of Walt’s jealousy earlier in the series.  And yet, Walt always spent more time with Jesse.

– Jesse.  Andrea.  Brock.  Fuck.  Everything.

– “Jesse doesn’t have a Heisenberg to hide behind” – my friend Martha.  Truth!  Which is all the more tragic.  Although, Heisenberg let Walt down when he put on the hat but then didn’t have the courage to go down the road.

– Could Todd and Lydia have been more obvious?  She should have just sat at his damn table.  Him picking the lint off of her jacket was Creep Factor: 5/5

– “That Opie, dead-eyed piece of shit Todd killed Drew Sharpe.” – Jesse

–  Poor Marie.

– By the way, the writers of “Ozymandias” confirmed that Walt’s phone call was 100% a ploy.  I was convinced it was somewhat of a ploy, and somewhat Walt enjoying just yelling at Skyler and getting his real feelings out while he could.  But I am ok with being wrong!

– “Chemistry is the study of transformation” – Walter White.




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  • The Driver

    I’m surprised Graymatter came back into the fold. Looks like Walt will be making two stops on his Rambl run.

    • krstphr

      I doubt we see Gretchen and Elliot again. They just provided the gasoline to the final fire.

  • Nick

    I think you’re making an incorrect assumption, saying it has only been a month in captivity. The vacuum guy says “I studied on the Internet” in reference to him being BETTER at putting in his IV. Meaning he’s done this before. Plus that’s a lot of hair in a month. I think it’s two months.

    I felt the greymatter thing was convenient as far as timing. I wish it was something within the news papers he found or something. Just the odds of the whole thing isn’t that believable. Minor gripe. I’m wondering why Saul had to go. As far as I can tell, his involvement isn’t really documented by anyone. Hefty precaution… I’m more interested in seeing a Saul SEQUEL now more than ever.

    • Nerdgasm

      Even though its not a sequel but a prequel? I still am not sold on that.

      • Nick

        Hence me saying that now I’m more interested In seeing a sequel (caps). I get that it’ll be a prequel, but I wish it were otherwise. Maybe itll be a sequel but they didn’t want to give Sauls fate away.

    • Batt Damon

      According to Talking Bad, he’s been there for about 3-4 months

      • LEM

        I can’t hear anything over Chris Hardwick saying how awesome everything is. yuck.

      • Andrew from Troy

        Please get anyone else to host… anything. Seriously, it seems Hardwick hosts everything (Talking Dead/Bad, Comic-Con panels, etc.).

      • http://www.pcass.co.uk Andrew Shaw

        He’s the geek Ryan Seacrest.

      • Prasanna Rajan

        lol! Well said…

      • Prasanna Rajan

        lol! Well said…

      • Liderc

        No kidding, he is a terrible host.

      • Batt Damon

        You all suck

    • LEM

      You don’t think a billion dollar company with ties to a major drug kingpin who may have murdered DEA agents and is on the run would have to do damage control?

      • Nick

        No, I get that. I just think the timing of him calling the dea, even walking to that bar to see a tv and it being aired is convenient. If the grey matter thing had been shown in a newspaper, It would com across more organically IMO

      • jocab_w

        I get what you’re saying, but you have to have a suspension of disbelief when it comes to stuff like that in a series. I personally prefer seeing the Schwartz’s talk about it in a TV interview since BrBa is told in a visual medium.

        Now, you could say that Robert Forester’s character could have brought Walt a DVD recording of the Charlie Rose interview, which is fair, I guess. Ultimately, what’s important is that Walt knows what Elliot and Gretchen said about him and that he’s pissed off enough to go back to ABQ.

      • Nick

        I agree, the timing had to be AFTER he made the call to the dea. Meaning with a trace and some calls the window was brief before he was caught. But the writing is too good to suspend disbelief, it feels like its legitimately happening. Anyhow he hasn’t seen a tv in months and yet he sees this JUST IN TIME. Anyway it’s totally forgivable. But Walt bought himself a huge head start. The dea won’t suspect him to be running back to New Mexico. I wouldn’t think. Until the neighbor sees him.

    • JJ

      I would guess a couple of months. Average human grows hair at the rate of 1/2 inch to 1 inch per month. Not counting that the vacuum guy comes once a month and Walt has played cards with him in the past AND the guy has already used the IV on Walt at least once. So I would say 2 -3 months.

    • FoonZeeS

      He was in the cabin for a minimum of two to three months (from what we saw). The show doesn’t do a great job of showing the flow of time.

      Between when Walter leaves and the flash forwards is a minimum of four months. Walt quits the business three-five months after his 51st birthday and not much time passes after he quits and when all hell breaks loose around him. So there’s like four to six months between him leaving town and coming back.

      And something Allison also said, “In the last few years in particular, Hank was more of a dad to “Flynn” than Walt was” is wrong. There is no “last few years”, the show takes place within a two year time period. Most people don’t realize that Walt goes from high school teacher to meth cooker maestro in the span of a few months.

      • James

        Absolutely, I say it again and again this reviewer doesn’t watch the shows.

    • brNdon

      You don’t think Jesse gave Saul up on Hank’s tape? I know the Feds never saw it, but he still had to believe that he had been given up.

      • FoonZeeS

        Jesse most certainly gave up Saul. From the bits and pieces we saw of the confession and other talks between him and Hank it’s obvious he spilled the beans on everything and everyone.

    • James

      Exactly right about the time frame. This reviewer has no grasp on a lot of details like that based on reading many of her reviews.

    • Bikoque

      I believe its going to be Saul’s Early years (prequel), not after the fall out.

  • tertiaryintervention

    Wow, so a show’s reviewer can’t understand the show. Bummer.

    • Nick

      These reviews are typically very good. I’d say the phone thing is a forgivable misunderstanding considering a TON of people didn’t get that either.. Idk how considering its so incorrect in the events he states, and to his character. Give the gal a break, unless three something else I’m missing? I’m thinking the ‘one month’ card is prematurely assumed but I’m o ly assuming by saying two months..

    • Leo Spaceman

      Try reading her Son’s of Anarchy reviews, she almost kind of understands this show at least.

    • NathanArizona

      try Sepinwall’s reviews at Hitfix. He is the best television reviewer I’ve come across. Great insight and analysis every time

      • tertiaryintervention

        Thanks Nathan! I will.

    • James

      She doesn’t understand any show she reviews, they are all completely full of mistakes.

  • Reijanrobo

    Never thought I would say this but I miss Matt Goldberg writing these Breaking Bad reviews. At least he saw the show underneath the surface. Luckily we only have to read one more from Allison.

    • Daniel O’Reilly

      She generally does a great job. I would not wish another Goldberg article on anybody.

  • Jay

    The principal is hot. I love the look in Walt’s eyes at the end. Charlie Rose sure knows how to ask questions that get Walter angry.

    • LEM

      Yeah that principal was so hot.

      • OhDawg

        “Ass like an onion. Makes me wanna cry.”

  • alexander

    i could be wrong but i’m guessing the saul goodman/omaha thing was probably a reference to bob odenkirk co-starring in alexander payne’s new movie nebraska

    • junierizzle

      Good one.

  • junierizzle

    I don’t think Walt will have any kind of redemption. Although they really demonized the Nazis in this episode. It had me rooting for someone to take them out. But Walt coming back to kill them doesn’t really amount to much in my book. He can have his revenge but he still lost. No family. I may not be rooting for Walt but that doesn’t mean I won’t have sympathy for him and Jesse for that matter, when their time comes.

    • The Driver

      I’m with this too, to be honest I think if Walt simply turns the Nazis into swiss cheese and dies from his wounds/cancer/ricin/whatever, it would be disappointing. This show always surprises and almost all of the it’s teases are dealt with passively and quickly moved on from.

      I’m betting Walt doesn’t even use the gun or at least doesn’t go on the M60 rampage/ ricin cigarette smoking spree everyone seems to be certain he’s destined for.

      • Roy Batty

        Maybe Walt tries to use the gun, but somehow Jesse gets it and he (or they)issues payback. Also, I think the ricin is for Lydia. They mentioned her sweetener too obviously, unless it’s just product placement like the Chrysler.

    • Burning_Horizon

      “Although they really demonized the Nazis in this episode.”

      This. While I am digging this last season and enjoying the ride. I can’t help but feel that the neo-nazis are kind of a cop-out on Vince Gilligan’s part. I mean, they were just a minor plot device in season 4, and I kind of feel like they were brought back in the final season just so that there could be an entity more evil than Walter. And, a group of guys that could act as cannon fodder for when Walt goes down in a Scarface-esque blaze of glory (if this actually happens). I would’ve like to have seen Walter truly descend into darkness through killing Hank by his own hand, and possibly Jesse. In the end, I guess that would’ve been too dark hence the neo-nazis.

      • Nick

        I don’t think the addition of neo nazis can be considered a cop out. They’re nazis after all. But I get what you’re saying. I think it would be a cop out any other way though. No one has been a part of Heisenberg without having an effect. You don’t get to associate with a group of hardcore nazis who can take out 10(?) prisoners in 2 minutes without that friendship having its conditions. These guys are viscous and they were since the introduction of Todd. I can only imagine what would have happened to these guys if they killed Todd after the train heist. Mike seemed unaffected by Todd’s threat of these guys, he was mistaken I think. I can’t call it a cop out when these guys are a fully integrated part of this world now. The fact that they’re nazis, well I guess but you’re taking two huge leaps. #1 assuming gilligan WANTS us to feel that Walt is the lesser evil. #2 that people see Walt as evil. He is polarizing, in that there are many people who are on Walts side despite the nazis and were on his side vs hank (hank is hardly a nazi)

      • mr_teaspoon

        I don’t think Mike was mistaken for not being overly impressed with Jack and his crew, it’s simply that Mike was a professional and Jack is clearly undisciplined and amateur in comparison.

      • mr_teaspoon

        Whatever you think of the story choices, I feel pretty confident in saying no decisions were made out of it potentially being ‘too dark’.

      • Nerdgasm

        Agreed TSpoon. i don’t think anything was done to water it down. And Gilligan needed the Nazis to make sure he didn’t lose everyone on Walt. Sure there maybe some people who are not on Walt’s side… to me that would make them dislike the show… But I would bet money that Many are still rooting for Walt no matter the character he has become. Nazis are SO integral as a writing technique to keep faith and face on Walt and help not have Hank become the VILLAIN against the lead character but also not have him die in vain. Nothing would work if everyone hated Walt.. People who say “I kinda want him to make it out alive” just don’t wanna admit that they love Walt. This show and the emotions and the “polarizing” aspects wouldn’t work if Walt was overtly hated and Hank was overtly swooned over at the time of his death. nazis were there to have the audience fall back on. They were a needed addition and worked well.

  • Daniel O’Reilly

    Did no one else think it was awesome that Robert Forster was Saul’s ID guy? If you said, “who?” go stream Jackie Brown on Netflix.

    • LEM

      So great to see him in this show.

    • axalon

      Perfect casting, I saw him and thought “of course he’d be the guy”

    • Roy Batty

      Yup. His character might even BE Max Cherry. You never know.

    • brNdon

      Did no one else think it was lame that Daniel O’Reilly only knows Robert Forster from Jackie Brown? go stream the dozens of other great movies he was doing for 30 years before Jackie Brown.

      • Daniel O’Reilly

        Actually most Tarantino fans will dig into an actor’s back catalog after seeing him (or her, in the case of Pam Grier) in one of QT’s films. I searched for the several pre-Jackie Brown Forster films I was most familiar with (Reflections in a Golden Eye, Medium Cool, The Stalking Moon, Walking the Edge, The Delta Force, Alligator) and while all of them were available to rent from Netflix and some could be rented from Amazon or iTunes, none could be streamed instantly like Jackie Brown could. Jackie Brown is his most well known movie and probably the best entry point into his career. Plus, most important of all, Vince Gilligan hired Forster based on his performance as Max Cherry (see the link below). So Forster’s role as “The Disappearer” has everything to do with Jackie Brown and that film makes a perfect companion piece to Granite State.

        http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/breaking-bads-disappearer-his-secret-634818

  • MorganFleurDeLys

    The timing in the show is not a month between the visits. It’s probably
    at least 3 months. You don’t grow that much hair in a month, and the
    guy was apologizing about the previous needle mishap. Minimum 2 months,
    I’m guessing nothing shy of 3 months.

  • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

    I’m starting to hear this and it seems like a totally new gripe with Breaking Bad. It’s as though people feel obligated to invent something to be critical about. What I’m speaking towards is quotes like this “The show has been criticized at times for relying too heavily on plot points and coincidence”. This has not been a normal thing I’ve heard regarding this show and all of a sudden in one night I’ve read 2 articles which bring this up but don’t back it at all. Plot contrivances are almost an inherent characteristic of television drama. You have to move the plot somehow so things don’t move at a glacial pace. But in the case of Breaking Bad, I feel that it has been one of the best shows ever at consistency and logic as to why characters do what they do and in how things eventually shake out. Someone enlighten me here if I’m way off.

    • mattritchey

      In the first two or three seasons, there were enough Deus ex machinas and “fortunate events” that transpired (to keep Walt alive, to hide things from Skylar, close calls with the DEA) that it was starting to become a little too much. But by season four – and God knows season five – everything’s been emotionally- and character-driven.

      • LEM

        They mentioned this too when Jesse was telling Hank he’s smarter and luckier than you.

      • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

        The emotion and character aspect of course has always been stellar, but the plot points for me work great as well.

    • junierizzle

      I think people are just trying to play the part of contrarian. I’m surprised its taken this long. It has finally received the love it deserved so of course it wouldn’t last.

      • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

        It’s fine to be contrarian if one can backup there position. But it’s like they state their gripe like it’s a fact that everyone knows and give no examples. Vice is the worst, they just wrote an article about how Miley Cyrus is the most “punk rock” thing out right now. But I totally digress. I imagine in the next weeks people will find a way to be cute and try to bring Breaking Bad down a notch but I learned my lesson in the 90′s when I hated Michael Jordan that it’s not worth it to hate greatness, or downplay it, and 10 years later regret that you didn’t admire and relish it like as it unfolded before my eyes.

      • junierizzle

        Ha. That’s how I feel about Kobe Bryant.

    • junierizzle

      Also, Walt and Jesse are the stars of the show, they kind of have to last and get away with things. This isn’t Game of Thrones where they have a cast of thousands so they can kill of a main character if they want.

  • OhDawg

    “…unlimited Deus Ex Machinas for Walt?” – Whuh?

    • LEM

      He never asked for this.

    • JCdenton

      Either you aren’t familiar with the term Deus Ex Machina or you don’t think Walt has had unlimited numbers of them. But the usage of the term here makes perfect sense.

      • OhDawg

        I am familiar with the term. I think Walt does NOT have unlimited numbers of them.

      • Kevin

        There are many times where Walt has barely gotten away with something, survived something.

      • OhDawg

        Barely getting away with something is not DEM. It CAN be, but not necessarily. It’s all in the how.

      • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

        DEM suggests that something completely out of the blue has saved Walter’s life. Generally something surprising occurs that allows him to survive but in almost all those cases there is an internal logic to it. Walter using his science acumen, a character doing something that seems consistent with what they would do. etc

  • LEM

    They took his research and made billions…with a B.
    Todd is the reason Walt has any money left.

  • LEM

    I want to know more about the principal at that school…damn she was hot.

  • Nick

    So are we watching this all in equal time span? I mean Jesse seems to not have very long. A few months of being Todd’s cooking slave? Plus his face is still swollen and beaten up. By the time we see Walt and he hears on tv reports of the Heisenberg blue… This has to be after Andrea gets that awful execution. How long does it take Todd to close the deal with Lydia!?

  • Andrew from Troy

    Showing how weak and tired Walt was at the cabin just before leaving, it almost seems comical that he will go on some shooting rampage and kill all the Nazis. Unless his lack of final revenge is how it all ends?

  • Andrew from Troy

    I’m just thinking about the poster for this season, with “Remember My Name” blaring across it. I’m thinking Walt will not only try to get revenge for everything by killing the Nazis, but he’s going to try and do it in spectacular fashion. I think Gretchen and Elliot saying he meant nothing really got to him and made him consider that his entire life was worthless. Walt cannot accept that, so if his actions already haven’t made an impact, he will have to go out in a huge blaze of glory.

    • Nick

      He’s going out in style for sure. I just can’t see how it happens in just one more episode! Anyway, anyone else REALLY excited for whatever music they play both during the shoot out, and the credits? This show is so perfectly scored, this episode could have been the end given the flash forwards, and the intent, and that song at the end I’d be okay lol

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  • SoWaise

    Strange choice, M60. Don’t you need another guy to operate an assault rifle like an M60?

    • Kevin

      Either that or have it mounted.

    • The Driver

      Nah. A M60 is a machine gun and primarily a support weapon. One can use it on their own, but your right, it unwieldly and normally has a crew of two to three men.

      Actually the more I think about it the more silly I think it is (despite how admittedly awesome it is). Walt has NEVER been good at combat on the show, he’s always outsmarted or straight up had others do the killing of others for him. Just look at the multiple fist fights with Jesse or the sloppy killing of Mike. Walt excels at keeping a cool head in the face of danger and planning ahead.

      The idea of someone as presently weak as him wielding a gun that would be difficult to use for ANYONE untrained in it and somehow managing to win against the Nazis is ridiculous. I mean these are guys that within the shows logic, Hank and Gomie weren’t capable of killing, even a single member, and yet they where actually trained with the firearms they used and had been in real gunfights. If Walt simply takes Uncle Jack head on with no planning or back up it will be a huge dumb moment for the show, but I trust Gilligan is just yanking the chain and something far smarter is in store.

  • Kevin

    I think the only redemption at all for Walter lies in a confession video. He can incriminate the Nazis, while also telling the truth about what happened to Hank (although I doubt his family will believe him). I don’t expect him to successfully gun down Jack and his men with an M60; there’s a lot that could go wrong with this plan. All I hope is that Jesse receives some form of redemption, even if that means killing Walt and then himself.

    • Fitzchiv

      jesse is definitely going to come out on top, i dont think there is any doubt of that, but lets be honest, walts been ripped to shreds too, he’s lost everything, he’s lost his family, he’s lost his money, he’s lost his battle with cancer, whereas walt was obviously the catalyst for his own demise jesse was more or less dragged along, thats why i think jesse comes out of this in reasonable shape, walt on the other hand is doomed, cant see any way he stays alive, i think him freeing/saving jesse is his redemption though, still interested in seeing what happens with marie, think she has an important role to play somehow.

      • Kevin

        Yeah, i was honestly a little disappointed when the call to Flynn was Walt and not actually Marie lol. I’m not as confident about Jesse’s fate; I don’t know if Walt would forgive him (if he’s even still alive).

      • FoonZeeS

        I have a feeling both Walt and Jesse are gonna die. I firmly believe there is not going to be a happy ending on any level to this story.

      • bidi

        even if Jesse lives, how can he have a happy ending? i mean how horribly did Jane’s death affect him? or Drew Sharpe’s? and now Andrea. i think Jesse gets out of here alive, but it won’t be a happy ending

      • Fitzchiv

        I agree totally that jesse has been through all sorts of torture, both mental and physical, but i think his raison d’etre in the end will be broc, andreas son. broc will be his chance to put things right

      • Kevin

        I wouldn’t be surprised, but I hope Jesse lives.

      • mr_teaspoon

        The only thing that makes me believe Jesse will get out alive is that Gilligan has gone on record as saying he believes in karma.

        As much as Walter has turned bad, Jesse has turned good.

    • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

      I’m sure Walt’s plan involves more then just going in blazing with an M60.

      • Kevin

        I agree, we just haven’t been shown too much yet. Can’t wait.

  • Fitzchiv

    why do you keep insisting walts house gets burnt? his house isnt burnt, go back and look at the episode again, his house is boarded up and derelict when he goes back to get the ricin but its definitely not burnt in any way! and he’s been holed up for way more than a month, its pretty obvious!

  • Fitzchiv

    why do you keep insisting walts house gets burnt? his house isnt burnt, go back and look at the episode again, his house is boarded up and derelict when he goes back to get the ricin but its definitely not burnt in any way! and he’s been holed up for way more than a month, its pretty obvious!

    • Nick

      Yeah this too. I think we were all chasing the answer to “who done it” with the house. This episode makes is pretty clear. Vandal kids. Heisenberg is a celebrity and doesn’t need to be outed by anyone,he already is.

    • FoonZeeS

      I’ve watches the future house portion a bunch of times and I don’t see any fire damage at. I too don’t understand why she keeps bringing it up.

      • James

        She doesn’t understand or grasp anything that is going on in any shows she reviews based on everything I have read from her.

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  • Reddevil09

    is it just me or the Full Breaking Bad title theme in the end just added to the fact that he is now completely Heisenberg and has nothing to lose? If I’m not mistaken, they have never really played the entire theme like that before.

    • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

      they’ve never played it at all I don’t think. Other than the title sequence.

  • matt

    throughout your reviews this season, you keep discussing the white person being burnt down. there is no evidence to suggest this at all. even in the flash forward scenes, the house has been ransacked, boarded up, destroyed, etc., but there is positively no burn damage.

    also, it’s quite clearly been a few months that walt has been in the cabin. for one, hair does not grow that quickly and secondly, the vacuum mentioned about the previous time he gave walt chemo. clearly, more than a month has passed.

    collider is great for news, but once again proves that the reviews and editorials are awful.

    • Liderc

      Yeah, house hasn’t been burned down and would put a guess at 3 months of hair growth.

      • James

        Yeah based on the hair growth, and the fact that you can assume he didn’t get an injection when first dropped off (probably already had one before coming), but the second time you see him the guy says he was sorry for the last time, and he has been watching youtube videos on it, and he is clearly more knowledgeable in it. So at least 3 months I think.

  • Guest

    The finale is titled “Felina.” Seems like the lyrics to Marty Robbins’ “El Paso” could be worth reading.

    Out in the West Texas town of El Paso

    I fell in love with a Mexican girl.

    Night-time would find me in Rosa’s cantina;

    Music would play and Felina would whirl.

    Blacker than night were the eyes of Felina,

    Wicked and evil while casting a spell.

    My love was deep for this Mexican maiden;

    I was in love but in vain, I could tell.

    One night a wild young cowboy came in,

    Wild as the West Texas wind.

    Dashing and daring,

    A drink he was sharing

    With wicked Felina,

    The girl that I loved.

    So in anger I

    Challenged his right for the love of this maiden.

    Down went his hand for the gun that he wore.

    My challenge was answered in less than a heart-beat;

    The handsome young stranger lay dead on the floor.

    Just for a moment I stood there in silence,

    Shocked by the FOUL EVIL deed I had done.

    Many thoughts raced through my mind as I stood there;

    I had but one chance and that was to run.

    Out through the back door of Rosa’s I ran,

    Out where the horses were tied.

    I caught a good one.

    It looked like it could run.

    Up on its back

    And away I did ride,

    Just as fast as I

    Could from the West Texas town of El Paso

    Out to the bad-lands of New Mexico.

    Back in El Paso my life would be worthless.

    Everything’s gone in life; nothing is left.

    It’s been so long since I’ve seen the young maiden

    My love is stronger than my fear of death.

    I saddled up and away I did go,

    Riding alone in the dark.

    Maybe tomorrow

    A bullet may find me.

    Tonight nothing’s worse than this

    Pain in my heart.

    And at last here I

    Am on the hill overlooking El Paso;

    I can see Rosa’s cantina below.

    My love is strong and it pushes me onward.

    Down off the hill to Felina I go.

    Off to my right I see five mounted cowboys;

    Off to my left ride a dozen or more.

    Shouting and shooting I can’t let them catch me.

    I have to make it to Rosa’s back door.

    Something is dreadfully wrong for I feel

    A deep burning pain in my side.

    Though I am trying

    To stay in the saddle,

    I’m getting weary,

    Unable to ride.

    But my love for

    Felina is strong and I rise where I’ve fallen,

    Though I am weary I can’t stop to rest.

    I see the white puff of smoke from the rifle.

    I feel the bullet go deep in my chest.

    From out of nowhere Felina has found me,

    Kissing my cheek as she kneels by my side.

    Cradled by two loving arms that I’ll die for,

    One little kiss and Felina, good-bye.

    • Fitzchiv

      awesome! good spot! although the ‘felina’ in the marty robbins song is spelled ‘feelena’, we still might have our scarface moment! i wonder will walts chemistry play a role in the conclusion, will he come up with some chemical concoction to deal with frank and todd, i’d be surprised if he doesnt, one last hurrah! jesse will definitely survive, he wouldnt be dragged over the coals in the manner he has just to be killed, walt and jesse’s fates are intertwined, have been since the start of the show, cant see that changing now!

    • Liderc

      Vince Gilligan said Felina is an anagram for Finale. Not sure if it’s as cut and dry as he made it sound.

  • HeathD

    Jesse had it pretty good with Walt compared to what he’s going through now. He’s getting what he deserves for ratting on the guy who bailed him out of every stupid situation he got himself into.

    • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

      I’d say watching his former girlfriend die and leave behind her surviving son isn’t “having it pretty good”. Walt and Jesse are both suffering immensely right now, but Jesse undeservedly at this point. Their plights are both terrible but in a lot of ways different.

      • heathd86

        Jesse is getting what he deserves. I didn’t say he has it good now, I said he had it pretty good when he was working with Walt. So what Walt poisoned Brock. Atleast he didn’t make him his meth slave. Walt always stuck his neck out for Jesse, to the point to where I would talk to the TV and say “You dumbass”. And Jesse repays him by going to the cops.

      • mr_teaspoon

        Honest to god, I don’t understand what people who think like this get out of the show. Like, I could have sworn that the entire appeal of this show is watching the slow, horrifying devolution of Walter White and the effect it has on the people around him. That’s the story.

        These people who say shit like ‘so what Walt poisoned Brock’….I don’t understand what you get your enjoyment from.

      • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

        it is very strange

      • heathd

        If you’re going to get in the meth game you can’t expect everything to be perfect. Walt knew what he was getting into when he started cooking meth to provide for his family when he was gone. The show is about different things for different people. For me it’s about how far a person will go to provide for his family. Jesse is just too soft to get into the drug dealing empire. People die when drugs are involved, that’s the reality of it. Jesse should have known what he was getting into when he started cooking. My main point is that Walt would do anything for Jesse. He treated him like a son, now Jesse is a meth cooking slave and for the Neo-Nazi group. I think it’s showing that worse things can happen when you are involved in drug dealing than someone poisoning a kid you like with a plant.

      • mr_teaspoon

        Walt knew what he was getting into when he started cooking meth to provide for his family when he was gone.

        ……no, he didn’t, that’s sort of the whole point.

        My main point is that Walt would do anything for Jesse.

        Again, dead wrong. It’s fine that the show is different things for different people. In fact, I love that the show is so deep as to invite multiple interpretations and points of view. But when Walt first hesitantly puts out a hit on Jesse, and then deliberately and with pure hatred in his heart, reveals his location to Uncle Jack and plays the Jane card, you are objectively wrong in saying that he’d ‘do anything for Jesse’.

        And it’s not like Ozymandias changed everything in that sense. One of the most beautiful aspects of the show, in my opinion, is the constant seesawing between Walt treating Jesse like a son and treating him like a total piece of shit.

      • http://mikevo.wordpress.com/ Mike Van Orden

        I misinterpreted your having it good comment. My apologies. However, Jesse went to Hank, not the cops. I believe that there is a fair distinction there. Yes, Hank is a cop, but that team up to bring down Walt was a tad more complicated then Jesse just ratting someone out. I’d say Jesse being in league with Walt, seeing kids get poisoned and killed, killing Gale, etc is not having it pretty good either. Jesse to me is so devastated and broken that going to Hank didn’t seem so bad especially since he probably didn’t care about living after he got his vengeance on Walt. He’s not being rational, for sure, but I can’t say I’d blame him for the actions he’s taken. Jesse certainly does not deserve the situation he is in right now.

  • justin

    so, its obvious that gilligan has a ton of symbolism, but even though this is obvious, i still want to see it typed for some reason, compared to previous episodes this season, this one is obviously the “calm before the storm.” exciting stuff

  • HP

    I’m not sure it was what elliot and gretchen said about walt that got to him. I think he is angry at the fact that someone is still producing blue meth, his signature drug.

    • Fitzchiv

      well i think it was the double whammy of realising jesse is still alive, being the only other person who could cook to that level, and the belittling comments of elliot and gretchen

  • It’s James Cain!

    I get that many people on here, myself included, are jealous of Ms Keene for being a writer on here, and getting to cover Breaking Bad.

    Being jealous doesn’t mean you have to be such rude, mean-spirited cunts about it.

    • James

      We get it you don’t have females in your life

  • Drake

    I’ve seen interviews in which the writer and director of “Ozymandias” said that Walt did want to yell at Skyler and did mean most of what he said, but that he also thought it would stop her from being investigated by the police and DEA. The writer also said that, unlike what some people thought, Walt didn’t take Holly thinking all along that he would use her to get away from New Mexico. It was only after Holly called out for Skyler that Walt decided to leave her at the fire house.

  • Sten

    Really bad recap. I’ll stay at denofgeek, because over there I get a real brilliant article on each episode. No mention of Robert Forster, no mention of the rooting for Jesse’s escape scene (and I know you did!), no mention of the nice sidegag with the DVD title, wrong assumption of the time Walt has spent in that hut and so on. Really poor work on this website.

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