Breaking Bad Open Thread: “Say My Name”

August 26th, 2012 by | Tags: , , , ,

Sunday Sunday Sunday! We’re going to have a weekly chat about Vince Gilligan’s Breaking Bad. I buy mine off Amazon, so I’m usually a day behind, but every Sunday around showtime I’ll post an open thread. I’ll probably start linking the Breaking Bad podcasts and trailers and whatnot

If you haven’t seen Breaking Bad, you should. You can find Breaking Bad:
-On AMC, Sundays at 10 eastern
Seasons 1-4 on Netflix
on DVD
on Amazon Instant Video (my preferred method)

-Don’t be a dick
-No spoiler warnings, so don’t come in unless you’ve seen the latest episode
-Feel free to hyperlink and youtube it up
-Liveblogging is cool, just be specific so we know why you’re going “WHOA DUDE WHOA WHOA BRO”
-Make sure your speculation is reasonable

This week is “Say My Name,” written & directed by Thomas Schnauz. It looks like he’s worked on The X-Files, too, and this is his directorial debut. One episode left! It’s getting kinda hectic in here!

Sneak peek for this week:

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24 comments to “Breaking Bad Open Thread: “Say My Name””

  1. @david brothers: Yeah. We were talking the other week about how it’s important to not go too far when talking about the show, but I love that it rewards you when you go just far enough. Great attention to detail. (from last week’s thread)

    Absolutely! The show is all about nice touches and hidden easter eggs, but they’re not supposed to be some kind of master clue that gives away what comes next.

    Breaking Bad sings to me on a lot of different levels. I was rudderless in my 20’s like Jesse (and I draw, as does Jesse), and I am a cancer survivor like Walt. But besides connecting with the characters on the level of personal experience, Breaking Bad feels like a comic book to me; a live action comic book.

    The color choices are bold & symbolic. Walt’s varying shirt colors depending on his mental and physical development, Jr.’s reds and his and Hank’s oranges, Marie’s purples, Gus’s disguise of non-threatening yellows (like he’s ‘chicken’), BLUE, etc. I’ve noticed this season that Walt has been sporting blue, like he’s being consumed by it. (!)

    The shots are panel-worthy compositions and instantly iconic, like at the end of ‘Crawl Space,’ or all the POV shots like on the end of Jesse’s shovel. The foreshadowing/repeated visual themes shine through glouriously (and GORE-iously), like Gus’s death resembling the one-eyed bear.

    The life-threatening villains are supervillain-grade. The Salamanca family was like a series of Sabretooth-level enforcers. Gus was a mastermind-level villain— like a Doctor Doom or a R’as Al Ghul— and with a fully-fleshed out complexity of character motivation.

    The world exists in a slightly heightened reality, where grounded decisions result in larger-than-life, amazingly-nuanced repercussions. The show knows its way around a cliffhanger too.

    All the little touches just add to that. Stuff like Walt whistling the ‘Lily of the Valley’ hymn are pure icing on the cake for attentive/obsessive viewers, but they in no way affect the enjoyment of the show for those who just watch it each week (or power-load through the seasons on Netflix). Like a good monthly comic, I relish in the wait. I love thinking about this show.

  2. The whole deal with Mike was silly. I know it’s been foreshadowed that he’s slipping but to this degree is crazy. It’s an amazing show, one of the best ever, but it really took a weak shortcut with that death.

    Really peeved to say much else. Todd is still creepy, Walt is still creepy, I feel horrible every time Skylar and Jesse are on screen. I miss breakfast with Jr. The Todd/Walt relationship is a more twisted version of the Jesse/Walt relationship and comes off interesting in contrast.

    Also, Declan settling for 35% didn’t seem right either. You would think he would’ve killed Walt and worked with Jesse at that point. Jesse teaches them the recipe and he and Mike have a sitcom spinoff series with the two men trying to raise

    Another thing that bugs me is how passive Mike becomes. Why not work something out with Declan? He knows Walt’s going to self-destruct and he was still linked to them. I know Mike was never a player but we do know he has resources.

    Walt’s speech to Jesse was brutal. And now they’re stuck together until they figure out how to stop the witnesses. Unless Jesse doesn’t play along and becomes a liability to flip…

  3. I have to agree with Nawid. Mike, the ultimate professional, slipped so horribly — many times — that the end of his story arc (except for some beautiful beats) doesn’t ring true, and that’s a shame. The way he approached Walt in this episode felt like paper, not a story. He knew Walt’s a crazy bastard, and he had a gun – why not just point it at Walt, take the money, then run? Gah. I wish Gilligan listened to Banks more, because from what I gather, Banks didn’t agree with some of the storytelling decisions in this season, and I can see why.

    Loved the way the ending echoed the endings of ‘Heat’ and ‘The Proposition’.

    Other than that…since some of my early “out there” predictions are proving (at least partially) true, I’d like to throw in one more: Declan’s coming back, and he’ll want the entire territory. He might even hit Walt’s home, if he puts two and two together. And the ricin cigarette, I can’t stop thinking about it. If Walt won’t get the cigarette out himself — and if he will, then why would the creators show us that he hid it so carefully in the first place — then the way I can see this playing out is: something terrible happens at the house (involving Declan and his men, maybe?), and cops (Hank?) start looking around afterwards, eventually finding the ricin cigarette.

    I also said that Todd would end up as the new king, and here’s another bit of my theory: Breaking Bad is, on a certain level, about the degradation of its territory. Gus, a near-complete professional and a criminal mastermind swallowed by his boner for revenge, is killed by Walt, a criminal mastermind devoured by his greed. And Todd…Todd’s just a fucking psychopath, probably badly damaged from an early age.

  4. @Ales Kot: You called it on Walt enlisting Todd. I wasn’t sure if Jesse leaving would end all the meth, and sure enough with Walt’s new deal, it didn’t (not for Walter). I conceded that if Todd was still around after ‘Buyout,’ and Jesse got out of the business, that Todd may be useful to Walt. Todd became Walt’s tool for one cook.

    In Regards to your “out there” theories (which, in your own words you described as ‘wild speculation’), well, you’ve thrown a massive amount of stuff at the wall since the start of the season, so it’s often difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff. Stuff like:

    Junior will smoke a ricin cigarette and die. Walt will then kill Skyler and make it look like suicide, or Skyler will just straight up commit suicide. Mike will wound Walt. Jesse will kill Mike. Walt will kill Jesse. Hank will kill Walt. Lydia is Gus’s widow. Jesse will find out Walt killed Jane and poisoned Brock. Jesse will get Junior hooked on meth in retaliation. Junior will get in a car accident. Junior will meet up with Badger and Skinny Pete at a party. Skyler will try to kill Walt, fail, then kill herself. Walt will kill Lydia and hide it from Jesse. Mike and Jesse will want to dispose of Todd. Todd will become Walt’s assistant cook. Todd will try and become a drug kingpin. Todd will install audio & video recording devices into the tented cook houses as a play. The next episode [tonight’s] is the end of the road for Mike.

    That’s a lot to wade through, and so much of it SO FAR off in the distance of events (re: the final 8 episodes), that it’s like, “How about you hold onto those for a bit?” Props for calling Mike’s demise and Todd’s meth lesson.

    Here are my two cents, as far as predicting the future: Walt’s ENORMOUS emotionally-charged fuck up of killing Mike is the last straw of putting the kibosh on any long-term cook sessions with Jesse, Todd, or anyone else. With Mike gone, Mike’s money gone, and with all of Mike’s guys about to flip— unless Walt can get their names from Lydia and successfully kill them all (which he won’t)— Walt’s gotta get the hell out of Dodge, as the saying goes. His rapid exodus will leave Declan & company $5 million in the deficit, with no meth to distribute. They’ll more than likely want that money if there’s no meth on the way.

  5. Now about tonight’s episode:

    Poor, poor Mike.

    I am upset. I am really, really upset. I don’t think it’s bad writing. I don’t think Mike’s character was in any way depreciated in any way. I don’t think his actions were unbelievable and poorly realized. I think Mike hasn’t been the same since Fring died, and he has known from the moment he got that news that things were going to get harder before they got easier.

    Some events were not things Mike could predict, such as the magnet operation breaking Fring’s picture in evidence, revealing the routing information for the offshore accounts full of hazard pay. Mike was out at that point. He did not want any part of Walt’s operation. Lydia wants Fring’s guys dead. Mike avoids Lydia’s misguided, amateurish hit. Mike goes to kill Lydia. But Fring’s men need money to keep quiet. So Mike enlists Lydia and works with Walt. Mike starts paying money to Fring’s men again. But the noose is closing. Lydia’s about to crack. Mike thinks she’s making a play to render her methalymine worthless. Mike feels this is a given because Lydia is desperate and will probably flip when push comes to shove. The DEA are all over him. Mike knows he must now get out of the business clean to avoid imprisonment. He needs 5 million to secure that hazard pay. he has a plan with Jesse to make a deal with Declan. Walt fucks him out of that plan. Mike has no choice but to go with Walt, because Mike has less than 24 HOURS to get that money before the DEA are all over him for forever. Walt gets Mike that money. Mike gets his guys their hazard pay. The DEA seizes the hazard pay again. Mike has to leave or get pinched. Mike needs his go away bag. Mike yells at Walt that everything was working well (from his perspective) before Walt up and killed Fring. If Walt had ‘known his place,’ none of this would be happening. Walt balked because how dare Mike tell Walt his place was in service of/to cower to Gus Fring until Fring saw it fit that Walt be disposed of?’ Mike WAS EXHAUSTED. Have you looked at the man’s eyes lately? He could barely keep them open.

    Was Mike a professional? Absolutely. He also had a freshly healed ear, a sore wound healing on his torso, a dead, long-time employer and friend weighing heavy on his mind, and Fring’s ENTIRE EMPIRE crashing down squarely on his old man shoulders with the heat around every corner, and that was all thanks to Walter White.

    It’s easy to say “That’s lazy/poor writing. Mike didn’t act perfectly. I was led to believe he was perfect.” It’s not accurate though. Just because WE can see all the angles doesn’t mean CHARACTERS CAN. Mike is as fallible as the next guy, and Hank was right in the end. Mike slipped up. C’est la vie.

    Mike going was so emotional for me. He was a truer father figure to Jesse than Walt ever was. Mike taught Jesse more about being a man than Walt could ever dream to be. I hate Walt right now. I’m so angry with his inability to control his self-esteem issues. And I hate that it’s now cost him Mike and Jesse, and if Jesse hears about Mike? Well, Jesse’s gone for good.

    I could actually see Jesse genuinely seek vengeance on Walt for Mike. I really don’t know what’s in store for Jesse, and I like that. He’s definitely not out of the mix, but I love that he walked away from $5 million and Walt this episode. He wants out for a number of very good, rational reasons. The only reason he was in the same room as Walt in Saul’s office was because of Mike. Jesse will forever be there for Mike.

    I fear that Mike’s death will allow Walt to sink his hooks into him, albeit briefly, before Walt has to disappear (that is of course if Jesse EVER finds out about Mike in the near future. Walt may very well say, “I gave Mike the bag and he left. He said you should still work with me, son. Yay! Friends!”).

  6. WHOOPS. I messed up that last paragraph. It should read as follows:

    I fear that Mike’s death will allow Walt to sink his hooks into him, albeit briefly, before Walt has to disappear (that is of course if Jesse NEVER finds out about Mike in the near future. Walt may very well say, “I gave Mike the bag and he left. He said you should still work with me, son. Yay! Friends!”).

  7. A little while back on Conan O’Brien, Bryan Cranston was talking about something he has learned playing Walter White: that each and every one of us could be pushed into a place where we do things we would otherwise consider unthinkable. Of course it’s just a work of fiction, but it’s fiction that rings true enough that I can see it. If survival is on the line and you are intent on living, you just might do some of the things that Walt has done. (Of course I like to think there are measures I would never take, and I would rather die than hurt a child or even an adult. Easy enough to say when I am sitting in a cushy chair, my belly full of breakfast and a workday ahead of me where, at worst, I’ll be yelled at by my boss.)

    In its way, “Breaking Bad” is a study in why we need society. When we are surrounded by people we can trust not to harm us, we all prosper, or at least we aren’t at each others’ throats. The collapse of the Fring empire has meant that Mike, Walt, and Jesse have all been mostly alone, and a threat to one another; Mike’s death came about not because he wasn’t a professional, but because even a professional is vulnerable when he’s on his own for an extended period. That, and because he was dealing with someone who doesn’t understand the rules of society, even if your “society” consists of two or three men trying not to go to jail.

    I say Walt’s brief contrition over shooting Mike was completely genuine: he didn’t want to kill Mike, he just felt he had to in order to head off a threat. Walt isn’t doing what he’s doing to be cruel; he just values his survival far above all other concerns. Back in the first episode he tried to shoot himself rather than be arrested; how things change.

    In other news, I like Skyler’s new lipstick; it’s a marked improvement. I seem to recall her using a shade that was just too bright pink; the new color suits her much better. Skyler, if by some chance you want to take up with a guy on the side, I think I can pencil comething in. We’ll just explain to Walt that it means you won’t be around to ask nosy questions and possibly incriminate him.

  8. @Karl Savage: You’re right! I suspect some of those will prove right later on, but as I said before, I take this as a game, and I like figuring out the shape of the story with all of you. I look forward to these every week.

    I entertained the thought of Mike not being the same since Fring’s death, and I agree with your points, but Mike slipped up too many times for my taste. I’d swallow some of it really easily – he’s a professional, but also a human being that’s falling apart, literally, because of the stress, his injuries, and old age, and he’s trying to do his best. I get it. But not killing Lydia, Not killing Walt, the half-assed cuffs, not pointing a gun at Walt to make sure he gets away safely…too many (in some cases trivial) mistakes in a short period of time for someone so good at their job, for me. But your exploration of the why’s is great, and it might help change my mind upon re-watching.

  9. I buy every one of Mike’s actions. It’s the classic Mann beat where the lone man breaks his code. And though he’s willing to walk away from his granddaughter, it’s too late. I don’t think Walt went there with the intention of killing Mike at all. He was told flat out truths that he’s unwilling to accept and lashed out like the child he is.

    My only prediction (which I’ll probably regret) is that Jesse will ‘Break Good’ before all is said and done. He’ll go to the DEA to bring down Walt, implicating himself, and taking responsibility for his life. Maybe this is less a prediction, and more my wish for the character though. Take it as you will.

    My hope for Walt at this point, is that he is taken by the Cancer that set him on this path. Alone. With nothing. Maybe not even on screen.

  10. PS – I love how viscerally the show is affecting me this season. I couldn’t sleep after last night’s episode.

    PSS –

    Todd’s kind of a dope. Him making any kind of “moves” is simply not there in my reading of the character so far. At best, his apparent ties to other organizations may come into play if something happens to him, which, let’s face it, is going to happen. Few are long for the world on this show.

  11. @Morgan Jeske: The classic Mann! Yeah. Looking forward to re-watching the entire season now, will see how it changes my perception of Mike’s actions. I think I might be changing my mind on this one, although I still can’t swallow the plastic cuffs thing.

    Jesse – oh, how I hope you’re right.

    Walt and cancer taking him – well, the real Heisenberg died of cancer, so maybe it’s a hint?

    I can’t see Todd making major moves on his own, but I can see him rising through the ranks more or less by mistake, and also because he’s simply good at taking orders and doing exactly as he’s told. It would fit the degradation of the territory scenario, as well as into the larger narrative of the US at the moment.

  12. @Ales Kot: O do like the notion that the territory and the order of its parts were made unstable by the introduction of an unknown element, Walter breaking bad.

    Ever since Jesse shot Gale, this has been my hope for him. He doesn’t make it out, but he makes it out alive y’know? It wouldn’t surprise me if at some point he comes to Skyler’s defense. It seems that there’s an understanding, unspoken, that Walt is dragging them both down.

    For everyone else, here’s a link that Matt Zoller Seitz attached to his review of the episode http://www.movingimagesource.us/articles/zen-pulp-pt-2-20090703

    Mike shares *some* similarities with the characters that inhabit Mann’s films

  13. Found on the AV Club: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0u0PpE8MCmU

    I see Todd as being increasingly dangerous. I doubt he’s as dumb as he looks – my girlfriend pointed out that he’s got the classic psychopath’s thing of being whatever a useful person needs him to be at any one moment. But the true Todd was the one idly examining his Kill Trophy Tarantula last episode.

    I predict if he doesn’t end up dead next week, he’ll be deading someone else soon enough.

  14. @Al Ewing: Oh my god that’s perfect! Even better than the last one.

    Also re: Todd – Great point.

  15. Scarface spoilers are in this comment:

    Ooh, ending predictions. Well, I’m going to go with a Breaking Badified Scarface ending. Walt is going to reveal himself to Hank, I think. He and Marie are the only people he still has to act like a dopey loser to. That’s got to nag at him.

    Anyway, Walt is going to kill Jesse, like Tony killed Manny. Walt will think Jesse is going to flip because of paranoia and kill him. Instead of Gina, Walt’s family will be killed (probably by Declan or his connections, I’ve got to imagine some cartel people still want to kill Heisenberg), and that’s when he makes that last trip we see in the season premiere. He’s got his gun and his pride won’t let him run away from revenge but of course, he’s going to die.

    Or I am just full of shit. :smugbert:

  16. You guys covered a lot of the good stuff, as usual, so just a few comments:

    * The return of ToolCam (my nickname for the POV-camera mounted on the end of an implement, like Walt’s brush or Jesse’s shovel). It always serves as a neat reminder of how, for all the glamorous shots of cash that we see, so much of this is tedious process. Scrub all the tanks. Dig all the holes. Fill all the safety deposit boxes with cash.

    * Foreshadowing of the death scene with the lawyer and the bank manager’s conversation about boats. Owning a boat is a retirement dream, and the bank manager looks to have a husband of retirement age. But, as she points out, the notion of owning a boat in Albuquerque is ludicrous (“”Oh, please. Where would you even take a boat?”). It’s a vision of retirement that you don’t get to buy into if you’re from ABQ.

    Cut to Mike taking the drop-off from Walt. That could have been any number of abandoned locales around New Mexico (why not the dry well, for instance?). But it’s on the water. And we can’t help but think that no, there aren’t a lot of places around here where you could take a boat. Mike’s dream of retirement, like the bank manager’s husband’s dream, is just as elusive.

    * Anyone recognize the tune that was playing as the lawyer filled the boxes? It’s a jazzed-up version of something I associate with Christmas, but I couldn’t name it.

    * Walter’s exhibiting classic addictive personality traits. It’s not the depravity of what he’s doing that bothers him – it’s the thought of doing it alone. He can’t stand being judged for what he’s done. His fix is admiration, and he takes a big juicy hit from Mike’s contact in the cold open (“… you’re Heisenberg”). But when Jesse denies him a fix later, he cajoles, pleads, threatens, taunts, and then nearly throws a tantrum.

    * (Side note: I love how the bank manager looks like an actual bank manager. You never realize how the default TV character is a gorgeous man or woman until you watch a show like this)

    * And finally, to the point upthread about Mike’s competence. There’s a line in the okay David Mamet movie Spartan when one character lectures another: “You ain’t a planner. You’re a shooter.” Mike is an extraordinarily competent enforcer, but he’s never been a strategist. Ever since Fring’s death, he’s had to improvise.

    If he had a better strategic sense, he could have done several things different – most important, mentioned his “legacy costs” to Walter before making the first cut, rather than during. But not only does he not mention it until then, he can’t even put into words why it’s so important. “That’s how it’s done!” It’s a tone of frustrated disbelief – that Walt could get so deep into a criminal empire and yet not understand the fundamentals of how a criminal empire operates. And yet Mike’s in no position to explain it, either. Because he ain’t a planner; he’s a shooter.

    Everything Mike’s done in S5, I can write off as “an XO in over his head.”

  17. @Professor Coldheart: That’s a great observation about Mike. I’ve been having a hard time putting into precise words my argument or my observations regarding Mike’s ‘shift in competency,’ as it were that people are wailing about all over the internet (“The writers are lazy!” “Mike wouldn’t do that!” etc).

    I’ve made the points that the writers aren’t being lazy and convenient, and that the characters are being written as fallible, and Mike was exhausted and running on fumes. My jumping off point is the start of this season, with Mike feeding chickens then getting the news of Gus’s death. Then you look at all of his behavior and none of it necessarily gels with what came before it. There was a shift. Gus was definitely a master strategist. Season 4 was all about his and Walt’s chess game. Mike was Gus’s queen piece.

    When season 5 opens, Mike isn’t aware he is now a ronin. And what does he do when he finds out? He takes his wounded, old body, gets in a car and starts speeding towards the border, toward Walt, to kill him. That’s not something Gus would do.

    On another Mike note, I was thinking about all the scenes with him and his granddaughter, and how sweet they were and how full of old, grandpa life Mike was with her. Hungry Hungry Hippos, balloons, etc. As the episoes progress, you can see it in his face as he watches her on the various playgrounds, that he is getting really, really sad. Things aren’t looking good for Mike post-Fring, and he’s going to miss the time spent with his granddaughter, and not get to see her grow up. I started to think, “Wow. Mike must’ve been really depressed. I’m depressed just thinking about it. That’s so sad.”

    Mike was so sad, you guys.

  18. Thomas Schnauz wrote for Lone Gunmen, then joined X-Files in its final season, writing the only two remotely watchable episodes of that dire year. “Lord of the Flies”, which is basically an issue of New Mutants that happens to have Doggett, Reyes, and Scully standing in for the X-Men. Then there was “Scary Monsters” a blatant riff on the old Twilight Zone Bill Mumy episode that manages to be clever and fun and self-deprecating in a way that the show hadn’t been for years, and even brings back that repulsive fan “tribute” character from “Alone” and makes her tolerable.

    Schnauz then drifted around for a while, like Gilligan ending up on Spotnitz’ abominable Night Stalker remake and later on Reaper, the poster child for spinning wheel wasted potential (seriously, when you hear about what the creators had planned for the eventual reveal, like, WHY DIDN’T THEY JUST DO THAT). He also wrote X-Files Resist or Serve, the PS2 mytharc game that actually filled in some plot holes from season seven.

    But this, man… this. Holy SHITBALLS was this well directed. That shot of Walter stomping back to Mike’s car to execute him was PERFECT. Walt may be regretful on the surface, but the composition of that shot, that body language says Walt’s looking for an excuse, ANY excuse to hurt that smug prick Mike Ehrmentraut for not recognizing Walter White’s brilliance. I loved loved loved it.

    There’s a theory that I’ve been chewing for a while. One of the reasons Walt is so insistent about keeping Jesse around- I used to think it was his control freak tendencies. There have been times where logically Walt should have kicked Jesse to the curb, but saved his ass. And it’s not out of affection or guilt, it’s something else. And this is pretty terrible, but bear in mind, I’ve always felt from the beginning Walter was an awful person:

    Jesse is the son Walt really wanted.

    Sure, he loves Walter Jr. He loves Holly. (Hey, Cersei Lannister loves her kids too) But I’m sure raising a special needs child, even one who’s shown admirable ability to overcome his disability and take care of himself, probably helped damage the brilliant academic or business career that he had in his head that was always entitled to him. We’ve seen in flashbacks it was Walt’s own arrogance that got him in that situation, but of course, he lives in a carefully world where nothing is ever REALLY his fault (Hey, just like Kevin Smith!).

    So deep down, though he’d probably never admit it (riiiiiiight), being domesticated ruined what he thought was going to be his life. Walter Jr., who is basically a decent kid, also doesn’t share the interest in science and business that his father does.

    Along comes Jesse Pinkman.

    When Walt first spies Pinkman in the pilot, he doesn’t look disappointed to see a dropout in the parking lot, he looks at Jesse like he’s a piece of gum on his shoe he can’t wait to scrape off.

    At first, Jesse was a means to an end (and was destined to die at the end of season 1, had the writers strike not intervened, and given time to think about it, Gilligan and co realized Aaron Paul was too good an asset to let go). But as Jesse got better at cooking, as Jesse got closer to Walt and his life, Walt began to feel… love isn’t the world for it, and affection is barely the word for it, but… pride.

    Pride that he turned this shiftless little fuck into a moneymaking machine. Pride that he, Walter White, provided the motivation the kid needed to MAKE something of himself. It was he, Walter White that did that.

    And Jesse was pliable. At one point he really did see Walt, IMO, as some father figure or someone to look up to or just someone who actually gave a shit whether he lived or died. Walt felt he had power over Jesse in a way he had power over nothing else.

    And when Walt says Jesse’s one of the best meth cooks in the region, he means it. It boosts his own ego, but he means it. And now, Jesse walking out, he can’t concieve of it. Jesse is a great cook! Walt showed him the way! How could Jesse not take PRIDE in that? How could he WALK AWAY from that? It’s almost inconcievable.

    Tl;dr: Walter Jr. is the son Walter White has. Jesse Pinkman is the son Walter White MADE.

  19. Also, I completely forgot to mention a plucky young guest star in “Lord of the Flies” Some kid named Aaron Paul. Wonder what happened to him.

  20. I didn’t even address all the other great things about this episode, seeing as Mike’s exit was so overpowering a story development, but yeah, Walt’s opening speech to Declan and co was very powerful but also very cheesy, Walt-watches-movies stuff, and Jesse’s big walk out on Walter was absolutely perfect, so I didn’t have anything to add other than man, I loved that Jesse walked out, and man, I love how well that scene illustrated the timeline of Walt’s & Jesse’s entire partnership. They’ve come a LONG LONG LONG way to get to this point, and to see Jesse take in stride everything Walt threw at him, was really, really cool.

    People throwing out predictions, I would like to add that I too think Jesse and Skyler may have scenes together sans Walt, and I am interested to see what those scenes will be (beyond the two of them commiserating about Walter White).

  21. An internet friend wrote this, which made me guffaw in laughter:

    So, it seems that “Everybody wins,” doesn’t mean quite the same thing to Walter White that it means to… everybody. “Jesse, you get cheated out of your methlamine money. Mike, you get shot to death. Everybody wins!”


  22. Aw shit @Ales Kot, I just realized Todd has been writing down Walt’s process, and diligently going over the notes he took while they were on a break. “Don’t worry about pay until I get it right,” he says. Very suspicious…

    I don’t know if Todd is going to make any kind of real play like sell Walt’s formula or something, but that is a thing that you could include to support your Todd theoriz– AAAHHHH! WHY AM I HELPING YOU?! lol

  23. I assume it would be a paper trail that could get them caught, like Gayle’s notebook.

  24. Hey Guys

    Im getting these episodes off iTunes in Australia, so Im getting them late, so these threads are about the only place I know to talk about episodes without spoilers. Thanks for posting them and for all the excellent commenters.

    As far as Todd making notes, I don’t see it being something major, its just a way of showing that Todd is actually studying what Walt is saying. And the “Pay me when I learn how to do this” moment is just a workmans ethic. Todd earns his money. Considering the Grey Matter saga from S1 and Walt’s response towards charity, this wins him huge brownie points.
    Also we had the not very subtle comments from Denny’s girl in episode one and the repairman who buys Walt’s car “Nothing beats free”, which Walt isnt down with. Its not just about having money, its about earning it.
    Todd’s first scene (I think) was running up to tell Walt that he had sorted out the cameras, and Walt asks his name and give him this look of ‘you did good kid’.
    And then the discussion about Todd killing the kid, I just watched it again and Walt just looks annoyed in that scene, not at Todd but at Jesse, whos slowly losing his mind. Walt wants to tell Jesse to get over it but he can’t risk Jesse flying off the handle.
    Ever since S1 Walt has been telling Jesse to focus, apply himself and not take shortcuts, and now he has a version of Jesse who does exactly that. Only problem is hes a violent sociopath whos kinda dopey. But considering Walt’s actions in this episode I don’t think thats going to be a problem for him.