Where the first two episodes of Breaking Bad this season have been about tying up the loose ends, this week it’s all about moving forward.
With Mike on board for the business side of things, he also gets Walt and Jesse their methylamine, which means they are ready to cook. We are treated to a wonderful montage or two this episode and the first is Walt, Jesse, Mike, and Saul running around the ABQ trying to find a suitable home for their new cooking lab. Failure after failure, Walt ingeniously decides not to settle on just one new home, but many. Using a fumigating pest control company as a front, out meth making duo will use a new house every cook before they bug bomb the house. Smell is covered, no one will investigate, and Walt and Jesse can get in and out and do their business.
Now I could ride around all day with that furious foursome searching for a new lab, as they are endlessly entertaining, but I am more intrigued about what is going to happen with these new guys they are paying off at the pest control place. Add in the fact that Jesse Plemons is playing one of the seemingly random faces for the company and you can almost guarantee something is going to go wrong with him or someone else at the company.
The cook goes well for Walt and Jesse, we even get a nice moment between the two as they talk to each other about something real for a change, but the payout doesn’t rub Walt the right way. (Also, that cook montage was one of the best the show has ever done.) As Mike dwindles down the stacks of money for them, split evenly three ways, Walt is disgruntled more and more every time a stack of his money goes in that bag. It’s not until Mike pulls the “legacy” payouts, for his guys in jail that lost their payoffs with Gus’ seized assets, that Walt cries foul.
Tension is going to run high between Mike and Walt over the course of the season, and the idea of Walt paying guys that he has nothing to do with isn’t going to sit well. The scene is another in a line of many more to come standoffs between the two and I could watch all day. Walt’s new found hard-ass attitude is fantastic to watch against Mike’s icy cool demeanor and the two going back and forth doesn’t disappoint. Walt has already struck a nerve though over money and his desire to become the Scarface he watches with Jr. is not being satiated by the 100K plus he is pulling down per cook.
It’s great to Jesse become so wise and observant as this season goes on, but he still is blind to the insanity above him. Mike vs. Walt is bound to blow up sooner or later and I don’t think Jesse is really prepared for what’s coming.
Another note on Walt, him driving a wedge between Jesse and Andrea/Brock is another kick in the side to his partner just to get Brock out of the picture. Though, this is probably for the best for everyone involved as mother and son needed to get out of that situation and Brock was honestly in danger from Walt the longer he stuck around. Question; Did Brock recognize Walt?
The other major development on the episode is that Skyler is losing it. She has a complete meltdown on Marie and looks as haggard as she has ever looked on the show. Skyler is emotionally drained and Walt getting Marie on his side of the now public Beneke affair was a brilliant, while evil, move by Mr. White. Marie isn’t going to be able to support Skyler and I honestly have no idea where she is heading this season; also another great moment for Gunn.
A very solid episode of Breaking Bad this week that serves as an excellent step forward as we had to previously back out of Season 4. The new meth production plan seems to make a lot of sense on paper, but I imagine something is going to go wrong sooner rather than later. I wouldn’t trust those pest control guys very much, even at ten grand a pop, and you can almost count on Plemons coming into play somehow down the line. Only five more episodes left until another year off!
Notes Along the Way:
-"Hey, let's go! Open up!"
-I guess Walt's moving back in.
-"It's what he does."
-Cranston must be having a blast playing this new version of Walt.
-I could watch these four roll around town all day.
-Nice to see and laugh at Badger and Pete again.
-Mobile meth lab v.2.0!
-Walt is so evil.
-Does Brock know?
-A beautiful montage for that cook, one of the best.
-A little "father/son" moment between Walt and Jesse.
-Shit, Skyler's lost it,
-First Hank, now Marie, which Schrader is going to take Walt down?
-Walt is making Skyler the enemy, brilliant play.
-"Everybody dies in this movie," foreshadowing with the film's inspiration.
-"Just because you shot Jesse James don’t make you Jesse James."
-Jesse might be in over his head with Walt the "time bomb."
Preview next week's "Fifty-One" here.