It would have been reasonable to guess that after last week’s episode, Breaking Bad might let us catch our breath before leaving us, and whomever else, lifeless at the final episode. Some tense setting up of dominos, of course, but ultimately a bit of respite while we wait for them all to fall. Right? That’s how this TV show has got to work, yeah? Otherwise we’ll all be too wound-up at work on Monday, and we can’t use our September 30th excuse (“migraine”) on September 23rd, because then what will we say after the finale airs? Right?! Ha-ha, nope! NOOOPE! Ugh, how stupid we were to think that we might get an almost-break. So, so stupid. Not Todd-level stupid but definitely Walt-level naive. Ugh, LET’S JUST GET ON WITH IT, THIS SHOW CERTAINLY DOES.
We begin with handsome Saul and his vacuum cleaner salesman/disappearer (hi, Robert Forster!) working to get him started on his new life in Nebraska. (“What’s in Nebraska?” he asks. Uh, hey Saul, ever heard of a little thing called SADDLE CREEK RECORDS?) He’ll have to stay at the vacuum store for a few nights before he leaves, and he’ll have a bunkmate. Ooh, is it a pretty lady?!
Ah, no, it’s just Walt. (And he is not doing so good.)
Elsewhere, Marie’s house has been broken into and the nazis have stolen Jesse’s confession tapes. They sit in their disgusting nazi den and laugh as he cries when describing murdering Gale. It’s kind of perfect, actually. Their entire role in this season has been to, fairly easily, dismantle and belittle what each character had been working for. Sitting and laughing at what, essentially, the viewers have been working for — meaning, a case for Jesse, the one we see as having something left inside worth saving — really rounds out their role as Breaking Bad Breakers. Those god damn jerks. When Jesse names Todd, Jack storms out to, once again, end Jesse’s life. One again, Todd stops him, saying that he still needs him to help him cook. Jack points out what we’ve all been thinking — they already have millions of dollars and disgusting dirty clothes and a shitty meth den, why do they even need to stay in the meth game? Todd says, uh, because why not have more money. Oh, right. Jesse is saved once again, and Todd is teased about having a crush on Lydia. WHATEVER WORKS.
Underground, Jesse begins his almost successful but ultimately incredibly depressing escape.
Back at the vacuum shop, Walt tries to get Saul to make a list of hitmen in order to, eventually, murder all the nazis. Oh, Walt. You sad, stupid murder idiot. Saul tells him that if Walt really wants to save his wife and kids, he won’t leave. The phone call was a good move and will help eventually, but until then, if they don’t have him they’re going to go after her. They’ll take her house, her money, and she won’t be able to appropriate defend herself or find work. “She knows nothing.” “Well too bad for her, then — she’s got nothing to trade.” Walt repeats the plan to Saul — he’s doing this for his family, he’s going to murder Jack and get his children all of his money, and only then will he be through. Oh, you stupid dummy I hate you so much!
Robert Forster comes in and tells Saul it’s time to go. Walt, the sad, pathetic idiot that he is, tries to teethface Heisenberg strong-arm Saul into going with him, but collapses into a fit of coughs. What is Saul even going to do with you, you dummy? “You have to come with me so we can think of hitmen together.” Saul, in perhaps both his best and final scene of the series, tells him that it’s over. He grabs his bags, and leaves.
Elsewhere, Skyler is in the exact situation Saul described to Walt. Everything is being taken away from her, and she doesn’t have enough knowledge of Walt’s plan to save herself and her kids. “Wrack your brain,” said the tough police guy. “WRACK YOUR OWN BRAIN, JERK” we shout in response.
What follows is one of the most terrifying, heart-stopping scenes in television. This god damn show! GIVE US A GOD DAMN BREAK! Skyler sits smoking and drinking in her house, while we see members of the police watching over it from outside. She goes to check on Holly, and:
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!
TODD AND HIS FUCKING GOONS! They stand around Holly’s cradle, like they’re god damn witches or Goblin Kings, while Todd threatens Skyler into not mentioning Lydia to the police, as if she ever even would have in the first place. They leave without doing anything to Holly, THANK GOD, JESUS CHRIST, and we all breathe a sigh of pained relief. This show!
Speaking of Lydia, hey, she’s here. She and Todd meet at a cafe and he plays along with her speak-with-backs-turned-to-each-other shit that Mike refused to, way back when. (R.I.P. Mike.) Todd tells her that Skyler’s a nice lady who just wants to protect her kids. Lydia is like, “Ugh, you can’t do anything, why can’t you do anything JUST MURDER HER SHE SAW MY DUMB FACE,” but Todd interrupts her with
a sweet kiss mention of how he’s gotten his meth levels up. ALL FOR YOU, MY SWEET LOVE! He picks link off of her suit jacket as we fade to black. The End.
Just kidding! Lots of nightmares up ahead!
Robert Forster takes Walt to his new secret cabin home. It looks pretty nice! He’s got a fireplace, lots of alone time, some food, a chemo IV drip, and two copies of Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium. What else could a guy want?! He gets a little cranky when Robert Forster tells him that he obviously cannot have a cell phone or internet access, you idiot, but cheers up a bit when he’s told that he can easily walk out of the gate and into town, if he wants to make the whole point of traveling to this stupid cabin worthless. Great, he says. “I just need to find my stupid Heisenberg hat, and I’m outta here!” “Tomorrow.”
God, do we even have to talk about this next part? What a heartbreaking, awful, wonderful, really great, shitty, terrible show this is. Jesse, his face completely mangled, manages to gymnast-escape his ice cream dungeon and is caught just as he tries to climb the fence and escape. The nazis don’t kill him, though. They — as they threatened to with the photograph that helped him escape — take him to Andrea’s house and murder her on her porch. “This is nothing personal,” says Todd, before shooting her in the back of the head. Jack comfort-threats Jesse, telling him that Brock is still alive. Jesus christ. Fun recap!
Walt’s tomorrow comes and, whoops, no it doesn’t, time has jumped ahead! Walt has hair now. That mother fucking coward! He’s still in his Magorium cabin and has Robert Forster bringing him newspapers, to piece together what’s happening with his family back at home. He pays Forster $10,000 to spend an hour with him. (Who is Forster, Kristen Stewart?!) (Because remember that thing with that prince?) (I’M JUST TRYING TO LIGHTEN THE MOOD.) That night his wedding ring falls off of his skinny finger, which explains why his wedding ring was not on his finger in the time-jump we saw so long ago. He puts money in a box and wraps the box very nicely, and can barely even get out of his gate:
But he does get out! And he goes to a bar and has a bar lady pretend to be Marie so Flynn is taken out of class, to speak with him on the phone! WALT! Walt tries to get him to agree to take money, but instead of agreeing Flynn flips out and screams about how he murdered Hank, and yells at him for not just dying already. Boy oh boy. How many loved ones have to tell you to die before you die, Walt?! When he gets off of the phone with Flynn, he calls the DEA to turn himself in. It is heartbreaking (the Flynn part, not the turning-himself-in part) (HE SHOULD HAVE DONE THAT SO LONG AGO, MR. HAIR!) and so insane and I am rushing over it because we both watched it and you don’t need me to tell you and also I want to get to this:
The founders of Grey Matter Technologies are on The Charlie Rose Show. They deny that Walt had anything to do with the company outside of the company name (“Black + White = Grey”) (“Uh-doyyy Charlie Rose doooyyy”) and attempt to completely distance themselves from him. This does not make him happy! Some are speculating that the gun and ricin might be for these bozos, as Walt decides to not get caught by the DEA after he watches their interview, but what I think those people are missing is the fact that Walt’s face gets the teethface-maddest when Rose mentions the fact that his signature blue meth is still circulating — even reaching Europe. He knows that Todd and his uncles can’t recreate his product. He must know that Jesse — our beautiful Jesse — is still alive, and working with them.
BOWWW, BEEEEEEEAAR BEEAAAR, BOWWWWW, BOWWWWWW, NAAAWWW, BOWWWW, DO-DO-DO-DO-DO! (Variation on the intro theme.)
What a heartbreaking, awful, very good episode. This fucking show! One more left! Will we even make it ’til next week?!