On last week's Breaking Bad, we saw the world's most awkward table-side guacamole offer, Walt's jaw-dropping curveball delivered via CD, a slight-of-hand maneuver by Saul's henchman that finally opened up a world of unpleasant revelations to Jesse, and a closing scene involving a holy-shit-bad-idea-BAD-IDEA arson attack in progress.
Look how I summed up that episode without giving anything away! That's because I care about preserving your viewing experience, dammit. Tonight's Breaking Bad, titled "Rabid Dog," had an equally nebulous description: "An unusual strategy starts to bear fruit, while plans are set in motion that could change everything." Clear as mud, AMC. Let's get to the recap and find out what actually went down, shall we?
(As evidenced by the word "recap," warning: there be spoilers ahead.)
We open with Walt driving up to his house only to pull to a stop when he sees Jesse's car parked haphazardly in the driveway, the door left wide open in his haste to … well, Walt's not sure, but he soon figures it out when the reek of gasoline whaps him in the face. (Shout-out to the Breaking Bad team for including a brief foreshadowing scene of skateboarders clattering by in front of the White's house, by the way.) Walt creeps through the house looking for Jesse, but comes up empty. (Second shout-out for the kickass shot when the camera slowly pulled back down the hall from his bedroom. That shit was tense, yo.)
Walt ends up trying to force-feed a box lunch of bullshit to Walt Jr. and Skyler about how he accidentally got soaked at the gas pump, sort of like that scene in Zoolander or something, but for once Walt Jr.'s totally not buying it. "Please, can you just tell the truth?" Walt Jr. asks plaintively, and I'm like hot damn has this kid finally figured out what literally every other character knows at this point, including the baby, what with that tug-of-war fight a couple episodes ago? But no, he's just worried that Walt passed out for cancer-related reasons while filling the tank. Jesus, someone seriously needs to spell some important info out for poor innocent Walt Jr. using, like, bacon strips.
Walt sends the family to an impressively upscale hotel (for real, how big is that bedroom?) and checks in with Saul in the parking lot. Saul makes another awkward suggestion that hey, maybe murder's not such a bad option here, but instead of delicately referencing sending Jesse to Belize he compares Jesse to Old Yeller. You know: *meaningful eyebrow waggle, finger guns* Walt's furious at Saul, but his anger doesn't even touch the slow burn Skyler's got going on in her fancy suite. She's fully aware of everything that's going on, despite Walt's bizarre defense that it's totally okay that Jesse was going to burn down their house because he obviously changed his mind. No big deal! He just flew off the handle a little, heh heh.
Skyler gulps her vodka and stares holes in her husband from the bed. "Walt, you need to deal with this." What are you saying, Walt asks, aghast.
"We've come this far. For us," Skyler says. "What's one more?" Holy shit. SKYSENBERG.
Up until now it's been completely unclear why Jesse DID change his mind, but then we jump back in time to the moment when he was in the White's house and about to light the whole thing up -- when out of nowhere, Hank pops out of thin air with a gun drawn. Jesse howls that Walt can't keep getting away with this. "You really want to burn him down?" Hank says. "Let's do it together."
Hank puts Jesse in his car and they drive away literally NANOSECONDS before Walt pulls up at the end of the street and stops to stare at his driveway. Love it.
We get a brief but deeply creepy scene with Marie (wearing all black, it must be noted) talking to her therapist. It feels like something out of the Sopranos, doesn't it? But it's so incredibly weird to see a shell-shocked Marie sitting there, murmuring about the poisons she's researched. Her therapist cautions her not to fall into the trap of believing that violence can solve any of these problems. "I won't hurt anybody. But it just feels good to think about it," she says, a little dreamily.
Hank takes Jesse back to his house, where he briefly tries to convince Marie to leave for a while. I'm totally hung up on the fact that he packed her suitcases for her. Could YOUR husband pack your suitcase without the results being completely comical? Maybe it's just me. Anyway, Jesse is eventually led to the living room where Hank and Gomez are ready to tape his confession. "But it's just my word against his," Jesse protests. Hank's like, whatever, I couldn't strong-arm Skyler into doing this and I'm still pissed about it, so sit in front of the camera and talk, even though I'm pretty sure we're on all sorts of shaky legal ground here.
They ask Jesse where he first met Walter White. Jesse stumbles over his oddly respectful habit of calling him "Mr. White" before spitting out "Walter," then says one of the saddest lines in Breaking Bad history:
"He was my teacher."
Hank decides to put a wire on Jesse for the meeting Walt has requested via voicemail, which terrifies Jesse because he figures Walt has no intentions of simply talking things out. "You two guys are just guys. Mr. White, he's the devil. He's smarter than you, he's luckier than you. Whatever is supposed to happen, the exact opposite is going to happen," he says. Hank shrugs and points out that he's not brainstorming, he's issuing orders. Later, Gomez voices the concern that maybe Jesse's right, and Hank goes stony-faced: "Pinkman gets killed? We get it all on tape."
In the end, Jesse approaches the meeting space, wire attached and ready to go. But before he gets to Walt, Jesse spots a hitman-looking bald dude -- he looks more than a little like Mike at a glance, doesn't he? -- standing nearby, and Jesse veers off to a pay phone where he dials Walt's cell. "Nice try, asshole," he says, before saying that he's just giving Walt a heads-up to know he's coming for him. "I decided that burning down your house was nothing, next time I'm going to get you where you really live."
My first thought was that he was referencing Walt's family, but now I'm thinking it has to do with Walt's identity as Heisenberg. Jesse's going to destroy the meth empire Walt built, maybe? Or maybe he's going to get rid of Walt's money?
The final scene (as we get confirmation that the bald guy was just waiting for his kid, which felt maybe a little cheap-red-herring-y but okay FINE Breaking Bad I'll give you this one) is Jesse back in the car with Hank. "I'm thinking there's another way to get him," Jesse says, in control for the first time this season. "There's another way. A better way." Meanwhile, Walt makes a call to Todd. “I think I might have another job for your uncle,” he begins, and … end credits. DAMN.
What did you think of tonight's episode?
Image via AMC