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Breaking-bad

Breaking Bad Review: I Am the Danger!

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Little by little, week by week, Walter White is getting smaller and smaller.

On "Cornered," he was once again phased out of the business while, perhaps even more damaging, even if the Heisenberg side of him doesn't want to admit it, he was outed by his wife as the dangerous, prideful, power hungry meth manufacturer that he is.

Someone has to protect this family from the man who protects this family. Not much Walt can say to that, is there?

Walt and Bogdan

Is Walt tough enough to be boss? Of course... according to his world view

There's nowhere for Walt to hide at this point. His relationship with Jesse scarcely exists, his wife finally sees him for who he has truly become and even his son can't be fooled by a phony, supposedly fatherly gesture.

Walt is simply a poor mentor to Jesse, an irresponsible husband and business partner to Skyler and an ATM to his son. He's also a major jerk to Bogdan.

It's unclear where Walt can go from here. But it can't be any place positive. As he made clear to Skyler in an early scene, and then later to Walt Jr. at the breakfast table, he knows who he is, he accepts and embraces the choices he's made and, in his warped mind, he is the danger. He's the one knocking on that door, firing that kill shot.

I can only imagine what sort of reckless move Walt attempts next in order to exert the dominance he believes he has at home, work or both.

This was as self-aware an episode of Breaking Bad as I can recall. Over and over, Walt verbalized what viewers have known for years: he thinks everything is about him, he seems himself as the key to a Nasdaq-level business, he is the hardened criminal the police (and Hank, specifically) are after. Turn himself in?!? He'd rather out himself, present Heisenberg to the world and laugh in the face of all who believe he's some spineless chemistry teacher.

Elsewhere, Jesse continued to get a lesson in Gus and Mike's world. And he taught Mike a thing or two about meth heads in the process.

Perhaps this partnership wasn't merely created to build a wedge between Walt and Jesse. Yes, Gus set up that robbery and, yes, there are ulterior motives at work here. But Gus Fring is a business man before all else. He's a calm and reasonable man and there's no reason not to believe that he really does see something in Jesse and is grooming him to be the next Mike.

But will Mike even be around in the near future? Will Gus? Might Walt have a new, even more dangerous set of dealers to square off against next season? Someone actually outsmarted Gus in that (awesomely filmed) opening scene, reminding us how there's an entire drug world beyond New Mexico and the few people with whom Walt has crossed paths. And these cartel members make Gus' season premiere execution seem almost tame by comparison.

It also raises the question of whether or not there's a mole in the operation. It's hard to see how the cartel could have known about the men in the truck otherwise, isn't it? They also knew how to locate the bucket with the drugs.

Also worth noting from yet another stellar hour of television:

  • Has Walt Jr. ever not been eating in an episode?
  • Skyler going to the Four Corners and flipping a coin to determine where she'd live felt a little heavy-handed. She's a very smart woman and, of course, she's scared. But that seemed a bit random and hard to believe.
  • Such great attention to detail in so many areas: Mike still has his ear bandaged, Walt still brings a bag lunch everyday, we see Walt's cancer scar in the shower.
  • More than any show on TV, Breaking Bad acknowledges every step that goes into a plan. This goes back to the multiple episodes it took on season one to dispose of a body. Here, we don't simply see Walt quickly talk to the cleaning woman and then a cut to the lab. We actually witness the struggle of this exchange, which makes their later bus ride back to Honduras that much more poignant.

And was that actual regret on Walt's face when he talked to Tyrus? In an instant, Heisenberg - the coffee toasting moron who never realizes the domino effect of his actions until it's too late... and then reasons them away anyhow - was replaced by a man who seemed to grasp just how bad he is at being the boss. Just how out of his depth he is in all of this.

But that's unlikely to last. Gus blames him for that action, Skyler blames him for endangering the family, Jesse blames him for not showing any respect. Will Walt ever blame himself for anything? No, meth head Tucker will hit China before that happens.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (33 Votes)

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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I LOVE Breaking Bad. I say that because I don't want this negative review thought of as coming from someone who doesn't care for it. It is starting to follow the typical Sit/Drama, "We are Good and now we are gonna milk the shit out of this," that leads to implosion. As much as I like this show and appreciate how good it is, it is spinning in circles and the powers that be seem completely content to keep it up. The power struggle with Walt and Gus is just shit ass old. Jesse is the ultimate f@&k up and would long since been thrashed. But I give the producers the benefit of the doubt. He is a central part of the show. This show is not moving forward. It is stuck in a spin cycle and I don't believe the writers and producer's have anything else in mind other than prolonging the series. I;m trying to hang in there and it still has my attention, but I can only watch re-hashed, (no pun intented), almost to the tee from several seasons ago. I'm not jumping the shark for this series, but you guys better get some shit going forward soon. I'm tired of spin cycle.

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did anyone else notice that mike's cooler looked exactly like the ones the cartel stole from the truck. I know they are common, but.....

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Thanks for the great review. Four Corners ties into the episode title, but I can't figure out the scene much beyond that.

Piecar

While there is no doubt that Walt is losing it and having narcissistic delusions of grandeur, we have to be fair. -he DID orchestrate the 'knock at the door' that killed Gale.
-the whole 'Mike and Jesse' story IS likely about him. I think Gus lied when he talked to Jesse.
-Walt DID cap two guys in cold blood to save Jesse. The man has a reason to think he's hard. He's WAAAYYYY out of his depth, but tough. I think he's like lots of guys who get into something that spins out of control, they've got to keep telling themselves that they're on top of it just to get up in the morning. This show is getting rough for me, even though it's great filmmaking and a terrific story. There's just no one to root for anymore. My favourite guy is the mouthpiece drug addict, followed closely by the one-eared murderous thug. Two strange characters to cheer for, doncha think?

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great review

Matt-richenthal

@Finn: And how did they know to look for that?

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Everyone showed their strengths in this issue. Walt Jr. isn't naive, Pinkman isn't powerless, Walter is Arrogant, Skylar is a stone cold bitch who does what needs to be done, Mike is wise, and Gus is calculating. One of the best episodes I've ever seen

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which was an inspired guess lol

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They knew which bucket because they used a black light and saw the star marked in invisible ink on that particular bucket.

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