Breaking Bad Review: "Crawl Space"

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What can one even say about a conclusion such as that?

"Crawl Space" would have been yet another classic episode of Breaking Bad if it had simply ended with Walt collapsing in the desert. But then there was the utter panic in Saul's office; the frantic search for the money; the admission from Skyler that it's gone; the bawling; the maniacal laughing; the slow drum beat in the background; the call from Marie; the panning away of the camera to reveal Walt in a makeshift grave.

I said it last week, but what other reaction can one have here except... WOW.

Gustavo Fring Picture

It seems impossible to comprehend that last Sunday night concluded with Gus being rushed to the hospital and here he was more alive and in control than ever before. That's what happens when you take out the head of the cartel.

He taunted Hector, he threatened Walt - the infant daughter truly sold his steady, menacing warning - he made it clear that Jesse really is part of the family. Seriously, both Walt and Skyler could learn something from Gus. This is a man that plans for every conceivable obstacle, preparing a blood supply for each important member of his team while having a fully-briefed, loyal doctor on call.

The contrast with Walt and his reactionary fits of anger couldn't be more stark. Same for Skyler, now that her desperate plot to force Ted to pay the IRS went as wayward as possible. (Between this and her infamous "I f-cked Ted" line, Walt really must be sick of hearing about that guy.)

It's also worth noting, as I have before, the differences in how Gus has treated and molded Jesse. Walt used intimidation and manipulation, while Gus has actually crafted a new chemist and a committed soldier. Ironically, Walt likely cares more about Jesse than Gus ever could - that appeared to be a hint of a legitimately grateful smile on Walt's face when Jesse opened the door to his house - but his hubris and ego get in the way of forging any kind of true father/son bond. And now we see where that has gotten him: pushed away from the only ally he ever had.

Somehow, though, Jesse still won't abandon his first mentor completely. When this series started, could you ever have envisioned Jesse being the show's moral compass? He really is a good guy.

But it all comes back to that incredible ending. It was the stuff of (terrific) season finales. But that doesn't even take place next week. There are two more episodes remaining this season. And then 16 more after that. Something major has to go down because Walt has finally reached his breaking point. There's no Heisenberg any longer, there's simply the realization of all he has wrought on himself and his family. That can't go on for too much longer.

Yet what separates Breaking Bad from almost every other show on TV is that I don't care what happens next. I'm not thinking about next season or next Sunday. I'm just reveling in the fascinating hour I just witnessed, capped by as tense a final five minutes as I can imagine and saying to myself... wow.


Editor Rating: 5.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (259 Votes)

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


The star savors simplicity, and she didn disappoint inside a black halter gown by designer Jenny Packham, accessorized with vintage jewels and her big reduced back tattoo. She told E! that awards days, even though hectic, are enjoyable. fun to wake up and play with your children and get ready and go out and be with your friends.


Did anyone else notice that Walt let out a “YAWP� after Skyler advised where the money went? There was a reference to it on an older ep. when Walt was watching Jeopardy with Jr.. I believe. Written by none other than W.W. Walt Whitman: “I too am not a bit tamed, I too am untranslatable,. I sound my barbaric YAWP over the roofs of the world.� Walt is going to fuck some shit up.


For the last two episodes or so, I have been getting a 'Donnie Brasco' moment. It seems strange that Jesse, a long-time addict is suddenly behaving responsibly and apparently has given up the habit. Depending on whose opinion you take on how much time elapses between episodes, it seems like a dramatic turnoaround in behaviours either way. Jesse's apparent hatred and disdain for Walt contradicts his insistence that Gus not harm him. Very Donnie Brasco.Especially the scene where he pushes Walt off his property while Gus's goons wait in the shadows to taser Walt and carry him away, bag on head. Could it be that for a while if not all along, Jesse has been a DEA informant? Last week, the AMC movie preceding BB episode 'Crawl Sapce' was 'Goodfellas", foretelling the scene where Walt finds out the money's gone. And next week? The lead-in movie is none other than 'Donnie Brasco'


After losing everything, Walter White is dead and Heisenberg will rise from the ashes.


Pinkman and his inflated ego. Arghhhh... I want to strangle him! Wring his neck! But well, he's also why Walt's alive. Come on Walt, get on your feet and kick ass already!
Love, love, love this show.


I have become convinced that "Breaking Bad" is the best hour of television that I have seen since the Moon Landings. "Salud" was especially fine, but then, "Crawl Space" was almost as good. The scene with Skylaw sputtering and crying and trying to explain to Walt why she gave the money to Ted, while Walt looks on with astonishment, exasperation, and hopelessness was powerful. Everyone concerned, from the writers and director, to the actors, Bryan Cranston and Anna Gunn, deserve applause. It created a real impression of things careening out of control, topped off by Marie's phone call that someone was trying to kill Hank (Anna Gunn's face showed that she feared that this, along with Walt's wild behavior, also meant that someone was on the way to to kill Skyler and Walt and the kids). The character of Gus has become so fascinating, that Vince Gilligan should refrain from killing off Gus and start a new series about Gus (with Mike)as the new cartel chieftan. He is a criminal mastermind, like a spider as the center of the web. Everything that he does is calculated and for effect and his revenge is "served cold" and complete (as Hector is learning). That threat about killing Skylar; Walt, Jr.; and baby Holly was chilling and more frightening to Walt, Gus knew, than a threat to kill Walt, himself.


I find it amazing that the writers have been able to drive a wedge not only between walt and jesse, but for us viewers between gus and walt. At the beginning of this season we were waiting for walt to kill Gus; now Walt is on his knees, having completely failed to do what was necessary for his survival. And the craziest thing is, Gus' character has grown stronger and more likable in the process. He's proven his intelligence, and his faith in Jesse helps to tame his image as the baddest character on the show. it will be interesting to see how this season ends; seeing as theres another one planned, I dont think walt or Jesse (or even gus for that matter) will die. But I do think that some sort of major shift will have to occur, either something that prevents Gus from acting against walt, or a major interference in Gus' ability to run his business. Maybe a moral interjection from Saul out of compassion for Walt's situation (ie hire someone to seriously hurt Gus), although that seems unlikely. In any event, can't wait to see how it ends!


Wow what a show...!
this is by far the best show on tv Ever I think either walter will kill pinkman or pinkman will do gus. Pinkman is not very impressed by they way gus is treating people especially if You consider his new chick and the kid. I think the show is going in that direction that gus will be gone walt will be the New Gus and Walter will order the kill in some futere episodes on his brother in law the DEA Agent


from the opening scene was amazing. any notice how the music was going to the sound of the open car door at the beginning. did the dr. call gus don? need to watch that scene again. the build up for the last 3 episodes this season is crazy.


I think Walt's cancer is going to make a comeback in the final 2 episodes, his coughing was back throughout the episode. Amazing episode.

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