‘Breaking Bad’ Recap (Season 5, Episode 6): “Buyout”
Death always results in change and Breaking Bad is no exception. The deaths of Emilio and Krazy-8 at the beginning of the series meant Walt could never go back to who he was before he started cooking meth. The death of Combo meant Walt and Jesse had to find a new way to distribute their product, which is how Gus was introduced. The death of Jane resulted in a mid-air collision and a fracture of the Walt/Jesse relationship. The death of Andrea’s younger brother led to a series of events, which resulted in the death of Gale and Walt vs. Gus. The death of Gus is why we are where we are today, with Walt as the wannabe kingpin. And Todd’s murder of an innocent dirt-biking and tarantula-collecting kid has resulted in the probable end of the short-lived partnership between Walt, Jesse and Mike, and the possible end of Walt’s meth-making business for good… unless a certain someone has their way.
After they dissolve the boy and his bike, the three partners discuss what to do with Todd. Jesse wants to fire him but Walt refuses to pay him off and none of them want to kill him, which leaves only one choice: they keep Todd close and make sure he doesn’t do anything like this ever again. This is a situation neither Mike or Jesse are particularly happy about, which is further complicated by the fact that the DEA have been tailing Mike ever since the three started their operation. Mike wants out and Walt wants him out too; the problem is Jesse also wants out, as he doesn’t want anyone else to be killed. Walt doesn’t understand: they just robbed all of this methylamine and now they’re not going to cook it? There are millions to be made! Mike and Jesse tell Walt he’s free to cook for as long as he wants, but they’re going to sell their share of the methylamine to some of Gus’s associates in Phoenix.
However, these associates only want to buy the methylamine if they’re getting all of it, and that includes Walt’s share. It turns out they only want it so they can be assured Walt and his blue meth are out of the game completely. Walt, refusing to give up so easily after so much hard work, decides to try and steal all of the methylamine, but Mike stops him and locks him to a radiator. While Mike and Saul deal with the DEA, Walt manages to steal the methylamine after an escape attempt (which could have ended in disaster), resulting in Mike pointing a gun at Walt’s head yet again as the episode ends. Jesse tells Mike that Walt has a plan that will allow him to continue cooking and for Mike to walk away with the money he wants.
We will have to wait until next week to see what Walt’s plan is, but I don’t think it’s too hard to guess. I think Walt is going to make a deal with the associates from Phoenix–he will continue to cook the blue meth for them to distribute and sell themselves, which means Walt will still have some level of control and Mike will no longer be necessary. Whether Jesse will stick around remains to be seen, but I’m sure he won’t be too far away.
“Buyout” almost felt like two separate episodes – the first dealing with the aftermath of the train heist, and the second dealing with Mike wanting out – but the two fit together so seamlessly that I didn’t mind at all. There were a number of phenomenal sequences I wanted to point out in this episode, particularly the cold open with the group breaking the bike down to dissolve in acid with no ambient sound or dialogue. It was a beautiful and terrifying scene, showing how precise they can be and how far they have come. The other sequence I really liked was Jesse at the White’s house for dinner. As this was only the second time Jesse and Skyler had ever met (the first being way back during the first season), it was one of the most awkward dinner scenes I’ve ever seen. Fortunately, Jesse’s ramblings broke up the silence and anger between Walt and Skyler, and offered a bit of lightheartedness in what has been a pretty dark season thus far.
There are now only two episodes to go before the hiatus (which I am dreading), and it looks like this season is full steam ahead from here. “Everybody wins.” We’ll see about that.
Image credit: AMC
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