After tonight's episode, this might just be the best string of episodes for a television series that I've seen in a long time. The Wire, Mad Men, Lost, have all had some good runs, but I don't think any of them have been able to top themselves as consistently as Breaking Bad. And I have no idea where the next two episodes will lead us. Seriously, how do you top Hermanos? By making Salud. How do you top Salud? By making....
- One thing that I've come to learn about Gustavo Fring, it's that he is a chameleon. We sometimes see him as the smiling, mild mannered owner of a chicken restaurant, a man more likely to write a check for charity than to slit someone's throat open. We see him with his out of style eyeglasses, and bland shirt, and nondescript car. Sometimes we see him in a sharp suit and tie, all business. But ultimately, I think there is bit more of a thug to Gus. Like when we saw him walk out in front of the sniper, daring him to shoot him. Or his warning to the Don's men in Mexico. Or, tonight, as he walked out after being revived after his poisoning. He looks like a man hungover. Not quite as elegant and put together. Everything we see of Gus is a veneer for something else. It's funny to think Giancarlo Esposito got his big break as Buggin' Out in Do The Right Thing. He is one of the most fascinating actors on television, playing one of the most fascinating characters. Really, is anyone else rooting for Gus at this point, because I sure am.
- Gus had everything planned out to the very end. Having blood on hand in case of emergency? The guy's got balls the size of my head.
- Mike is still in bad shape, but he'll live. Jesse is concerned, and I was glad to see it. Mike is almost like a father to him. Actually, both him and Gus are like Jesse's parents. Supportive, yet firm. Mike can be scary when he wants to be, but he's brought Jesse quite a long way this season. I hope he isn't killed off.
- I really don't give a shit about Ted, so mercifully he was killed off, in a rather embarrassing manor. The confrontation scene was great. The black guy (I forget his name) is a stand up comedian in real life, actually.
- Walt has a terrible poker face. I think Breaking Bad was shut out of this year's Emmy's as it wasn't eligible. That won't happen this year, and I think Cranston is guaranteed that Emmy. We see a storm appear on his features as Hank tells him they're going to Walt's base of operations. The car crash was unexpected, and I thought Hank was going to bite the big one. Hank was a bit dickish with Walt, though, by pointing out in front of the family that it really was his fault that they crashed.
- Jesse is now the new cook, but for how long? His confrontation with Walt thankfully didn't lead to blows, but it was sad to watch. He no longer gives a shit if Walt dies, and it's all Walt's fault.
- Nothing good happens in the desert, I have come to that conclusion after tonight's episode. Think about it, does anything good ever happen in the desert? Think of any other movie or television show. People go to the desert to die. Or be killed. A few weeks back I likened the scene where Jesse and Mike drive out to the desert to Se7en's final act. We see another scene reminiscent of Se7en when we see Walt on his knees (much like John Doe). Things turn out better for Walt, at least. The show does an interesting thing by having us see their silhouettes against the desert backdrop, without cutting back to the closeup. Walt mentions death just as a cloud passes overhead, and darkens the entire landscape. I doubt this was intentional, and I'd bet that when they were editing this thing they realized they had a cool effect on their hands. It is in this scene that Walt is issued his final ultimatum.
- Walt's final freakout is scary to watch. The moment he realizes there is not enough money to change his families identities and go into hiding, he loses it. When the camera pans out, we see Walt lying down in the crawl space, like a tomb, laughing like a mad man. This show has done some cool things direction wise. I should have brought that up once before. Even more chilling is Marie's phone call.
- So where does that leave us? Better yet, where does that leave Walt? He is finally expendable, and he has no where to run to. Unless, he turns himself in? Hank said, as a DA, he was the best guy for Walt to come for help. Could Walt turn himself in? Make a deal? Come clean about the whole thing? What other options does he have besides going right after Gus? And do we really want to see him succeed over him?
To think, there's still two more episodes to go.
_________________"Heard them Walthers like to jump some" "As will you, with one in your elbow."