Monday, 13 August 2012

Breaking Bad - Dead Freight

Ok, I did not see that coming at all. I like to think of myself as somewhat of a television pro; I can usually work out where certain things are going based on previous examples in other shows. It's a bit harder to do this for all these cable dramas nowadays, where more free creative license is granted to the showrunners - so they get to surprise us a bit more. But I've rarely been as shocked in my life as a fan of television as I was at the end of this week's episode of Breaking Bad. Follow me if you will, but ONLY after you've seen this week's episode, heavy spoilerage ensues..

Here's what I thought was going to transpire at the end of this episode and into the next: 

So the three guys are celebrating the successful heist, the same as they did, then they turn around and see the kid on the bike. Their faces completely drop and they just stare at this kid, contemplating what the fuck they're going to do. Then the episode just ends. The entire next episode and perhaps the rest of this half of the season would then deal with the kid, what they're going to do with him and all that. Perhaps, EVENTUALLY leading to the murder of the child. As a finale-type job even.

Obviously this is not the case. When Jesse Plemons whips out that pistol and puts a bullet in the kid, I could not believe what I was seeing. Not only were my expectations wrong, they were blown away. Never before have I seen such a massive, massive plot point so coldly dished out like that. Breaking Bad normally takes great pleasure in the slow reveal, spending multiple episodes and even seasons building up to an event that we can usually see coming as a result. But with the quick draw of Todd's gun, everything has changed.

Adding to the shock of the final scene was the entire episode itself that preceded it. It was a really fun hour, with some great banter between Mike, Jesse and Walt. Watching them hatch and execute a heist was thrilling, and classic Breaking Bad. The sheer light-heartedness of the whole thing left me completely blind-sided as a result.

A few other afterthoughts:

  • LOVED the western vibe of this hour. Some of the desert photography was excellent, and the fact that they were doing a train heist was completely apt. Probably the best looking hour of television this year.
  • Walt planting the bugs in Hank's office was a bold move, the first time Walt has gone out of his way to use his brother-in-law. This can only lead to bad things.
  • Another, "YEAH, BITCH" from Jesse in this one. Is it in danger of becoming a but of a silly catchphrase? Perhaps, but it's still funny.
  • Jesse Plemons kills another person on a different TV show, but this was FAR better.
So yeah, that was a brilliant episode of Breaking Bad, and the fallout is going to be amazing to watch as well.  This episode felt like the first to really ramp things up in this final season, and I can't wait to find out what's next. I may even make this a weekly thing for the remaining episodes if they're as kickass as this one.



  1. Jesus fuck. They'd just kinda built Todd up as this amiable, subservient goon as well. Holy fuck.

  2. Four thoughts.

    1) First time I've seen the hashtag come up at the start of the show. Looking back, it seems like a warning, like "youse fucks are gonna be talking about this". Sure enough, I don't know anyone who watches this show who hasn't made a comment, however small. Also some celebrities.

    2) It seems important to me, and I'm happy to be proved wrong on this next week, how little reaction we see from Walt. Watch him the whole time it's going on. He doesn't lift a finger before or after. Not a peep. Camera on Jesse the whole time. I'm sure he'll be a little upset about it, but it's going to make for serious problems with him and Jesse. Jesse's good and sentimental and something like this will shatter him. For Walt, it's an occupational hazard. He's done worse. He's a cold, cold fuck.

    3) Yes. This is actually the first time in the show's history where the desert of Mexico has been shot and not overexposed or filtered into shit to the point of making you think it's a dream sequence or handled by another DP.

    4) Less Skyler. She actively makes me not want to follow the show, I dislike her so much. That's not happened since Janice Soprano. I give no props to Anna Gunn. I wish she would morph into her own surname (like Megatron) and blast herself back into semi-obscurity.

  3. That should read "desert OR Mexico".