Breaking Bad

Episode Report Card
admin: B+ | 734 USERS: A
Dead and Loving It

So at the gas station, Walt makes a pay phone call wherein he poses as a reporter doing a story for The New York Times. He's talking to a woman who is either a publicist or some other kind of agent for Gretchen and Elliott Schwartz, so it does seem like he's going after them. He pulls the old "Is their address still X? No? It's Y? Why don't you tell me Y so I can write it down." People fall for this in TV and movies literally all the time. So he gets their address and promises the publicist/agent that it "should make one hell of a story." Yeah, no shit. Before he leaves the station, he removes his watch and places it atop the phone booth, which as far as I know is only to match continuity with the flash-forward, which is whatever.

That night, Gretchen and Elliott return home from whatever business they had in New York, and there is a palpable dread in the air. I really care what happens to these two. Part of it is that I'm so fond of Jessica Hecht and Adam Godley as performers. Part of it is that Walt's jealousy over their Gray Matter success is one of the uglier sides of him, and so I take their side even more strongly. And part of it is pushback against what turned out to be my least favorite part of the finale -- this scene right here, where Walt gets one over on these rich assholes that had the nerve to succeed without him -- where we suddenly need Walt to win and win big. So Gretchen and Elliott walk past Walt in their courtyard without even noticing him. He's able to shadow them, get into their home before they have time to set the alarm, and move about through their palatial abode without them noticing. Seriously, they're gabbing about Thai food and turning on the fireplace and uncorking wine for like ten minutes before they notice him.

Gretchen screams, Elliott darts out of the kitchen and suddenly, they're all face to face again. The Schwartzes are petrified, while Walt does that overly casual thing that bad guys do when they really want to unnerve someone. He notices the view outside the glass walls of their living room. He tells them how good they looked on Charlie Rose. "If you're here to hurt us --" Gretchen begins, but Walt cuts her off. He's actually here to give them something. He tells them it's out in his car, and the three of them should walk down the road to retrieve it. With the classical music the Schwartzes prefer (like the awful rich folk they are) swelling in the background, Elliott slowly raises the paring knife he's got in his hand. Gretchen grabs him by the shoulders, as if to tell him not to take it there, and Walt explicitly tells him, deadpan, "If we're gonna go that way, you're gonna need a bigger knife." We cut to commercials, so Walt fans can better high-five each other without missing any dialogue.

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Breaking Bad




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