Breaking Bad
No Mas

Episode Report Card
Joe R: B+ | 12 USERS: A
Do You Know the Way to Santa Muerte?
I guess it's pretty serious.)

Watching this play out in front of Walter, knowing what he knows about the part he played in that chain of events, it feels like an airing of grievances. And seeing Walt standing on the gym floor with some of the other teachers, scowling at this whole display, you can tell he's equal parts exasperated and incriminated by this whole display. Carmen finally notices his huffing and puffing and asks him to speak (after first offering a warm welcome-back). Walt's words of advice are to "look on the bright side." He goes on to spout statistics and precedent, all explaining how this disaster really could have been a whole lot worse. No one killed on the ground. The planes weren't at full capacity. It was "just" the 50th worst airline crash in history. Nearly 600 people died when two 747s collided over the Canary Islands in the '70s, but schmoes like your recapper here had to look up "Tenerife" on Wikipedia because, as Walt says, we forget these things. Clearly, the students aren't interested in hearing how this tragedy could have been worse, but Walt sure is. "We will move on. We will get past it. Because that's what people do. We survive and we overcome. We survive ... we survive." Unspoken after Walter's pleas for a collective memory lapse are the words "But at what cost?"

Back to Mexico, as the amber hue and dusty environs will tell you. Cousin/Cousine are back in their shiny sedan, pulling up to a run-down shack with a goat in the yard and laundry on the line. They saunter up, as is their custom, and wordlessly stride past the mother, father, and daughter living there, who know better than to even talk to them, much less ask what the hell they're doing there. They pluck some casual clothes off the line and begin getting changed. At first, I thought it was because their fancy duds were filthy from the crawl. They're not (it's a Santa Muerte miracle!); they're just changing so they'll be inconspicuous on this next leg of their journey. After they're done, they drop their shades on the ground (in perfect unison -- it was at this point I started thinking of them as the nonunion Mexican equivalent of those albino ghost twins from the Matrix sequels. The stop to hover over the girl (in her adorable pink poncho), but rather than menace her, they just hang their car keys on the goat's horn and walk away. Like twin Anton Chigurhs but with silly landing-strip beards instead of Dutch Boy haircuts.

Walt drops Flynn off at home, in his car with the two corpse-shaped impressions in the windshield. He tries to make small talk with his son that doesn't have anything to do with the current marital strife, but that somewhat hilariously leaves him with nothing to say but "How's your aunt Marie doing?" On the list of concerns in Walt's life right now, "How's Marie doing" would probably not crack the top 300. Flynn gets frustrated and asks why Walt doesn't just come inside. "It's your house!" Walter doesn't have an answer for that, leaving Flynn to go inside, alone and frustrated.

Inside, Marie keeps watch and lets Skyler know when Walt's driven away. She greets Flynn with an overly exuberant "How's tricks?" which he totally doesn't get. He's immediately all over Skyler for treating Walt so poorly. "Why can't you just talk, even?" Again, Skyler has no answer for this. None she wants Flynn to know about, at least. Or Marie, who is positively vibrating with frustration at not knowing why Sky kicked Walt out. Skyler's not budging.

Rancho Relaxo. Jere Burns is leading an outdoor, evening campfire chat about "that voice that tells you you're not good deserve your share of basic human happiness." Jesse's clearly not hearing any of this and generally looking like a big ball of frustration and anger. Jere sees this and calls on him to speak up for once. Even if it's just to say Jere's full of shit. "What makes you the expert?" Jesse starts, before getting to the root of what's tormenting him: "Have you ever hurt anybody before? Not just disappointed your parents, but really hurt somebody." Jere's shocking reply is that he killed his own daughter. He goes on to explain how he was on a coke-and-vodka birthday bender and needed to drive out for more vodka and backed his car out over his six-year-old daughter playing in the driveway. Jesse's shocked but not so much that he forgets his own anger. "How do you not hate yourself?" he asks, of himself more than Jere, obviously. Jere says the self-hatred and guilt doesn't help. It just stands in the way of "true change." On a lesser show, here's where Jesse joins a cult or something. Sadly, I'm thinking he's going to end up much worse off than that.

At the bachelor pad, Walt drops the rogue eyeball underneath his bed. He's interrupted from retrieving it by a knock at the door. It's Skyler, and I have to give it up to Anna Gunn at this point, because her body language is amazing. She looks like she's about to be sick to her stomach. Walt gets a glimmer of hope in his eye and invites her in. As they sit around his kitchen table, there is a pregnant pause to end all pregnant pauses. Skyler looks hopeful for literally three-quarters of a second that Walt might lead with an explanation or an apology -- something that will mean she doesn't have to leave him. But Walt, the coward, asks her if she wants to start. He can't just come clean -- he needs to see what cards she's holding, on the off chance that he can still bluff. Instead, Skyler lays down her hand: the divorce papers.

Walt immediately gets defensive, says this is a punitive maneuver, that she's punishing him for something ... he can't say "that I didn't do," he can't say a lot of things, so there are a lot of half-sentences and trailing off. He demands she hear his "side" of things, even though I don't think he's the slightest bit prepared to offer any kind of version of his side. Skyler makes it easy for him and cuts to the chase: "You're a drug dealer," she says, barely able to speak the words without crying. Walt goes for "gobsmacked," but he can't sell it, and Skyler gets wide-eyed and tearful, knowing she's right. Well, sort of. She drew the lines between the sudden influx of cash and the shady dealings with Jesse. She thinks it's marijuana, though. Oh, honey. Wrong show. Walter averts his eyes, and his non-denial makes her up the stakes. "Cocaine?!" she asks, eyes wider and more tearful. Busted, Walt finally puts her out of her misery and cops to methamphetamine. "I'm a manufacturer, I'm not a dealer," he quickly equivocates, adding "...per se," just so he's not a total damn liar.

Skyler gets up, not wanting to hear another word. Walt blocks her path to the door, though, and promises, "There are a lot of angles to this. It's complicated." He begs her to sit down and let him lay the whole story out for her. I'm actually curious how Skyler would react if she heard the whole story. I don't necessarily think it would be as favorably as Walt thinks. But she can't listen to this. She makes Walt a deal: she won't tell Hank about the meth, and she won't tell their children, or anybody else, so long as Walt grants her the divorce and stays the hell away from them. She finally pushes past him and out the door.

At Rancho Relaxo, Jesse's getting sprung, and Walt's there to pick him up. I know it's guilt that's motivating Walt here, but whatever it takes for him to do right by this kid, I support it. Jesse seems to have inherited Walt's perma-scowl now that Walt's traded his in for the weary visage of the damned. Jesse gets a look at the windshield of the car and does the first Jesse-like thing of the episode, stating the obvious so simply: "windshield's broken." It's a start, but what I wouldn't give for a few gratuitous "yo"s to know he's really back.

The men unload at Walt's bachelor pad, as Walt explains his situation as "a little friction in the marriage right now." Jesse gets the couch. Walt gingerly broaches the subject of Jesse's half of the million. Saul's got it now, and Jesse can have it as soon as he feels better. "I'm better," Jes

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Breaking Bad




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