If last week’s hour ended with a BANG, this week’s installment packed round after round of emotionally ruthless heat. ‘Buyout,’ a brilliantly paced, versatile, and series-pushing episode has certainly ignited what's sure to be yet another signature sequence of pulse-pounding proportions, cranked up to maximum speed for a thrill ride that doesn’t look like it’ll run out of steam anytime soon. After all, don’t we have to get all the way to New Hampshire?
Episode six started with the obligatory rollover minutes from episode five, duly explaining and providing the ramifications of Todd’s moment in the bloody spotlight. “I had to do it” he rationally repeats, purveying the incident with more logic than a high school math whiz who ends up going to Rice University. Pinkman, thinking increasingly with his newly discovered heart, has no patience for that which is coldly calculated, shown visually through his early episode punch.
During the Todd conference, it’s almost as if Walt is trying to feel remorse--remember, it wasn’t too long ago that the disposal of innocent children served as the straw that broke the Heisenberg/Fring parternship’s back--but fails miserably in the endeavor. His brief jaunt into human compassion appears to be not just unnatural, but forced. For Walt, taking the time out of his precious business to think about human decency--or whatever that sh*t means--is now as irksome as a particularly annoying carpet stain.
We’re left wondering what Todd’s future role will be, though the episode’s sudden shift into Marie/Skyler-land makes us to hold that thought for another day. There’s not much to extract from here, other than the blatant irony that cruelly laces these routine “actually, it will now be impossible to get this sh*t off my chest” faux-revelations.
Walt meanwhile, takes some time to be very happy that the "business" paid their child-murdering dues, and can now focus on what really matters. “We’re on the right track,” he excitedly tells Jesse. Except that this track--a track where the guilt of innocent child murder is brushed off with a worker bee household whistle--is no longer something Jesse wants to be remotely associated with. Jesse’s disgust with Walt, now at an all-time high, is only rivaled by his disgust in what he’s helped build; a monster whose insatiable thirst for empire has swallowed any and all remnants of the Walter White who was once scared sh*tless by the prospect of someone being named Tuco.
Walter’s rejection of the buyout is more predictable than the Zac Brown Band releasing songs about relaxation and worry-free environments, but it brings the masterpiece of a story to one of its ultimate questions; what in fact, is Heisenberg now doing this for? I think I can write about 20 pages breaking down the significance of Walt and Jesse’s conversation at Casa de Heisenberg, but for purposes of this recap it’s important to remember that Walt, now a tyrant, will ultimately fail because “him having nothing left” means that he has created enemies out of everyone and everything he’s crossed paths with since his destructive foray into empire building. Walt may be vying for that unprecedented legacy, though first he’s gonna have to learn how to have a proper meal with those who know him best. Great moments in Jesse Pinkman dinner conversations may have been utterly hilarious, but it was obviously overshadowed by what the dinner confirmed--that Walter, despite doing everything in his power to rule by tyranny, is also completely powerless.
We then speed up to a bunch of “yo, so here’s what’s going down the rest of the season” type sh*t--a business glitch, some Walter escaping via science, bitch, and a bone-prickling climax, underscored by an “LETS BE EVIL, BRO!” facial expression that has now become immortalized as vintage Heisenberg. The Saul/Mike vs. Hank/Gomez may not have accomplished much this episode, but clearly served as the "captains shake hands, home team you’ve won the coin toss" ritual necessary for establishing the gravity that’s to come--an epic, no holds barred rumble for the ages. Each side best dig up their favorite Ray Lewis pump-up speech, because gameday is right around the corner.
Jesse Pinkman “Bitch” Count
While no verbal confirmations were uttered, really solid work by the Pinkman. And although not present in the stat sheet, his punch of Todd was essentially a silent “bitch.”
- This episode: 0
- Season total: 3
Random Observation(s) of the Night
- Is Vince Gilligan ever going to film a scene that doesn’t feature suffocating darkness? Yes Heisenberg is evil, but I only really use my glasses for driving and they’re all the way in this drawer that’s really annoying to rummage through.
- Don’t overlook Todd keeping the spider. Overtones of “destroying all evidence” and “nobody can know this sh*t went down” are now given a rather interesting twist.
- A $5,000 buyout for Grey Matter, a $5 million buyout for Heisenberg, LLC? Hmm
- Speaking of Grey Matter, there’s something more to this that we’re not seeing
Relationship(s) to Watch:
- Jesse vs. Frozen Lasagna
- Bryan Cranston vs. most legendary acting performance in television series history: Although Walt’s career is coming to a close, his potential in this regard is remarkably high. Think Kobe following the Dwight Howard trade. Seven rings, now attainable, just might put him over the edge. I take notes during the episodes for these recaps, and the only thing I had for the final scene was “HBERG--SO F*CKING EVIL.” Because he is.