Breaking Bad Discussion: ‘Yeah Bitch! Magnets!’


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve yelled that spontaneously over the last few weeks in the course of getting caught up on Breaking Bad via Netflix. It’s happened too many times for me to deliver an accurate count and I lost track somewhere along the way. I have a feeling I’m not the only one.

With that said, unless you’ve been living on another planet for the past few days, you know that last night marked the return of Breaking Bad and the most bad ass high school chemistry teacher in the history of high school chemistry teachers, Walter White. We’ll be discussing each episode this season on the Mondays after they air — and we plan on having a guest or two from the show join us from time to time as well. Additionally, Josh will be doing character power rankings each week.

I suppose this as good a time as any to let you know that RJ Mitte — aka Walter Jr. aka Flynn — will be joining us for a live discussion this coming Thursday afternoon at 3pm EST. Get excited, and be sure to eat a hearty breakfast that day, because you know RJ will.

So let’s get right to it, shall we? Here are a few notes I made during last night’s Breaking Bad about characters, scenes, etc. I found interesting for one reason or another.

– Going into last night, I had one suspicion in regards to what’s going to happen on the show going forward, and that was this: things are about to get really f*cked up for Walter. My sole reason for thinking this was that things seem to be going too well for him. Gus is gone. He continues to successfully elude the law. What goes up must come down. It’s basic storytelling.

In such, we see a future version of Walt on the run using an alias in the opening scene of the show. I’m not sure when Vince Gilligan will circle back to this — it’s at least a year off from the show’s present setting by my estimation — but I think that scene hints that the sh*t is indeed going to hit the fan bigtime for Walt in the future. I mean, he obviously feels the need for a MACHINE GUN for the love of God.

– Going into last night I was also wondering how the state motto of New Hampshire — “Live Free or Die” — was gonna tie in to the episode which bore said motto as its title. It didn’t take long to find out. And about the opening scene, Vince Gilligan discussed it a bit here.

– Oh by the way last night wasn’t the first time we’ve seen Walt’s age spelled out in bacon on his birthday…

– One of the things I regret about watching the first four seasons of the show in marathon session on Netflix was not getting the opportunity to have a week in between each episode to ruminate on them and take in the thoughts of others. However, I do remember a lot of debate going on about whether or not Walt was the person responsible for that kid being poisoned with a plant from the Whites’ back yard. I suppose Walt putting the plant in question in his truck along with other incriminating evidence he presumably plans to destroy pretty much confirms that Walt poisoned the kid.

– How is Hank walking so well suddenly? I don’t remember him being able to get around at the end of season four like he did in Gus Fring’s burned out meth superlab last night. But hey, whatever.

– THOSE FREAKING CAMERAS! I had a hunch that they’d come into play at some point with the authorities, although I always envisioned Hank hacking the feed with some sort close-circuit feed hacking device or something, only to not recognize that Walt was one of the dudes walking around the lab in a haz-mat suit.

– If the magnet truck is rockin’…

– How great was it that it was Jesse who came up with the centerpiece of the night’s diabolical plan? I really think this Pinkman kid is beginning to come into his own. Looks like he has a bright future.

– All all hail the return of Mike, arguably my favorite secondary character of the show’s entire run.

-Speaking of Mike, Walt blurting out “because I said so?” to him while they were speeding away in the getaway car was one of three moments last night that spoke to how overwhelmingly cocky Walt has become — the other two being the moment he had the “we’re done when I say we’re done” moment with Saul and the “I forgive you” moment he had with Skyler, who is suddenly emerging as a sympathetic character for me. Walt truly believes that he’s invincible, and it appears as though his delusions are beginning to morph him into a monster.

– How about a round of applause for whatever makeup/props department person contrived Saul’s hilariously ridiculous looking hair piece!

– Well I’ll be damned…Huell did indeed lift the explosive ricin cig from Jesse after all.

– I think the biggest question concerning last night’s episode is this: was the plot to destroy a computer locked in a police evidence room with a giant magnet plausible? Probably not. Here’s what Gilligan has to say

As Mr. Gilligan acknowledged in a telephone interview, it would probably have been more sensible for his characters to pilfer the computer before the police obtained it.

“But you say to yourself: Where’s the fun in that?” Mr. Gilligan said. “Let’s make life harder for these guys.”

The “Breaking Bad” team did not necessarily expect that this plot would withstand close scientific scrutiny, though Mr. Gilligan suggested that he would enjoy seeing it tested on a future episode of “MythBusters.” He added, “I would love to have ‘MythBusters’ prove or disprove that on their wonderful TV show.”

– Well, well, well — looks like Gus Fring banks in the Cayman Islands, just like Mitt Romney!

– With all the crazy sh*t that happened in the season four finale, I’d totally forgotten about Ted. He looked terrified of Skyler when she showed up in his hospital room.

– But hey, let’s not forget who wears the pants in the White family.

Your own thoughts and observations are of course welcome in the comments.

(Pics and GIFs via Film Ghoul, King in the North, The Seventh Art, It’s Davo and Jest)