The most exciting episode this season I would say. Plenty of crime, one-liners, and hair raising moments. And then a fantastic finale to wrap up the most jaw dropping episode. I say time and time again that this is one of the best original dramas on television and if you’re not watching, you’re seriously missing out. I can’t keep not talking about it, so enough with the spoiler free talk, read below for my review and take on last night’s episode: Dead Freight. As always MIGHTY spoilers ahead.
Chekhov’s Gun: The Boy in the Desert
Breaking Bad loves using Chekhov’s Gun as a ploy for many of its episodes. This essentially means it starts off with a more random scene that will eventually be wrapped up and explained for by the end of the episode or the next couple of episodes. It works incredibly well because it gets its intuned audience to pay attention and to try to make connection, therefore further involving them. And this time it was about a brave boy who ventures around the desert on his dirt bike collecting tarantula specimens. By the end of the episode, we know how this Chekhov’s Gun plot device was used…
Walter White the Actor and Bugging Hank
Walter starts off the episode by visiting his brother in law Hank’s new office. There he pulls a sad story about how Skyler isn’t loving him, therefore making Hank uncomfortable and leaving him alone in the room as he gets some refreshments to comfort him. In that brief amount of time, Walter quickly wires Hank’s office, barely making it before Hank returns to the room. A crazy way to start the story. I particularly like that Walter is so great at lying at this point for such an evil reason. Is it his drive to cook meth that draws him to betray his own brother in law? His own safety? It’s hard to say.
Lydia The Aftermath
With Lydia, the hyper-intense, up-tight business woman, taking the rap for the planted Methylamine cans, she’s taken hostage by team Heisenberg and gun to her head, is used a pawn to get to the bottom of who’s responsible for that GPS tracker. With the help of the new wires in Hank’s office, they prematurely deduct that she’s responsible and nearly kill her, but not before a last minute call from a Texas police division confess to the plant. With barely surviving Team Heisenberg, she reluctantly gives up new information as to how they can acquire methylamine: robbing a train. She’s apparently 100% on board with this new group, as she even asks for a cut of the profits. I’m still hesitant to see if she’ll bring the team down, but I’m slowly gaining more and more hope in her. She is one of the few faces to actually look at in this show [I miss Krysten Ritter's character...].
Devising a Train Heist
Mike sees it as having to kill the crew to get away with the chemicals, but also sees they would rather not deal with the State Troopers and FBI and industries going on a state wide man-hunt for them, so admist Mike and Walt arguing about whether or not to proceed, Jessie comes up with another idea [he's on fire this season] as to how they can get away with it cleanly. They enlist the help of Todd, a young man who works for pesticide company that’s covering their operation to aid them in replacing methylamine with water while stopping the train. With the help of Lydia’s knowledge of a dead zone and Mike’s seemingly crazy network of connections, cars, and equipment, they ready themselves for the heist ahead. Jessie is absolutely killing it this season and is 100% the most likable person on this show. It’s amazing how much he’s changed from punk-ass gangster to brilliant plan maker.
Schrader Problems and Walt Jr./Flynn
Meanwhile, the kids are still with Marie and Hank and it appears the childless couple are falling in love with Holly. So much to the point where it looks like they want to steal the baby from Skyler and Walt [which might not be the most horrible thing.] On the other hand, they have to deal with the ormone enraged Walt Jr. who may or may not be going by his alias Flynn again. Hank had it right calling him ‘Emo’, because that’s all he really has been doing this episode/series.
Burying Bodies and Robbing Trains
The followup to Skyler and Walt’s fallout last week is kind of resolved. Skylar’s not acting crazy anymore and has more or less accepted the fact she’s stuck in this situation for ever. She’s claimed to do everything she can to keep the children out of it and Walt seems to let it go. Despite her distaste for Walt, she is curious as to what he is up to as she comments on his pants as though he’s burying bodies. Walt commonly replies: “robbing trains”. The bewildered look on her face indicates that she’s actually surprised and maybe even interested. I’m still waiting for Skyler to turn full bad ass…maybe it’ll happen, maybe it won’t.
The heist is every bit as awesome as you’d expect. The soundtrack fits well for an upbeat dubstep vibe, the quick cuts between the multiple scenarios and scenes happening at the same time, you’d think you were watching an Ocean’s 11 movie. There are multiple parts being played here, the distraction, the extraction, the decoy product, the overseer, and the monitor. It’s all well constructed and had me at the edge of my seat the whole time. Of course there are issues like the good samaritan and Walt’s stubborness, but the entire crew gets out just fine and they extracted 1000 gallons of methylamine. They celebrate until they see they have a visitor.
Tarantulas on the Desert
The boy on the dirtbike shows up and gives them a reluctant wave. The three who see him, Walt, Jessie, and Todd look at him in disbelief. Todd reacts first by returning the wave, and then reaching for his back pocket to pull out a gun and then promptly shoots the kid. Jessie screams in agony and we’re not given Walt nor Mike’s reaction. Multiple issues with this: Mike and Jessie don’t kill kids, Walt has tried, but not seriously done so, and we don’t even know if that good samaritan has left the premises before he hears a gun-shot. All these things better be addressed next episode! Not often do we see children get hurt or possibly die in such a gruesome way, but that’s Breaking Bad for ya’. Pushing the boundaries in the most tasteful manner.
A truly, truly, truly exciting episode that had amazing balance of acting, drama, crime, and excitement. As we cross the line for the first half of the final season, that means we probably hit the climax. The rest of the season will likely be ramifications to the actions we saw happen, but I’m curious how this will set up the penultimate climax of the entire season by the end of this half. It’s tough to say, but I do imagine a couple of people dying. But who? We might find out next week on Buy Out, the set up to the half-season finale.
See ya’ll next week. Don’t let your kids collect Tarantulas in the desert.