TV Series: Breaking Bad S05E13 – Another showdown for Hank, but the last?

walter2Warning: there may be some soft spoilers in this post.

The last episode of Breaking Bad, “To’hajiilee“, left me (and presumably millions of other viewers) breathless. It set me thinking about loads of aspects of the show that I wanted to explore briefly here.

One of the aspects that makes this show work so well is how they use humor to break up the tension in the story. This episode was probably the most stressful one so far this season, but just when it was nearly unbearable they threw in the carwash scene. It was so great to see the star-struck Walt Jr talking to Saul, hear Saul’s awesome comebacks, and then have Walt pop and and run out holding baby Holly. There was also that great camera shot of Walt on the left, Saul on the right, and the “Better Call Saul” billboard between them. And amazingly enough, the tension skyrocketed again until the end of the episode.

The ploys of Hank in this episodes were clever and ingenious – it was great how there was the first one which was already rather interesting and then the second was which was ingenious. I loved how Jesse figured that where Walt “lives” was in his greed – and that Jesse, despite all the grief and insults that Walt would throw at him, actually had some great ideas in the past too (the magnet – science bitch!, etc.).

The whole episode works up to the final three minutes may be the tensest three minutes I have seen on TV. While it was obvious that the Uncles were going to show up, it fun waiting for it to actually happen. It was hard to see Walt turn himself in – and we wondered whether he had something else brewing although that would be hard to believe. Also, why did the Uncles disobey his direct order? Perhaps they wanted to force him to cook? Were they drawn to the blood? I can’t help hoping for a total miracle, but that last call to Marie did sound like a real goodbye, didn’t it? I just hate to see Hank and Gomey go.

Another observation: why is is that nearly every time that Hank goes in the field, some bad shit goes down: Tuco, Tortuga, the Cousins, and now this. I just don’t think he has that many lives left. I just didn’t see it coming. Then again, E14 is called Ozymandias which is poem by Shelley:

 I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

Are the “two vast and trunkless legs of stone” in the desert, Walt and Jesse? The shattered visage being that of Hank? “Nothing besides remains” is the end of the rest of the family? I don’t see how they go down unless there is a move on Lydia’s part? One theory on the web is that Walt may be forced to cook for the Uncles again under duress. Hard to see that happening since it isn’t really in the spirit of Breaking Bad…in any case, Vince did say on Talking Bad last night that the title was not innocuous. The traditional interpretation of the poem is that it is about the inevitable fall of all great men. The fall of Heisenberg? The tough thing will be sleeping for the next six nights in order to see where this really goes.

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About mfinocchiaro

IT Architecture Guru for large PLM software company but dabbling in Web 2.0 and other stuff.
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4 Responses to TV Series: Breaking Bad S05E13 – Another showdown for Hank, but the last?

  1. David Froehling says:

    This was an amazing episode. The funny thing is that. I had never watched this show (ever) before the night this episode came on. I just happened to turn on the TV and I watched this and the previous episode. I may be hooked.

    • mfinocchiaro says:

      The ENTIRE show from S01 -> S05a is INCREDIBLE. Best. Show. Ever. But I find it awesome that you would drop in at S05E13 and STILL be able to follow and appreciate it. Was your heart racing during the driving scene and nearly breaking during the last 3 minutes? For someone coming in without the full context of the relationships between the characters, was it all obvious what was going on? Or perhaps the cinematic techniques being used drove the tension through the roof even if all the subtleties weren’t clear?

  2. Pingback: More Breaking Bad Podcasts and other Obsessive Musings | Fino's Weblog

  3. Pingback: TV Series: Breaking Bad S05E14 – Look upon my works, ye Mighty, and despair! | Fino's Weblog

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