Breaking Bad
Cornered

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Joe R: B | 19 USERS: A+
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The One Who Knocks
In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

Previously, Mike had to shoot his way out of a Pollos truck hijacking, then later babysat Jesse and took part in a ruse that ultimately left Jesse feeling like he was a vital cog in the Gus Fring meth empire (and not just Walter White's lab boy). Walt and Skyler toasted to their new car-wash venture, but then Walt went and ran his mouth at Hank's house, causing Hank to re-think his theory that Heisenberg has been killed.

Another week, another cold-open inside a Pollos truck. Only this time, instead of Mike, it's two random yahoos, which means of course they're going to end up dead. This time, when the truck is stopped, they don't have the foresight that Mike had to crouch down for cover. And as dumb as these two are, their cartel counterparts are that much more clever. Instead of barraging the truck with bullets, they hook up the exhaust pipe to a tube and pump it right back into the cabin. A truck this size, you can imagine how much carbon monoxide that is. The cartel guys wait, snack on some fruit, while the Pollos guys wheeze. When they get desperate, they try to shoot out some oxygen holes, but it's too late. Pollos 1, Cartel 1. After the Pollos guys are dead, the cartel folk open up the back of the truck, search the buckets of fry batter for the one with the blacklight-sensitive star marking, and abscond with it. This is definitely not just another blunt message sent to Gus; it's next-level shit.

Title card.

White house. Skyler is researching Gale on the computer and listening back to Walt's frantic voice-mail message from last week, over and over. Walt is passed out in bed, still in his clothes from the party. Skyler brings him coffee and waits for him to rouse himself. The mark of a true liar, he begins with the tried and (opposite of) true, "I don't even remember what I said last night, I was so drunk!" Skyler slowly starts in on Gale -- was he involved in Walt's business? After scoffing ineffectively a few times, Skyler repeats herself, and Walt assents by his silence. Who killed him? The people Walt works for? "Definitely not." People who, at some point, might want to do the same to Walt? "I seriously doubt it." Hmm. How telling, the different in word choice there. Walt "definitely" doesn't work for Jesse. But there's less absolutism in his sense that Jesse would never do the same to him.

Obviously, something has changed in Skyler's mind, about this whole drug-dealing operation she thought she'd made her peace with. And as usual, she's trying to put together the few puzzle pieces she has in any way she can, and she doesn't always connect them right. She thinks Walt's loose lips last night were a "cry for help"; he wants Hank to catch him. Walt openly mocks this train of though. "You're like Dr. Joyce Brothers, here," he scoffs. Oooh, nice topical reference, GRANDPA WALT. Skyler's serious, though. If he is in danger, they will go to the police. She means it. If it's between that and him getting killed, there is no choice. "You are no hardened criminal," she says. She then makes the Season 1 case for Walt -- schoolteacher, cancer, in over his head. The case we all wanted to make for Walt when this first started. She doesn't know that it's far too late for that. And the only way Walt can get her to stop talking about turning themselves in is to tell her himself. Of course, it's Walt, so he deliberately says it in the worst way possible. "Admit you're in danger," Skyler says. "Who is it you think you see?" he glowers. "Do you know how much I make? What would happen if I suddenly stopped going in to work?" Typical, self-aggrandizing Walt says the whole billion-dollar operation would come crumbling down without him. (Oh, Walt, do you even believe that one anymore?) "You think I'm in danger?" he asks, scowling and menacing and mean. "I am the danger. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No. I am the one who knocks!" Naturally, this has all completely scared the shit out of Skyler.

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