Monday, August 26, 2013

Meth Monday: 5.11 - "Confessions"

Hello, Readers Mine! Sorry to be posting this so late, but I've spent most of the day either on the road, settling back in to my grad. student digs, or, well, napping, so it got kinda late on me. Fair warning, I'm going to be talking a bit about last night's new episode of Breaking Bad, "Confessions," so if you haven't see in yet: SPOILER ALERT!!!

Skyler (Anna Gunn) and Walt (Bryan Cranston), waiting for hank and Marie in 5.11 "Confessions"
Okay, my co-author, K. Dale Koontz, has already totaled up the number of confessions in this episode and been looking into them, so I'll leave it to her to talk about them in this week's Walter White Wednesday. What I'd like to focus on are the three people who don't make a confession of some type in this episode: Hank, Walt, and Jesse.

First off, Hank went into the DEA office towards the end of last week's episode, "Buried," fully prepared to tell his superior and Gomey about Walt, and by so doing, end his career. Unfortunately for him, Gomey told him about Jesse's little redistribution of wealth scheme, so instead Hank unsuccessfully tried to get Jesse to roll on Walt, and wound up telling no one anything. Which left him vulnerable to being framed by Walt via the false confession DVD.

And yeah, it's a "confession," even if a false one, but I don't think it counts. Neither, for that matter, does Walt telling Junior about his cancer, because both instances are nothing more than manipulations which demonstrate the true depths of Walt's moral bankruptcy. He doesn't care about Junior, only about keeping Hank and Marie from telling him about Walt's crimes, and he uses his son's deep and abiding love for him as a handle to get him to do what he want's him too. This is a betrayal every bit as viscous, calculated, and despicable as the fake confession. Walt has one real opportunity to confess in this episode, to actually be honest, and that's when Jesse confronts him in the desert. Because Jesse is right, Walt is playing him. Walt is always playing him, but despite Jesse's agonized plea for just one single moment of honest from him, Walt stays silent, never admitting that getting Jesse out of town is all for Walter White's own good. The hug is just another play. 

Finally, there is Jesse, who doesn't say anything to the APD, or to Hank or the DEA. Over the course of the series, Jesse, despite his failings, and his very serious crimes, has become the moral center of Breaking Bad and, at this point, he is the most honest character on the show. He is also the one who could offer the most damning confession of all. After all, Walt is the mastermind. Jesse could likely get into WitSec pretty easily if he rolls, but Jesse is also intensely, perhaps stupidly, loyal. Until he finally figures out the connection between Huell, Saul, Walt, and the near fatal poisoning of Brock. For this first time since season 5B cranked up three weekends ago, Jesse is awake - and furious.

Here's the thing: In 5.09 "Blood Money," as Walt52 wanders through his abandoned house, there is absolutely no evidence of fire damage int he living room area where Jesse was last seen splashing gasoline. So we know he is interrupted before he can light his intended fire, and we appear to be supposed to think that it is Walt, frozen thirty-eight snub in hand, who will do the interrupting. But what if it's someone else? What if it's Junior? Or Hank. Yeah, what if it's Hank? After all, we last saw him suddenly leaving the DEA office for who knows where. Maybe he thought he'd search Walt's house? Or maybe both Walt and Hank show up at roughly the same time.

Or maybe Gilligan and Co. will stun the world and have Walt shoot Jesse dead.

It's Breaking Bad. Anything can happen.

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