Live Chat for “Felina” (Breaking Bad)

livechat516indexAs mentioned in this post, there will now be a “live chat” post for each new episode. Feel free to post thoughts before, during and after the episode here. This will be a place for all the discussion on the new episode before the review post goes up.

I’m actually watching the first showing this week–everyone’s coming to the early one–so less than two more hours to go. I don’t feel all that excited today, though. I’m dreading what could happen to all these characters we’ve invested so much in over the last several years, and I’m just so sad that it’ll soon be over. I already feel the emptiness that is sure to set in big-time later tonight and tomorrow.

Live chat in the comments section! Have at it!

~Emilia J

P.S. Some final thoughts:
Still expecting Marie’s poisoning fantasy to play in SOMEHOW.
I may be the only person who doesn’t think that “woodworking” has anything to do with Lydia and her “woodchipper.” I think it’ll be something random that we can’t yet guess.
I think Walt dies in the episode or will be dying by the end.
Think Walt may turn himself in and take the ricin so he doesn’t have to keep living in jail.
Jesse’s a wild card but I hope he ends up okay. Live, Jesse, live!
It’s going to be fucking EPIC!

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69 thoughts on “Live Chat for “Felina” (Breaking Bad)

  1. re: ‘I think “woodchipper” will be something random that we can’t yet guess.’

    Yep, another VG tease that gave away nothing.
    Jesse daydreaming was just about the only way it could have been tied to the story about Jesse’s shop class.

  2. So, I guess they wasted a segment on Marie’s poisoning fantasy just to keep us guessing?!

    And considering how security conscious Jack’s boys were, I don’t think it’s realistic that they wouldn’t bother to check the rather large trunk of that Caddy, which could easily have held a couple of heavily armed mercenaries instead of an M60!

    Oh well, chalk it up to artistic license and such…

  3. Loose ends left untied: What was it that G&E did that caused Walt to split from Gray Matter?

    Still trying to figure out what motive Walt would have for killing Lydia, who helped him amass a large part of his fortune. It sure wasn’t her fault that he lost most of it, either. As far as her part in furthering the proliferation of Crystal Blue Meth without Walt, that was in fact what Walt himself had chosen, as he himself told her (that he left her with a viable operation). AFAIK, Lydia never double-crossed anyone, especially not Walt (although she did have Duane Chow killed, he would have been on Walt’s hit list too). I guess she had to die because she was just so dang uptight, huh?

    • [Loose ends left untied: What was it that G&E did that caused Walt to split from Gray Matter?]

      The beauty of it is that, it doesn’t matter anymore, because Walt won. Walt will be the third person in that relationship until the end of their lives, always just the sound of a footstep away. They’ll never forget he’s there, and that he was smarter than them in the end.

  4. IMO, it was a major mistake to have Walt poison Lydia BEFORE he Skyler told him she had been threatened by three masked men who told her to forget ever seeing Lydia at the car wash.

    Walt didn’t need to know exactly what he would do with the ricin when he stopped by his house (which was also to reminisce one last time). He would get the ricin just in case he needed it. But for Walt to have decided to use it on Lydia, it would have made a LOT more sense for him to have known she was behind that threat to Skyler.

    Of course, people are saying that Walt resented Lydia’s role in the perpetuation of “his” signature Blue Sky meth, but that doesn’t really square with the reality that Walt had in fact willingly given that up to her, and undoubtedly not for free, either… Lydia must have paid some kind of bonus to Walt in exchange for that “viable operation” Walt mentioned to her (normally that would be a percentage of future sales but I presume that retirees from the illegal drug business want their money up front instead). And let’s not forget that probably half of that nearly $10 million Walt dropped off at G&E’s house came from Lydia. Without Lydia (and Declan) Walt would be back where he was at the beginning, when Jesse had trouble selling a few OUNCES per week directly to end users.

  5. I love how Jesse holding the gun on Walt at the end mirrored the showdown between them in “End Times.” However, while they both ended the same (with Jesse not pulling the trigger), the first one ended with Jesse playing right into Walt’s hands, allowing himself to be manipulated for what seemed like the 1000th time. This one ended with Jesse freeing himself from Walt once and for all (that “do it yourself” line was great.)
    I also have to mention that Jesse killing Todd was the only correct prediction I ever had for this show. I even managed to get the method correct (I thought it would be with his ceiling leash, but close enough.)

  6. re: “Still expecting Marie’s poisoning fantasy to play in SOMEHOW.”

    I’ve been thinking that MAYBE after final editing was already complete on that episode, maybe they made changes to the subsequent episode(s), which wound up forcing them to cut the follow-up to Marie’s poisoning fantasy? I know that’s a stretch, but it’s about the only excuse I can come up with.

    BTW, did anybody else think the cut from the cold open seemed harsh? Marty Robbins was cut off in mid-stanza (mid-word, really). I know his next words were “El Paso” but still…

    • Emilia and Nomad, I expected the same thing re: Marie’s poisoning fantasy. Was kinda hoping they’d address that in the podcast. Oh well. You’re probably right, Nomad.

  7. I think Walt gave Jesse his freedom in a whole lot of ways last night. Obviously, in physically freeing him from the Nazis. Then, in giving Jesse the freedom to exercise his own free will in choosing whether or not to kill Walt. Just my opinion, I think Walt knew if he told Jesse he wanted to be shot, Jesse wouldn’t do it. It spared Jesse taking still another life. Jesse still had the free will to choose either way, so it was another step in Jesse’s redemption. After Jesse walked out to the car and stood there, Walt came out talking to Lydia, making sure that Jesse heard the conversation. So Walt gave Jesse freedom by letting him know Lydia would never be a threat again–and that he did it with the ricin.

    “Baby Blue” was such an uplifting song to go out on. The lyrics were perfect. Walt’s true love was chemistry, and you can read the lyrics as Walt returning after his true love after years of being away (teaching instead of doing):

    Guess I got what I deserve
    Kept you waiting there, too long my love
    All that time, without a word
    Didn’t know you’d think, that I’d forget, or I’d regret
    The special love I have for you
    My baby blue

    All the days became so long
    Did you really think I’d do you wrong
    Dixie, when I let you go
    Thought you’d realize, I would know, I would show
    The special love I have for you
    My baby blue

    Walt died in the lab, where he was happiest, reunited with his true love, his baby.

    He and Jesse both found as much peace as they possibly could have, under the circumstances. The last few minutes were poetry. Thank you, Vince et al.

    • re: El Paso. There must have been hundreds of hard-core BB fans yelling “yes!!!” when the Marty Robbins cassette hit the carseat; I was. The cut before the words “El Paso” were a wink to that audience. We all knew what the song was.

      Linking El Paso’s lyrics back to the final few minutes, Felina is the singer’s love to whom he returns one last time though he knows he will be killed. I assumed Vince was inferring Skyler was that love, but now I think it was Baby Blue.

      But my love for
      Felina is strong and I rise where I’ve fallen
      Though I am weary I can’t stop to rest
      I see the white puff of smoke from the rifle
      I feel the bullet go deep in my chest

      From out of nowhere Felina has found me
      Kissing my cheek as she kneels by my side
      Cradled by two loving arms that I’ll die for
      One little kiss and Felina, good-bye.

      Walt was cradled in the loving arms of his lab, he patted the equipment goodbye, and died knowing he had gone out on his own terms.

      • Given that BB was set in New Mexico, it always seemed FAR more likely that “Felina” referred to the Feleena in the Marty Robbins’ song ‘El Paso’ than it did some other things I’ve seen floated a lot, like: Iron-Lithium-Sodium.

        They had to cut away before the next words (El Paso) in the song, which was supposedly playing from that tape (which pretty much ruled out having it somehow play the earlier part of the song about heading to the badlands of New Mexico), but given that, I think the transition from that song to the BB theme was too jarring. To a lot of people, it will seem like an editing glitch (even though it obviously wasn’t). IMO, it would have been better to fade out the music to the sound of the Volvo picking up speed, maybe even have it driving over some type of washboard surface that evoked the feel of a galloping horse.

        • The chemist in me could never get behind the Iron-Lithium-Sodium thing because the lithium-meth connection is weak. Yes, there is a process for meth-making that uses Lithium and Ammonia (the Benkeser reaction) but that is used in a pseudo cook, and Walt hasn’t used a pseudo cook since sometime in Season 1. And even when he was doing a pseudo cook, there was never any indication he was using the Benkeser reaction method. There are lots of ways to make meth and we’ve never seen Walt employing Lithium (and definitely not once he switched to P2P cook in 107 and thereafter). So I never bought that connection. But that is also me being picking about the chemistry.

          Which must be respected, yo.

          I’ll say this though, I was a skeptic aobut the “El Paso” song really playing a part, and I was clearly wrong in my doubts!

          ~EJ

          • re: “I’ll say this though, I was a skeptic about the “El Paso” song really playing a part, and I was clearly wrong in my doubts!”

            What, you didn’t know that most New Hampshire Volvo drivers are BIG Marty Robbins fans?!
            Wheras, most Saab drivers prefer Conway Twitty !
            ;)

      • Here’s the lyrics they chose to include at the end of the cold open:
        “I saddled up and away I did go, Riding alone in the dark. Maybe tomorrow A bullet may find me.
        Tonight nothing’s worse than this Pain in my heart.
        And at last here I Am on the hill overlooking…”

        Especially considering that that last line refers to actually being there (as opposed to starting the journey), I guess I don’t understand why they chose those lyrics, when they could have used these:
        “Everything’s gone in life; nothing is left.
        It’s been so long since I’ve seen the young maiden.
        My love is stronger than my fear of death.

        I saddled up and away I did go, Riding alone in the dark.
        Maybe tomorrow A bullet may find me.
        Tonight nothing’s worse than this Pain in my heart…”

        In this case, “Young maiden” being a metaphor for both Holly and the Baby Blue referred to in the Badfinger song.
        They also could easily have muffled out most of the line
        “It’s been so long since I’ve seen the young maiden”
        when they switched from inside the car to the outside.

      • I think there are puns on the title, as you said Felina is mentioned in the opening song but Felina is an anagram of Finale and can be also read in chemical elements Fe – Iron Li – Lithium Na – Sodium wich are respectively contained in blood, meth and tears. I don’t think it’s a coincidence, not in BrBa. This finale was a masterpiece, even in its title, VG is really a fucking genius!

        Anyways I hope my english is understandable.

    • “I think Walt gave Jesse…. with the ricin.” I love that whole paragraph. Also, if Walt hadn’t given him the gun, I could imagine Jesse years from now, thinking, “If only I’d had the chance to kill that bastard myself!” and believing that would have given him peace. Now he knows it wouldn’t have.

      • “If only I’d had the chance to kill that bastard myself!” Great thought, brows, Jesse never had to wonder “what would have happened if…?” It so makes me feel good that Jesse’s free to go his own way.

  8. I like how Jesse’s last kill was a callback to Walt’s first, though here the prisoner did the killing. It also became clear that Todd couldn’t make the meth blue because Walt purposefully did not teach him everything. I agree with Nomad that killing Lydia would make more sense after knowing she threatened Skyler. But it could be he is just killing everyone who is involved in making and selling his blue meth.

    • Killing of Lydia had two important purposes: Losing all ties to the meth cooking especially for reducing any threat to Jesse and , whats more important : Getting rid of a person, who wouldn’t hesitate to testify against Skyler, that she must have been somehow involved, to save her own ass.
      So although I somehow had a little crush on Lydia , I found the Ricin directed at her quite satisfying.

      • Thanks, Marcel. I didn’t get why he would kill her (especially before finding out about the midnight visit to threaten Skyler), but your explanation makes sense.

  9. Also, both Jesse and Crazy 8 were imprisoned after ratting to the cops, and the Nazis chose the option that Crazy 8 told Walt he didn’t have: Crazy 8 says either kill me or free me, but the Nazis just Jesse is kept as a prisoner, neither killing nor freeing him.

  10. re: “It also became clear that Todd couldn’t make the meth blue because Walt purposefully did not teach him everything.”

    Yeah, I think I (and others I’m sure) have mentioned that idea, but the problem with that is that Walt & Todd cooked 99% pure Blue Sky meth together for months before Walt turned it over. Since Jack had specifically asked Walt to help Todd produce that color in exchange for killing Jesse, I think the main thing the re-emergence of the Blue Sky meth told Walt was that Jesse was still alive. Funny thing is, Lydia never mentioned anything to Walt about the lack of blue color nor did she complain to Declan about that either in the early episodes this year. Seems like they introduced that once they’d decided on how the finale would end.

    Walt came back not just for his “Baby Blue” lab but also to be with the *only* member of his family (literal or surrogate) who had not rejected him: Holly One of my earlier predictions mentioned that Walt would be coming back for Holly, but at the time I thought it might be because Skyler had been killed and Marie had custody of Holly. It’s pretty straightforward that Walt would want to see his kids – especially his infant daughter – one last time.

    Clearly, VG’s choice of the final song leaves no doubt who Walt’s other baby was. Given the Chiral/duality theme of the show, maybe it’s more accurate to say that Holly was Walt’s baby, and the lab was Heisenberg’s baby. Each of the two personas got to see their baby one last time before Walt/Heisenberg died for good.

    Another thing that bugs me is how the scene with Walt out in the desert ruined any surprise about how the final showdown would play out. IMO, it would have been better to show Walt working on some mechanism (leaving viewers to wonder what Walt was up to, maybe building another bomb, or something to create a diversion), leaving the M-60 out of the picture until the final act. It would have been a much better surprise that way.

    • Yep. That’s why I find it so strange that they omitted the earlier lyrics (“Everything’s gone in life; nothing is left. It’s been so long since I’ve seen the young maiden. My love is stronger than my fear of death.”) at the end of the cold open, and included the lyrics about arriving at the destination (which forced the rather crude edit ahead of the words “El Paso”), even though Walt was just starting the trip back home.

  11. On another board I won’t mention here, I had the temerity to ask if Walter White believed in God. I got a smattering of replies, mostly along the lines of No, Walt’s selfish, he only believes in himself. Although the answer may seem apparent, that question was never far from the minds of Breaking Bad’s creator and writers.

    The arc of the Walt’s transformation begins in the pilot episode, when Jesse asks his former teacher why he’s breaking bad. Walter’s reply (just a little god-like): I am awake. His words demonstrate one who believes in the efficacy of his own will. He thinks, therefore he can.

    Fast forward to Felina, however, and the first words Walter speaks form a prayer: Just get me home. Just get me home, I’ll do the rest. The words aren’t exactly repentant; he’s not expressing remorse for what he’s done. But, unless you think he’s talking to the Volvo, he seems to be addressing a higher power to give him a cosmic assist. Because–and here we go–if The Universe will avail him this one chance, he’ll surely make things right. Just a little help by fate’s right hand, that’s all he needs. (I suspect there might be a lapsed Calvinist somewhere in this construct, but I won’t speculate further.)

    Of course, when Walter makes his confession to Skyler, for the first time (who saw this coming?) he’s honest: I did it for myself, he says. I liked it. I was good at it. I was alive. Which completes the arc on Walt’s transformation–that’s right, the confession, not the rip-you-a-new-asshole M60 slaughter-fest. (Pffff. What kind of self-respecting Scarface confesses his sinful nature in the penultimate scene sequence? Right?)

    I am perhaps saying more than I should here, yet less than I want, about this beloved series. So I’ll keep it civil and go all English-major on you with a definition, a literary (eek!) term:

    Deux ex machina: When Greek playwrights ran into a difficult part of a plot unsolvable by logic, they would use a mechanical crane to lower a god to the stage. Then the god would solve the problem by unnatural means. The term deux ex machina refers to any improbable method deployed by a writer to bring his/her plot to the desired solution.

    In this post-modern age, no writer plots a story with this technique at the forefront of his mind. No, of course not. We’re too sophisticated to fall for that sort of claptrap. Contrary to stated intentions, though, Walter did not, as promised, end up as Scarface. More like a Greek deity, Walter White was mechanically lowered to the stage in the finale, where he solved just about every difficulty in the script, all in one immaculate, last fell swoop.

      • Emilia, you took the “wow” right out of my mouth.

        Martin, your comment is so beautifully written. As they say, there are no atheists in a foxhole. Walt’s prayer was perfect, and perfectly answered.

        Emilia, I’m looking forward to your analysis. Keep on writing, woman!

        • Martin, your post kind of reminded me of Samson, who did what he wanted but was always able to save himself from any situation. At the end he says a prayer so he can get the strength to do one final act to make up for all he did.

          • Samson. I like that parallel. Glorious, bittersweet triumph.

            Walter is in that line of characters who have a serious physical drawback–in Walt’s case, cancer–and yet they manage, through sheer genius, to do amazing things. The show “House” is another example of the smart-but-hurt protagonist. Like Walter, Greg House is Mensa-level smart, but at the same time, he bears physical and emotional scars that hold him back. For viewers, that seems to be a compelling combination. Writers, though, will be hard pressed to one-up Gilligan’s character study of Walter White. (We, both writers and viewers, might have to put the smart-but-hurt character on the shelf for a while.)

            What I didn’t say in my original post was this: I thought “Felina” was structurally not as sexy as previous episodes in the last eight, but Walt’s overcoming triumph was a glorious ending, even if a bit too tidy in the revenge department. REMEMBER MY NAME. Yes, indeed.

            • When I was trying to think of another show whose ending I liked, I thought of House. But I hadn’t noticed any similarities between Greg and Walt. Great observation!

              • House was the show that got me watching TV after years of not watching much of any. I still remember the first episode I saw. It was called “Lines in the Sand” (S3E4) and was about an autistic kid who turned out to have worms. But what hooked me was a speech House makes to Cameron.

                I would definitely rather hang out with House than Walt though. He may be a jerk, and kinda careless with patients’ lives, but at least he’s not a murderer. Plus he’s got that acerbic wit.

                House also does a bit of self-sacrifice in the end, right? I only watched the finale once, while it aired, so it’s hard to remember, but doesn’t he give up his medical career and his “puzzles” (which were his strongest drug) in faking his own death in order to spend time with Wilson since Wilson is dying of cancer? I remember Wilson saying something to House like, “You know there is no going back, ever.” And Walt got shot shielding Jesse. They both did something for their only “friend” ish type person. And wasn’t House also supposed to/about to go to jail?

                I am so glad we got a season five of BrBa. There aren’t numbers in the universe that could capture how many million times more I prefer the series the way it ended to the “I won” of season four. That’s just me though.

                ~EJ

    • Martin: I can’t say it any better than Emilia and Catherine. Insightful, eloquent, informative post.

      I thought it was classy of you not to mention the name of the other board, too. I really like the posters this board attracts. The comments tend to be well thought-out and respectful – even when people disagree.

      • Yes, the place doesn’t need to be mentioned though it was a pretty good discussion over there. There have been some great ones over time at that place. And lots of insanity, too. Sometimes it’s too much (plus all the technical difficulties).

        ~EJ

        • @ EJ

          About House and the possible parallels to Walter.

          House is on probation for stalking and assaulting Cuddy, when he pulls a prank in the hospital–clogging the upstairs toilets with paper–which puts him in jeopardy of going to jail. This happens just as Wilson finds himself in deep crisis, with inoperable cancer. House wants him to take further cancer treatments, but Wilson refuses. To avoid arrest, House goes on the lam, fakes his own death in a fire, and the final scene is of House and Wilson doing their version of Easy Rider on a motorcycle on a country road somewhere, headed to points unknown.

          House has impulsiveness in him, and, like Walter, he’s also pissed at fate/God/the Universe, which gets him into serious trouble, but not exactly a life of crime. I particularly like the two-part episode where House ends up in a State mental hospital. Some of the best drama I’ve ever seen on television. But, of course, Walter has a different set of problems. The two characters are similar in that they have to work through deep personal difficulties yet manage to function at a high level of competency anyway. I think that character type has become a standard in TV writing, one that may have to be retired for a time after BrBa.

        • A comment about boards in general… I’ve only participated in two other than this one, and I don’t know first hand because I have to avoid them around finale time since I don’t watch eps until the day after they air, but I’ve read that the “insanity” factor rises when a season or show ends because emotions are running higher than normal. Something useful to keep in mind (if it’s true).

  12. What I want to know is, when do we start our Kickstarter campaign to launch an annual BB festival in ABQ? I bet there’d be funding, and it would be a gas to plan something like that. It would be a definite draw for ABQ. Anyone up for it?

    • Like x1000! YES! Let’s do that!

      I was once in a writing class where a student read a nonfiction piece about going to a My Little Ponies convention and all I could think was WHY don’t we have something like that for BrBa? It would be awesome, and they could keep the legacy of the show alive, and it could just be an “everybody wins” type situation.

      I think we need to come up with ideas for this.

      ~EJ

    • Checking my dictionary of literary terms, I find that the correct spelling for the device I cited is deus ex machina, god from the machine. I wouldn’t want to put out bad information.

      Thanks for the positive comments.

      MB

      • Great post Martin. One thing that got me thinking about your question of Walt believing in God. I don’t think he originally did. I think he is man of science and logic, not of faith. However there is a scene that was one of my favorites of the show. In “Fly” Walt starts talking about Jane and tells Jesse that he ran into her father that night she died. He talks about the odds of this happening being nearly impossible to calculate.

        Few things hit me when this happened. First, I didn’t think Walt felt much remorse for letting Jane die, but he obviously had put some thought into it. Second, the odds. Walt only went back to Jesse’s apartment because of the conversation he had with Jane’s father. You don’t give up on family. I think Walt convinced himself that something beyond logic, randomness, or any other explanation helped influence the events of that night. This influence did not make him kill Jane, but it did give him a choice. Maybe he does not believe in God, but now he might believe there is something in the universe that influences the paths of our lives. And this could be the ‘cosmic assist’ he is looking for.

        Last note on Lydia. I think someone already pointed it out, but I think Walt just knew Lydia had to go. She was on board with Walt in killing Mike’s men because they became a liability. Walt’s family and himself could end up being a problem if they started talking with police trying to make a deal. And Walt knows that Lydia will do anything to cover her tail.

        So sad to see the show end, but happy to experience such a wonderful story.

        • @ LJ

          Glad you mentioned “Fly.” That episode is one of my favorites, that and “Peekaboo.”

          I took a class with an English professor who said of Herman Melville: He was pissed at God for not existing. I think Walter might be in that category, too (Hell, I might be in that category) The idea being that life seems so fated and determined, with undeniable happenstances, like Walter meeting Jane’s father right before her death, so how can God not exist? And if he does exist, why am I in so much pain? I think that strain of anger at fate is definitely a part of Walter White’s character, but the writer’s placed it in the quieter moments of the show, making you slow down, forcing you to be patient enough to look for it. I give them major props for having the courage to do that.

        • re: “Last note on Lydia.”
          I think there were two main reasons why Walt met Todd & Lydia before he showed up at Skyler’s apartment:
          1. The timing, in terms of time of day. Walt needed to show up a Skyler’s apartment shortly before Jr. arrived home from school in order to see him one last time
          2. From the storytelling standpoint, it was more sentimental for Walt’s last stop to see his kids (especially Holly) one last time to occur just before before he went on his “mission,” from which he probably did not expect to return.

  13. Has anyone heard VG mention anything about why he picked the color blue for Walt’s signature product? I’m wondering if VG had thought of at least some of the songs that were so appropriate for ‘Blue Meth’ (as opposed to another color). The first one must have been “Crystal Blue Persuasion” and of course the Badfinger song at the end of the finale. I’m wondering if VG had thought of any of those songs when he picked the color blue, or if they were all afterthoughts? If the latter, it was an extraordinarily fortuitous choice of color!

    • That’s a great question. I would guess that the answer is no, only because the songs related to the blue meth came SO much later on. Years later.

      It’s hard to imagine the meth as any other color, but even if it was, there might be songs to fit that too. I’m thinking of the song “Crystalline Green” by Goldfrapp, which would’ve worked if they’d made green meth. Actually, to tie it all back into House, that song plays during a great episode of House, and I can’t remember the episode name but it’s S2E7, the episode where House uses the notes he stole from his ex-gf’s therapist to try to win her back, and the patient is a druggie with AIDS and Cameron does some of his meth and sleeps with Chase, with “Crystalline Green” playing in the background of her drug experiment.

      Any other color seems weird though, and would invoke different things. It would be interesting to know exactly why he chose blue. I also like that when they call it “blue sky” it conjures up Skyler, who used to wear a lot of blue. Walt’s loves.

      ~EJ

      • re: “It’s hard to imagine the meth as any other color…”

        Well, yeah, it is NOW, after several years of becoming accustomed to Walt’s signature blue meth. I guess that if an impure product is a dingy yellowish color, the opposite of that would be blue, which is why that’s the color most often used for “pure” drinking water containers.

        I also wonder if how early VG thought about the blue meth in terms of it being Heisenberg’s “baby” whereas Walt’s little girl Holly was typically dressed in pink (naturally). It could be that was another reason for the color blue.

    • Maybe they talked about this in the “To’hajiilee” podcast while discussing Todd’s cook? I listen at work, so I don’t catch every detail. :\ If you find the answer, will you please post it? I’m very curious now!

      • I’ll go back and listen again and see if there’s anything. We also might want to look into articles around the time of episode 107 since that’s when they introduced the blue color to the meth.

        ~EJ

    • When cooking crystal from a methylamine base the product rendered is blue in color (as opposed to white, if one starts from pseudoephedrine). In the story, Walt and Jesse are forced to switch their ingredients when pseudo becomes scarce, leading them to steal a barrel of methylamine from a chemical company warehouse. Therefore, Walt didn’t exactly choose blue as the signature color for his product; scientifically, it just is blue. Which is a color, luckily, that opens up lots of choices in song selection. (About the color business: yo, none of this is based on first-hand experience. I just read eclectically, that’s all.)

      • Ah, thanks Martin. I didn’t know that methylamine truly turns meth blue. That must have been one of their “happy accidents”.

        • Okay guys, I don’t want to burst your bubbles here but the chemistry tutor part of me can’t keep quiet. Pure meth would not be blue, whether it was made in a pseudo or P2P (the method that uses methylamine) cook. VG and friends made that up. Meth is clear, and actually the presence of color (especially a LOT of color like that) would signify impurities.

          Hahaha actually in a lab I once had to purify out some impurities that made the solution a gorgeous crystal blue, using activated charcoal. Afterward, even the impure solid (which was only about 70% pure) only had the slightest hint of blue, where the purified one was solid white (as was the correct color for the compound).

          Here are some sources. This is an interview with the organic chemist who advises them for the show. She talks about how the blue color of the meth is artistic license and not science:
          http://www.salon.com/2013/08/22/so_what_if_pure_meth_isnt_really_blue_partner/

          Another article:
          http://www.ibtimes.com/breaking-bad-chemistry-truth-behind-blue-meth-walter-whites-process-1411068

          But if you’re not convinced–I’m such an amateur chemist at best and certainly no expert on meth–just google “Why is Walt’s meth blue?” or something like that.

          As for the connection between meth and the color blue, it’s kind of interesting that they call people who get lots of pseudo for meth cooking purposes “smurfs.”

          In real life, if meth is blue, it either is really, really impure or has been dyed with food coloring like Jack and Kenny wanted to do.

          Also I need to echo what Martin said and clarify that I have no experience actually cooking meth. The only real “kitchen chemistry” I do (aside from cooking…food) is make up cleaning solutions to try to get hair dye out of my kitchen table which hasn’t been successful yet, sadly.

          ~EJ

  14. One other thing I’ve been wondering: where is the actual location of the shootout in “To’hajiilee”?
    We know the GPS coords. are for the production studio. But surely somebody on the crew has revealed the actual location, or somebody familiar with the area recognized exactly where that was. I did a couple of cursory searches but came up empty.

    • I think it was actually set and filmed in To’hajiilee. They talked about that on the podcast, that it was where they filmed the real first cook, and the money burial scene, and the shootout. I don’t know anything more specific than that, or how big To’hajiilee is.

      ~EJ

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