Does anyone remember last year, how episode 507 was originally listed as “Everybody Wins,” instead of “Say My Name”? I was thinking that “Granite State” could’ve been called “Everybody Loses.” Every character lost a LOT in “Ozymandias,” but in this episode, the fallout really hits. Some characters can see the loss for what it is and accept it, while others can’t. I think the crux of this episode is how everyone deals with and reacts to “It’s over.”
Yo! So I’m currently in this contest to go to the Breaking Bad finale in LA, which I’ve been desperately wishin’ and hopin’ to go to for a long while now. The contest is based on coming up with toasts, but I thought, just in the interest of trying everything I can, I’d also throw out a pitch.
This make me so uncomfortable (and I really hope the places where I make fun of myself come across) but here goes:
Top Ten Reasons You Should Pick Me for ToastingBad
Whispers about the finale event at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery started in February. And ever since then, I’ve always kept one dedicated window on my phone’s internet browser open to a google search for “breaking bad finale hollywood forever” and would refresh it on a daily basis in hopes of new updates. For months and months, there was nothing new. In June and July the news started picking up and in August ticket info was finally available. At noon on September 4, 2013, I sat here at my computer with two browsers open, refreshing the ticket page on each like a madwoman. But even with all that, it went from “not onsale yet” to “no more tickets available” with one click of the refresh button on each browser. I was so crushed that I wrote a post about it.
In Season 5 of The Office, Michael Scott tries to start his own paper company. He has his first meeting with investors, and of course it turns out to be his grandmother’s investment group. When Michael’s Nana asks him how he expects to turn a profit in this economy, Michael says, “By wanting it more” This answer is hilarious, ridiculous and quintessential Michael. I realize that winning the chance to go to the Breaking Bad finale is a much bigger stretch than Michael Scott launching a successful paper company on his own, that my odds are WAY worse than his (which is saying something sorta astronomical), but I think I can make a case for wanting it more. Or at least wanting it really, really badly.
Point is, I was tracking this event for a over six months. The timing of the event fit my schedule so well (which came as a surprise) that it felt destined. And that’s gotta count for something, right, Nana?
9. Contributions to the Breaking Bad Community
I blog here, a lot, about Breaking Bad. My post How Walter White Poisoned Brock and What Happened to the Ricin Cigarette, which walks through the whole tangled web of lies Walt wove, step-by-step, with episode titles, pictures and detailed discussion to illuminate what happened and how Jesse finally figured it out, has helped more than TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND people (check it: photo evidence from my stats page) understand that plotline. One commenter even said, “This convoluted plot seems to be all crystal clear now about 99.1%. :) Thanks Emilia J I’m going to marry you!” This post has been linked at IMDB, televisionwithoutpity, a Radiohead forum, the Breaking Bad wiki, a bodybuilding forum, the AMC Breaking Bad site, TV Guide, and many, many other sites. Greg Otto linked it in his review of a Game of Thrones episode (it’s the “near-deaths” link) in US News and World Report.
So this was a little fun idea that was inspired by a few people over at the AMC BrBa board–Kathy, Schmeisenberg and Lydia’s Shoes–why not try reading tarot cards for the characters who are left and see if that’s indication of their fate in the next episode? Of course they aren’t real, but their stories are more finite than most things one might attempt to pick up using esoteric tools. I used to read cards all the time, so why the fuck not?
And just in case it’s not abundantly clear, this is totally in fun, not serious. Just playing around. So let’s do it.
Character Tarot Readings for “Granite State”
MARIE – Victory (Six of Wands)
That was a bit surprising. I don’t expect anyone to be feeling victorious in tonight’s episode, especially Marie, considering her husband has just died. This could pertain to an “I was right!” type feeling. Maybe in her grief, she is enjoying one-upping Skyler somehow? There is definitely a sense of pride going on here. There could also be some righteous anger. Can’t let go of the poisoning idea even though I can’t see how it would come into play. But whether it does or not, perhaps Marie will “win” somehow tonight? Or it’s all just hogwash.
SKYLER – Knight of Discs
This card actually fits Skyler very well. The knight of discs is pragmatic, steady, solid, concerned with the little details that add up to building a future. The knight of discs is savvy and careful about matters of money, again always focused towards building a future. This indicates acting out of logic and practicality and not so much out of emotion. We might see some calculated moves on Sky’s part, that shrewd intellect of hers leading the way. Skysenberg may be at it again. To me this card doesn’t necessarily indicate an outcome so much as a mindset. I think she’ll be using that big brain of hers to deal with things the best way she can for the long-term benefit. Maybe that will mean playing into what Walt set up in that call, or maybe it will mean fessing up everything she knows if that’s what’ll be best for the kids, or maybe it could mean floating Walt’s false confession (doesn’t seem likely though). The point is, if there’s anything to this, Sky will be acting out of logic and reasoned thought rather than emotion. And she has that potential in her, big-time.
This was my favorite episode so far this summer. Holy shit. So much to discuss. But first:
I gotta do it. I TOLD YOU SO in last week’s predictions that Jesse would find out about Brock and the poisoning. Yeah bitch!
So, are we getting ourselves into a Chekhov’s Disappearer situation now? That’s the second time that someone on the show has tried to use Saul’s last resort and the second time it hasn’t worked out. Walt was going to do it back in 411 “Crawl Space” but then he went to the crawl space to get the money and Skyler had given it to Ted for his IRS fiasco.
Now Jesse gets even closer to using this “out.” Saul tells Jesse, “This is it. Once I make the call, no take-backs.” Saul makes the call and asks for “a new dust filter for a Hoover Max Extract Pressure Pro Model 60,” Jesse’s at the pickup site, it’s all good to go…and then he just wants to smoke a little pot and the whole plan goes up in smoke. (Much more on that coming up.) So a second attempt to use the disappearer is thwarted. Will the third time be the charm? Will Walt (and family?) end up using the guy later on? Is that how Walt ends up in New Hampshire? Will this “gun” ever go off?
Because this post is getting so complicated and involved, here’s a little Table of Contents so you can easily jump to any section you are interested in right off the bat. I’m going to keep updating as the season progresses, and promotional pics and teasers come out for each episode, so this will come in handy.
General Pre-Seasons Teasers and Trailers
Episode 509 “Blood Money”
Episode 510 “Buried”
Episode 511 “Confessions”
Episode 512 “Rabid Dog”
Episode 513 “To’hajiilee”
Episode 514 “Ozymandias”
Episode 515 “Granite State”
Episode 516 “Felina”
Overall Season Predictions
Spoilers (mostly relate to the premiere)
UPDATE SEPTEMBER 18: Pics, teaser and updated predictions for episode 515 “Granite State” added to the section below about that episode.
Also, no idea in what episode, but Gretchen will be returning! You can read the article here. It mostly focuses on another upcoming project for actress Jessica Hecht but at the very beginning, it says that she was in Albuquerque filming for an appearance in the final season. What do you make of that? What episode might she appear in? My thought is that Walter’s crimes become public knowledge and Gretchen finds out what she was inadvertently helping to cover up so long ago. I just imagine that finding out the truth about Walt could bring her out of the woodwork. As could Walt’s funeral, but I’m leaning more towards the first guess. Thoughts???
UPDATE AUGUST 29: Pics and video teaser for episode 512 “Rabid Dog” added to the section below about that episode. New cast member listings at IMDB and updated predictions added for “To’hajiilee” and “Granite State”.
UPDATE AUGUST 22: Pics and video teaser for Episode 511 “Confessions” added to the section below about that episode. And a tiny little thing is added to the section for “To’hajiilee”. Betting Bad results added for “Buried”.
UPDATE AUGUST 14: Pics and video teaser for Episode 510 “Buried” added to the section below about that episode.
I’m also going to start posting my Betting Bad results after each episode airs. For others that are playing, please share your updates as well.
UPDATE AUGUST 7: A few more teeny, eensy little spoilers have leaked out about the first episode. Critics got advanced copies of 509 “Blood Money” and wrote reviews and tried not to say anything, but some couldn’t help giving a few things away. Even though these all relate to the first episode, I’m putting them down below in the Spoilers section so people who want to avoid them can, and those who want to know can read on.
UPDATE JULY 27: I did come across some actual spoilers (Comic-Con). The new info raises more questions than in answers, but I’m going to add it at the very bottom to be sensitive to those who don’t want any, even tiny, spoilers (and I’m usually one of those people but BrBa and this long wait is just killing my willpower).
BEGINNING OF ORIGINAL POST: In less than four weeks, the final episodes begin. It’s getting so close but it still feels like an eternity, all this waiting. So what to do in the meantime? Dig, dig, dig up every clue and try to figure out what it means. And there are several clues to find, so let’s put it all together and make some predictions, even though we know that Vince Gilligan and co. will no doubt prove us wrong and surprise us with things we never would’ve thought up. Still, mysteries are fun, so let’s at least try. I have gathered up a LOT of little tidbits for you all.
In the previous episode, Walt pushed for expanding their territory, and a price hike, and in this one, there are some consequences. Actually, there have been a lot of consequences all season, but it’s funny how Walt doesn’t see it. Or sees it and wants to just push on anyway. He’s not exactly proceeding with caution. Skinny Pete got held up and in response Walt pushes Jesse to get into the whole mess deeper. Gretchen called Walt on his bullshit and he gets all Heisenberg and says “Fuck you.” Walt and Jesse got kidnapped by Tuco and Walt gets naked in a convenience store to make his cover-up of his disappearance more believable and talks to Jesse, while still at the hospital, about starting up cooking again. Jesse got all depressed after his dealings with The Spooges and Walt sees it as an opportunity to exploit their newfound power and expand the business. Walt’s family life is all a mess and he just keeps on lying and disappearing.
I guess my point is that at any point where it seems a person might decide to proceed with caution and dial things back, Walt does the opposite. He is a man on a mission and doesn’t see any of these things as warning signs. He wants that money counting thing to be going around the clock.
But Badger getting busted could be really bad. Jesse says he’s too loyal to roll, but how long will that last?
UPDATE AUGUST 26: After last night’s episode, there are a lot of questions about Jesse’s desert revelation and how it all fits together, so I updated this post to include that toward the end, to keep it chronological. You can skip to that part here.
I’ve noticed that a lot of people come across my blog from googling something like, “How did Walter White poison Brock?” or “What happened to the ricin cigarette?” or “what happened berries Walter Brock” or something similar. On the Breaking Bad message boards, questions about these topics still rage. While watching the latest episode on Sunday night, some friends were asking the the same questions. This storyline definitely has to be one of the most complex–maybe even convoluted–plotlines on the show. Some of it is more left to assumption than explicitly shown. So I thought I’d try to elucidate with my understanding of what happened, start to finish.
In episode 407 “Problem Dog,” Walt makes some ricin in the superlab. He gives it to Jesse, who puts it in a “lucky cigarette” that he keeps upside down in his cigarette pack. The ricin cigarette is born.
In episode 412 “End Times,” Walt is despondent and doesn’t know what to do. Gus has just threatened his wife, son, infant daughter and brother-in-law. Walt knows that Gus could be close to turning Jesse against him and that Jesse’s flagging loyalty is the only thing keeping Gus from killing him. Since Skyler gave a big chunk of Walt’s drug money to the IRS for the Ted thing, Walt doesn’t have the money to get himself and his family out of town through Saul’s disappeaerer “vacuum guy.” He sits out back behind his house and spins a revolver. The first two times, it points at him. The third time though, it points to a potted plant, which (we will later come to see) is a lily of the valley plant. Here is where Walter White gets his idea.