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Breaking Bad: I See You

Gus: "I'm supporting my community. I hide in plain sight, same as you."

This is the episode when Gus started to get to me.

Beneath the convincing disguise of a mild-mannered businessman who cares about his community, Gus is in fact more frightening, more dangerous, than Tuco, the Killer Twins, and the cartel. He's three steps ahead of everyone else in the game. Gus walked calmly into a hospital packed to the brim with angry cops and fed them all chicken dinners while Mike murdered the remaining Twin right in front of their noses and Gus's operatives took out the head of the cartel. That's more than cold-blooded. Gus has ice water in his veins.

In that hospital lobby surrounded by cops, Walt and Gus had a quiet conversation that changed everything. Walt is accustomed to thinking rings around other people, and it was a shock for Walt to realize that Gus was thinking rings around him. What a game-changer. Crafting a great villain is quite possibly more important to good drama than creating an appealing hero, and Gus is turning into an exceptional villain. "I See You," the title of the episode, wasn't so much about the remaining Killer Twin finally seeing Walt. It was Walt discovering that Gus knew everything. Walt now sees Gus as he truly is.

The family waiting room scenes were powerful, too. Marie blamed Walt for Hank getting shot, tracing it back quite perceptively to Walt "buying weed" from Jesse. Walt kept telling Marie he was sorry, and in truth, it really was Walt's fault. Marie is often the comic relief in the series, but not this time. Marie's anger and distress over Hank, especially when she discovered that the DEA had taken Hank's gun away from him, was touching and real.

I was also moved by the scene where Walt told Marie and the rest of the family how he had actually felt when coming to the same hospital for his risky operation, since telling people how he truly feels is something Walt never does. When he told Marie, "I survived this place, and I'm not half the man your husband is," I thought that was the most touching, genuine thing Walt has ever said to anyone during the entire run of the series.

Jesse was the comic relief this time. Bored to tears waiting for Walt in the lab, he didn't disobey, he didn't leave -- but he played with all of the equipment, rolling around in office chairs, putting vents on his head, and (this was great) filling his bright yellow plastic coverall with compressed air. He looked like a banana. (Appropriate, since Jesse actually is the second banana.) The contrast to efficient, brilliant Gale couldn't have been more extreme.

It's interesting that Gus Fring almost certainly knows that Gale did nothing wrong, and accepted Jesse as an employee only to indulge Walt. Jesse's life now depends on Walt continuing to be invaluable to Gus. And how long will that be?


-- The opener was fascinating. Jesse, covered with bruises and his eye swollen shut, was leaving the hospital as bullet-ridden Hank was arriving. Jesse was in the hospital because Hank beat him, and Hank and Jesse were both injured because of Walt's choices. And it was Walt's hospital. It's still all about Walt.

-- Jesse has a skull tattooed on his back.

-- Walt fixed an uneven table in the waiting room with a piece of paper. That felt a lot like Marie freaking about the water spots on the forks in the hospital cafeteria. They couldn't fix Hank, so they were obsessed with fixing something else.

-- Skyler was wearing yet another money-green blouse. Walt was again in bright blue.

And pieces:

-- Before Mike killed him, the remaining Twin finally saw Heisenberg. Pulling himself out of his deathbed and going after Walt with his bleeding leg stumps dragging behind him was intense (and a reminder of the scene that introduced the Twins). Walt's face as he realized what was happening was amazing, too.

-- The cops were donating blood to help Hank. It was a nice thing to see.

-- I was anxious about Walt missing his deadline, at least until we found out that Gus knew everything. But really, what excuse could Walt have given for leaving the hospital? I honestly think Walt cared enough about Hank that he didn't want to leave the hospital.

-- Gold acting stars for Bryan Cranston, Betsy Brandt (Marie), and especially Giancarlo Esposito (Gus). Emmy-worthy, without a doubt.


Walt: (to Gale) "It's as if I'm classical but you are more ... jazz."
And God knows, Jesse is all about the classical.

Merkert: "Cartels tend to be ... dramatic." You could say that. Gus is not dramatic.

Jesse: "Hey, tell your douche bag brother-in-law to head toward the light."

Junior: "Good guys never get ink like the bad guys do."
That's the truth. Even in this episode, it was Gus I wrote about. Then again, the episode really was about Gus, wasn't it?

Four out of four diversionary chicken dinners,

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. Not as a great as the last two, but still lots of good stuff in this one. Gus certainly came into much sharper focus and made it quite clear that he's one of the scariest villains we've encountered yet on this series.

    I was also very, very moved by the scene in the cafeteria. It is so weird to get little glimpses of the man Walt used to be. In this moment, he reminded me very much of the man refusing to get treatment during the family intervention. He had such a refreshing, emotional honesty about him in that moment. He spends so much time lying to himself and others that even little hints of truth are surprising.

    What I loved about the second twin's crawl after Walt (which was so, so freaky) was that it mirrored the bizarre desert crawl toward the shrine that we saw back in the season opener.

  2. The guy crawling across the room towards Walt, leaving two trails of blood from where his legs used to be will definitely be giving me nightmares.

  3. Duh, I am so dumb. I saw Mike for a second at the hospital, but did not realize he had killed the twin until Billie told us here in her comments.


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