‘Breaking Bad’ Season 5, Episode 13/14 Recap: Le Morte d’ Walter White

‘Breaking Bad’ Season 5, Episode 13/14 Recap: Le Morte d’ Walter White



The last two weeks of Breaking Bad have been a sprint to the demise of Walter White’s life.  No one expected Jesse to be the Trojan horse that would seal the faith of his empire. Hank was also essential, outwitting Walt ending the cat-and-mouse game; using his greed to lure him into a trap in the desert. The series could’ve ended here with Walt’s conviction, Hank the hero and a predictable cliché where injustice is punished by the ball crushing grip of the law. If only Todd’s uncles didn’t arrive with enough machine weaponry to make CJ from San Andreas piss a waterfall. The high intensity shootout was the longest 15 seconds of television I’ve ever witnessed. Name-less bullets looking for innocent flesh, uncertain who lives, who dies, but I knew instantly that Walter White’s life was over. That’s where episode 13 finished, but it wasn’t until episode 14 “Ozymandias” did I get my confirmation.

Mix feelings of freedoms apathy, and mournful sorrow – that’s how I imagine Walter White feels as Hank takes his last breath. It’s the death of his brother and executioner. What makes the moment sweeter is how adamant Walt’s attempt negotiating Hank’s survival. Not many humans would barter 80 million dollars cash for anyone, not even their own mother. Hank didn’t die a hero, justice doesn’t prevail, and this reality sets the pace for destruction. There was a silent murder of innocence when the dust settled. Walt’s desire to acquire wealth was to allow easier living for his family once he passed on, and now, at the setting of his first meth cook he loses someone priceless. To make the image even more painfully morbid would be Todd’s uncle stealing all Walt’s money, a switch snaps, one that is stuck on Heisenberg. Proof of this theory would be the request of Jesse’s death – who was hiding under the car, but was discovered before the parties flee. Todd saves his life, requesting that they question Jesse about what he’s revealed to the DEA before killing him.  This leads up to the most shocking moment of the series. During Walt’s heartless confession about Jane’s death, he tells Jesse, “I watched her die” and “I could’ve saved her but didn’t.  This was a torture that couldn’t be replicated with bullets, chains or knives.

This is only the beginning of Walter’s suffering; no Hank, no Jesse, and almost no money (Todd’s Uncle left him one barrel which is equal to 11 million dollars), but to my surprise that is only the welcome mat to the purgatory Walt has walked in. Marie’s actions were unpredictable; to arrive at the Car Wash with confidence that Walt was in custody showed she had more balls than most of the series antagonist. There’s a theme of avoiding conflict embed into Breaking Bad, but Marie kicks in the door.. She tells Skylar about the little information she knows about Walt’s arrest, it’s enough to give her leverage to demand the truth be told to Walter Jr, finally being brought into the light from the shadow of deceit he’s been protected in.  The events at the car wash leads to the transition into hell for Walter White, whose at home packing his bags, but before he leaves Skylar, Walt Jr and Holly face him.

It’s possible that without Marie intruding, Walt could’ve convinced his family to pack their bags and begin a new life together. Sadly, they demanded to know about Hank’s whereabouts – a question that Walt didn’t predict would arise. He’s a liar, but only after he’s prepared a story. Skylar concludes Hank’s death, drawing a knife and demanding Walt’s removal from the home. Even though both didn’t receive a fatal wound during their tussle, their home was the place Walter White died. His family’s betrayal  and cops on the way, a year of life as a drug dealer finally come crashing down in less than 24 hours.

All of my predictions for the show have been wrong. I didn’t see Walt stealing Holly at the end, and maybe it was a last attempt at holding onto a family member that couldn’t reject him. His last intense conversation with Skylar showed a still  beating heart, despite the ugliness of his words.The cops are tuned in, so once they discover the truth of his meth dealings, Skylar would look less like an accomplice, and more like a wife that couldn’t control her off-leashed husband. Skylar asked him to “come home” and Walt replies he has something he must do first. The last scene is Walt entering the truck to start his new life, leaving his daughter at a fire station, attached to a note with his former address. Two more episodes, both 75 minutes, and Heisenberg has taken completely over.

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