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'Breaking Bad' - 'Caballo Sin Nombre' Recap

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 29th 2010 1:00AM
Bryan Cranston, 'Breaking Bad'(S03E02) Last season, we had to wait until the end to see what the cold open was all about each week. This time around, the scary pair of bald Mexicans worked their way into the main story almost immediately, even if it's still unclear what their objective is. In fact, the climax at the White house that wrapped this episode had so much going on, it was almost overwhelming.

Vince Gilligan and company continue to take things slow, after the bombshell revelation that Walter laid on Skyler last week. Walter's clearly in a state of crisis, and he's becoming unraveled completely because of it. He's without direction and focus. Everything he did for the past two seasons he did for his family; albeit misguided and taking things way, way too far.

He at least had a purpose and there was always a goal behind the production of meth: making enough money to keep his family going after he died ... then to pay for his treatment and surgery ... then to pay for Holly, the new and unexpected baby. Now, he's lost everything and he's lost in response.

The frustration was captured perfectly with the toss of the pizza onto the roof of the garage, and the depths of his despair portrayed with him lying on the ground in his underwear with popcorn bits ground into the side of his face, where he'd been sleeping. Walter is ready to give up everything he's been doing, which had been making him feel alive for the first time in years, in order to get his family back, but Skyler keeps slamming that door in his face. Suddenly, Gus' offer might start to sound more appealing.

Gus is one of those characters that was perhaps too easy to dismiss. He's so unassuming in his demeanor, you find yourself believing that this is the depths of his character. The fact that he's also a drug dealer almost doesn't come into the equation, but he is. And this week, we started to see the deeper side of him.

At this point, it looks like he's only looking to do surveillance at the White house, though we're not sure what he does or doesn't know. If he doesn't know that Walter is no longer living there, then his intelligence is lacking, which would count as a mark against his position as a key player in Albuquerque's crime scene. If he knows Walter's not living there, then he's gaining intel on what Skyler's up to? Flynn, perhaps?

Much like Walter revealed to us that he is a much darker and capable (in all the worst ways) person than we ever realized, I have a feeling Gus is going to show just how he came to be such a big deal in this town.

The odd showdown in the White house, while Walter was taking a shower after having broken in through the crawl space from the water heater repair last year, was yet another example of the brilliance that takes place every week on 'Breaking Bad.' The sinister Mexicans didn't have to say anything, just waiting outside the bathroom door. They disturbed Walt's eyeball, though I wonder if they left it moved on accident, or so he would know he's not safe anywhere.

Here's where I may have gotten myself confused. Gus' man called him up to tell him about the Mexicans and their shiny new ax going into the house while Walter was in there. Shortly thereafter, the Mexicans were called off. Is Gus then behind whatever their story is? [You've cleared up at least that it was Saul that hired the guy to do surveillance and saw the Mexicans entering the domicile, but who then called them off? Who tipped off Gus? --j/h]

Speaking of which, what a bizarre treat it was to see Truco's wheelchair-bound uncle and that damned bell of his. If there's a perpetually angrier character on television than this guy, I don't know who it is. Also returning in a big way, was Saul. I'm still loving that Saul is one of those sleazy late-night lawyers we see on local commercials, and yet he's so very good at what he does.

He was there to assure Walter that Skyler would never turn him in to the authorities; she'd have too much to lose, as well. And he was there for Jesse, who's apparently decided to live up to his realizing that he was a bad guy. I'll admit to a feeling of satisfaction when Jesse undercut his parents out of his aunt's house, forcing them to take less than half its value. You reap what you sow. Perhaps Jesse was giving his father one last chance to accept him with that earlier visit to the house, and when he stayed as callous as ever, it was time to box up his heart and get to business.

So far this season is very much about individual journeys. Skyler is on her journey to try and be the person on the moral high ground, which is getting shakier than ever the more she signs off on Beneke's crooked books. Her own uncertainty about how she should feel about Walter's revelations were made clear when she asked Beneke what he would say to his kids if they found out about his own misdeeds.

With Walter, though, she's clearly decided on the harshest path possible. The problem is that she's taking such a hard tact, she's losing her son in the process. She's clearly trying to protect him from what Walter's been up to, and therefore thinking she needs to keep him from Walter altogether, but she doesn't realize that the love Flynn feels for his father is too strong to just turn off when she wants it to happen.

Flynn's journey is to find out what the hell is going on with his family. Skyler hasn't told her sister, or Hank or anyone why she's suddenly thrown Walter out and now wants to keep him from seeing his own kids. Those are huge things to do in a marriage, and not revealing why will only make the other people in your life worry if you're not taking things a bit too far. After all, who's going to guess what's really going on?

The worry that Skyler doesn't even know she has is with all these bad people who've tracked Walter back to the house he no longer lives in, but she does. Is anyone else worried that all the violence that has erupted in Walter's life is going to devastate the one thing he's fought for the hardest throughout this series: his family?

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Spoiler the mexicans are
cousins and one dies by Walters brother in law who shoots him to death and thenother get hit by a car actually he's in between 2 cars when he gets hit .

April 03 2010 at 10:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Song is "Magic Arrow" by Timber Timbre.

March 30 2010 at 10:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Great episode. Does anybody know the name of the song that's played when the guy is drilling into the White's house and Walt turns up?

March 29 2010 at 6:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Could someone please explain the old man in the nursing home in the wheel chair to me? Have we seen him before and how did he know Walter's name?

March 29 2010 at 3:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Carl's comment
tony massimini

The old man is Tuco's uncle. Last season Tuco kidnappped Walter and Jesse and took them to the uncle's home in a remote area.

The uncle, who appears to have suffered a stroke, cannot speak, hence the bell to communicate. He saw how Walter and Jesse were trying to kill Tuco. While they did not actually kill Tuco, from inside the house it sounded to the old man that they did. Hank killed Tuco in a shoot out shortly after Walter and Jesse left. So the old man clearly blames Walter and Jesse for Tuco's death.

March 29 2010 at 5:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

God, I LOVE LOVE LOVE this show. I wish it were on for 3 hours every week. Every single episode is brilliant, exquisitely written, acted, directed and produced. The best show on television - bar none.

March 29 2010 at 12:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm assuming that the "pollos" text was a reference to "Los Pollos Hermanos", the restaurant owned by Gus. If it is in fact another player, could we in fact find out who Gus' brother is, and his role in all of this as well?

March 29 2010 at 9:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Anyone else notice that the pizza wasn't sliced? who gets an unsliced pizza from a pizzeria?

March 29 2010 at 9:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Pollos or whatever his name is, is the big man in all this and the link. He needs Heisenberg to get back to work. The twins initially were getting revenge for Tuco's death. But they will be used to get Walt back to work in future episodes. Pollos, Saul, Gus and the Mexican connections will be able to control production, transportation and distribution and enforcement.

March 29 2010 at 8:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The sneak peak for next week's episode answers some of your questions. This is going to be a great season.

March 29 2010 at 2:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to emassoni's comment

Next week looks awesome from that small blurb. I like how quickly they are moving the story forward and confirming our suspicions. I've read many complaints about the 'weak' season premier and I have to beg to differ, entirely. Two episodes in and we're already treading in far more dangerous waters. All of the characters appear on the brink of even more substantial moral dilemmas. Gus rocks!

March 29 2010 at 4:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
BC McKinney

Jesse didn't buy his parents' house, he bought his great aunt's house which she had intended him to have and he had lived in until his parents evicted him during their tough love campaign, because they had legal control of it due to his being a minor when she had passed on. Either way, it's hard to summon much sympathy for them--they got back the money they had put into fixing the house up, and while they may legally have been entitled to anticipate a profit, their ethics were questionable.

I wonder if they noticed the younger son's a stoner yet? And space camp? We know what goes on at space camp.

March 29 2010 at 1:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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