Breaking Bad Season 5 Review “Blood Money”

Breaking Bad Season 5 Episode 9 Blood Money (2)

“It was you. All along it was YOU!”

The wait is finally over! After one of the longest mid-season breaks in television history, Breaking Bad has returned tonight with the first of it’s final eight episodes with the incredible installment “Blood Money”. After ten long months with no Walter White or Jesse Pinkman in our lives, and with the last episode ending in a (quite literal) “Oh crap!” moment with Hank finding out about Walt’s business, there was a lot of speculation of where this episode would begin. Would we pick up right where the first half left off? Or would we go back to the bearded future-Walt and find out what he’s doing with the giant gun in the trunk of his car?

Well we actually got a little bit of both, but first we start out with…skateboarders? Seeing the teenagers using an abandoned pool as a skate park was a little confusing at first, but it was a really cool reveal for the camera to pan out so it could finally click with us that “Hey, that’s the White’s pool!” The pool at the White’s house has been so important to this series over the past five seasons. You can’t think about that pool without thinking of Walt Jr. drinking too much and puking into the deep end, the pink teddy bear in season two, or Skyler sinking into the pool earlier in the season. Seeing Future-Walt walking into the abandoned and dilapidated house, with “Heisenberg” scrawled on the wall in yellow graffiti, definitely gave me chills. It was smart of them not to give us more of the future scenes, as I’m sure there’s a lot of that to come, but the “Hello Carol” was a nice touch that was then cleverly echoed later in the episode.

When the first five minutes of the episode took place in the future, I was a little disappointed that we might not see the immediate aftermath of Hank’s discovery, but thankfully that wasn’t the case. I know some people may not have agreed how Hank reacted to this news, but I thought it was perfect. It was the perfect blend of anger, disbelief, and sadness. It all escalated so perfectly as well. Some Breaking Bad fans were speculating that Hank would march right back into the White’s backyard and slap cuffs on Walter, since Hank has such a type A personality. I thought it was a great wrinkle in his character that he seemed to really try to convince himself that he was wrong. He really seemed to do his due diligence to make sure that Gale Boetticher’s “WW” was actually Walter White, and it all led perfectly to the final scene, but we’ll get to that later.

In an episode where we’re obviously most interested in finding out what’s going to happen between Hank and Walt, we definitely couldn’t forget about Jesse. Jesse is (yet again) hitting another one of his “rock bottoms”, but it’s great to see that he’s no longer buying any more of Walt’s crap. We’ve seen Walt come to Jesse during his many low points over the past few seasons, and he’s usually been able to use a rousing and emotional speech to get Jesse out of his slump. However, at this point Jesse is so damaged and so accustomed to Walt’s lies that he barely even listens to anything he says anymore. Even when Walt is adamantly lying through his teeth, he isn’t buying it at all.

Jesse’s reaction to not being able to give his money to his preferred beneficiaries was also totally reasonable for his character. The slums of Albuquerque are about to become quite a bit richer! It’s possible that someone could fingerprint the stacks of cash to see who threw them out of their car, so we’ll see if that comes back to bite him.

As for the rest of the minor characters, they were all (understandably) pushed to the side due to the big Hank/Walter showdown we all wanted to see. Lydia and Skyler only had one scene together, whereas Todd was absent completely despite being credited for the episode.

So we finally get to the big showdown that we’re all waiting for. So many great things here, that I barely know where to begin. When Walt walks away from Hank, you could just see the gears turning in his head as he decides if he wants to go through with this. Walt’s bravado and ego is so out-of-control huge at this point that he really can’t walk away without having the last word, but maybe he’ll regret that now. It’s been an incredible journey with Walt over these past four and a half seasons, and it’s crazy to see just how terrible of a person he’s become. Not only does he feebly attempt to play the cancer card on his brother-in-law, but he then arrogantly tells Hank that they both know he’ll “never see the inside of a jail cell”, and then he actually threatens Hank by telling him that he doesn’t even know who he is. If the future scenes we’ve seen are any indication, Walt is about to get quite a rude awakening. It looks like we’ve hit the ground running, and I can’t wait for the final seven episodes!

Random Thoughts:

– Was I the only one who was immediately concerned that Hank didn’t flush before leaving the bathroom?

– Again proving how perfect the song selection is on this show, I loved the use of the frantically upbeat “Wordmule” by Jim White while Hank was sorting through his old files.

– The Enterprise pie-eating contest is quite possibly the best piece of Star Trek fan fiction I’ve ever heard.