Warning, nothing but spoilers ahead.
God, I love this show. How jaw-droppingly awesome was “Sunset,” Sunday’s episode of “Breaking Bad”? Hands-down, it was the best of the season so far, and this is such a fantastic series that that’s no simple task. After a slow start to the season, things finally kicked into gear and the tension got ratcheted up to 11.
Here are a few scenes that struck a chord with me:
– Loved, loved, loved, the intro, with the tribal police officer, um, “meeting” The Cousins. Such a beautiful short scene, almost a mini movie. And the ending, with the one Cousin in the foreground eating an apple while, in the background, you see the blurry form of the other one tomahawk chop the cop . . . . just stunning.
– I almost cheered out loud when we met Walt’s new lab assistant, Gale. It’s David Constabile, the best veteran character actor on TV! (You may know him from such places as “The Wire,” “Damages,” “Flight of the Conchords” and those T-Mobile commercials.) Walt and Gale’s budding nerd bromance was hilarious (The coffee! The magic of the lab! The Walt Whitman reading!) until I realized that by giving Gale all his secrets, Walt is making himself expendable to Gus. But Walt’s so excited to have a new friend and soaking in Gale’s admiration that he doesn’t even see it. Gotta wonder what Gus’ plan is for Walt after his three months are up. Chop chop?
– The scene with Walt and Jesse trapped in the RV with Hank trying to get in has to go down as one of the most gripping, nail-bitingly tense scenes in the series’ history (and geez, can you believe it’s only been 20-something episodes?). It was perfect: The slow buildup, the dialogue (“This is my own private domicile and I will not be harassed. . . . bitch!”), the lighting (the sunlight cutting through the darkness from the bullet holes), the camera shots (that wide shot of Walt and Jess standing in the junkyard after Hank took off was totally cinematic) . . . . simply brilliant all around.
– Poor Hank. First his gruff, blustery personality has been shattered, then he suffered the panic/terror/relief/fury after the fake emergency with Marie, and now The Cousins have been sicced on him. He may have avoided the cartel horrors of El Paso, but the cartel horrors are coming to him. And will he put the pieces together and link Walt to the fake phone call? Who else knew he was after Jesse, and would have not only his personal number, but his full name and his wife’s name? Or will The Cousins get to him first? I got the chills at Gus’ closing words: “The agent’s name is Hank Schrader. May his death satisfy you.”
So, so, so good. And I didn’t even mention Walt’s apartment-hunting (“Everything is negotiable” – turns out, even The Cousins’ vendetta on Walt), or his bag lunch (with his name! Ha!), or Saul’s awesomeness, or The Cousins’ imposing presence at El Pollo Hermanos, or the return of Badger (loved the Riverdance and his description of the blue meth: “It’s like my brain’s boiling in . . . . boiling anthrax!”), or the cool, calm evilness of the new Jesse.
Anyone else have any thoughts? Will the RV’s demise bring Walt and Jesse back together? What’s more powerful, Hank’s single-minded obsession with taking down Jesse or The Cousins’ desire to kill Hank? What’s the future hold for Walt and his shiny new lab? Will anyone escape this season not physically or emotionally destroyed?