“Just get me home. I’ll do the rest.”
And with that, folks, Breaking Bad comes to an epic and satisfying conclusion. After 5 unforgettable seasons, the final chapter of Walter White’s life comes to a close. With last week’s episode, we had a glimpse into what Walter’s final objectives were going to be and for the most part we knew what to expect with “Felina” but it was still so satisfying to watch. With all of his remaining ducks put into a decent row, Walter dies knowing that he did all that he could do. Throughout the series, Walt did everything for his family. After last night’s finale, we find out that he did it all for himself. It was the most amount of honesty that Walt has ever shown to Skyler. Each cook fueled his ego more than the last. Walter never got high off of his own supply, but he was addicted to the formula that he perfected. He wanted no one else to take credit for his work, not again.
Other than cancer and for the good of his family, Walt got into cooking meth because of Gray Matter, which was ultimately about himself. He contributed so much work and research into that company that, for whatever reason, he took a buyout. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but not when he became a starving Chemistry teacher with a baby on the way and diagnosis of cancer. So when Walt says he did it for himself, it’s really hard to blame his actions. But do the ends justify the means? Remember his magic number? $737,000 is what he needed. Once he surpassed that number, Heisenberg took his throne. Walt craved that success and wanted more. He was in the empire business that ended up crashing and burning. Oh, kind of like the plane crash. “Seven-Thirty-Seven Down Over ABQ.” Seven-Thirty-Seven … $737,000.
A lot of elements in this final piece of the puzzle came full circle. Let’s start with Gretchen and Elliot. When Walt placed the watch that Jesse gave him for his 51st birthday on top of the pay-phone posing as a New York Times writer, he found out where the Schwartz’s were currently living. When he arrived at their house, I especially loved Walter inspecting and touching everything. It was one last glimpse of Walt looking at something that should have been his. All of that hard work he did for Gray Matter was represented by Gretchen and Elliot’s comfortable lifestyle. Those who love the theory that Walt takes on certain characteristics of people that he’s killed will have loved one particular line that Walt says. When Elliot tries to protect himself and Gretchen with a cheese knife, Walt says that he will need a bigger knife if they are about to go down that route. Who does this sound like? It’s none other than Mike Ehrmantraut. This line sounds a lot like when Hank shows up to Mike’s house with the search warrant and sort of rubs it in his face, to which Mike replies, “If you want me to read that, I’m going to need my reading glasses.” You got to love the poetry of Vince Gilliagan. Later, when Walt has Gretchen and Elliot place his money on their coffee table, he threatens them by having laser-dots placed upon them saying that if they don’t deliver the money to his family, they will die.
It appears as if Walt had hired expert killers but it ends up being one last hurrah for Badger and Skinny Pete. Giving them laser pointers and having them pretend to be assassins was quite cruel. Even they knew it was messed up until Walt pays them. Everyone looks at Saul as being the comic relief of the show, which is true, but Badger and Skinny Pete were always the comic relief no matter what the situation was. I was glad to see them for the final time and even more happy to see them survive. Once Walt dealt with the Gray Matter situation, it was now time to take care of the main objective, Jack and company. Seeing as they were still using his formula, it was time to send those gentlemen to Belize. I was worried that that would include Jesse and that he would take the blame for it all. However, Walt always cared for Jesse and even Hank knew that.
Although Walt and Flynn didn’t end up seeing eye-to-eye, it was nice to see Walt and Skylar make amends with each other. They both knew that their last phone call wasn’t going to be the way that they would say goodbye for the last time. When he says he did it all for himself and that he felt alive doing it, he hands her the lottery ticket. It’s interesting that Walt used a lottery ticket to remember where his money is exactly located. And now, it will be used to locate Hank and Gomie’s bodies. Walt didn’t realize that he was preparing their graves when he was initially burying the money. X marks the spot. Before Walt leaves, he takes one last look at Holly and Flynn, for he would never get to see them again.
I’m curious to see how many bets were made in preparation for this episode and a lot of people probably won a ton of money tonight if they bet that the ricin was going to be for Lydia. My guess was that Walt would take the ricin for himself after he finished his goals and make it look like the cancer killed him. But for Lydia, she is always drinking tea, always. I did not expect her to live to see the final episode but someone needed to put her out of her misery. She had no business to be in the line of work that she was in. With her big sunglasses and always wanting to talk back-to-back, she was the most suspicious character of them all. I’m not quite sure what Todd saw in her, personality-wise. Even stranger to think that he thought they would make a good couple, being how awkward he is. But seeing Walt break up their “date” was awesome as he tells them he has a new method of cooking without Methylamine. That was his ticket into Jack’s compound.
Then comes the main event. For the past year, the one question that we have all been asking was about that M60. Who or what was it for? What were the events that forced Walt into deciding that he needed that big of a weapon? At last, that answer has been revealed. Even crazier was the fact that that weapon never even left the trunk. For awhile, I pictured Walt carrying that weapon, going on a firing rampage and getting shot towards the end. Walt being quite the engineer that he is (making a battery, a bomb, etc.), constructs a device so that the gun can spray left and right like a lawn sprinkler. So now we have Walt in the compound and I’m sure he didn’t expect the meeting with Jack to be a walk in the park. When asked why Jack still hasn’t killed Jesse, Walt tackles Jesse to the floor. At first, it looked like another fight between them was going to ensue but then Walt triggers the M60 from his trunk, leaving Todd alive and Jack barely able to remain conscious.
It was in this moment where I wanted to stand up and give Walt and Jesse a high-five. Seeing Jesse strangle and kill Todd was too satisfying. TOO satisfying. After killing the kid on the dirt bike and Andrea, Todd had it coming and it was awesome seeing Jesse finally win that battle. Afterall, it was Todd’s idea to keep Jesse alive and it’s assumed that he put the chains on Jesse. After all of that, the chains were what killed Todd. For Walt, he enacted his revenge on Jack. Notice how Hank’s death and Jack’s death were very similar. Both were laying on the ground, both were shot in the head and both were interrupted during their last words. More poetry from Mr. Gilligan. Finally, Walt and Jesse were face-to-face, alone, and without restraints. As much as Jesse was ready to kill Walt, he tells him to do it himself as he is already bleeding. Jesse has done way too much in his past and killing Walt wouldn’t solve anything for him. I mean, look where his past got him. If he had pulled that trigger, he would have gone back to old habits and it truly shows how much his character has matured. Driving off in the distance while laughing maniacally was his proudest moment. Pinkman has made his escape and I was so happy to see that he didn’t die in the end. He was the least deserving character to have any of the torment that he went through. Good for him.
As Walt takes one last look at the meth lab, we see a sense of relief on his face. The way he pats the equipment with a subtle smile is parallel to us, the audience. Whether you loved Walt or absolutely despised him, we still stuck around for the ride. We hate to see this show end but we knew that eventually that day would come. Season 5 did a great job of connecting the earlier seasons with the recent turn of events in the show. It showed us just how far all of these characters have come and it makes the audience so proud that we were there to see it all unfold. The way Walt holds the mask and looks at the lab while the cops approach was bittersweet. He did everything he could have possibly done. Whether it was legal or illegal, Walter White had a passion for science and he always respected the chemistry. Breaking Bad is more than just a television show. It’s an adventure that never lets up. Just when you think the show couldn’t get more intense, it kicks it up a notch and keeps going until there is no more. “Darkness” like he tells Gretchen and Elliot. Not only has this show set the bar incredibly high for future television, but it has set it high for all stories in general across the board! From video games to movies to books, Walter White’s story will be tough to match, let alone top it. “Felina” was nothing short of quality and perfection. Nothing was left open-ended and the story was able to conclude smoothly without feeling rushed. As Walt laid down on the ground, he felt a sense of completion as did the audience.
“Goodbye to Everyone…”