This is it. The die has been cast on Breaking Bad. There’s no turning back now. Walt ordered a hit on Jesse. On his partner. His surrogate son. And at the urging of Skyler, no less. He finally agreed that Jesse was a “Rabid Dog,” the title of the episode, and had to be put down. Surely sending Hank on a trip to Belize can’t be far behind.
“Rabid Dog” opened with Walt driving into his neighborhood, but parking his car at a safe distance from his house. He climbed the backyard fence Simon Pegg-style then entered through the backdoor. He smelled the gasoline and shouted, “Jesse, come out right now!” He must have been feeling what Gus Fring felt when Walt approached his home with his snub .38 way back at the start of Season 4. But Jesse was gone, even though his Cadillac was still parked askew on the lawn. And he never bothered to strike a match.
Walt immediately called Saul, had Huell get rid of Jesse’s car, and hired a carpet cleaner and locksmith. He really thought he could get rid of the gasoline smell by the time Skyler and the kids came home and act like nothing had happened. He called Jesse and told him that he’d fix whatever needed fixing and would explain why he poisoned Brock. In the meantime, Jesse should just sleep it off.
When Skyler got back, Walt went into an elaborate lie about having had a pump malfunction at the gas station which caused his clothes to be soaked in gasoline. You could tell right away that Skyler didn’t believe it, but for the sake of Walt Jr., and perhaps because of her own amazement at her husband’s infinite capacity for deception, she let him weave his web. Walt Jr. didn’t believe it either because he said he thought his dad had fainted from his illness. Walt Sr. indulged that…then suggested they all flee to a hotel where they wouldn’t have to deal with the gasoline.
Saul had been looking for Jesse ever since the incident, but not even Skinny Pete nor Badger had been talking to him. His wiretap showed they’d just been talking for three hours “about something called Babylon 5.” Saul suggested to Walt in the parking lot of the hotel this could be an Old Yeller situation: they had a rabid dog on their hands who needed to be put down. “You are just brimming with colorful euphemisms, aren’t you, Saul,” Walt said. First Belize, now Old Yeller. Saul did have a point, though: “Just say for the sake of argument the boy’s not in the mood for a lecture on the virtues of child poisoning.”
Upstairs in their hotel room, Skyler revealed she knew the gasoline story was a lie and that Walt had been talking to Saul. Walt said that it was Jesse who’d dumped the gasoline all over their house, and, needless to say, Skyler did not have any of the sentiment for Jesse that Walt has. She said he needed to deal with this. Yes, another euphemism. Walt couldn’t possibly begin to convey how much Jesse has meant to him throughout all this, and he rebuffed her suggestion, even as she kept insisting “What’s one more?”
The second half of “Rabid Dog” revisited the same period of time but from the point-of-view of Jesse, who had remained totally elusive during the first 30 minutes. Why did Jesse stop torching Walt’s house? Because Hank barged in, gun drawn, and suggested a better option to bring down Heisenberg: “If you’re gonna burn him down, let’s do it together.” This time, Jesse actually seemed receptive to talking. But Hank couldn’t book him, because he’d be killed in prison in a heartbeat, and he couldn’t put him in witness protection without there being formal charges against Walt. So what to do? Hank brought Jesse to his house, to sleep off his misery and be served coffee and lasagna by Marie. This would be a good thing for her too, the feeling that she could really have a stake in helping to bring down her monstrous brother-in-law. Otherwise, all she could do was look up untraceable poisons for six hours online. A good thing her shrink didn’t take that revelation seriously or he might have had to report her murderous feelings to the authorities.
When Jesse woke up, he gave his video confession to Hank, which I assume was merely a recap of the entire series of Breaking Bad. But all of this would boil down to just a case of “he said, he said,” right? Lucky for Hank, Walt left another message on Jesse’s phone asking to meet him at an open-air plaza in person, to discuss what had happened. This was a total win-win. He’d outfit Jesse with a wire and get Walt to talk on tape, and he’d get him formally charged. Or Walt would murder Jesse and still be formally charged. Gomez, who Hank had brought in on the case, was shocked by Hank’s callousness. But they set up the meeting. Jesse, outfitted with a wire, approached Walt in the square. But from a distance, he saw a tough-looking bald guy and assumed that must be the dude who Walt had hired to put him away. He ran, first to a payphone to tell Walt that he’d target him where it hurts, then back to Hank’s van, where he told them he’d come up with a better way to nab Walt.
After that phone call threat, Walt had no choice. He called Todd and asked him for his uncle’s help in dealing with a situation. Meaning that he put a hit out on Jesse. It’s Old Yeller time.
Overall, “Rabid Dog” seemed to lack the urgency and suspense of the previous episodes of the season to date. It seems weird to call it a breather episode considering Walt’s decision regarding Jesse, but I think we all kind of knew this was coming anyway.
What did you think?
More: ‘Breaking Bad’ Director Teases the Series Finale Other Series Will Try to Attain ‘Breaking Bad’ Recap: The Most Awkward Meal at a Mexican Restaurant Ever ‘Breaking Bad’ Recap: Skyler Stands By Walt, But Will Jesse?
From Our PartnersStars Pose Naked for 'Allure' (Celebuzz)20 Grisliest TV Deaths of 2012-2013 (Vulture)
The 56 year old's 2007 Cadillac was pulled over by cops on Saturday night (27Nov10) after he was spotted making an unsafe lane change.
But when officers ran a background check on Medrano, they discovered he had already been banned from getting behind the wheel of a car for a previous incident and had his vehicle towed away.
Medrano will be able to reclaim his Cadillac after 30 days, reports TMZ.com.
Warner Brothers' Four Christmases tops the chart for the second weekend in a row as it crosses the $70 million mark and proves that its holiday-oriented theme and title were the perfect combination for moviegoers looking for some light-hearted fare this weekend.
Given the limited release patterns of the newcomers, this gave the hold-over films an opportunity to dominate the chart. Interestingly, Summit's teen vampire flick Twilight and Disney's animated Bolt flip flopped again as the two films have been battling for position since their debuts three weeks ago.
Bolt is now approaching the $100 million mark, while Twilight has its sights firmly fixed on the $150 million benchmark as teen girls continue to support the film. At No. 4, Fox's Australia proves that older audiences are supporting the film which is now approaching the $40 million mark. Finally, in fifth plave Sony's Quantum of Solace remains a fixture in the Top five and has now crossed the $150 million mark domestically and $500 million worldwide.
Causing some intrigue outside of the top 5 were newcomers such as Lionsgate's Punisher: War Zone, Sony's Cadillac Records, Freestyle's Nobel Son and Universal's acclaimed Frost/Nixon, which all enjoyed varying degrees of success in their debuts.
The latest in the Punisher franchise found itself in the eighth spot for the weekend and should look forward to a potentially strong run on home video. Lacking original star Thomas Jane probably did not help its box-office prospects, but the modestly budgeted film could come up a winner when all of its ancillary revenues are added up.
Opening in ninth place was Sony's Cadillac Records, which posted a very solid per-theatre average of over $5,000 in just the right amount of theatres. The music-themed film had a terrific marketing campaign and a very appealing cast. Most disappointing may have been the performance of Freestyle's Nobel Son, which despite fairly strong reviews managed only $415 per-theatre for the entire weekend in 893 locations.
The best news of the weekend came from the limited release Oscar-contenders, which all had banner weekends. Fox Searchlight's Slumdog Millionaire continued to impress with over $18,000 per-theatre, while Focus Features' Milk did the same with over $17,000 per situation. Both films build great word-of-mouth and much-deserved Oscar buzz.
Finally, no discussion of this weekend would be complete without noting the incredible $60,049 per-theatre average for Universal's Frost/Nixon The film boasts Oscar-caliber performances from the two leads, Michael Sheen and Frank Langella, plus stellar direction by Ron Howard and phenomenal attention to period detail and wardrobe. From top to bottom this is one of the finest films of 2008 and hopefully this incredible performance in just three theatres in New York, Los Angeles and Toronto portends a strong run as the film expands into wider release.
A solid if not spectacular weekend that keeps our box-office winning streak alive as we head toward the home stretch of the box-office year of 2008.
THREE-DAY STUDIO ESTIMATES (Source: Media by Numbers)
1. Four Christmases (Warner Bros.) - $18.1M; 3335 theaters; $5,451 PTA; -41%; $70.8M cume
2. Twilight (Summit Ent.) - $13.1M; 3620 theaters; $3,646 PTA; -50%; $138.5M cume
3. Bolt (Disney) - $9.6M; 3516 theaters; $2,758 PTA; -64%; $79.2M cume
4. Australia (Fox) - $7M; 2721 theaters; 2,573 PTA; -53%; $30.8M cume
5. Quantum of Solace (Sony/MGM) - $6.6M; 3423 theaters; $1,928 PTA; -65%; $151.4M cume
6. Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (Paramount) - $5.1M; 3317 theaters; $1,538 PTA; -64%; $165.6M cume
7. Transporter 3 (Lionsgate) - $4.5M; 2626 theaters; $1,714 PTA; -63%; $25.3M cume
8. NEW! Punisher: War Zone (Lionsgate) - $4M; 2508 theaters; $1,595 PTA
9. NEW! Cadillac Records (Sony/Tri-Star) - $3.5M; 686 theaters; $5,102 PTA
10. Role Models (Universal) - $2.6M; 1907 theaters; $1,375 PTA; -49%; $61.6M cume