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Walt makes a deal to cook for the methylamine buyer, Declan, and have Declan handle distribution. Walt announces that he is both Heisenberg and the guy who killed Gus Fring. Ye gads, that ego is out of control. Can we get a slow clap for Jesse Pinkman? Last week, we thought, “Well, Jesse’s conscience isn’t big enough that he’d leave Walt without his money, and Walt will never just give it to him unless Jesse is sucked back in.” But then Jesse just leaves. With nothing. No college education, family, legally marketable skills, or $5 million, because a kid died and he doesn’t want to do this anymore. Redemption almost complete! Something has to go wrong, right? Walt replaces Jesse with Todd.
Most of the episode focused on Mike getting out. He gets rid of his guns, gets Walt to remove the DEA bug from Hank’s office, and gets his safety deposit boxes all set to pay his granddaughter and nine guys. So when Hank shows up at his house with a search warrant, Hank finds nothing and gets a slap on the wrist from his boss. Hank is forbidden from following Mike, so he tails Mike’s lawyer instead. Mike’s lawyer isn’t Saul, and he puts Mike’s money in the safe deposit boxes for him. When the lawyer is caught, he gives Mike up. Walt is in just the right position to hear about this, and he warns Mike. That was quite the lucky coincidence. Come on writers, don't be so lazy next time. We guess it's possible, so we'll let it go.
Mike escapes and meets Walt in an isolated area. Jesse offers to bring Mike his getaway bag, complete with passports, guns, and money, but Walt wants to go. That way, Walt can ask Mike who his nine guys are. Now that the guys aren’t being paid, they won’t keep quiet. What does Walt intend to do with these guys? When Walt meets Mike, Mike yells at Walt about his ego and says that if Walt hadn’t screwed things up with Gus, they’d all be safe and making money right now. Mike refuses to give Walt his guys’ names. Mike tries to leave, but Walt shoots him in the stomach on a rage-filled impulse. Walt had taken Mike’s gun out of the bag before they met. Mike keeps trying to get away, but he ends up dying (after telling Walt to shut up and let him die in peace). Walt realizes that he could get the names from Lydia.
So what do we think of Walt killing Mike? We guess the show has built toward this. Walt has been killing from afar for a while. First, he makes meth and turns his attention from considering who might be using it. Second, he stands by and lets Jane die, Third, he almost poisons a kid and blows up three men with a bomb. He’s worked his way up to outright murder. But why would he shoot Gus when he thought only Gus could give him the nine guys? Was his pride so hurt by Gus’s words? We guess Walt didn’t plan Mike’s murder. He probably took the gun as a precaution, knowing Mike was dangerous. We were thoroughly entertained by this episode, but we don’t know if we were fully convinced by it. We appreciate this season picking up the pace though.
Episode grade: B+