Last week’s “Blood Money” gave us Hank clocking Walt in the face after his discovery that his own brother-in-law is a drug lord. This week, Hank’s wife Marie delivers a similar blow to her sister, Skyler. The impact is ten times more effective, as these two women have always been able to bond in their man trouble together. Not this time though.
Last night’s episode, titled “Buried” is mainly Skyler’s tale. We pick up right where we left off from last week as Walt exits Hank’s garage. Hank puts in a phone call to his sister in law while Walt tries to get in touch with her as well. Once Walt realizes his wife may be in trouble, he speeds off to get her.
Hank nabs her first, and the two meet in a diner. The audience is led to believe Skyler might turn her husband in; after all, she’s been privy to some serious disturbing stuff on account of her husband. Hank leads her to believe that she will be under his protection, and it almost seems like he’s got her right where he wants her, but then he whips out a recorder for her testimony. Hank wants to wrap this up as quickly as possible, but Skyler vows to get a lawyer. Hank, believing time is slipping away from him as Walt’s cancer may kill him before he ever gets to the stand, pleads with Skyler to think twice about lawyering up. Skyler won’t budge. She confronts Hank questioning if she is under arrest several times before storming out of the diner.
Hank of course, tells his wife, who shows up to Skyler’s house post haste. Marie interrogates Skyler heavily, but her sister just sits there and cries. However, once Marie asks Skyler if she knew about Walt’s doing before Hank got shot (Season 3, Episode 7: “One Minute),” Skyler comes up with the worst possible response….
“Marie, I am so sorry.”
With that well deserved whack to the face, Marie storms out and plans to take Holly, the infant daughter of the White family. Her kleptomania working full force, Marie believes that the house is no place for her niece. The loud verbal show down alerts Hank (who was waiting outside) to take action, and he tells Marie to put the child down. Whether this was just Hank giving up or trying to side with Skyler in order to get her trust is debatable.
Meanwhile, Walt has taken his money from the storage locker as an immediate reaction to Hank’s pursuance of him. He heads out to the desert (a throwback to the first season, which provides a nice bookend of sorts to all the proceedings) to bury the dough, remembering the latitude and longitude of the location, putting it on a lottery ticket. Walt then goes home to hear his wife stating she told Hank nothing. Walt, quiet as he’s ever been, strips down to take a bath, and immediately collapses. He wakes up to his wife and claims the cancer is back, asking Skyler “Are you happy now? (referencing his wife telling him she hopes his disease returns).” Skyler states she hasn’t been happy for a long time. The scene concludes with Walt telling Skyler that he will give himself up but she needs to keep the money, otherwise everything he’s done has been in vain. Skyler knows that if Walt goes, the money will not be there for her to keep. She says the best course of action is to keep quiet.
Lydia also makes an appearance in this episode, visiting the meth base that not suiting her needs. And ever the cold calculator, she organizes a hit on the lab crew, bringing Todd back into the game. Todd escorts Lydia around dead bodies, as she doesn’t want to see the carnage. It’s kind of disturbing how powerful and weak she is at the same time.
The episode concludes with Hank returning to the DEA office. Apparently he’s in luck, as Jesse Pinkman has been discovered chucking money packets around the town. Brought in for investigation, Jesse isn’t talking. Hank hears of this and asks the interrogation team if he can have a few minutes with him, as there is history there. Permission granted. Hank walks into the room, and as the door closes, the episode ends.
Fist clenched and raised, the “nooooooo!” factor from yours truly was in full force. Ugh, how can they leave us hanging for another week! But the closing moment was ever a effective one; will Jesse give Walt up? If Pinkman evaluates everything Walt has done to him and all the crap he’s been through, Mr. White might be in serious trouble. There are no walls around Jesse like there is around Skyler, who might be protecting her husband for reasons we don’t understand (it does seem kind of artificial). Jesse, however, lost his closest friend with Mike, who he knows Walt “took care of.” That along could be the fuel Jesse needs to turn in his former partner in crime.
And then there is Hank. His pride has to be weighed here, as the day he goes to the DEA with this news, “My career is over.” Suspicions will get him nowhere, he needs hard evidence, and bringing up the fact that his brother ran a meth lab will get him canned instantly. Having Jesse in his grasp provides him the indirect path to victory, and Jesse can finally redeem himself for everything he’s done, therefore getting his emotional baggage lifted. Both men can benefit from it, but in the next six episodes a lot still can happen.
There was a point when 9:40 I said to my girlfriend “How is it 9:40 already?!” Breaking Bad rockets by so fast and the thing is, it’s just mostly verbalization, at least this season. Just like Hank doesn’t want Walt to escape his grasp, we don’t want this show to escape ours. And hanging on every word becomes key for this show. There’s no doubt in denying that Breaking Bad is one of the best television programs ever. Nothing is wasted, and “Buried” was proof positive that that formula is still going strong.