Breaking Bad recap: He Didn't Start The Fire... Yet

Walt gets the upper hand on Hank; Jesse makes a major discovery
Ep. 11 | Aired Aug 25, 2013

WILL HE STAY OR WILL HE GO? While waiting for the vacuum man to pick him up and deliver him to his new life, Jesse comes to an important realization.

Ursula Coyote/AMC

As for Jesse, he does his best, in the beginning, to protect Walt. Hank's entrance into the interrogation room snaps Jesse out of his haze. Hank hopes he'll turn on his partner, but Jesse says he won't talk to him. Saul comes in, and throws around the threat of lawsuits, and Hank leaves.

Saul brings Jesse out to the desert to meet Walt. While they wait, Jesse stares at a tarantula crawling on the ground -- another thing to remind him of Drew Sharp's death.

Walt's car pulls up and he asks Jesse what Hank knows. Jesse tells him not much, except that Walt is Heisenberg. Then Walt makes his pitch.

"Jesse, will you let me help you? I don't like to see you hurting like this. Maybe it's a time for a change," Walt says in the same tone of voice he used to tell Junior about his cancer. Walt says Jesse should start a new life, using Saul's vacuum cleaner guy. Walt even suggests that Jesse could have a family in a new place. "You're still so damn young," he says, preying on his protege's emotions, just as he does with everyone else. Jesse screams at his mentor/father-figure. He wants Walt to just ask him for a favor and tell him if he doesn't go, he'll kill him just like he killed Mike. Walt walks up to Jesse and pulls him into his arms. Jesse cries into Walt's shoulder, but refuses to return the embrace.

Back at Saul's office, the lawyer packs up a bag of money for Jesse to pay the vacuum cleaner man, including extra from Walt so Jesse can get his life started wherever he goes. Jesse lights up, upsetting Saul, who says the guy won't take him if he's high. Jesse reluctantly puts the joint out. Saul asks him to hand over the rest of the dope. Jesse just puts it back into his pocket.

As Jesse goes to leave, he passes by Huell, who grabs the dope off Jesse -- unbeknownst to him. This is not the first time Saul's bodyguard has picked Jesse's pocket.

At the pickup point, Jesse wants to light up again. He fumbles around for his marijuana and realizes it's not there. He frantically searches for his cigarettes, and pulls them out. He looks at the pack and his face blossoms with the horrifying realization -- Huell stole his dope, and he stole the ricin cigarette, too.  (This ricin revelation comes easily to Jesse -- and seems pretty pedestrian for Bad. It's like watching a procedural, where someone says something offhand to the lead detective, and suddenly, the cop knows exactly who did it.) A red van slows to pick him up at the side of the road, but he walks past it and the driver drives off. Oh Jesse, you should have gotten in the car.

Then Jesse bursts into Saul's office, locks the door, and viciously attacks Saul. As Saul goes to grab his gun, Jesse reaches it first and points it at the bloodied lawyer. He wants him to admit that he stole the ricin cigarette to help Walt. Saul pleads with Jesse. "I'm sorry. Yes okay. I had Huell lift your cigarette, but Walt made me. He told me he was helping you. He was saving you. I never would have agreed to it if I knew what he was going to do. Jesse, you've got to believe me. I never wanted any of this." As pathetic and desperate as Saul looks and sounds in this moment, he is telling the truth. Once he found out what Walt did to Brock, he tried to quit. (Side note: Are there more Tarantino references in this episode? Saul screams for Jesse to calm down, and Jesse screams back: "Say it again, tell me one more time to calm down" -- recalling Samuel L. Jackson's great "Say what again" speech in Pulp Fiction.)

However, Saul's allegiance still seems to lie with Heisenberg. After Jesse grabs Saul's keys and retreats, Saul calls someone and says, "Hey, it's me. We've got a big problem."

NEXT: Timing is everything

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