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AMC to Launch Two New Spin-Offs

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For those of you still reeling from Sunday night’s epic series finale of AMC’s smash hit, Breaking Bad, we totally feel your pain.  We have yet to recover from the awesomeness that was “Felina.”  However, it’s a little bit easier to say good bye to Walter White, Jesse Pinkman, and Co. with the recent news that a Bad spinoff is definitely happening.  We already told you that a prequel just might happen but on Sept. 11th, AMC confirmed that Bob Odenkirk will reprise his role as Saul Goodman (s’all good, mannnn) in the Bad prequel entitled “Better Call Saul.”  While an official air date has yet to be announced, AMC and Vince Gilligan have confirmed that the show will be an hour long drama, and will tell the story of Saul’s adventures before ever becoming the infamous crime lawyer for Heisenberg.  And don’t worry – if plans go south for the show on AMC, Netflix is eagerly waiting in the background to scoop it up.

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AMC followed up this fantastic news with an announcement on Sept. 16th that they would launch a “companion series” for it’s other smash hit, The Walking Dead.  The new series will take place in the same zombie apocolypse as Dead, but will most likely steer away from the story in the comic series, of which the original show is based.  However, fans of the comic shouldn’t give up on the new show.  Comic author, Robert Kirkman, is set to join Gale Ann Hurd (Walking Dead, The Terminator) and David Alpert (Walking Dead) as executive producers of the new show.  AMC is hoping to continue to gain success in the target age group (18-49) as Dead is currently the #1 scripted show in that category.   An airdate (and title!) for this show has yet to be announced.

Season 4 of The Walking Dead premieres on October 13, 2013 at 9pm on AMC.  Can’t wait that long?  Here’s a preview for the new trailer.  Happy Tuesday!

 

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Breaking Bad 5×13 Recap, “To’Hajiilee”

My apologies for my lack of recap the past couple of weeks.  Family emergencies and a new graduate course kept me away but alas I am back and just in time.  Breaking Bad is roaring towards it’s series finale with only three episodes left.  But before we start to scream, cry, and throw things at the thought of saying good bye to Jesse and Walt, let’s remember the events that took place during “To’Hajiilee.”  Below is the recap for one of the most dramatic, suspenseful, and ironic hours Breaking Bad has ever deliverered:

WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD!! DO NOT READ THIS POST IF YOU HAVEN’T WATCH THE LATEST EPISODE OF BREAKING BAD!

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The thirteenth episode of season 5 starts off with Todd and his twisted family pouring out a batch of non-blue meth.  Todd proudly tells them that it’s 76% quality.  Lydia is really unimpressed by this and wants to know when the signature blue color will form.  Ha!  Walt would die if he saw this mediocrity in the lab.  Lydia insists that blue is their thing and the meth must be blue, even if it’s poor quality.

This (pointless) scene continues with Todd making creepy passes at Lydia while discussing his poor meth-cooking skills.  The scene is finally broken when Todd gets a phone call from Walt.  Walt’s making the call that we saw at the end of last week’s episode informing Todd that he has a new job for his uncle (remember, Walt hired Todd’s uncle, Jack, for the massacre of nine prisoners at the end of season 5).  But this time we see the entire conversation. Walt is hiring Jack for one target this time and he’s not in jail.  The target is Jesse Pinkman.  Cue periodic table.

We catch up with Hank and Jesse meeting with Gomez.  Hank tells Gomez that Jesse has an idea to take down Walt.  Jesse informs them that he knows there is evidence that Walt would never get rid of because of his green – his money.  He tells them he doesn’t know where it is, but he thinks who knows who does and this surprising trio sets out on a mission.

We watch them begin to unveil their plan, without knowing what the hell it is that they’re doing.  Hank pours bloody meat all over his kitchen floor, and tells Jesse “you’re up”.  Next, Hank and Gomez visit with Huell (Sauls’ bodyguard, the one that laid on the cash-stack).  They tell Huell he isn’t arrested, but being held there for his own protection.  They inform Huell that they interpreted a call from Walt where he stated that Jesse is his first target and Huell is his second.  Huell doesn’t believe it at first, but Hank and Gomez (with the help of Jesse’s intel) spin a web of lies that convinces Huell that Saul turned him over to Walt.  They even show Huell a picture of Jesse laying next to the pile of meat to prove that Jesse is dead (so the scene earlier makes sense now).

Unfortunately for Hank and Gomez, Huell truly doesn’t know where the money is.  But unfortunately for Walt, Huell knows a lot.  He tells Hank about the seven barrels of money, the rental van, the dirt on the car, and the shovel.  They leave but remind Huell of the danger he’s in and basically convince him to hang out in an apartment by himself, for his own protection.  Poor Huell, he has no idea he’s being deviously manipulated.

We then see Walt meeting with Todd and his family going over the plans to take care of Jesse.  Jack thinks this is a case of “rat patrol,” but Walt tries to convince them that Jesse isn’t a rat.  Oh Walt, if only you knew.

Walt convinces them that he’s not a rat, and tells them he wants his death to be quick and painless.  Walt think he’ going to pay them for this job, but then he receives a little surprise.  Instead of cash payment, Jack wants Walt to pay in the form of Walt’s meth-cooking.  Walt tries to rebuke, but it’s for naught.  He eventually agrees to one more cook, but it will be done after the job is finished.  “Time is of the essence, do you understand?”  And then Walt tells them he doesn’t know where Jesse is, but he’ll flush him out and then give the order.  Jesse’s time is up.

And so it appears Walt does know Jesse’s weak-spot.  Walt heads to Andrea’s house and visits with her and Brock.  Walt pretends like he’s visiting to find out where Jesse is, and claims he hasn’t seen him or heard from him in a few days.  He tells her that Jesse’s using again, and claims to have exhausted all resources for finding him.  Walt tells her that they’ve had an argument, and feigns caring for Jesse’s whereabouts above all else.

Andrea finally just offers to call him and leaves Jesse a message explaining that her and Walter are worried about him.  Walt quickly departs, knowing he planted the seed that he needed.  Walt leaves and makes a call to two men sitting in a car across the way.  Walt tells them that they’re on but that when Jesse arrives, that must take him away and do it so the mother and son know nothing.

Hank intercepts Andrea’s voicemail on Jesse’s phone, but fails to report the message to Jesse.  But Hank does report back to Gomez and Jesse that the rental van that Walt used to hide his money didn’t have a GPS, thanks to a law-suit from the ACLU forcing the company to remove them.  But Hank has another idea.  He correctly surmises that Walt buried the money, thanks to Huell’s clues about the dirty van and the shovel.  Hank thinks if they can convince Walt that they found the spot where he buried the money, they can flush him out and force him to head to the spot of the money, therefore giving Hank and Gomez an opportunity to follow him and find the physical evidence they need.

We finally have our first spotting of Skyler and Walter, Jr. halfway into the episode.  Skyler is teaching Walter, Jr. the ways of the carwash.  After ringing up a random customer, the next customer is none other than the beaten and battered Saul Goodman.  Saul is there because he’s in a panic over Huell’s disappearance.  Saul has no idea where he is, and he’s afraid.  He warns Walt that Jesse is smarter than they think, and that Huell’s disappearance is a sign that something is not right.

Then, Walt gets a picture message that changes everything.  The photo is of a barrel hidden in what appears to be the desert and it’s full of cash.  Walt’s phone then immediately rings.  It’s Jesse asking Walt if he got his photo claiming that he found that and six more barrels.  Walt flies out of the car wash and races to his spot while he listens to Jesse explain that after pistol whipping Huell, he was able to trace Walt’s rental van which included a GPS, leading Jesse right to Walt’s hiding spot.  Jesse then tells a distraught Walt that he’s going to start burning the money, $10,000 at a time, until Walt gets to the spot.

Walt is more distraught about this than anything I’ve ever seen before.  The thought of his money burning breaks at him.  He tells Jesse he’s dying and begs Jesse to stop and save the money, as it’s intended for Walt’s children.  Jesse can’t believe Walt would mention children, which leads Walt into a confession about what he did to Brock and an apology.  He claims he planned it for Brock to be okay.  Walt then goes on to make a full confession to Jesse as he claims that everything he’s done (which he lists out, murder by murder) was to protect them and keep them safe.  He tells Jesse that he’s just too stupid to realize it.  Little does Walt know that he’s the one that’s too stupid to realize when he’s been duped.

The van didn’t have a GPS and Hank and Jesse tricked Walt.  Their plan worked perfectly.  They got Walt to confess to all of his crimes AND lead them directly to his buried treasure.  Walt stands there for a moment, alone and confused, until he finally sees a car heading in his direction.  He tries to hide, but as soon as he realizes that Jesse was working with Hank, Walt realizes that his time is up – it’s over and there’s nothing he can do about it.  Or, can he?

While the car was still pulling up, before Walt knew who was in it, he called Jack and desperately relayed the coordinates of their whereabouts to him.  As he was ending the call, Walt realized Jesse was with Hank and told them not to show up.  Will they follow his orders?

Hank calls for Walt to come out and surrender.  Can it really be?  Did everything on Breaking Bad lead up to this moment?  It seems so, as Hank yells it’s over and Walt finally gets up and begins to walk towards Hank and Gomez, surrendering.  Hank books him and reads him his Miranda Rights as Jesse looks on smiling.  After Jesse and Walt squabble like children, Hank gets ready to head back into town and calls Marie.  In a heartfelt moment, he tells Marie that he got him and it’s over.  He even waves to Walt in the car on Marie’s behalf.  The two exchange tearful “I love you’s” before Hank hangs up.  Then, as it seems like all hope is lost for Walt, Todd and his family show up.

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Never one to follow directions, Jack and his boys arrive with a slew of guns and automatic weapons.  Walt desperately tries to yell warnings to Hank and Gomez, but they don’t listen.  With guns pointed and Walt locked and cuffed helplessly in a car between the two groups, the men stand off.  Walt yells from the car telling Jack to stand down, not act, and go home, but Jack doesn’t listen.  They ask for Hank and Gomez to show badges, but after they make no effort to do so, Jack and his men finally open fire on Hank and Gomez.  In an epic scene with guns firing, glass shattering, and debris flying everywhere, Jack, Todd and co. fire round after round at Hank and Gomez, with Walt trapped helplessly in between.

The episode comes to a shocking end with Walt trying desperately to hide on the floor in the backseat of Hank’s bullet-ridden SUV, with bullets and glass flying everywhere around him.


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Top 12 Worst TV Deaths Countdown

If you don’t already know, we here at RPW really enjoy a good countdown.  After discussing an entertaining evening of television on Sunday, and freaking out about the possible untimely and fiery death of Eric Northman during the True Blood finale, the idea for this list hit us.  We are counting down the 12 worst deaths in television history.  By “worst deaths,” we don’t mean the ones that made us sad because we loved the character or the ones that were heartbreaking to watch.  We mean the downright disappointing ones.  The ones that make you question the sanity of the writing team,  the ones that make you say, “Oh my gosh, are they really dead?  Did that seriously just happen?  They can’t be dead?  They deserve a much better death!”  If a major character is going to depart a show, the death should be gut-wrenching, appalling, and downright difficult to watch but it also needs to make sense.  And so our list begins:

12. Charlie Harper, Two and a Half Men

So we all knew the death of Charlie was inevitable after Charlie Sheen’s sudden departure from the show.  But being hit by a subway car?  Really?  Wouldn’t it have made more sense for Charlie to die surrounded by prostitutes?  We guess It was a nod from the creator that Charlie Sheen would never, ever return.

11. Russell Edgington, True Blood

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For being one of True Blood’s biggest and baddest villains, his death was shockingly boring.  He was killed by Eric Northman in the opening scene of Episode 5×12 but his death was ultimately way overshadowed by the death and rebirth of Bilith.  They really should’ve stepped up their game and given Edgington a more fitting True Death.

10. Jimmy Darmody, Boardwalk Empire

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Jimmy Darmody’s death still sparks debates among critics and RPW writers alike, so it wasn’t a complete disappointment.  But there is one thing that everyone can agree on – the ultimate success of this show was hurt by the death of Jimmy.  Michael Pitt was a stellar actor and his Jimmy was beloved by many.  It was too soon for the show to say good bye to the second lead character, and the third season was noticeably weak without him.  It also felt unfair to see Jimmy die at the hands of Nucky, his make-shift father, as Nucky’s other enemies (Eli and Manny, just to name a few) escaped with their lives.  The argument can be made that Nucky finally became a full gangster, but did he really?  Did he murder Jimmy and walk away without guilt?  Did he take out all of his enemies, or just the one that was easiest to target?

9. Matthew Crawley, Downton Abbey

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Many argue that Matthew’s death was unavoidable after Dan Stevens decided not to return to Downton Abbey, but it doesn’t make his death feel any less bogus.  After two seasons of waiting for him and Mary to get together, they finally get their happy ending…only for him to die almost right after.  #Disappointing.

8. Andrea, The Walking Dead

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No one was more pleased to see Andrea die on the season finale of The Wakling Dead than me.  But come on writers, there wasn’t a better way to do it?  In a horrendously stupid scene, where Andrea has to fight for her life against Milton using her (perfectly manicured) toes and a pair of pliers, Andrea finally comes up short and is bitten by a walker.  She then has all the time in the world to sit and bleed out and wait for Rick and Co. to show up and mercy-kill her.  It would have been 1000x better to see Rick & Co. arrive to find zombie-Andrea munching on someone.

7. Bill Henrickson, Big Love

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We have one giant complaint about the way Bill was shot.  After all the enemies he made through the years, it’s the neighbor that offs him?!

6. Robert McCallister, Brothers and Sisters 

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HE HAD JUST SURVIVED CANCER!… only to die in a car crash.  Everything about it felt SO WRONG.

5. John Locke, LOST 

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Our biggest complaint isn’t the fact that John Locke, the biggest believer in the magic of the island and most obvious replacement for Jacob, died before the series finale.  No, we can deal with that.  Our biggest complaint is the way Locke died!   The scene in which Ben pretends to want to help Locke and then suddenly turns on him to kill him was so sudden and so forced that it was almost unbelievable.  And it especially threw off the audience when Locke’s body was suddenly alive and well and perusing the Island.  In a series that posed more questions than it answered, this curveball was unnecessary and hurt the storyline more than it advanced it.

4. George O’Malley, Grey’s Anatomy

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He got hit by a bus and spent majority of the episode as an unrecognizable John Doe surrounded by his best friends as they half-assed operated to save his life.  When they realized that the John Doe was George it was too late and his actual death got wrapped up in Izzie’s almost-death.

Watch the clip below but be warned, you’ll probably feel annoyed just reliving it.

 

3. Lady Sybil, Downton Abbey

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Probably one of the most unexpected characters to be killed off on TV, Lady Sybil was a cast favorite.  Revolting against her families wishes and expectations, Sybil set out to form her own life.  After a difficult childbirth, the audience knew Sybil made it out alive, however toxemia claimed the best of her post-pregnancy, leaving TV viewers reeling the death of a beloved character.  Once word spread of the sudden, unexpected death of Lady Sybil, the ratings of Downton spiked, bringing in many new viewers just in time for them to be let down by the (expected) unexpected death of Matthew Crawley.

Watch the heartbreaking scene unfold below.

 

2. Rita Morgan, Dexter

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We get that the death of Rita was inevitable (she’s married to a seriel killer!).  And the shock factor for this death was definitely there.  No one, Dexter included, thought that Trinity would break his cycle and go after Rita.  All of that aside, I have some major beef with this death.  My biggest complaint is that the audience didn’t see it happen.  Rita was such a big part of the show and it felt unfair that we didn’t get to see her live her final scenes.  I get the shock factor wouldn’t have been there, but couldn’t the writers throw in a flashback somewhere?  Or even a flash of memory from Harrison?  Because we didn’t get to see the interaction between Rita and Trinity, we will never know if Rita died knowing the truth about Dexter.  #ThingsThatKeepMeUpAtNight

Watch the [disturbing] clip of Dexter finding Rita below.

 

1. Ned Stark, Game of Thrones

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Ned Stark’s death could be viewed as the best death ever on TV (I mean, who can argue it’s epicness?) or the worst death.  For our purposes, we think it was the worst.  Why?  Because Ned’s death meant that the Lannisters (AKA the dad guys) won.  Ned’s death was such a shock because it directly defied everything that viewers come to expect from a drama – the hero faces trials and tribulations, the hero suffers, the hero finds a way out, the hero is victorious.  Game of Thrones took the opposite route.  They killed off the main character and protaganist in the first season, throwing everyone for a major loop.  Not only that, but Ned’s death meant Joffrey won and who the hell wants that to happen?

Watch the chilling scene unfold below.


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Breaking Bad 5×10 Recap, “Buried”

WARNING – If you have not yet watched Sunday’s new episode of Breaking Bad, 5×10 ”Buried”, DO NOT READ THIS POST.  This article contains SPOILERS!

Sunday night’s episode of Breaking Bad continued this series’ pattern of delivering intense and emotional drama.  And I can’t even begin to give the actors on this show enough praise.  Anna Gunn was on point this episode,  Dean Norris was riveting.  It’s almost ashame that this show is coming to an end, as the actors reach the pinnacles of their characters’ storylines.  But all things must end, whether they be good or very, very bad.  So our recap begins:

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We open up with a lucky old man stumbling upon wads of cash courtesy our friend Jesse, who tossed his money all over Albuquerque last episode.  The man first spotted his own wad and then followed the money trail.  The trail ended with Jesse, who is really not doing very well so far this season, playing on a jungle gym with his car left abandoned a few feet away.

Cue loud harsh music and flashes of the periodic table.

In the habit of picking up exactly where we left off, we catch back up with Walt and Hank concluding their extremely heated and threat-ladened conversation.  Walt races out of Hank’s house to call the one woman who can crush him – Skyler.  However, Skyler is already on the phone and won’t take his call.  In yet another magical moment with a garage door, Hank opens it to reveal to a stunned Walt that he is also on the phone…with Skyler.  Hank got to her first.  Walt heads to the car wash but, of course, Skyler already left without saying where she was going.

Skyler left the carwash and went directly to a small diner to meet with Hank.  He meets her with an embrace, but his look is hard to read.  How much does he know about Skyler’s involvement?  It becomes clear that Hank thinks Skyler is the victim of a “monster.”  Hank thinks she found out the truth around the same time she jumped into the pool earlier in the season.  Hank isn’t sure what Walt did to force Skyler to keep his secrets, but he’s ready and willing to help protect her and the children.  In return for his protection, he just wants her to tell him everything she knows.  Skyler asks about Marie, but is careful not to reveal anything or admit to anything.

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Hank takes out a tape recorder and asks Skyler to start from the beginning.  Skyler seems horrified about the location of the interview and Hank’s urgency to get her statement.  Hank persists but she continues to avoid saying anything.  Hank tells Skyler he needs something solid on Walt, whatever she knows, and mentions that they are running against the clock.  Not one to miss something, Skylar asks him to explain what that means.  Hank tells her that Walt’s cancer is back.  (Inner dialogue: Is she happy about that?)  He tells her that Walt said there wouldn’t be any time to even convict him, if what Hank thought was even true, because his cancer was back.

Hank essentially tells Skyler he has no case so far.  He has a lot of little pieces, but they don’t fit together, and he needs her help to figure it out.  She responds by telling Hank that she thinks she needs a lawyer.  Dismayed, Hank says that isn’t necessary and tries to argue his case.  But Skyler doesn’t believe him.  She thinks Hank wants to get Walt “at all costs” and wants someone there on her behalf.  Hank agrees but still tries to make Skyler leave with him therefore preventing her from speaking with Walt.  Skyler finally asks Hank out right,  “am I under arrest?” in the “Shutup! Shutup!” style to which he responds by grabbing her arm.  She continues to throw a tantrum to cause a scene and finally gets the hell out of there.

Walt, who is now doing everything he can to cover his tracks, has Saul’s men move the gigantic stack of cash.  After using the cashstack as a bed, Huell suggests that they take the money and run to Mexico.  “Guy hit 10 guys in jail within a two minute window, all’s I’m saying.”  That response sent chills up my spine; it’s clear that Walt is now feared by everyone.

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While Walt is waiting for the money, Skyler tries to get in contact with him.  Saul convinces Walt to avoid the call and he listens because Walt thinks that Skyler told Hank everything.  Saul tries to convince him that that’s probably not the case, but Walt doesn’t listen.  Then, Saul suggests that Walt send Hank on a “trip to Belize” or wherever it was that he sent Mike AKA Walt should kill Hank.  Walt adamantly refuses and reminds Saul that Hank is family.  Walt’s pure shock and clear disdain of the idea was very surprising to me.  It was the first of two times that Walt really surprised me this episode.

The men finally show up with the money and Walt decides to deal with it himself.  Walt instructs Saul to find Jesse before he heads into the desert.  Walt deals with the money by digging a gigantic hole and burying all six barrels in it, chemo-treatment and all.   He memorizes the coordinates and then breaks the GPS on a rock, leaving no evidence behind about his hidden fortune.

Hank enlists Marie to plead at Skyler’s sisterly heartstrings to break her of the truth.  Marie eventually convinces Skyler to open the door and the two of them head to the bedroom to chat.  In a carefully constructed conversation (and some MAGNIFICENT acting), Skyler manages to let Marie know that she has in fact known about Walt’s secret for much longer than Hank thinks while still admitting absolutely nothing to her.  It is right here that Marie realizes that Hank not only was shot because of Walt, but also received treatment with Walt’s drug money.   Marie and Skyler’s bond is broken with a harsh (and sort of deserved) slap in the face from Marie.

Marie then leaves and tries to take Holly with her.  In one of the most emotional and intense scenes of the entire series, Marie and Skyler fight (with the baby screaming in between them) until Hank convinces Marie to return the baby.  Marie leaves, her world shattered.  Hank joins her in the car and Marie ominously tells him that he has “to get him.”  The family is now broken.

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Walt finally returns home with the coordinates a la lottery ticket (nicely done, Mr. Gilligan) and we have The Confrontation.  Neither Walt nor Skyler have any idea what has happened to the other.  Skyler begins asking Walt a series of question but he literally collapses from exhaustion.  Physical activity has that effect on cancer patients.

Walt finally comes to and they talk about the cancer.  Walt asks her if she’s happy but Skyler admits she isn’t and hasn’t been in a long time.  Walt believes that she already told Hank everything.  He tells Skyler that it’s his fault that Hank knows, that he slipped up and it cost them.  He offers to turn himself in on one condition – she must keep the money and give his legacy to his children.  After all, that is the reason he did all of this.  This is the second time that Walt surprised me.  For two instances, we saw a flicker of the old Walt, the Walt we came to love and root for in Season 1.  It seemed like that person was gone, especially after the heinous crimes he committed earlier this season.  Is it possible that the old Walt is still in there somewhere?

Skyler then tells Walt again that she did not tell Hank anything.  In fact, she believes that Hank doesn’t even have anything to work with besides his suspicions.  In a moment that proves that Walt isn’t the only one on this show who has transformed, Skyler suggests to Walt that their best move is to stay quiet.  Hello, Mrs. Heisenberg.

We then catch up with Lydia and get a glimpse into the world that was set in motion by Heisenberg.  Lydia, who looks utterly ridiculous strolling through the desert in heels, goes to visit the men that Walt left in charge.  She asks them to take Todd (Walt’s former mentee from earlier this season) back and allow him to cook a more superior product.  The men deny her but that doesn’t matter.  Soon after, Todd and his deranged family show up and kill all of the men in a firefight.  Lydia, the orchestrator of this whole thing, leaves the scene with her eyes closed to ensure she doesn’t have to live with the reliving the crimes she committed.  This story isn’t over yet.

We stop by the Schrader house one more time to find Marie and Hank now both playing hookie from work.  Marie tells Hank it’s time for him to go to the DEA with this case.  In a gut-wrenching scene, Hank finally admits a hard truth to Marie.  Once Hank tells the DEA that Heisenberg, the man he’s been chasing after and the man that destroyed his life, was in fact Hank’s very own brother-in-law, Hank’s career is over.  The least Hank can do for himself is to bring in solid evidence, so he is the man who takes Heisenberg down.  However, Marie tells him that if Hank hides the truth and the DEA figures it out without him, and realizes Hank’s role, he will go down with Walt.  That seems to change Hank’s mind.

He heads back into work and makes arrangements for a conference call.  It seems like Hank is about to open the can of worms.  However, in a brilliant twist of fate, Hank learns that Jesse Pinkman has been arrested and found with millions of dollars in unreported cash.  Booyah baby (at least for Hank).  As Hank convinces the cops to give him some time with the prisoner and heads into the interrogation room with a very much alone Jesse, the dorm slams shut and we cue the credits.

So there we have it.  We are now six episodes away from the series finale and we have no idea where we are headed.  The only thing we know is to expect one crazy ride with twists and turns to the very end.  Catch all new episodes of Breaking Bad Sundays at 9pm on AMC.


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Breaking Bad 5×9 Recap, “Blood Money”

WARNING – If you have not yet watched Sunday’s new episode of Breaking Bad, 5×9 “Blood Money”, DO NOT READ THIS POST.  This article contains SPOILERS!

In a brilliant episode, which not only answered many questions but also posed new ones, and spurred thousands of theory conversations all across the Internet, AMC delivered the final season premiere of Breaking Bad, episode 5×9 entitled “Blood Money.”  The full recap discussion is below.

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We open with skate-boarders having at it in the Walt’s abandoned backyard pool.  We then pan to the front to find a much scruffier and hairier Walt breaking into his condemned house.  We notice he’s driving the red car that he procured with the M60 in the trunk from the cold open of BB 5×1.

The house is completely empty and dilapidated, and the word “Heisenberg” is scrawled in graffiti on the wall.  The White’s have clearly been gone for a long time – how long, we do not know.  We can only guess it isn’t too far past Walt’s 52nd birthday, considering the car and his disheveled appearance.

Walt slowly takes everything in as he makes his way back to his bedroom.  There, he removes the Ricin from the outlet he hid it in during Season 5.  This is the reason for his return.  However, in an interaction with his neighbor, Carol, it’s confirmed that everyone knows who Walt is and they are very much afraid him

We jump back to The Moment, the one where Hank is reading the encrypted message in “Leaves of Grass” which confirms that his dear brother-in-law, Walter White, is Heisenberg.  This is the moment we’ve been waiting for!

Hank leaves the bathroom with the book in hand.  It’s too soon for a confrontation, so he sticks it in Marie’s bag and then feigns illness to get out of dodge.  Marie and Hank leave and then Hank, clearly reeling and very shaken after his discovery, suffers from a panic attack while driving home.  We have a quick moment in the hospital, so Marie can rule out a heart attack, before they return home.  When they get home, Hank asks Marie not to mention any of this to Skyler.

Hank heads to the garage and takes out the Gale Boetticher case files.  He tries to match the “W.W.” written in the Whitman novel with the “W.W’ written in Gale’s lab notes.  It seems that he’s found a match, but he needs to find more evidence.

We cut to the unknowing Walt, who is busy trying to come up with marketing tactics for air fresheners and assimilate into his “carwash owner” lifestyle, talking strategy with Skyler.  It’s here that Walt mentions “the story” and reiterates to her the importance of sticking to it.  I feel like this is important, since Vince Gilligan put it in the episode.  I guess we shall see.

Lydia stops by the car wash, which Skyler notices is pretty odd.  Lydia’s there to beg Walt to return to his laboratory, because the cook he left in charge is producing meth with purity levels at 68%.  She seems almost desperate, and mentions  “a lot of moving parts.”  Walt thinks this isn’t his concern and dismisses her.  How foolish of him.  Walter killed Gustavo Fring in 4×13, and he knows that Gus has many friends and connections, many of which would be happy to seek revenge against the infamous Heisenberg.   Plus, Gus’ military background as Generalissimo in the Chilean army, and the many mentions of his connections to Chile, make me think it’s too soon for Walter to stop watching his back.  However, Lydia leaves the carwash.  But not before Skyler gets an opportunity to tell Walt’s former business associate to never come back to their carwash again.

Hank stops going to work and begins having work brought to him.  He has all the case files on everything blue- and Gus-related delivered to his house.  He’s working to find connections between Heisenberg, Gus, and his brother-in-law.  Remember, Hank is the boss now so he can pretty much do whatever he wants.  We then have a scene montage where Hank is like the new Carrie Mathison, working the case crazy-timeline style.   It seems as if Hank isn’t going to find anything, until he stumbles upon the sketch of Heisenberg that appears to be a dead ringer for Walter White.

Then, it’s the second moment we’ve all been waiting for – the first sighting of Jesse Pinkman.  Jesse is hanging out with Badger and Skinny Pete, who are in the middle of an intense Star Trek conversation/smoke session.  Jesse seems disinterested and lost, and he’s not really paying them any attention.  Poor Jesse.  He was a wreck after the boy was shot and killed during the freight train heist last season and he doesn’t seem to have gotten over it.  Side note – Badger’s story was pretty funny.  Jesse suddenly goes and gets two huge black duffle bags and heads to Saul Goodman’s office.

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After growing impatient and smoking up in his waiting room, Jesse sees Saul.  He tells Saul the bags are each full of $2.5 million and he wants one to go to Mike’s granddaughter Kaylee, and the other to go to the parents of Drew Sharp (murdered boy).   Saul tries to talk Jesse out of it but he insists before leaving the office.  Saul then calls Walter to report on Jesse’s behavior.  Walt instructs Saul to hold on to the money.  We then see that as Walt is on the phone with Saul, he is also receiving chemotherapy treatment.  The cancer is back. 

We catch up with a distressed Jesse as he lies underneath his table, watching a huge bug scuttle across the glass.  I take it that this big bug is a symbol, representing or even foreshadowing contamination, as the fly has in earlier seasons.  I digress.  Walt then stops by to return Jesse’s money, and try to convince Jesse that they are still partners.  Walter reminds Jesse that he’s earned his money, which makes Jesse look even more sickened and distressed.  Walt tells a teary-eyed Jesse to let go of the darkness behind him and let go of the past.  It may be easy for Walt, but Jesse can’t seem to let go of his pain.

Jesse then tells Walt why he wants to help take care of Kaylee.  He knows that the only way Walt could execute all of Mike’s men (like he did in BB 5×8) is if Mike is permanently out of the picture.  Walt (of course) denies this and pretends like Mike left town alive and well.  Jesse doesn’t really buy it, and it seems Jesse has really come to hate Walter White.

Over family dinner, Skyler mentions that Hank still isn’t feeling well and hasn’t returned to work.  Walt then flees to the bathroom and covers up his vomiting, caused by the chemotherapy.  (PS – Notice in this scene he is sure to kneel on his towel, like Gus does in Season 4).   It is then that Walt first notices his Whitman book is gone.  He then heads outside to search his car and, much to his dismay, discovers a GPS tracking device attached to it.  It’s the same tracker that he himself stuck on Gus’ car on Hank’s behalf in Season 4.  Walt now knows that Hank is (finally) onto him.

Jesse then finds himself in the parking lot of a bar being solicited by a homeless man.  He pays it forward, and hands the homeless guy a huge stack of cash.  An idea then hits him and Jesse begins to drive through the streets of Albuquerque, tossing cash onto lawns, newspaper-style.

As Hank receives another shipment of files (I guess he’s having trouble building the case?), Walt shows up at the house.  Never one to avoid a confrontation, Walt heads right for the garage.  After dribbling around an awkward and forced conversation, Walt finally gets to the point.  He pulls out the GPS tracker and asks Hank if he knows anything about it.  In a move that I definitely didn’t see coming, Hank closes the garage door and punches Walt in the face.

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“It was you, all along. It was you, you son of a bitch.”  And then Hank begins to rattle off the hindsight moments that ate at him the most – Walt drove them into traffic to avoid the laundry, he faked a call about Marie in the hospital to avoid Hank finding him, he killed 10 witnesses to protect his name, he bombed a nursing home.  And then Hank calls him by his true name – Heisenberg.  Walt denies the “wild accusations” and tries to use the family card.  He then tells Hank that his cancer is back, and none of this will even matter in six months because he will be dead.  So according to Walt, there is no point for Hank to even pursue this, if there is even anything there.  And then, in the most perfect sentence that could be written to come out of Bryan Cranston’s mouth, Walt tells Hank, “If you don’t know who I am, then maybe your best course would be to tread lightly.”

And BOOM, there you have it.  The ground for the final episodes of Breaking Bad is laid.  And now the waiting begins.

As mentioned above, there are many different theories circulating the Internet right now about how Breaking Bad is going to end. Of all the ones I’ve read, this one here is my particular favorite.  In this theory, Walt murders his wife at some point between Hank discovering the truth and the cold open of Season 5.  In my opinion, this is perfect.  There is no greater way to symbolize the full circle that Walt has come – the transformation from Walter White to Heisenberg.  But, I don’t want to focus too much on theories.  I want to enjoy this final ride as it plays out, since this is the last time I’ll ever be enjoying new and unknown episodes of Breaking Bad.

New episodes of Breaking Bad air Sundays at 9pm on AMC. 


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Breaking Bad Prequel “Better Call Saul” Just Might Happen!

This post is meant to serve as an update to our earlier post, Breaking Bad: The Rougher Years. RPW previously reported that there was no word of a spin-off or movie adaptation for Breaking Bad.  Now, we are retracting that statement because rumor has it that a spin-off or prequel has become a real possibility.

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Vince Gilligan, creator of Breaking Bad, is currently in works with AMC to produce a new show called (I’m sure you can guess) Better Call Saul.  The show will revolve around questionable-attorney, Saul Goodman, and his adventures with his shifty clientele.  Gilligan made a point to say the show will probably be a prequel to the Breaking Bad series and is quoted saying that’s because “…you never know, when the dust settles at the end of our final eight episodes, where everybody’s gonna be and who’s gonna be left standing.”  How ominous.

Gilligan also mentioned that the show has potential to be done in two different forms – a 30-minute comedy based sitcom-y type show centering on Saul’s goofy attitude and comedic encounters OR it could be a 60-minute drama based show that focuses more on the dangerous aspects of Saul’s life.  The latter of the two choices is way more in tune with what fans come to expect from Breaking Bad, but the former has me intrigued.  It wouldn’t really be a sitcom (since it won’t be in front of a live audience) but it will be shorter than BB fans are used to and comedic-based.  However, considering the type of comedy we’ve come to expect from our man Saul, it will probably be dark and gritty humor and feel more like East Bound and Down or Curb Your Enthusiasm than Friends or any other comedic show we tend to associate with sitcoms.

While there is no deal in place for Better Call Saul just yet, things look promising and RPW will keep you posted. Until then, you better get ready for the epic finale of Breaking Bad which picks up right after THIS happens.

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The final eight episodes of Breaking Bad premiere in three weeks on August 11th on AMC at 9pm.  


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Lauren Cohan, Our Un-Dead Girl Crush of the Week

Girl Crush of the Week: Lauren Cohan

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Top 3 Reasons Why We Are Girl Crushin’

1.) She is the only female character on ‘The Walking Dead‘ that doesn’t drive us NUTS.

2.) She always found a way to bring out the best in Damon on ‘The Vampire Diaries

3.) She can do some serious work with a machete.

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So…Why Does She Look So Familiar?

If you live under a rock and haven’t been watching ‘The Walking Dead(Ahem, Elizabeth Bond),

Lauren shows up in Season 2 as Maggie Greene, Hershel’s oldest daughter and love interest of Glenn.

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Guys, you probably have a girlfriend who watches ‘The Vampire Diaries.’ Lauren played Rosea vampire, servant of Klaus, and the best friend of Trevor…..etc…etc…etc…

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Where You Can See Lauren Next…

Serving up plate of zombie heads on Season 4 of ‘The Walking Dead,’ which returns this fall on AMC.

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See-ya Next Week Boys….