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Recap / Breaking Bad S 5 E 2 Madrigal

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The Last Supper

"I'm sorry the kid doesn't see it, but I sure as hell do. You are a time bomb, tick-tick-ticking. And I have no intention of being around for the boom."
Mike Ehrmantraut

Peter Schuler, an executive for Madrigal Electromotive based in Hanover, Germany, glumly tries out various condiments his company's test kitchen prepared before being informed by his secretary that men were coming to visit him. Schuler asks her to stall the men, by telling them that he will see them shortly. He knows all too well that those men are with the police: Madrigal's connection to the American drug trade, and his own connection to Gustavo Fring and the meth trade in the American southwest, has come to light with the death of Gus. Seeing no other alternative, Schuler takes a portable emergency defibrillator with him into a restroom, and locks himself in. Carefully taking off and folding his clothes in silence, as his secretary, and then the men from the police knock on the door demanding to talk with him, Schuler calmly apply one pad to his chest while the sticking the other chord in his mouth, and commits suicide.


Back in Albuquerque, Walt helps Jesse look for the ricin capsule that Jesse thought he had lost, but that Walt had really stolen to trick Jesse into thinking that Gus had poisoned Brock. Hiding the real capsule in an electric outlet in his own house, Walt slips a decoy containing table salt into a roomba that Jesse owned, then pretends to find and discard it. Afterwards, Jesse tearfully apologizes to Walt for suspecting him of using the ricin to poison Brock. Walt comforts him and tells him to remember that they always should stick together going forward.

Afterwards, the two meet with Mike. Walt plans to start cooking meth with Jesse again, but Mike wants nothing to do with Walt, seeing him as a ticking time bomb and wanting to give Walt a wide berth because he "has no intention of being around for the boom."


Hank and Gomez meet with Madrigal executives, and are assured that they would aid Hank in his investigation and that Schuler was a "lone anomaly". Afterwards, they go to a bar with Merket, who has been pushed out of the DEA due to his relationship to Gus and his failure to realize his true nature. Hank tells Merket that before the laptop was destroyed in the evidence room debacle, he saw that the laptop had powerful encryption on it, so it was unlikely they would've learned anything from it. As Hank ponders who gave Hector Salamanca the bomb that killed Gus, Gomez speculates that there may be an answer hidden in the offshore bank accounts Gus managed...

Meanwhile, Mike meets with one of the Madrigal executives: Lydia Rodarte-Quayle, who was also privy to Gus's drug empire. She gives Mike a list of eleven men in prison that Gus had been paying to keep silent about his drug business. Lydia suggests having them killed before they could implicate either of them, but Mike refuses and vouches for their integrity.

After the DEA grills Duane Chow, they bring Mike in. Hank is skeptical about Mike's claim to be the head of corporate security for Los Pollos Hermanos. Before Mike can walk out, Hank mentions his granddaughter, Kaylee, by name: one of the offshore bank accounts that Hank found was made in her name, with Gus stowing money away for her for some reason. Gomez makes an offer to let some of the money go to Kaylee in exchange for his cooperation, but Mike adamantly refuses, knowing there's no way he'd be allowed to leave behind his illicit money for his granddaughter...

As Walt and Jesse discuss starting their cooks up again with Saul, Mike is contacted by Chow, who claims the DEA seized his money, and wants to talk to him. Mike realizes something is amiss, and sneaks into Chow's house, where he finds and disarms Chris Mara, one of his former henchman, sitting near Chow, whom he shot in the head after luring Mike out. Chris admits that Lydia was paying him $30,000 to kill him, plus $10,000 for each man on the list. Resigned, Mike shoots Chris.

Afterwards, Mike travels to Houston and sneaks into Lydia's house. He corners Lydia in her own room and prepares to kill her. Lydia begs Mike not to shoot her in the face, so that her young daughter wouldn't be too shocked when she finds her body; but Mike dismisses her, stating that no one would ever find her. Lydia begins to panic, claiming that her daughter can't believe she abandoned her and threatening to scream unless Mike leaves her body where she can be found. Mike prepares to shoot her, but hesitates, and ultimately asks if she can secure him methylamine...

With nowhere else to turn to secure the hazard pay for his guys in prison, Mike reluctantly decides to join Walt's new cook operation.

After talking with Mike over the phone, Walt climbs into bed with Skyler. As Skyler lay motionless and scared of her husband, Walt kisses and molests her as he assures her that the guilt she felt over what happened to Ted Beneke would pass, because she did what she had to for the family...

This episode contains examples of:

  • Artistic License – Medicine: It's impossible to deliberately electrocute yourself with an Automated External Defibrillator, which won't even activate unless it detects that it's connected to someone whose heart is fibrillating. You could probably get the job done with a portable manual defibrillator, but even then, most of them have safeguards to prevent someone from accidentally electrocuting themselves.
  • Assassin Outclassin': When Mike refuses Lydia's offer, she hires a guy named Chris to kill all of Gus' former employees, including Mike. This doesn't work out so well, with Mike seeing the trap Chris set from miles away and killing him instead.
  • Berserk Button: Don't even suggest the idea of killing the men Mike trusts. Or take it out yourself.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Chow is killed by Chris this way.
  • Call-Back: Mike spitefully tells Lydia you don't kill people as a prophylactic measure to cover your own ass. Means a lot more knowing what happened to Mike's son in Better Call Saul.
  • Can't Kill You, Still Need You: The only reason Mike decided against killing Lydia is because she can get him methlyamine, which can help him make up for Gus' hazard pay.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: A somewhat unusual example in that it applies to people who are already dead. Hank says that Gus had 'an even dozen' secret accounts, and based on the remainder of the season we know who they all were: Mike himself (in Kaylee's name), Dennis Markowski, Ron Forenall, Duane Chow, Chris Mara, and seven security guys. The problem is, Gus had other hitters on his payroll such as the two guys who were killed in the Los Pollos Hermanos truck in Cornered, the guy who was shot by the cartel in Bug, and Victor. Even if we assume that those accounts were closed by Gus after their owners died, there's also Tyrus Kitt and the two guards that Walt gunned down in the laundry basement laboratory in Face Off. Gus was already dead then and so he couldn't have terminated their accounts. There's no explanation for why there aren't accounts for them, so it reads like the writers just forgot all of Gus's dead employees ever existed.
  • The Determinator: Mike intends to get his men the hazard pay that was promised by Gus, and the money he wanted his granddaughter to inherit, even if it means working with his former enemy.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Chris was hired by Lydia to kill the other 10 people on Lydia's hitlist, plus Mike. He only did it to both cover their tracks, and because his hazard pay was confiscated, thus he needed the money. He was successful in killing Chow. Not so much with Mike.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Merkert laments to Hank on how impossible it is fathom that someone who could be such a close family friend could be running a drug empire right under your nose. Although Hank doesn't realize it, the parallel with him and Walt is evident.
    Merkert: I had him out to my house. Fourth of July. We cooked out in the backyard. ... That whole night, we were laughing, telling stories, drinking wine. And he's somebody else completely. Right in front of me. Right under my nose.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Lydia is more concerned about what would happen to her daughter after her death than her death itself.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Mike refuses Lydia's suggestion that they kill his guys in prison to make sure they don't rat and insists on protecting them.
    • He later backs out of killing Lydia because it would mean making her daughter an orphan.
  • Killed Mid-Sentence:
    Chris: "Listen, Mike, I—" [Mike shoots him four times]
  • Noodle Incident: When Mike is being questioned by Hank, Hank mentions that Mike's tenure as a Philadelphia police officer ended under dramatic circumstances, but neither he nor Mike want to talk about them. Hank doesn't want to because he's more interested in probing Mike for any evidence that he was doing work off-the-books for Gus.
  • Oh, Crap!: In the interrogation room, Mike does the silent facial variant as Hank explains to him that the hazard funds Gus had set up for Mike and his employees have been seized.
  • Perp Sweating: Mike is asked for an interview by the DEA, which he agrees to without an attorney. As a former cop and hitman himself, he easily sees through their attempts to rattle him, such as calling Agent Gomez' bluff, but Hank revealing that Fring's offshore accounts have been discovered does get a subdued response from Mike.
  • Properly Paranoid: Mike refuses to work with Walter, because he considers him a ticking time bomb of problems that could result in arrests and more deaths. He starts to work with him anyway when his hand is forced by circumstance.
  • Put on a Bus: George Merkert is pushed out of his ASAC position due to his friendship with Gus Fring and failure to recognize that he was running a huge meth operation. He even remarks, "Somebody's gonna go under the bus."
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Walt practically has his way with Skyler at the end of the episode, as she is too afraid of her murderous druglord husband to try to stop him.
  • Shout-Out:
  • This Is Reality: When Lydia wants Mike to kill all of the potential witnesses she identified from Gus' former operation, he tells her that she's been watching too many movies; Mike personally vetted all the people on Lydia's list, and they're all being compensated for not informing on them.
  • Wham Line: "Oh, well, I don't suppose we could talk about the $2 million in your granddaughter's name?"
    Hank: Yeah. It seems that, uh, Fring had all these secret offshore accounts that he would deposit money into. Like, uh, well, an even dozen of them. And they're all in the names of certain people on his payroll. There was the, uh, the manager of the laundry, umm, a couple guys from the Pollos distribution center. Uh, there was the owner of a chemical warehouse, a bunch of others, you know. Guys that must've been getting paid off the books. Anyway, one of the names...was Kaylee Ehrmantraut. Ten years old and just cute as a button. Yeah. $2 million and change we found on deposit for her. Way more than anybody else. Now, my partner here? He took one look at that and said, "Shit, man! This fifth-grade girl is the muscle behind Fring's entire operation!" I said, "Whoa, whoa, hey, partner, slow down there. Maybe it was actually her dear old granddaddy." Impressive, no? That...[clicks his tongue] level of insight? [Mike stares at Hank and Gomez as he absorbs the realization that his funds have been seized] He's not impressed, Gomie.
    Gomez: Perhaps he's picturing all that money going bye-bye.
    Hank: Yeah, well, I mean, the government's gonna take every last dollar, unless... Well here's the thing, Mike — Or Michael?
    Mike: Mr. Ehrmantraut.
    Hank: Here's the thing, Mike: lucky for you, you didn't touch that money. I cannot say the same for the other eleven on the list.
    Gomez: One of your guys is gonna roll on you, and then we'll definitely remember the handcuffs.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Mike intends to kill Lydia after she puts out a hit on him. She talks him out of doing so.