Let's Liveblog the "Breaking Bad" Series Finale Together (and Pre- and Post-Game, Too!)

Laura asked me if I wanted to do a liveblog for "Breaking Bad" tonight. Boy do I! Please join me.

Sep 29, 2013 at 8:00pm | Leave a comment

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Bye, Mr. White. (This is not a prediction! It's just a cutesy caption, yo.)

Spoiler alert: There will be. Because it will be an EST-based liveblog. But I think if you have HD you can watch the eastern time zone version on the West Coast, yes?

Update: There's lots of fun in the live-blog below, but if you want to read my take on the finale as a whole, check out: "Cheer Up, Beautiful People: How the Breaking Bad Finale Made Me Root For Walt Again."

So...have you done the betting pool? Are you throwing a themed party complete with Angry Roof Pizza right now? Are you watching the marathon on AMC? Are you still rooting for Walt even though he's undeniably evolved into this can't-look-away nearly unrecognizable monster (albeit now a pathetic lonely one bribing the Vacuum Guy to spend time with him for cash)? Are you excited for the Saul Goodman spinoff show?

Here, I'll start things off with one specific question: Why do you like the show?

For me, I think two things have compelled me the most. 1) I've never seen such a compelling portraiture of the notion of what it means to be a man. 2) The unleashed dragon that comes with Mr. White's diagnosis of cancer and evolution into Heisenberg resonates deeply with me in a form of angry DGAF-ness that is undeniably thrilling. You?

Also -- if you're into that kind of thing, what are your predictions for the ending? Salon has a few here. I love the idea of Walt Jr. getting killed -- because it would be so Shakespearean perfect, but that's about all I've got right now in the way of my own predictions. What are yours?

9:03 p.m. Walt is in a frosted-over car. He pulls out a Marty Robbins cassette. That's not help. He finds a screwdriver. That might be more useful. He hurts his hand. He exhales white frosty exhalation. He sees the cop lights around him. He is dead quiet. "Just get me home, just get me home, I'll do the rest," he whispers (prays?) as the cop lights flicker on his face and then get farther away. The screwdriver proves useful in....pulling down the hidden keys. Walt has a smug smile. And we have our opener.

9:07 p.m. "Live Free or Die." Here we are back at the teaser we got in the season opener. Cash. Oncology pills. The usual.

9:09 p.m. THE OLD PRETENDING TO BE A NEW YORK TIMES REPORTER. I love that trick.

9:10 p.m. Walt is standing outside the founders of Gray Matter's house. This is insanely creepy.

9:12 p.m. Gretchen and Elliott Schwartz are having the most insane yuppie frivolous conversation. They are going to pee their pants. Walt is just chill, looking at photos. There it is. She screamed. "Hello Gretchen. Elliott. I really like your new house."

9:14 p.m. Walt wants to talk view. "If you are here to hurt us," Gretchen says. "Whatever your plan is," Elliott says. "Actually I'm here to give you something." Elliott is holding -- a butter knife? "Elliot, if we're going to go that way, you're going to need a bigger knife," Walt says. He may be a sociopath, but Walt crushes Elliot in the muscle competition. Elliott looks trembly and weak.

9:21 p.m. "Keep stacking, it'll all fit," Walt says. He is LITERALLY making them count his money. "Where did it come from?" "I earned it, and you're going to give it to my children," Walt says. "If you want to give your kids drug money, go do it yourself," Gretchen says. (I kind of hate her.) Walt says: "I have to think your money would be very welcome. My children are victims of their monstrous father. A man who you once knew quite well. Call it liberal guilt...but do it. And you are not spend a single dime of your own money. If there are taxes or lawyer's fees owed, use my money, never yours." Elliott: "Okay." (Don't believe him, Walt!) "I guess we shake on it, and I leave," Walt says. Walt has extended his hand to Gretchen who doesn't shake so much as grab his hand and pull it away. "I can trust you to do this," Walt says. Shaking in his khakis, Elliott says: "Yes, absolutely you can." HOLY CRAP NOW THERE ARE TWO HITMEN MARKS ON THE SCHWARTZES. "If for any reason, my children do not get this money, a countdown will begin...without a worry in the world, and then suddenly you'll hear the scrape of a footstep behind you but before you can even turn around -- darkness." They shriek. "Cheer up, beautiful people, this is where you get to make it right." OK, I love that quote. For some reason whenever the Schwartzes are involved, I have sympathy for Walt again.

9:24 p.m. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA Skinny Pete and Badger were the hitmen! "For real, yo, the whole thing felt kind of shady, you know, morality-wise," Skinny P says. "How do you feel now," Walt says handing over $200,000. "Better," Skinny Pete says.

9:25 p.m. Uh-oh. Skinny P and Badger just told Walt the blue meth was better than ever. "Passing the torch, yo." Yeah, that wasn't the right thing to say to Walt.

9:31 p.m. Jesse looks well. He's crafting wood. There is meaningful "enjoying the simpler things in life" music as he touches and carresses the wood. Oh yeah, it was a daydream. Real-life Jesse is still attached like a dog on a chain, with scratches to his face, building meth. And here we are back at the diner teased in the opening sequence, complete with the bacon getting turned into a "52." But sadly, no Walter Jr. to give the bacon that extra meaning. Oh we're speeding through teasers now -- because we are officially at the steal the ricin from the light socket part also teased in the beginning. "It's easy money, until we catch you," Hank says in a flashback. Walt remembers this. He's thinking about it in the living room now tagged with "HEISENBERG." He's leaving the house goodbye. And here's Evil Lydia... Oh good, she's getting the chamomile and soy. BUT IS THERE ENOUGH STEVIA?

9:33 p.m. "I like your shirt," Todd says. "MY BLOUSE," Lydia says with disgust. And then easy-peasy Walt pulls up just like he did on the Schwartzes. Yeah, this is definitely Mr. White's finest hour.

9:34 p.m. "You're rather schedule oriented," Walt explains how he knew Lydia would be at the diner. And then he lets out into one of those embarrassing kill-the-moment hacking fits. Awk.

9:35 p.m. I think Walt is lying about the discovery of a new way to cook meth. "He's just leaving," Lydia ices him out. "OK, no disrespect to the man but..." Todd starts speaking in Kanye-isms. "Jesus, did you look at him? You'd be doing him a favor," Lydia says as she taps out the Stevia into her tea like the ice queen she is.

9:37 p.m. And now a special look at "Need for Speed." Yeah this trailer cost bank. Oh wait, Aaron Paul is in it! Hot. Yum. Aaron. Paul. I love him. This trailer looks a bit too over the top, though. I'm not feeling it. It's Batman-esque. It's like "Batman" meets "Fast & Furious" meets Aaron Paul's appearance on "Price is Right."

9:40 p.m. Sofia Vergara is pretty. (Yeah, I'm live-blogging the commercials. Because Lydia would want me to.)

9:44 p.m. Walt is humming a song about New Mexico ("as fast as I could...") as he is in gearhead heaven constructing some kind of machine-gun Nazi-killer supermachine. A close-up on his wedding ring now on a string hanging from his neck because he got so skinny. "Truce, all right?" Marie says and a chain-smoking Skyler takes the call. "Walt's in town," Marie says. "Becky -- Carol, whatever. She saw him at your old house, plain as day. And he called her plain as day. And he's like, Hey Becky! Or Carol. She said he looked exactly like the Unabomber." B.S. calls are wasting the police's time as anonymous tipsters are calling in to say that they are him, that they have a manifesto, etc. "That arrogant asshole thinks he's a criminal mastermind," Marie says, and tells Skyler to be on the lookout. "Thanks," Skyler says, and there is almost a softness indicative of love and regret and understanding and empathy toward her husband. Or is it just me? "Five minutes," she says. OH NICE. It's a reveal, a pull-back that Walt was here the whole time in the kitchen. DANG! Nice one, Vince Gilligan. She lights another cigarette. "You look terrible," she says. "But I feel good," he says.

9:48 p.m. "It's over, and I needed a proper goodbye, not our last phone call," he says. "So you'll be going to the police," Skyler says. "When I still had that house three men came in the middle of the night..." "They're not coming back. Not after tonight," Walt says. "I don't want your money, Walt," Skyler says in a hoarse whisper. "I thought Flynn made that clear." "I don't have any. All I have to give you is this." And he pulls out the lottery ticket with the secret coordinates to where Hank is. He tells her they are GPS coordinates. "For what?" "A burial site. That's where they'll find Hank and Steve Gomez. That's where I buried our money. And the men who murdered them, put them in that hole. Now you trade that for a deal with the prosecutor. Get yourself out of this. Skyler, Skyler, all the things I did, you have to understand." And Skyler lays down: "IF I HAVE TO HEAR ONE MORE TIME THAT YOU DID IT FOR THE FAMILY" except in a tight hushed tone. "I did it for me," Walt finally admits. "I liked it. I was good at it. And it was really -- I was alive."

9:50 p.m. "Flynn'll be home soon," Skyler says. "Before I go, may I see her?" Walt asks. And he brushes the hair of an angelic Holly, and oh damn, I feel tears welling up in my eyes now. What's that about. Walt. Damn you.

9:51 p.m. Here comes Flynn. And is that Walt watching him? Yes it is. He's watching Flynn go up the steps to his new home. And again, I feel these damned tears. BAH. Amazing that this finale is inspiring such emotion. I did not expect this.

9:53 p.m. I wonder how much Men's Wearhouse paid to sponsor these commercials? Also, are you going to see the new "Carrie"? I've never seen the original. So. I need to see more scary movies.

9:55 p.m. Hipster GTA commercial with Animal Collective or some shizz.

9:56 p.m. WAIT HOW CAN THERE ONLY BE A FEW MINUTES LEFT? WHAT THE HELL THERE IS NOT ENOUGH TIME. FAAAAAAH.

9:57 p.m. Here we are at the Nazi compound. Where I guess Walt is getting in via his lie about being able to make meth without, you know, meth. Nazi dick wants to talk cars. Walt does not like Nazi dude. He does not want to talk cars.

9:59 p.m. I guess "The Clubhouse" is what they call Jesse's slavery sanctuary. Walt does not park where he is told to park. He is being circled by creepy Nazis who are teling him to put out his arms as he is searched. One of them uses product in his mustache. "While you're at it, lift your shirt up and give us a spin," he lifts his shirt up to show he is wire-less.

10:03 p.m. "Can we talk business?" Walt says to Jack. "Thing is we're not really in the market," Jack says. "You're running low on methlymine..." "Todd, explain things to your Uncle," Walt says. Todd says his version of "It's nothing personal" and tells Walt, "You really shouldn't have come back." Jack's pride is now affronted by the idea that he is partners with Jesse. "This one here, calling me a liar? Hustle it up, let's get this over with. I'm going to show you just how wrong you are, and then I'm going to put this bullet in your head myself," Jack says. And we can hear Jesse's chains clanging as he gets taken to the house. Poor Jesse. Walt is reaching back improbably for his car keys which clearly activate a bomb or something. Oh come on, they would notice him grabbing the car keys. And here's poor Jesse. Poor Jesse. Can I say that again? Poor Jesse.

10:06 p.m. AND WE HAVE LIFTOFF!!! He is magical spinning semi-auto killer machine took out the Nazis -- oh and nice touch, the recliner is lifting up the dead Nazi back and forth. And Walt threw himself on top of Jesse. AND OF COURSE DAMN TODD IS ALIVE. GET TODD, SOMEONE! Oh here comes someone to get -- yeah, Jesse is choking him with a chain! THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT. Love you, Jesse.

10:11 p.m. Jack is spitting up blood and fighting for his life and pulls up a cigarette to get a last drag. Now he is taunting Walt with his money -- and as he starts to say that if you pull that trigger you won't get your money -- Walt's transformation is complete. He doesn't care about the money. He shoots him dead. And now he throws the gun over to Jesse, seemingly for Jesse to be able to shoot him? Yep. Jesse is holding it up. "Do it," Walt says. And Jesse may not be able to. Walt is nodding. "You want this," he says. "Say the words. Say, 'You want this.' Nothing happens until I hear you say it." Walt is bleeding. He says softly, "I want this." Jesse can't. He drops the gun. "Then do it yourself," he says. Walt walks over to the personalized ringtone for "Ms. Lydia." "Is it done? Is he gone?" Lydia asks. "Yeah, they're gone. They're all gone," Walt says. "How are you feeling? Kind of under the weather? Like you've got the flu. I slipped it into that Stevia crap you're always putting in your tea. Well, goodbye, Lydia," Walt says. Perfection. Jesse is staring at Walt, and Jesse nods toward him. They both have tears in their eyes. Jesse rides off, busting through the gates, crying and laughing and banging the steering wheel. And, Walt? What is Walt going to do?

10:13 p.m. Walt is looking around the meth lab. He taps on the pressure gauge. All the while he is bleeding deeply from his stomach. And "Baby Blue" from Badfinger begins. The cops are coming in. Walt's bloody fingerprint caresses one of the metallic lab cylinders. And he falls to the floor, gone. The camera swings upward to reveal the cops circling in on him, a blue light shining on his lifeless body. Epic.

**During "Talking Bad"**

10:20 p.m. When Walt dies, "he is with his 'precious,'" Vince Gilligan tells Chris Hardwick on "Talking Bad," speaking in "Lord of the Rings" terms.

10:22 p.m. "Walt dies protecting Jesse, and I thought that was really beautiful," Aaron Paul says.