TV Review: Breaking Bad S05E09 “Blood Money”

As Vince Gilligan’s cautionary epic comes to a close, audiences, and die-hard fans, find themselves discussing the many possibilities  of the final eight episodes in season five. Breaking Bad is a rare breed of show that has kept situational and narrative continuity for  all fifty-five hours of its existence (with 7 more hours to come.)

“Blood Money,” reminds us why Breaking Bad is perfect. The script, written by Gilligan and Peter Gould, is organic. Letting the characters react to the circumstances around them and the actions of each other. A common fault in television dramas is often found in the characters, and their reactions to situations (if the character isn’t doing anything why watch him?) But here we have a scene where we just look at Jesse while his friends talk, and he is over-encumbered with guilt, and Hank falling apart at the haunting discovery of his brother-in-law and good friend.

Nothing spells it out for us, but we can feel it through the expert direction (from Bryan Cranston), editing and production design of this episode. We feel Jesse’s guilt, Hank’s devastation, Walt’s pride. Of course Hank has a panic attack at the start of this episode, he is just learned that the man he has been hunting who has committed dark and disturbing crimes, was right under his nose the whole time. He is betrayed, his perspective of law, good and evil, is single-handedly shifted. The editing while he’s driving demonstrates his overwhelming wave of emotion.

From the start of “Blood Money,” we are immediately brought back into the world of Heisenberg with intrigue. Walt walking into his rundown, abandoned home with the Heisenberg graffiti. Not to mention Carol, his neighbor’s reaction. What has he done to have his home taken away? How’d he gain this notoriety? Where’s his family? And the biggest question. What is he planning on doing now?

From top to bottom this episode had everything a fan could’ve asked for. Comedic elements, intensity, a visit from each character in the cast, and another gut-wrenching monologue from Heisenberg. Hank and Walt’s confrontation exceeded expectations from perfect acting to perfect dialogue. Now that everything’s out in the open, what remains for these final hours?

“Blood Money” exceeds unrealistically high-expectations. Gilligan and his crew are masters of their craft and I am way too eager for Sunday. Another perfect episode.

Breaking Bad
S05E09 – ★★★★★
S05E08 – ★★★★★
S05E07 – ★★★★★
S05E06 – ★★★★1/2
S05E05 – ★★★★1/2
S05E04 – ★★★★★
S05E03 – ★★★★★
S05E02 – ★★★★1/2
S05E01 – ★★★★★