Breaking Bad: Confessions (S5E11)
I have been complaining the last few weeks about a lack of Jesse in these episodes. Let me tell you - this episode made up for that in spades. This episode gave every single central character a lot of screen time and a lot of room to grow and explore. It was honestly the episode I had been waiting for these past weeks, since it brought our entire cast of characters together and pushed things forward in a big way.
That being said, it was not flawless. Due to time constraints in my own busy life, this review will be rather brief, especially for such a meaty episode. Let's go through each character's journey in this episode and talk about what went well and what did not.
First of all: Walter Jr. He didn't have the biggest plot arc in this episode, nor has he had a lot to do this entire season. However, I really enjoyed the little of him that we did get. Walt sits down with his son to be "honest" with him, telling him that his cancer has come back. This scene broke my heart because Jr. looked so devastated at the thought of losing his father, but he has no idea about the rest of what is going on. Walt's subtle manipulation was actually really hard to watch, since Jr. clearly cares so much for a man he knows nothing about. I hope we get to really explore more of Jr's role in events as the season continues.
Then there's Skyler, Hank, and Marie. Their dinner scene with Walt was one of the highlights of the episode. I enjoyed the awkwardness of the waiter trying to take their order while they discussed things. Hank and Marie are unrepentant in their attempts to get Walt to confess. Marie even suggests that Walt just kill himself. This was shocking and dark to hear, but Hank says that Walt doesn't deserve to get off that easy. The dynamic between these four in-laws is extremely intense - Marie's attempts to take Holly and Jr. coupled with Skyler's loyalty to her her husband makes for a very strained relationship between the sisters, and that really showed in this restaurant scene.
Hank has other things going on as well, of course, as he tells Marie that he hasn't turned in Walt yet. Marie is concerned about this, but Hank is playing things more under-handed, talking to Jesse and attempting to get the younger man to give up his partner. This scene was intense, as it brought back earlier plot points such as Hank's attack on Jesse. He's also got to deal with Walt's latest deviousness, in the form of a "confession" tape where Walt says that Hank is the mastermind behind the meth empire.