Breaking Bad review: 'Buried'


#1

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#2

“Buried” took an incredibly tense moment at the end of last week’s episode and let it go without much of an explanation. (Did Hank just push the garage door button and let him leave in silence?)

I don't think this scene was left as abruptly as you suspect.

Breaking Bad has a history of adapting movie-level cinematography and camera use to television. It also has a history of nodding to its inspirations. "Buried" did both right at the beginning and it was fantastic.

Yes, the overhead shot of Jesse having the world spinning out of from under him in the cold open was interestingly shot, but for my money the best cinematographic scene in this episode has to be right after the opening credits when Walt leaves Hank's garage.

There's a tight shot of Walt exiting. He turns around, and we see Hank, his new nemesis, over his shoulder. Both men have their hands at their sides as Hank squares up with Walt a driveway between them. Back to Walt eyeballing Hank, the shot over Hank's shoulder this time. Then a shot from the ground up at Hank eyeballing Walt. Hank's left hand twitches. Same shot mirrored at Walt who wriggles his left hand. Back to Hank. Only this time the shot is behind his right hand with Walt at the bottom of the driveway. Hank draws and shoots; the garage door closes. Again the shot is mirrored from Walt's perspective – his left hand at his side and Hank twenty paces away.

Every shot in this vignette was a perfect replication of the classic high noon shootouts of Old West movies. The only thing missing (and only just) were tight shots of the shooters' eyes and them chewing a toothpick or cigarette. Hell, even the whirring yellow car in the background was reminiscent of a lone tumbleweed rustling across the dusty, abandoned main street of Dodge City.

This was a perfectly done scene for a show whose setting is as much a character as any of the one's played by actors, and it was a fantastic set up for two rouge gunslingers with itchy trigger fingers ready for a final showdown. (I'll leave the over-analysis of the fact that Walt's wearing a whitish beige and Hank's wearing a dark rouge to others.)

This fantastic Old West stylized standoff between Hank and Walt established everything you need to know about how last week's episode ended. Both men have sized each other up and know how dangerous a misfire will be.


#3

The coords given to the moneys burial lead us to Albuquerque Studios


#4

One thing I can't understand is how Walt is still alive after a month away from the organization. Lydia seems to treat former employees as loose ends, and loose ends get murdered. Hell, she had her entire cook staff murdered because they were just a little incompetent. Not one guy to make an example, she had the whole gang executed in what was the shortest and apparently most one sided gun battle in history.

The only thing I can think is that she's so worried about the quality that she can't afford to kill the one competent guy she knows, and apparently she has the word that if you kill Jessie Walt will kill you. That's got to be the only thing keeping the kid alive at this point, especially now that his guardian angel has taken a trip to Belize.


#5

I think you nailed the reasons, but there's also the fact that Walter promised her she'd be safe after handing over the names, and he kept his word. She knows he's also ice cold, trustworthy, and he's got too much to lose by blabbing.

He's no threat because he's such a threat.


#6

Great summary and analysis. The scene between Skyler and Marie was harrowing. The tussle over Holly was heartbreaking.

All I'd add, at least as a bonus crystal, is Saul's brief scene, promoting Belize tourism: For now, at least, Walt considers Hank family -- and off-limits for any permanent measures. If it comes down to one or the other, well, that's the big Heisenberg uncertainty, right?

I'm going to miss this show.


#7

The Scrooge McDuck reference isn't necessarily to Duck Tales. I was reading Uncle Scrooge comics back in the seventies. Apparently Scrooge has been diving into pools of money since 1947. Duck Tales wasn't created until 1987 and only lasted 3 short years. Bill Burr is 5 years older than me. I bet he read a few Uncle Scrooge comics back in the day. All I'm saying.


#8

1972


#9

Hank over-played his hand with Skyler. He will live to regret that. Will he be able to handle Jesse or will he create another enemy? I still have a hard time liking Hank.


#10

Well, the guy killed 10 different guys in 2 different prisons in a 2 minute window. All I'm saying.


#12

I read this review and another, as well as the comments, then rewatched the episode yesterday evening. Last night I had a tough time sleeping and was thinking in my half waking state, "There is so much that Skyler does not know about; even though she has gotten behind Walt, what will happen when she learns about the really horrible things she does not know?"


#13

34 59 20 106 36 52 <<<< These number must be typed into an Apple II+ every 108 minutes.


#14

I've never heard of a lottery where the numbers go as high as 106


#15

I just assumed he bought Pick 3 tickets with multiple numbers.

The tickets were : 034 059 020 106 036 052

Figured that was six "pick 3s"


#16

The Feds find the barrels of money and confiscate it, but ironically his Lotto ticket wins big and he gets several million bucks to replace the drug money.


#17

I think what's more likely to happen, given this fucking series, is that the ticket wins something and walt jr goes and cashes it in, having seen it on the refrigerator.


#18

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