So yeah, another gorgeously filmed (this time, not black-and-white) montage involving Jesse’s car opens the episode, and then it’s to Walter and Jesse being forced out of the trunk and held at (a much bigger) gunpoint by Tuco.
As far as Skyler remembers it, Walter exited the house when he saw Jesse’s car and then he was gone. Walter is missing, and the episode make this the centerpoint. It’s all about both ends: Walter being help captive at Tuco’s house with Jesse opposite Tuco’s Tio, and on the other end we have Hank, Skyler, Marie and Walter Jr. trying to get the word out about Walter’s disappearance.
Tuco makes it clear that while he finds a lot of potential in Walter and likes him a lot as a “cook”, he doesn’t think the same for Jesse. Then again, the duo almost succeed in having Tuco take the ricin they produced previously until Jesse lets it slip (as a lie) that the secret ingredient in the ricin (“meth”, “new recipe”) is chili powder, which Tuco hates, so I guess that pretty much puts Jesse on the wrong foot. Hey, they can try.
Meanwhile, Hank uses those police procedural, detective skills you would most likely attain from being a DEA agent (I mean, they’re police too, right?) to deduce/discover that the call Skyler saw Walter not take/ignore never made it on Walter’s cell phone call records, which leads him to discover that second cell phone of Walter’s (for deals, you know). Which leads to Hank and Marie convincing (or at least trying to convince) Skyler that that pot addiction she thought Walter had then got rid of is back, and then Jesse enters the frame. After a question and answer session between Hank and Mrs. Pinkman goes nowhere (sorta) but produces a quip about Jesse’ car with the dumb as hell LoJack, that’s when things seriously go somewhere.
Okay, so back to Walter and Jesse’ predicament. I mentioned Tio, Tuco’s uncle, a sick uncle at that. Confined to a wheelchair and cursed with being and mostly appearing like he’s not really there, you’d think he wouldn’t be much trouble, right? Wrong. He catches Walter and Jesse changing the channel on the news report of Gonzo’s death, whom Tuco previously thought ratted him out to the feds, and he catches the last split second of Walter putting the ricin in Tuco’s burrito. That bell affixed to Tio’s wheelchair is also a curse one *ding* from means yes, and it is dinged once to pretty much all of Tuco’s questions, leading him to believe that either Walter or Jesse (or both) did something to him. Since I’m guessing Tuco still needs Walter’s insanely good meth cooking skills, Jesse receives the beatings and the butt of the gun to the back of his head. Until Walter saves him (again) with a few lines that delivered scarily good. It is with this that you see Walter growing and developing more. That scared chemistry teacher he was? I think it’s going away more and more, and being replaced with someone who rivals whatever antagonist the show will have in its seasons or individual episodes in monstrosity. Walter pretty much tells Tuco, “Yeah, we tried to poison you, but that’s only because you deserve it” in the most badass way possible. The duo then get the jump on Tuco and leave him bleeding out after a gunshot (or gunshot clip) to the stomach.
The episode ends with an exciting standoff between Hank (after requesting info on Jesse’s car) and Tuco, and just when you think Hank looks like he’s pretty much screwed, he gets the upper hand on Tuco and shoots him dead, leaving the show villain-less, for now. I mean, in the world of drug dealing, there will also be a villain.
This was a superb episode even if it was a tiny step down from the season 2 premiere. There were still tense and action packed filled moments, and no one can forget Walter’s growth. Right now, the show has nowhere to go but up. Rating: A-