Breaking Bad: Season 1, Episode 5

Gray Matter (24 Feb. 2008)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Thriller
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 5,261 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 14 critic

Walt rejects everyone who tries to help him with the cancer. Jesse tries his best to create Walt's meth, with the help of an old friend.

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Title: Gray Matter (24 Feb 2008)

Gray Matter (24 Feb 2008) on IMDb 8.1/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Manager
Marc Mouchet ...
Kiira Arai ...
Server (as Kiira Arai Sniegowski)
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Scientist (as William Allen)
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Kyle Swimmer ...
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Storyline

Jesse tries to get a regular job and put his drug dealing behind him but he finds that there are few opportunities for someone with his education and experience. Jesse tries to cook a new batch of meth but can't come anywhere near Walt's standard. After attending a birthday party at a now very rich friend's house, Walt reconnects with his one-time business partner Elliott who offers him a job. It turns out Skyler told Elliott about his condition and Walt is not very pleased. Walt Jr. tries to get someone to buy him a six-pack but is busted in the process. He calls his uncle Hank to pick him up and Hank learns from Skyler that it's Walt senior who admitted smoking marijuana. Finding his behavior bizarre, the family sets up a intervention where they all get to tell Walt what they think about the situation. Written by garykmcd

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Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

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24 February 2008 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Walter White is said to be the "white" in "Gray Matter", the name of former partner Elliott Schwartz's company. Schwartz is German for "black", and white combined with black makes gray; hence the name of the company. See more »

Goofs

The black Fender Stratocaster given to Elliot by a friend at his party is a Fender Stratocaster Mexican version. Eric Clapton only played Fender Stratocaster American. When he picks up the guitar, the headstock is from a Mexican made Stratocaster (subtle differences, i.e., the missing Fender logo up the very top). See more »

Quotes

Walter H. White: What the hell did you say to Elliot?
Skyler White: What?
Walter H. White: You told him about the cancer didn't you? Didn't you? I can't believe it.
Skyler White: OK, we we're talking. He asked how you were doing and I am sorry but I don't have the best poker face these days where that's concerned. He knew something was wrong with you and he pressed me.
Walter H. White: He pressed you, come on.
Skyler White: Walt, when it came right down to it, I didn't know what else to do but tell him the truth.
Walter H. White: The truth? Well how about you just said 'He's fine' huh? You think maybe ...
[...]
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Soundtracks

Deixa Pra La
Performed by Bronx River Parkway
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User Reviews

 
Talking, talking, and even more talking - yet it's actually quite a great episode!
7 October 2013 | by (Austria) – See all my reviews

While being without a doubt the most dialog-focused episode of the season, "Gray Matter" was the one that got me hooked again as I first watched this fantastic series. The premise is the same as it was in "Cancer Man" with Walt and Jesse still going separate ways. The one now gets confronted by his family due to his aversion to cancer treatment plus his continuing strange behavior; the other once again tries to succeed in life on his own after both his parents and Walt have left him alone.

The pre-credits scene brings a huge novelty for Breaking Bad as we see Jesse suiting up for a job interview that – didn't we expect it? – doesn't work the way he wanted it too. I always love to listen to this dude talking and so I quite enjoyed this introduction, however, it also brought us Matt Jones' Badger, a junkie similarly as unsuccessful with life as Jesse. I really don't like his character and I'm not at all able to take him seriously since he's just too moronic. Now that wouldn't be too bad if "Gray Matter" were the only episode he's starring in, but unfortunately, he returns for eleven additional episodes in the future. Through that, you can reason that I didn't enjoy the scenes with him on screen that much, although Aaron Paul partially compensated for that with great acting. The real assets of this episode were all the conversation scenes between Walt and Skyler plus sometimes Walt Jr., Hank, and Marie. In one outstanding scene of almost 15 minutes, the latter of this list stage an intervention for Walt. Each and every one of them gets the talking pillow (applause to whoever came up with that idea!) and with the number of minutes increasing, you'll find yourself more and more admiring the screen writing and acting work the cast of Breaking Bad has done with this scene.

"Gray Matter" had other touching, amusing, or simply entertaining moments too, which made it a generally really good episode for me. It's just that because of the emphasis laying on the conversations, it's not that thrilling anymore if you re-watch it and, as I've already said, Badger ruins it a bit for my taste.


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