Walt and Jesse realize how dire their situation is. They must come up with a plan to kill Tuco before Tuco kills them first.
Having completed their deal with Tuco in the junkyard, Walt and Jesse realize just how crazy and violent he can be. Jesse is convinced that he's seen Tuco's black SUV going up and down his street. Walt puts it down to paranoia - until he sees a black SUV parked just down the block from his house. Jesse's solution is to shoot Tuco before he kills them but Walt has a better idea. Panic sets in however when they think Tuco is killing his associates. Hank reviews the security surveillance footage of the warehouse break-in without realizing it's Walt and Jesse. Skyler tells Hank about Marie's shoplifting and gets a surprising reaction.
- Last season on Breaking Bad: Walter White (Bryan Cranston), a 50-year-old high-school chemistry teacher, starts cooking primo-quality methamphetamine with a small-time local drug dealer and former student, Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul), to earn money to leave behind for his family after learning he is dying of lung cancer. Walter and Jesse start selling wholesale to a crazy drug kingpin named Tuco (Raymond Cruz) in order to make cash more quickly. Walter has a pregnant wife, Skyler (Anna Gunn), and a teenage son with cerebral palsy, Walter Jr. (RJ Mitte). Walter's brother-in-law, Hank Schrader (Dean Norris), is a DEA agent--he's married to Skyler's sister, Marie (Betsy Brandt).
Open with a silent back-and-white scene in a suburban backyard (Walter's). As sirens wail in the background, the camera pans to a half-burned stuffed animal floating in the pool.
We begin with the scene (from last year's season finale) where Walter and Jesse sell Tuco their first batch of blue meth cooked with methylamine instead of pseudoephedrine. The deal goes smoothly, but Tuco freaks out over a relatively innocuous comment by one of his boys and beats him unconscious. Once in the car, Walter talks through how long it will take them to earn the $737,000 he wants to leave for his family and get away from Tuco: 11 weeks.
As the pair drives from the junkyard, they are cut off by Tuco's Escalade screaming toward them. Tuco drags out the beaten and convulsing man and demands Walter do something since he's "smart." Tuco's boy quickly dies, and Tuco demands that his other henchman, Gonzo (Cesar Garcia), dispose of the body. Though Gonzo thinks the situation isn't "very Christian," he stashes the body under a precarious stack of cars. When Walter and Jesse attempt to leave, Tuco stops them briefly and stares at them menacingly.
Skyler is in the bathroom when Walter returns home. He turns on the TV in a daze, not noticing her calling to him until she grabs his shoulder. He doesn't say anything about where he's been but begins to sob on Skyler's shoulder. This somehow turns to lust. Walter violently pulls down her underwear and pushes her up against the fridge before she screams at him to stop. Walter goes and sits outside on the deck, and Skyler tells him not to take out his fear and frustration on her. Walter Jr. returns home and spots the strange mess in the kitchen.
We see Jesse illegally purchase a revolver.
Jesse tells Walter he thinks they are "dead men." His phone rang eight times the previous night with dead air, and a black Cadillac like Tuco's was roaming the neighborhood without headlights. Jesse thinks they need to kill Tuco themselves, but it quickly becomes clear he is not prepared for the task.
On her way out the door for work, Marie tries calling Skyler and leaves a lengthy message on the answering machine. Hank stops her in the car and asks about a meeting she's supposed to have with "Dave" that night. She has only six more sessions left, and Hank says he thinks "Dave is really helping."
Hank shows up at work, and Gomez (Steven Michael Quezada) shows a video of Walter and Jesse breaking into the chemical storage facility and stealing the drum of methylamine. Because of the awkwardness of the getaway and the Thermite used to get through the door, the agents figure the masked thieves are chemistry-savvy meth-makers with no street skills. Given the amount of meth the methylamine could produce, Hank thinks they could tick off other drug dealers: "They better pray it's us that catches up to them and not those boys from Juarez."
Walter arrives home that night. When he picks up the paper in the driveway, he notices an SUV parked across the street. When he stares at the vehicle, its engine starts and it leaves.
The next morning Skyler notices Walter isn't in bed. We see him in the living room staring out the front window. Marie calls and Skyler hangs up without answering. When she asks Walter if he's been up all night, he mumbles something about his stomach, and after she leaves, he puts a large kitchen knife back in the block.
At Jesse's, Walter grills him about whether Tuco could have found out his real name or address and wonders what might happen if Tuco learned Hank's profession. Walter pulls out a small bag of castor beans and tells Jesse he plans to make the highly lethal ricin. The amount needed to cover the head of a pin is deadly, and it is difficult to spot at autopsy.
In the nursery, Skyler looks through old photographs. She pauses on one showing her on a man's lap. Just then Hank startles her by tapping on the window. Hank is there to ask Skyler to stop giving the cold shoulder to Marie but admits he knows about her stealing. When Hank suggests that Marie needs their support, Skyler loses it. She intensely details her family's laundry list of current problems and how little patience she has for her "spoiled, kleptomaniac, bitch sister" before dissolving into tears. The stunned Hank awkwardly attempts to console her.
In Jesse's basement, Walter mixes a tiny amount of ricin with a few meth crystals in a small plastic bag. The plan is that after the next sale they will hand Tuco this new, more potent form of meth in the hope that he'll try it on the spot. If the plan works, Tuco will die several days later, and it will appear to have been of natural causes. Hank calls Walter to apologize for getting Skyler so upset. He is at a new crime scene and sends Walter a cell-phone-camera picture of the bodies. Walter and Jesse look in horror at the henchman Tuco killed lying next to the body of Gonzo.
Walter and Jesse sprint upstairs. "Tuco killing Gonzo means he's coming after us next," Walter tells Jesse before grabbing the gun and telling Jesse to get out of town. Jesse goes through a cabinet and pulls out a bag of cash.
At home Walter finds Skyler in the bathtub. Walter Jr. is not home. Walter goes into the nursery and pulls all his cash out of the vent. He puts the money and the gun into a box of diapers and goes back to the bathroom.
Back at the junkyard, Hank can't find any bullet wounds on Gonzo. When the police attempt to lay Gonzo's kneeling body flat on its back, one of his arms comes off, stuck in the stack of cars . Hank determines that Gonzo attempted to move the first henchman's body, got pinned by the shifting stack of cars and bled out. "This guy wasn't murdered," Hank says.
Sitting on the edge of the tub, Walter is ready to tell Skyler everything. He ignores a ring on his phone and opens his mouth to begin. Just then he sees headlights on the street. Jesse has pulled up in front of the house.
Walter walks outside and puts his head in the open passenger-side window. "What the hell are you doing here?" he demands. Jesse is silent and looks terrified. Walter glances to the back seat, and Tuco sits up holding a gun. "Get in," Tuco orders him. The car heads down the street as the episode comes to an end.