|Season 5, Episode 5|
|Air date||August 12, 2012|
|Written by||George Mastras|
|Directed by||George Mastras|
|Images from "Dead Freight"|
A young boy rides through the desert on a dirtbike. He stops to play with a tarantula, which he then places into a jar. When he gets back on his bike, a freight train is heard in the distance to which he drives off to presumably chase.
Walt visits Hank at his new ASAC office where Hank remarks on Walt's expensive new watch. Walt tells Hank it's a birthday present for himself. During their brief conversation, Walt breaks down in tears, telling his brother-in-law that Skyler no longer loves him and thinks he is a bad father. Uncomfortable with displays of emotion, Hank quickly excuses himself to get a cup of coffee and to give Walt some space (as Walt anticipated Hank would react). Walt seizes the opportunity to plant a transmitter in Hank's computer and a receiver in his family picture on his desk.
In the basement of an abandoned building in Houston, Walt and Jesse standby as Mike threatens Lydia. He forces her to call the DEA to sort out the GPS's origins, threatening her life if she cries or arouses Hank's suspicions in any way. Listening into Hank's phone communications, the GPS trackers were revealed not to be the work of the Albuquerque DEA field office. Discussion among the Mike, Walt, and Jesse leads to Jesse dissenting but Walt agreeing with Mike that Lydia be killed, with Lydia insisting that it wasn't her doing and begging for her life to be spared. Just as Mike approaches her, the bug picks up a call from the Houston field office confirming to Hank that they placed GPS tracking devices on the outside, rather than inside, of all the methylamine barrels. Mike still wanted to kill Lydia but she saves her life by informing the men of an "ocean" of methylamine in a freight train tanker car that passes through New Mexico each Wednesday. Lydia demands a percentage after providing key transport details to boost the methylamine, including the exact position of that tanker car in the freight's lineup, but Mike is skeptical they can complete the heist without killing the engineer and conductor.
At the Schrader house, Hank plays with Holly as Marie looks on, and Hank lovingly tells Holly he's "not going to give her back", and Hank asks Marie how "Emo McGee" is doing. Just as Marie remarks that Walt Jr. is being reclusive and unsocial and Hank replies that his parents treat him like a baby, Walt Jr. , steps out of his temporary bedroom to walk into the kitchen. Marie calls out to him using his current preferred name "Flynn," indicating his defiance once more, again over the temporary relocation and stonewalling by his parents. Hank asks him if he wants to watch the DVD of "Heat" with him later that he'd brought home, and Flynn declines. Marie asks Flynn if he wants some lasagna, and he declines that offer too, angrily telling them he's going back into his room so they can "keep talking about him." Walt, Jr. returns home sometime later that day. In the next scene we see Skyler at his bedroom door refusing to come out, and Walt uses his parental trump card ordering him back to the Schrader house. Skyler then expresses her fear of Walt and his profession, tells him she will never change her mind about him, and negotiates a deal with him: if Walt agrees to keep the children away from the house while he's engaging in the drug business, she'll launder the drug business proceeds, then refers to herself as Walt's "hostage."
Back at Jesse's house Mike and Walt argue about how to proceed, with Jesse once again hanging back on the living room couch away from the other two as they engage in yet another tense standoff. Mike suggest using cough medication for the time being but Walt suggest halting production until they can get methylamine. Jesse has an idea: what if they can steal it without getting caught (thus negating the need to kill the train engineer and conductor)? Light bulbs go off in their heads in Jesse's living room.
At some train tracks in the middle of the desert, Mike, Jesse, and Walt measure off 800 feet, the length to reach that specific methylamine tanker car in the freight train lineup, and agree it's the perfect spot for their operation. Todd, one of the trusted crew from Vamanos Pest Control helps dig a hole for, and bury, two giant plastic tanks near the tracks. One is filled with water by Todd, in weight approximately 9/10ths of the weight of the methylamine they intend to heist, the other is kept empty. Later, Kuby blocks the train tracks with a dump truck filled with a load of fill dirt, and the train screeches to a halt. Mike signals to Walt when the conductor and engineer get out to help Kuby with the truck. Jesse scrambles under the train and begins siphoning methylamine into the empty underground plastic tank, while simultaneously Todd climbs atop the train, opening the upper lid with a pneumatic drill and inserting his line of firehose into it for the replacement fluid. When the meter by Walt displays over 300 gallons of methylamine has been siphoned off into the 1st underground tank, Walt turns on the compressor to evacuate the water from the 2nd underground tank, and simultaneously signals Todd that the replacement water is coming.
The plan appears to be working until a Good Samaritan appears and pushes Kuby's truck off the tracks. Mike signals to Walt to wrap it up but he pushes it to the very last moment when they have stolen every drop they can. As Walt, Jesse, and Todd celebrate their flawless heist, they notice that the child who was portrayed in the opening scene witnessed their brief celebration. The boy nervously waves at the three who are suddenly standing in stunned silence. Todd returns the wave and shoots the boy as Jesse yells in protest.
- Laura Fraser as Lydia Rodarte-Quayle
- Jesse Plemons as Todd
- Steven Michael Quezada as Steven Gomez
- Bill Burr as Kuby
- Samuel Webb as Drew Sharp
- Jamie McShane as Conductor
- Myk Watford as Engineer
- Ryan Begay as Good Samaritan
- Mary Sue Evans as Janice
- Joshua Gomez as Sandor
- Miguel Martinez as Fernando
- Bob Odenkirk does not appear in this episode.
- Jesse James is once again mentioned in this episode, this time by Jesse Pinkman when he says that boosting the methylamine from a train is just like "Jesse James." Jesse James was previously brought up when Mike compared Walt's murder of Gus to Robert Ford, Jesse James' assassin, saying "Just because you shot Jesse James, don't make you Jesse James." ("Hazard Pay")
- The movie Hank says he has on blu ray, Michael Mann's Heat (1995) is a heist film. During the opening heist, one of the thieves kills a civillian unnecessarily, much to the chagrin of the leader of gang. This parallels the ending of this episode when after the train heist, Todd shoots the boy, much to the dismay of everyone else.
- The location for the filming of the train heist outside Santa Fe, New Mexico, is the same location for the filming in 1969 of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, in which Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid jumped out of a passenger train.
- The shot of Jesse underneath the train was achieved by visual effects, with two separate shots combined: the train moving and revealing the tracks, and Jesse on the tracks.
- Many crew members working on the episode have said it was very tough to film.
- The episode was originally to be called "Dark Territory", but the name was taken from a movie called "Under Seige 2: Dark Territory", which also starred Jonathan Banks in pretty much the same exact role he had in this episode.
Breaking Bad Episodes
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