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Thirty-Eight Snub

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Breaking Bad
Season 4, Episode 2
Thirty-Eight Snub
Air date July 24, 2011
Written by George Mastras
Directed by Michelle MacLaren
Episode Guide
Box Cutter
Open House
Images from "Thirty-Eight Snub"

"Thirty-Eight Snub" is the second episode of the fourth season of Breaking Bad.


Walt purchases a .38 snub-nose revolver with a filed off serial number from an illicit gun dealer in a motel room. Watching Walt awkwardly draw the weapon, the dealer advises Walt to practice. He tells Walt that as long as this gun is for defense, there is little sense in him carrying an illegal firearm. But Walt says he wants it this way "just in case" — from the look on his face it's clear 'legal' isn't what he's looking for.


Having coffee at a bar, Mike discovers Victor's dried blood on his jacket sleeve. He wipes it off, unsettled.

Jesse shows off his powerful new sound system to Badger and Skinny Pete. He then tempts his friends — who are in recovery — with cocaine. Badger and Skinny Pete quickly cave, get high and discuss the finer points of videogame zombies. Jesse decides to throw a party and the house quickly fills with dozens of people drinking and dancing.

At his condo, Walt practices drawing the revolver; he's getting better and better.

Marie wakes in the middle of the night to find Hank examining his minerals. When she mentions how late it is, he pointedly notes that the house has other bedrooms.

The next morning, Walt chastises Skyler for discussing their intention to buy a car wash over the phone. They're not talking about purchasing a brothel, she counters, adding that if Walt isn't "willing to pull the trigger" on the deal then she'll contact Saul directly. That gets Walt's attention — he can't let that happen — and they start to talk it over.

Jesse, meanwhile, tiptoes through the passed-out partygoers. Peeling off some large bills, Jesse instructs Badger to buy everyone breakfast and keep the party going until he returns.

At the lab, Walt tucks his gun in his belt, waiting for Gus to arrive. When someone appears at the top of the stairs, he prepares to draw... only it's not Gus. It's Victor's replacement, Tyrus, here to pick up the latest batch. When Mike demands a second weighing ("new policy") Walt asks to see Gus to "clear the air." "You're never gonna see him again," Mike replies.

Surveilling the car wash from across the street, Skyler tallies the cars and services each customer receives, making a detailed accounting of the business.

At the Schrader house, Hank pushes himself to "soldier up" through a tough physical therapy session. Marie is elated by Hank's progress, but after the therapist departs, Hank coldly orders her out of the room.

The party is in full swing at Jesse's house when he returns from the lab. Andrea rings the doorbell, but waits outside to speak with him. She asks Jesse if he sent her an envelope of cash the night her brother's killers were murdered. Jesse acknowledges he did, then urges her to use the money to move her son Brock to a better neighborhood.

Late that night, Walt approaches Gus's house, gun in hand, but loses his nerve when Tyrus calls, telling him to "Go home." His every move is being watched.

The next day, a deliveryman arrives at the Schrader home with box upon box of minerals. Hank instructs Marie to check each box for damage. "They're rocks," she replies, bristling. He corrects her, "they're minerals," and some of them are very delicate. Once again, Hank treats her unkindly and Marie feels it acutely.

At the car wash, Skyler approaches Bogdan with a proposal to buy his business. He derisively asks for $10 million; Skyler counters with $879,000 then shows him detailed research of his expenses and revenues. $20 million, Bogdan replies. "This is the price for Walter White," he says, because Walt insulted him by quitting, grabbing his crotch, and "sending his woman" to make the offer instead of coming himself. This last accusation clearly angers Skyler.

Walt approaches Mike at a bar and tells him that his recent actions were motivated by loyalty to Jesse and self-defense. Walt says that he believes that Mike was just following orders when he tried to kill him. "There's a load off my mind," Mike drily replies. "So, what's with the piece?" Mike asks: he noticed Walt's gun at the lab.

Walt insists that he and Mike are in "the same boat," and that Gus could easily kill either of them. "Get me in a room with him," Walt says, "and I'll do the rest." Mike seems to consider the suggestion for a moment, then knocks Walt to the floor with a savage punch, and kicks him in the gut when he's down. Walt's got his answer; Mike is not an ally, here.

As Jesse's party finally breaks up, he asks Badger and Skinny Pete to stick around. Badger and Skinny Pete apologetically decline, disappointing Jesse. Alone in his house for the first time in days, Jesse cranks up the music to earsplitting levels, and sits against the shaking speaker.


Main Cast

Guest Stars


  • In the scene where Walter is packing his lunch next to the cartridges for his recently purchased revolver, it can be clearly seen that the cartridges are blanks, characterized by the crimp on the end.

Featured Music

  • "Money" by D/R Period
  • "Up in the Club" by The Trak Kartel
  • "Hoochie Mama" by 2 Live Crew
  • "Unga Bunga G" by Flav Flav
  • "Raise Hell" by M.O.P.
  • "I'm Down" by Dub-Boro
  • "Digital Animal" by Honey Claws

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