TV Club

Breaking Bad final season preview: Can Hank catch Walt?

Can Hank’s investigation actually yield fruit if Walt’s out of the game?

Hank Schrader (Dean Norris) - Breaking Bad_Season 5, Episode 8_"Gliding Over All"
Dean Norris as Hank Schrader in Breaking Bad

Photo by Ursula Coyote/AMC

Emily and June,

As a latecomer to Breaking Bad, the gap between last year’s eight episodes and the conclusion is actually the longest I’ve ever gone without a fix. I’m jonesing. But I’m still not satisfied with the elliptical way that last episode was structured. Or at least I’m hoping the final episodes give me satisfaction. I’m curious to learn what happens next, of course, but just as curious to learn about what happened during the time we just recently skipped over.

The issue bringing those two strands together will be, of course, Hank Schrader’s burgeoning investigation into his brother-in-law. The simultaneous executions of all the subjects of the DEA’s investigation into Gus Fring will have stymied the case. But surely our Captain Ahab hasn’t just been twiddling his thumbs waiting around for Leaves of Grass to give him a lead. The sudden appearance of much more potent blue-tinted methamphetamine in the Czech Republic must have made it to someone’s desk in Albuquerque, right?

I hope so, at any rate. Without some backfill, I’m not really sure where Hank’s investigation is going to go. If Walt has really gotten cleanly out of the game, then keeping close tabs on him isn’t going to reveal anything. But of course that changes if loose threads drag Heisenberg into one last coffee shop meetup with Lydia, or into the Vamanos office, or a quick chat with Declan. I mean, how easy can it be to quit an ongoing criminal enterprise?   

Alternatively, is there any chance Hank goes back to the Jesse Pinkman well? That didn’t work out so well for him last time. But poor Jesse getting dragged back into things seems inevitable.