It's been a long wait since Breaking Bad left us with a BOOM this past fall. While you certainly haven't forgotten the events of the finale, you may not recall the astounding amount of money Walter White spent in Season 4—so much that when a desperate Walt sought to "disappear" his family to safety at the cost of $600,000, he discovered he was far short, propelling him toward a face-off with Gus.
Which got us thinking: How much money did Walt make in the first place? Where did it all go? And as the new season starts, with no clear top dog in the meth game, how much does Walt have to kick-start his empire? (If only Walter Jr. had realized the potential for his crowdsourced online donations idea, he'd have invented
Bear with us here, our math is a little fuzzy as not every single item was explicitly priced out in Season 4, but our estimates make it clear that Walt's bank account will begin at near empty this season. Hopefully Jesse has done a better job saving in between parties...
We can estimate the amount of time Walt worked for Gus at about six months. We used this handy Vulture article to help us out with the timeframe.
– Walt's first three months of work were done at a rate of $3 million to be split with Jesse... or $1.5 million for the first three months.
– Gus then re-upped their deal to pay $15 million for a year, split down the middle. This was confirmed in Season 4's seventh episode, "Problem Dog," when Skyler did some quick math as to how much Walt earned per year. She estimated about $7.1 million, to which Walt responded calmly, "$7.5 million minus expenses."
– $7.5 million divided by 12 months is $625,000 per month. Walt worked for Gus for an additional three months on the new deal, making him $1.875 million.
– So with six-month earnings equal to $3.375 million, we can subtract work expenses established by Walt as about $400,000 per year, or $200,000 per six months. That gives us an earnings total of:
Click the image to open a larger, hi-res version in a new tab/window.
Do you agree with our math? Feel free to post your own calculations in the comments!