Breaking Bad

Season 5 Episode 1

Live Free or Die

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Jul 15, 2012 on AMC

Episode Recap

Walt has headed to a diner and ordered breakfast. He receives bacon, eggs, and hash browns. He doesn't immediately eat. He instead makes the bacon into the number 52. It's Walt's birthday today, although this is a flash-forward because in the real storyline Walt hasn't turned 52 yet. When he looks up, Walt's appearance has changed. He has a fuller beard and black-rimmed hipster glasses. His hair has grown back in. The waitress offers to give him his breakfast for free since it is Walt's birthday. Walt shows her a New Hampshire driver's license.

A man walks in behind him and Walt sees that it is the gun seller, Lawson. Walt previously bought a gun from him. Walt heads to the washroom to meet with Lawson and hands over a large envelope full of cash. Lawson gives Walt some keys and tells him to not to take the acquisition to Mexico. Walt says it won't leave town. Walt coughs and takes some prescribed pills. He pays for his simple breakfast with a $100 bill. Outside, Walt finds his white Volvo and takes out a duffle bag. Next he uses the keys to find his new ride, an older junkie, in which he finds a serious gun, an M60 machine gun. He puts his duffle bag in and closes the trunk.

Backing up to where the story left off last season, Skyler is calling Walt saying that there is news about the Casa Tranquila bombing. Walt says it's over and that they are safe. Heading home, Walt gets to work. First, he cleans up the mess from making the homemade bomb. After tossing out various items, he pours himself a drink of hard liquor. He stops before drinking. The plant. Walt heads out to the backyard and gets rid of the Lily of the Valley plant. He puts these items into the trunk of his car. Before taking a sip again, Walt Jr. and Skyler arrive with the baby. Walt Jr. talks about the news of Gus' death and Hank is going to be an even bigger hero now. Walt tries his best to seem surprised but he doesn't want to watch the news.

Walt heads to the bedroom and tries to talk to Skyler. But she is extremely somber at this moment. Skyler says she is scared, however, of Walt and what he's become. After a moment alone with the baby, Holly, Walt suddenly remembers – he's got more loose ends to attend to.

Meanwhile, Hank and Gomez check out the burned remains of the superlab. They can't find much though because the lab was torched well. They find a melted security camera. Back in Mexico, Mike feeds chickens as he continues to recover from his earlier gunshot wound. Gus' personal physician notifies Mike that Gus is dead. Mike races across the desert along a dirt road. Another car approaches at similar speeds. They pass each other and then they both realize who was in the opposing car. Mike gets out with his gun pointed at none other than Jesse and Walt. In a stunning confrontation, Jesse convinces Mike to lower his gun. Walt says differences aside, they need to delete the video camera footage of the superlab. Mike says Gus kept video recordings on his laptop at the Los Pollos Hermanos restaurant office. Meanwhile, at that very office, the laptop is being tagged as evidence for the DEA as Hank precariously looks on.

Mike pretends to call the police as a USPS employee looking for a package. He learns that the laptop is in the evidence locker at the APD. Mike says they are boned and suggests skipping town. But Walt calmly asks how they can solve this problem. Mike scoffs at this and heads out but Jesse says to give Walt a chance. Walt says they don't need to retrieve it, they just need to destroy what's on the laptop. Mike says an explosion wouldn't be a good idea. Jesse suggests a magnet repeatedly in the background, which eventually gives Walt an idea.

They head to the junkyard and find Old Joe. Walt's plan is to borrow the huge magnet used to lift cars. They also plan to put it inside a truck to move it around. Walt says he's short of cash and Jesse agrees to pay. Mike is skeptical about this whole plan but Jesse says Mike's help is needed.

Saul heads to the car wash and tells her that there was an issue in dealing with Ted and the IRS issue. Skyler thinks Ted Beneke is dead. But Saul quickly reveals that Ted is not dead, but just woke up from being knocked out.

The guys have placed the magnet into the cube truck and connected a bunch of car batteries to power it. Old Joe cautions to toss out any pieces of metal they may have on themselves. Jesse stands at a distance holding a stand-in laptop while Walt powers up the magnet slowly. Jesse then walks slowly toward the magnet and it suddenly died and flies out of his hands. Jesse screams in success. Walt wants Joe to get more batteries in order to increase the amperage. Walt ensures Mike that it would only take 60 seconds to inflict the damage they need.

Skyler heads to the hospital to see Ted. Skyler is shocked to finally see him, shaved bald, in a halo brace for his neck. Skyler doesn't know what to say but apologizes. Ted is terrified and says he reported the incident as an accident. Ted says he has children and family so he won't say anything.

Later that night, Mike rigs the security gate into the APD, allowing Jesse and Walt to drive the cube truck into the compound next to the evidence room. Walt prepares the magnet next to the wall of the evidence room. Jesse is worried that it won't work, but Walt has doubled the number of batteries and the computers are already going dead in the office next to the evidence room. As Walt increases the amperage, metal objects start flying off the shelves. Jesse says the damage is done, but Walt wants to make sure and turns the magnet up all the way. This causes the cube truck to tilt towards the wall. The officers inside quickly hurry outside to inspect but Jesse and Walt are already gone. Mike has picked them up but scolds them for leaving the truck. Walt says he covered everything on the truck up. Mike wonders if this plan actually worked. Walt says it worked, because he says it worked.

The next morning, the APD combs through the evidence locker logging what has been damaged. The laptop is damaged and totally unusable. They also find a broken frame from Fring's office, which is damaged but now reveals Cayman Islands bank account numbers. Meanwhile, at Saul's office, Saul explains what happened with the $622,000 that was used to pay of Ted's tax debt so that the IRS couldn't possibly investigate Skyler and Walt. Walt is incredibly upset over this move, but remains calm, although stern. Saul is upset too, he tosses the ricin cigarette back to Walt and complains that whatever he gave Brock could have hurt the kid. Saul says that their business relationship is over, but Walt gets up and sternly says that they are not done until Walt says so.

Walt returns home and says he knows about Ted. Walt forgives Skyler, hoping it will make things better between them. But Skyler still displays a face of displeasure when Walt embraces her.