Breaking Bad

Season 4 Episode 5

Shotgun

17
Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Aug 14, 2011 on AMC
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (10)

8.6
out of 10
Average
300 votes
  • More "Small Arm" than "Shotgun", but still an enjoyable episode.

    7.0
    Continuing the trend of weapon-named episodes, "Shotgun" reveals that the cliffhanger of the previous episode had the sole purpose of misleading viewers and that audiences will have to wait just a little longer for season four to pick up pace. However, the disappointment in the fact that Mike is not about to kill Jesse and that we are not about to see a possibly phenomenal shoot-off between those two, Walt, and Gus turned out not to be of long endurance, as the aforementioned two provide for some of the best bickering scenes the series has had up to that point (and we've had a lot of them, the number of those involving Skyler alone has to be in three figures). Jonathan Banks did an awesome job in reprimanding bored Jesse while Aaron Paul revoked some nice memories of his punk band's magnum opus "Fallacies" with humming the song.



    The other major part of "Shotgun" was focused on the Whites' family life, now that all and sundry are aware of the false truth about the origin of Walt's accumulated dinero, but besides the outstanding cliffhanger realization that a much more likeable Hank came to at the end of the episode, not a lot occurred that was of interest to me. I also wasn't that impressed about Walt attempting to ice Gus yet another time and the overly dramatic opening sequence that involves the most unlikely race car in television history breaking each and every existing traffic regulation.



    That's about it for "Shotgun", an enjoyable episode with at least some rememberable moments here and there that nonetheless leaves one waiting for some real peril in this season.

  • They shoulda ended this show last season, it is drifting without direction, like a housewives soapie. Unless new characters r brought in, ones that are truly different from any before, it is impossible to see this show lasting teh season

    3.5

    So walt is gonna manipulate until he gets facetime with chicken man? Puhleeze - who even cares? We already have a good handle on these two - how they operate, their total committment to being in control, because that was what last season was about. Walt 'showing' that he has better controlling skills. Except he doesn't. Surely the writers can come up with something else this season and I don't mean more rubbish about lurve or whatever passes for motivation to sustain a relationship among these infantile grown ups.


    TV has nearly as many dramas covering that worn out ground as it has reality shows about food. cooking or dieting.



    But lets face it, three seasons was more than enough to canvass everything about a meth maker/ dealer

  • Jesse and Mike go on a mission.

    8.5

    "Bullet Points," the episode before this one, was one of those episodes that leaves your entire body on pins and needles. I don't think anybody expected Jesse to actually be killed by Mike, but Vince Gilligan and his team of writers are pretty great at what they do, and for a week, I was expecting an early departure for Jesse Pinkman.


    Maybe he didn't die, but "Shotgun" is an equally intense episode, one that finds Jesse regaining his confidence and Walt continuing to lose his. But for the first five minutes of the episode, Walt is in kamikaze mode, driving like a bat out of hell towards Los Pollos Hermanos, gun in hand, ready to shoot Gus in order to find out where Jesse is. Dave Porter's score is superb here; once again, his music perfectly fits the tone of the episode. However, as soon as Walt gets there, it's clear as day that he won't be shooting anybody. For a few brief moments, Walt appeared ready to go into Heisenberg mode to get what he wants, but once again, he's incapacitated by fear. Ever since Gus cut Victor's throat with the box cutter, he's been afraid to do anything wrong.


    A large portion of the episode revolves around Mike driving Jesse around to various locations to pick up hidden money. We learn right away that Mike isn't planning on killing Jesse but instead seems to be using him as a bodyguard of sorts. Things take a turn after a couple of guys wielding shotguns threaten Jesse. Jesse narrowly escapes and gets respect from both Mike and Gus.


    It's fascinating to watch Jesse slowly rise into the good graces of Gustavo Fring while Walt's stock with him plummets. It's clear Gus is trying to seperate Jesse and Walt so he can kill Walt and have Jesse cook. It's a chilling thought, but there's still eight episodes left in the season. It could go either way.


    The episode ends with Walt being Walt: he hears Hank praising Gale for being a great cook and being a genius and Walt's pride kicks in; instead of keeping his mouth shut, he has to go ahead and make Hank believe that Gale wasn't the person in charge of everything. Instead, he tells him that there was probably a person that made the recipe and that Gale was simply following orders. This puts Hank back on the hunt. That scene sums up Walt easily.

  • Best episode of Season 4 so far

    10

    I thought that this was an excellent episode of "Breaking Bad". This episode is the best of Season 4 so far in my opinion. The beginning of this episode was pretty intense as well. I know that there will be better Season 4 episodes than this in the future but this episode is definitely one of the best. The scene with Skylar listening to Walter's message and than they have sex was pretty interesting but kinda pointless to me. Honestly, all of the scenes with Jesse and Mike are my favorite parts of this episode. The scenes with the two of them were are pretty intense and just so developed very well. Hank giving out some bad news was also very interesting. This whole entire episode was just devloped very well but all of the Jesse/Mike scenes are the ones that captivated my attention. If you love this show then I think that you should go all out and watch this episode. If you're not a fan of "Breaking Bad" then you're probably going to find this episode to be boring. This epsiode wasn't boring to me. Okay, the Walter/Skyler thing is a little bit boring to me but the rest was very good. Overall, an excellent episode of "Breaking Bad" that all of the fans should be watching and just go all out with this episode... the storyline was fantastic, the premise had a smooth touch, and the characters were really good here. 10/10

  • 405

    8.0

    "Shotgun" reminds us why we love Breaking Bad and really why we love television all at the same time. While I hope that the show would one day mundify us of Skylar, her presence was really limited tonight, which is part of the reason I loved the episode. For the most part it was a well-told story about Mike and Jesse, that once again featured a twist ending, something that is slowly becoming the norm on this program. The scenes with Jesse and Mike were dramatic, they were funny, at times confusing, but they accomplished the goal tonight of showing the structure and hierarchy of this organization and how manipulation plays into that.


    Very good episode tonight. This showed why people adore this program so much.

  • Shotgun

    10

    Shotgun was a perfect andexhilarating episode of Breaking Bad. I really enjoyed watching this episode because it was uncertain what was going on with Jesse and if Mike intended to kill him at any point. Walter and Skylar make the carwash purchase official and they rekindle after Skylar hears Walts voicemail. The characters were portrayed perfectly, the story lines were awesome, and the over all quality of this episode was perfect! I look forward to finding out what Gus has in store for Walt and Jesse and Mike. I look forward to watching the next episode of Breaking Bad because this is definitely one of the most entertaining shows on tv today!!!!!!!

  • Blowback

    8.5

    With an adrenaline beginning that sees Walt rushing to figure out Jesse's disappearance he sets things up expecting it to be the end and that he will be next. He goes to Los Pollos but Gus is not there even though he breaks into the back part of the store and now he notices the cameras in place at the restaurant. Jesse, believing himself to be a dead man walking is instead Mike's new pick up buddy for dead drops of drug money at isolated locations. Walt's paranoia gets some unexpected results after he and Skyler finally sign on the line for the carwash and a message he left in his desperate hour leads to them sharing each other again and their relationship rekindling. When Skyler suggests Walt move back in you can see the shock on his face and how he's become so accustomed to the idea of being there for them but not under the same roof. Skyler is seduced by the world he lives in now and even if this is exactly what he would have wanted last season things have changed. Jesse's saving the day thing was cool in the moment and him being the alleged substitute for Victor isn't really that believable but watching Walt cave under his own paranoia and Jesse being full of himself worked into Gus's failure, Jesse now has a sense of purpose rolling with Mike and Walt is going down a road to losing his greatest ally should the worst happen. The acceptance of Hank on the part of Gale being Heisenberg makes sense but the thrill of Walt getting his ego stroked while drunk and having the rush of being right under the DEA's nose with Hank there in front of him is a drug for him. The reveal at the end of Hank discovering a connection to Los Pollos was well executed and seeing him and Marie back in a good place is satisfying after what they've been through. I'd like to see more of the cartel coming after Gus as what happened last week as clearly there are people out there who have it out for Gus and his enemies may prove to be Walter's friends.

  • Jesse and Hank get a renewed sense of purpose.

    9.5

    A very good episode tonight.


    Jesse renews his sense of purpose. He is useful, he's capable. Mike's setup, suggested by Gus, keeps Jesse alive and actually turns his downward spiral around. He even shows up early the next day. This two job thing might just work out for him. Whoever thought that Mike and Jesse would be partners at some point? That's the kind of writing that makes you smile. Jesse in the car with Mike was hilarious - just perfect. And Mike's "not the guy" blurb... KILLED IT. Mike is easily becoming a central figure this season and I like it.


    The other major turn around was Hank. After deciding to give up the case, dismissing it as trivial, Walt gets him going again. A genius, says Hank, but does he really think he would show up dead so easily? Perhaps a partner in crime? Walt screws himself over but Hank is the second character to be revived in this episode. The next day, he picks up the box of files and will now go over them in a more focused manner, renewing the danger for Walt. He's even pleasant to Marie - what?????? Yeah, that's all it takes then, eh, a sense of a case being too easy clear-cut.


    The directing in this episode was superb. Every shot was painstakingly calculated; multiple views, crazy angles. Michelle MacLaren never ceases to amaze me. And man can these guys do MUSIC... let me tell you, it gets to you! I was on the edge of my seat during those tense scenes. And then the Mike and Jesse scenic music, classic.

  • perfect

    10

    what i liked- Skyler playing Walt's message and then the scene instantly switches to them about to have sex, the ending of the episode, every scene with Jesse and Mike, Walt telling Hank that Gale isn't a genius and he copied stuff from someone else, the first 10-15 minutes as a whole was pretty intense, amongst other things.


    great episode. not as great as last week, but if i compared episodes every week i would probably be disappointed a lot. all i can say is this was a great episode, like always, and i certainly can't wait for the next new one, next sunday. A+ episode

  • Aspiring Writers Take Notes; THIS is How You Tell A Story

    9.5

    I wonder is anyone getting the same sense that I am getting at this moment: this season is building and building after each episode. Walt's ego is once again becoming the cause of his own troubles and Jesse and Hank have found a new sense of purpose as drug lord Gus is making moves of his own behind the scenes that has the audience realizing that he just might be a step ahead of Walt at this moment.


    I've been a little bothered by comments of many of the fans of this show recently that the show's pacing during this season has been slow.(And I'm not saying everyone doesn't have a right to opinion but I do as well and here is mine). I am going to have to respectfully disagree with that opinion for two reasons: 1) After each episode, meticulous details and plot points are beginning to come together while the characters' situations and mindsets are being beautifully drawn out. 2) This cry of "slow pacing" has already been tried and tested the past two seasons (and if the fans of this show who cry "slow pacing" are still watching, I'd say the last two seasons were a success to them.)


    As I said in the title of my review, THIS is how you tell a story. You want explosions and deaths every week, go to another network. AMC is especially known for the characteristic of building story as the season goes on. Oh by the way, have you noticed that every year now AMC seems to be picking up more and more award nominations and viewers while keeping their shows uncancelled? (Save "Rubicon", may it rest in piece).


    Many shows on TV try the angle of action and explosions as its main premise and many of them get cancelled because, hey guess what? People get tired of that once they realize that's all the show has going for it. AMC has allowed for shows that have not forgotten how to tell a true story that has a beginning, a middle, and an end. This kind of storytelling that contains strong characterization, writing, and camera work is what makes those explosive moments of action and thrill more memorable. This is because the writers are taking the time for you to learn to like, respect, or very justifiably hate each of the characters on the show..and oh the intricate details and plot will be enough to make the mouth water once the payoffs start coming.


    I have a strong feeling about this: this season is just going to keep getting better and better, and the ending of this season is really going to be one to remember all because the writers and directors are telling a story the right way. Aspiring writers should take note as serialized TV is becoming more and more famous.



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