"Open House" Review
There were some great scenes in this episode between Walt and Skyler. I loved the opening sequence with Skyler’s hesitation about Walt’s injury. You can tell she really cares for his safety, even going so far as to offer frozen peas to stop the swelling (don’t worry, they’re on Walt’s grocery list now). And the scene with Saul was just perfect… I’m glad he returned for this episode.
We also see a darker side of Skyler, as she is adamant about purchasing the carwash to get back at Walt’s former boss. I was surprised how far Skyler went with her revenge scheme - the fact that she fed the fake EPA guy information over a cell phone took things a bit too far. Walt and Skyler’s champagne toast at the end pretty much cemented their relationship this season. There’s a certain attraction to their criminality.
Marie’s story is front and center in “Open House” and we see her as vulnerable as she’s ever been on Breaking Bad. She needs some sort of outlet for nursing Hank back to health; we find out that she’s been going to open houses and telling lies about her own life. It starts out fun but as the episode continues, an underlying sadness starts to seep in.
Furthermore, Marie is sinking back into her kleptomania from Seasons 1 and 2. It all culminates in an uncomfortable confrontation between Marie and a real estate agent. When Marie’s offered a ride back home, she finally bursts into tears. It’s a sad moment and I wonder how long the Schrader marriage can go on like this. And more importantly, is there some resolution that could work?
Meanwhile, Jesse is digging himself deeper into a really dark pit of depression after murdering Gale. We see what his never-ending party from last week has turned into… and God, his house has become a frightening place. Things are spiraling out of control, and there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. I thought his offer to ride go-karts with Walt was really sad and poignant. I hope Walt takes him up on that rain check!
I should also mention another key player in “Open House” - Gus. Though he hasn’t made an appearance in the last two episodes, we know he’s coming, and it’ll be interesting to see what he has planned for the rest of Season 4. For now, we know he’s watching Walt both at work (with that giant 1980’s security camera) and at home (via Tyrus, Gus’ new assistant, parked ominously outside the White residence).
Finally, the stakes have risen a bit higher now that Hank has Gale’s lab notes. That’s definitely a bad sign, considering Jesse shot gale and Hank likely still has a grudge against him. We’ll have to see how it turns out - Walt and Jesse have been in this situation countless times before on Breaking Bad. Though it’s likely they’ll get off scot-free again, I have a feeling the writers have more planned with this.
But as always, we’ll just have to wait and see.