Life In An Electric Box

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Jesse Pinkman’s Moment of Truth Is Upon Us

Breaking Bad Spoilers Through Episode 5.10

As I’ve written before, Jesse Pinkman is Breaking Bad’s most compelling character. Is he a bad man with a conscience that he can’t shake? A good man who hates himself so profoundly that he’s turned his back on his better nature? Is he a little of both? Neither? It’s a hard thing to lay judgment on a man. But while Walter White’s been on a clear downward trajectory towards monstrosity and as Hank Schrader has slowly and painfully become a better man, it’s the final fate of Jesse Pinkman that remains the most up in the air. 

This weeks episode has shown the battle lines. Walter White has taken Skyler to the dark side with him, kicking and screaming. Marie has sided with Hank against her sister. Saul will choose his self-interest no matter what. But what of Jesse Pinkman? Will he talk to Hank and tell him what he wants to know? Unlike Skyler, Jesse has enough information to bring Walter down. If Jesse stays quiet, he will be prosecuted for some crime or another. Not that he cares. It’s clear that Jesse can’t live with himself or what he’s done. He needs a way out. Siding with Hank against Walter will give him an opportunity to redeem himself, even if it comes with a jail sentence. But what if he stays quiet? Jesse has shown that he will defend himself when cornered and once threatened to do everything in his power to ruin Hank’s life.

Next week’s episode probably won’t determine if Jesse lives or dies. I suspect that fate won’t be decided until the last episode. But it will determine the sort of person he is. Will he be a good man and help Hank turn the tables on Walt and finally put an end to Heisenberg’s Meth madness? Or will he stay quiet and protect himself, knowing that he can ruin Hank’s case and possibly even go free?

So who is Jesse Pinkman? In a little less than a week we will know for sure. I can’t wait to find out.