Breaking Bad Recap: Father Knows Beast

The sweaty palms, the stomach knots, the heart palpitations you get when the world is turning to shit and it’s all your fault: that’s “Ozymandias.”


Written by Moira Walley-Beckett and directed by Rian Johnson (“Fly,” Looper), this was an agonizing episode of TV. Watching it was like being on an old wooden roller coaster that thrilled and terrified you but made your back hurt so bad you worried that maybe you ruptured something. The title refers, of course, to Percy Bysshe Shelley’s poem, alluded to in a memorable Breaking Bad promo a few weeks back, and referenced again, obliquely, in that the flashback prologue of Walt lying to Skyler on the phone while cooking meth with Jesse, then bantering about the name of the as-yet-unborn daughter that he’d kidnap by episode’s end and spirit away in the night like some horrible goblin. The prologue ends with a startling series of dissolves that erases Walt, then Jesse, then their mobile meth lab from the frame, leaving only the desert, which has no opinion on their early meth production, or on loot Walt would hide there in “Buried,” or on the shootout and other shenanigans that would happen there in the last couple of episodes.



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