"Bit by a Dead Bee" is the third episode of the second season of Breaking Bad and the tenth episode altogether.

Summary

Teaser

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After burying Tuco's gun in the desert, Walt and Jesse hatch a plan to explain away their days of absence. After splitting up with Jesse, Walt hitches a ride back to civilization in a pickup truck. Shortly, in a supermarket, a clerk follows a trail of clothes littering the floor to find Walt, seemingly weak and confused, walking naked down an aisle.

Act I

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Walt is taken to a hospital in Albuquerque, where he joins Skyler and Junior in a tearful reunion. Walt claims that he can't remember the last couple of days, but says that he feels fine now. Skyler steps outside to make a phone call to Marie, who is with Hank as he is delivering an official statement to his DEA superiors, ASAC George Merkert and SAC Ramey, about the shooting with Tuco.

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Jesse, who has also returned to Albuquerque, sits in a car with Badger, watching as Albuquerque police officers are staking out Jesse's house. After the cops leave, Jesse and Badger are able to enter the property. Badger is excited when he sees the meth-cooking setup in Jesse's basement, but Jesse says they can't cook anything now. They toss the supplies into the RV, which Badger's cousin, Clovis, tows away with his truck—for a $1,000 fee which Jesse can only pay half of but promises to settle later. Jesse instructs Badger to make a call from a payphone.

Dr. Soper and Dr. Delcavoli quiz Walt about his experience, but Walt says he can't remember much of anything. Walt suggests that his disappearance and memory loss could have something to do with all his medications. He's informed that no matter the cause, he won't be released until the doctors are confident it won't recur. Meanwhile, based on the tip received from Badger, Hank's DEA team raids a motel room at "The Crystal Palace" that Jesse is sharing with Wendy.

Act II

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Hank interrogates Jesse, who insists he was partying at the motel all weekend even though his car was found at the shack and denies that the $67,920 recovered from the vehicle is his. Hank tries to intimidate Jesse, saying he knows he was at Tuco's shack, but Jesse sticks to his story. Hank then turns his attention to Wendy who, remembering her previous encounter with him at the Crystal Palace, vouches for Jesse's story. Gomez says they have to let Jesse go because there's nothing solid to charge him with, but Hank wants one more shot at cracking him.

At the hospital, a psychiatrist tells Walt it could be days, weeks, or months before he is released. Walt confesses under doctor-patient confidentiality that he made up his story of having amnesia in order to cover for taking a few days off from the demands of his family.

Act III

Hank brings in Tio -- real name Hector Salamanca -- hoping to get him to identify Jesse. Despite being seemingly invalid, Hector does indeed remember Jesse, but follows what Gomez calls an "old school gangbang Mexican" code by refusing to rat on him. After Hank asks for Hector's help, he replies by defecating in his wheelchair. The DEA is forced to release Jesse without charge. Upon being released, Jesse calls his father for a lift, but his father refuses to help him. Jesse then calls Walt at the hospital and they bring one another up to speed. Walt asks Jesse if Clovis can get the RV working so they can start cooking again. When Jesse balks at the idea of cooking again, Walt asks, "What's changed?"

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While analyzing his finances, Walt remembers stashing his drug money and Jesse's gun in a diaper box at his house. He sneaks out of the hospital and into the house in order to return them to his hiding place in the vent. Unseen, he witnesses Skyler and Junior share a close moment over a bowl of cereal then rides a bus back to the hospital.

Act IV

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At the DEA field office, Hank reviews footage of the methylamine heist and theorizes that the thieves cooked the blue meth recovered at Tuco's house. "Lab said that blue meth is the purest they've seen. At least since this," he adds, holding up the batch Walt made for Krazy-8. Hank's colleagues throw him a party to congratulate him for shooting Tuco and hand him a small gift. At the hospital, Hank shows Walt the gift: Tuco's glittering dental grill, set inside a lucite cube. Walt apologizes for putting Hank at risk, but he tells Walt not to worry—he's being treated like Eliot Ness at the office.

Walt says he feels good enough that he is allowed to return home. In bed that night, he assures Skyler that he won't go missing again. Skyler asks Walt if he has a second cell phone. Walt says he doesn't remember much about the weekend but claims that he doesn't. Walt leans in to kiss Skyler, but she turns away.

Official Photos

Trivia

  • The episode title refers to a quote from the film To Have and Have Not (1944); "'stung' by a dead bee" ie, potential harm comes after the offending person is dead, or deed done; "bit" for Tuco's dental grill.
  • This episode marks the beginning of Jesse and Hank's tumultuous relationship.
  • The painting Walter glances at while overhearing Skyler's questions in the hospital, and later focuses on in his sessions, is found later in Season 5 on Gliding Over All. In Gliding Over All, Walter claims to have seen the painting before.
    • The picture is a symbol of Walt's life, and possibly a flashforward of him leaving his family in the Season 2 finale.
    • Paintings are romanticized when sailors IRL had a secret free life of adventure away from family.
  • When an IV is inserted, the needle is removed and only a plastic catheter remains. Walt would not have a needle left in his hand and would therefore be unable to reestablish IV access without new equipment. Also, the angle he inserted the needle would have pierced completely through the vein and the IV fluids would not flow through the tubing.
  • In the opening the naked Walt is standing next to a bunch of pink teddy bears hanging from the wall.
  • Tuco's dental grill in a clear cube: he was "iced" [murdered]; ice also a reference to meth.
  • Tuco's dental-grill-in-lucite prop, given to Hank, sold at auction for $20,250 on October 8th 2013.

Production

Credits

Co-Starring

Uncredited

  • Michael-David Aragon as DEA Agent
  • Lawrence Gilligan as DEA Agent
  • Jamie Haqqani as DEA Agent

Filming Locations

  • The Hi-Lo grocery store where Walt walks naked down the isles has been purportedly identified by a few people as being Jerrys Market at 7543 Isleta Ave. The exterior shots of the store are actually a Hi-Lo at 2522 4th Street. As of 2017 the location appears to be closed, but the sign still remains.

Featured Music

  • "Feel Like Makin' Love" by Bob James (in the store where Walt removes his clothes)
  • "Waiting Around To Die" by The Be Good Tanyas (as Walt takes the bus back to the hospital)

Memorable Quotes

Therapist: "So, being found naked in a supermarket, that was your way of giving credibility to a lie? Of avoiding questions about your disappearance? Why run away? What did you feel you had to run from?"
Walter: "Doctor, my wife is seven months pregnant with a baby we didn't intend. My fifteen-year old son has cerebral palsy. I am an extremely overqualified high school chemistry teacher. When I can work, I make $43,700 per year. I have watched all of my colleagues and friends surpass me in every way imaginable. And within eighteen months, I will be dead. And you ask why I ran?"
―Walter telling the "truth" to the therapist about his disappearance.

Jesse: "Yeah, that's the thing, y'know? Your scumbag brother-in-law took my rainy day fund."
Walter: "Your what? What is that?"
Jesse: "My rainy day fund, $68,000, okay? Cue-ball son of a bitch laughed in my face. Now I got, like, 80 bucks to my name."
―Walter and Jesse's conversation about Jesse's money.
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