Breaking Bad Wiki
Breaking Bad Wiki

"Cornered" is the sixth episode of the fourth season of Breaking Bad and the thirty-ninth episode altogether.



On a remote highway, Cartel gunmen ambush a Los Pollos Hermanos truck, similar to their previous assault. However, instead of shooting up the truck like before, they lock the guards in by barring the rear doors, use a hose to redirect the exhaust into the truck's ventilation system, then put a brick on the gas pedal. The gunmen eat the dead driver's lunch while the guards suffocate from carbon monoxide asphyxiation. Afterwards, the gunmen enter the truck and take a single UV-marked bucket of fry batter.

Act I[]

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"I am not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger."

At the White residence, Skyler reads up on the Gale Boetticher case and repeatedly listens to Walt's voicemail message, finally realizing its meaning. When he awakens in the afternoon, she questions him about Gale's murder and the people he works for, interpreting his comments to Hank the previous night as a cry for help. Walt, annoyed, rejects Skyler's suggestion that he go to the police to obtain protection. When she asks him to "admit you're in danger," Walt turns on her and angrily states that he is an indispensable part of a lucrative drug business; stating that "I am the danger" and remarks that when someone gets shot opening their door, "I am the one who knocks." Skyler is left stunned with the realization of who Walt is and what he's capable of. Walt goes into the bathroom to shower. Upon exiting, Walt offers an apology, only to realize that Skyler has left the house with Holly.

Walt goes to the car wash alone to formally transfer ownership from Bogdan. Bogdan mockingly says that Walt is not ready to run the business and insultingly recommends that he should fetch his wife to do it instead. Several times, Bogdan clarifies that the Whites are buying the business "as-is," knowing that he didn't declare the fake EPA violations. When Bogdan wants to retrieve the first dollar he ever made, hanging in a frame on the wall, Walt spitefully says "As is" and insists he leave it behind. Bogdan storms out of the car wash while Walt smashes the glass, removes the dollar and feeds it into the soda machine, relishing the moment.

Act II[]

As they sit in a diner, Mike notices that Jesse's hands are shaking and asks if he's okay. Jesse indirectly tells him he is in withdrawal, which causes Mike to offer his dinner to Jesse. Shortly after, Mike receives a phone call, leaves some money and leaves to attend to something. Jesse offers to go along but Mike leaves him behind.

Over breakfast the following morning, Walt Jr. assumes that parents aren't talking because of Walt's "gambling addiction" and tries to excuse his actions as being equal to an illness. Walt pointedly counters that they are the result of his own choices. On the way to school, Walt decides to take a detour and buy a car for his son. Walt Jr. cheekily suggests that his father buy him a brand-new Dodge Challenger if he wants to "buy him off," drawing his attention to a nearby billboard.

Outside the laundry, Walt questions Jesse about his errands with Mike, insisting that they don't make any sense. Jesse, however, is gratified at being seen as useful by Gus' organization, telling Walt that maybe he's not "a loser" after all. Walt realizes that the robbery attempt on Mike was a setup, but Jesse assumes that Walt is trying to minimize his accomplishment. Walt comes to another realization: since he can't get rid of Walt without disrupting his operation, Gus is trying to drive a wedge between him and Jesse. Jesse doesn't want to hear it and heads into the superlab to begin cooking.

Halfway through cooking, Jesse receives a phone call and heads out on another errand with Mike, leaving Walt to clean up by himself. Walt defiantly goes upstairs and pays three Spanish-speaking women laundry workers to help clean the lab. Walt raises his coffee to Gus' surveillance camera with a smile while the women scrub the lab equipment.

Act III[]

Skyler drives to the Four Corners, a monument marking where the borders of New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado intersect. At the point where the four states meet, she flips a coin; it lands in Colorado. She frowns, flips again, and again it lands in Colorado. Using her foot, Skyler drags the coin from Colorado to New Mexico. She looks at Holly, picks up the coin and gets back in her car.

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Mike and Jesse waiting outside a junkie's house

Back in Albuquerque, Jesse and Mike drive up to a house in which the meth addict occupants are selling three pounds of blue meth that they didn't get from Gus. Mike wants to stake out the place until someone leaves, but Jesse decides to infiltrate the house. He offers to buy meth, but gets the door slammed in his face. He returns to the car to retrieve Mike's shovel from the trunk and begins digging a hole in the house's front yard. Soon one junkie comes out of the house and asks why he is digging. Jesse answers "You know why." Shortly, he offers him the opportunity to take over, which he seizes. With the first junkie preoccupied, Jesse enters the house and is confronted by a second junkie armed with a shotgun. When the junkie is distracted by Mike entering from behind, Jesse knocks him out with a nearby bong. Mike retrieves the stolen Pollos fry batter bucket; words in Spanish are written on the lid.

Act IV[]

As Walt walks out of the superlab with the three laundry workers, Tyrus approaches them and takes the women away. Tyrus claims he is putting them on a bus back to Honduras. Feeling guilty, Walt tells him to have Gus blame him instead of the women; Tyrus assures him that he does.

That night, Mike and Jesse are again eating at the diner when Gus enters. Mike asks Jesse to step outside so that Gus can sit at the booth. Mike informs Gus that the intent of the truck robbery was to send a message, recommending that he get ten or fifteen men and retaliate immediately. Instead, Gus wants to set up a meeting between himself and the Cartel. Before leaving, he asks how Jesse did that day. Outside, he tells Jesse that he heard that he could handle himself.

Skyler returns home to find the Dodge Challenger in the driveway. She is displeased with the reckless purchase, telling Walt that the car directly contradicts the story they're supposed to be following and demanding that it be sent back the next day. Walt says he only wished to do something nice for his son, insisting that everything he's done is to protect the family, to which Skyler replies: "Someone has to protect this family from the man that protects this family." She takes Holly to her room, leaving Walt sullen and speechless.

Official Photos[]


  • When giving his "I am the one who knocks" speech, Walter takes off his light red shirt to reveal a darker shade of red symbolizing a darker turn for Walter after the speech.
    • It can also be seen as a reference that Walter White had turned into Heisenberg the moment he removes his red shirt, as often stated by the community on 'Walter turning into Heisenberg'.
  • The three laundry workers who clean the lab for Walt share the same first names as the women playing them (Celia, Maria, Veronica).
  • When Jesse tries to enter the house, he uses the name "Diesel," which is the same name he used last time he was trying to recover stolen meth from junkies in "Peekaboo".
  • The episode title name may refer to:
    • Skyler cornering Walt with several questions
    • Walt is cornered into giving back the car
    • The trapped guards in the refrigerated truck
    • Skyler's visit to the Four Corners landmark.
  • This is the second episode in the Breaking Bad series that doesn't use the word "shit".
  • Samuel L. Jackson is a big fan of Breaking Bad. In a video to raise money for Alzheimer’s research, Jackson puts his own spin on a "Breaking Bad" monologue, reading Walt’s infamous "I am the one who knocks" speech.[1]




In the very beginning of this episode, there is a production error. When The Cartel thugs are opening the back of the Los Pollos Hermanos truck to retrieve the containers, the angle at which the truck is parked changes between shots. When the camera is shot from inside of the truck, the truck is parked at a 45 degree angle to the road. But in outside shots for the same scene, the truck is parked parallel to the road. This could imply that both sequences (inside and outside) were captured at a different time during production.




  • Luis Pimber as Cartel Henchman
  • Celia Holguin Anaya as Laundry Woman #1
  • Maria L. Pardo as Laundry Woman #2
  • Veronica Jaquez as Laundry Woman #3


  • Andrea Good as Laundry Worker

Filming Locations[]

Featured Music[]

  • "(I Can't Believe) She Gives it all to Me" by Conway Twitty (in the diner where Mike & Jesse eat at the start of the episode)
  • "'Till I'm Gone" by Tinie Tempah (feat. Wiz Khalifa) (playing in Walt Jr's Challenger as he arrives back at the White residence)
  • "Four Corners / Waiting for the End" by Dave Porter (as Skyler & Holly visit Four Corners)
  • "Here Lies A Good Old Boy" by James Hand (in the diner where Gus meets Mike & Jesse)

Memorable Quotes[]

"Who are you talking to right now? Who is it you think you see? Do you know how much I make a year? I mean, even if I told you, you wouldn't believe it. Do you know what would happen if I suddenly decided to stop going into work? A business big enough that it could be listed on the NASDAQ goes belly up – disappears; it ceases to exist without me. No, you clearly don't know who you're talking to, so let me clue you in. I am not in danger, Skyler; I am the danger. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No. I am the one who knocks!"
―Walt explaining who he is to Skyler.

Walter: "I just worry that he'll blame you for this."
Skyler: "Oh, he will. Once again, he'll blame his bitch mother for taking away what his loving father has given him. So, thanks for that. But you know what, Walt? Someone has to protect this family from the man who protects this family."
―Skyler explains why Walt must return the car he bought for Walt Jr.