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Breaking Bad Wiki

"Granite State" is the fifteenth and penultimate episode of the fifth season of Breaking Bad, and the sixty-first episode of the series altogether.​



Just as seen at the end of the previous episode, the extractor's red van drives off from the side of the road after picking up its passenger. Shortly afterward, it arrives at a vacuum shop. The extractor, a man named Ed, drives the van into the shop and we see that instead of Walter White, Ed tells Saul Goodman to get out. Saul is amused to learn that Ed's cover story about being a vacuum cleaner repairman is real. Ed takes a photo of Saul and starts working on Saul's new Nebraska ID. He says that Saul will have to wait at least two days to be transported out of the state, since his face is well known in Albuquerque, and that in the meantime Saul will be staying in a downstairs bunker with another client. Knowing the person is Walter White, Saul asks Ed how Walt is doing. Ed shows him a monitor screen with live footage of an impatient Walt angrily pacing around the bunker and slapping a ceiling lamp.

Act I

Jack Welker's Gang watch Jesse's confession video.

SAC Ramey and two DEA Agents are driving a distraught Marie Schrader home, still in shock from the news that Hank is dead; on the way, he promises that they will find Hank Schrader and Steven Gomez (though what he really means is that they will recover their bodies and give them a proper burial). When they arrive at the Schrader house, they find that somebody has broken in, raided and trashed the place. One agent drives a shocked Marie away as Ramey and the other agent investigate the premises.

It is revealed that Jack Welker's Gang have broken in and stolen Jesse Pinkman's confession DVD ("Rabid Dog"). At night, in the neo-Nazis' compound, Kenny is showing Jack Welker and the rest of the gang the footage from the DVD. As they laugh over Jesse's often emotional confession, Kenny tells them there's something important they need to see. Kenny fast-forwards the video to the moment that Jesse reveals Todd Alquist's murder of that "missing" kid Drew Sharp. Standing in the back of the room, Todd shows no emotion whatsoever, and actually appears slightly prideful at the description of his murder of Drew Sharp. Suddenly furious, Jack prepares to kill his prisoner, but Todd pleads with him to keep Jesse alive so they can cook more meth since they still have all that methylamine they stole. Jack wonders why they need to make and sell more meth, i.e. make more money, since they already have most of Walt's millions; but Jesse is a rat and needs to be put down. He eventually realizes Todd wants to keep going with the meth production because he's attracted to Lydia Rodarte-Quayle, and needs a continuing meth supply for her Czech clients, as this is the only way Todd can keep in contact with her. After joking about the situation, "one can't help who one is sweet on" among other nastier suggestions from the crew, Jack decides to let Jesse live for his nephew's sake. The gang head back inside to continue watching Jesse's confession. Meanwhile, in his cage, Jesse is now in possession of the photo of Andrea Cantillo and Brock Cantillo from the lab. Attached to the photo is a paperclip, which he uses to unlock his handcuffs.

Walt attempts to intimidate Saul once more.

In Ed's bunker, Walt is making plans to get revenge on Jack and his gang for killing Hank and stealing his money. He asks Saul for a list of trustable mercenaries that can help them with the job. Instead, Saul advises Walt to stay and turn himself in so Skyler White can go free, otherwise the police will squeeze her for everything until she gives Walt up, something Skyler can't do since she doesn't know where Walt is. Saul points out that, given that Walt is already dying, it would be better to turn himself in. The Feds simply won't give up, given that two DEA agents are missing and presumed dead (especially since one of them was the ASAC and a public hero), and that they will throw everything they've got at Skyler, unable to find decent employment and essentially making Walt's entire family outcast from society. Ed comes calling for Saul, whose ride to Nebraska has arrived, while Walt will have to wait a little longer. Walt interrupts, saying that there is a change of plans: Saul is coming with him. Saul refuses, saying that he is no longer a lawyer but just a normal civilian trying to make a living in an honest way to get a decent retirement. Walt changes his expression to pure wrath and slowly approaches Saul, making him back up against the wall in a similar way as he did in the first episode of the season ("Live Free or Die"), but before Walt can finish his sentence, he erupts into a severe coughing fit and collapses onto the bed. No longer intimidated, Saul tells Walt it's over, grabs his bags and leaves.

Act II

Skyler is threatened by Jack Welker's Gang.

Skyler meets with the Assistant United States Attorney and members of the DEA, including SAC Ramey, who push her for information about Walt's drug activities and her involvement in it. She tells them she can't help them even if she wanted to as she has absolutely no idea where Walt is. They, perhaps not believing her, insist that she consult with her attorney and think hard to come up with something they can use. At night, Skyler sits at home and looks out of her window at two DEA agents working surveillance in a car on her street. She goes to check on Holly White inside the bedroom and finds masked men (Todd and other White Supremacists) menacingly looming over Holly's crib. One of the neo-Nazis grabs Skyler and covers her mouth preventing her from screaming. Todd approaches and tells Skyler that they respect her husband a lot, so they are only passing by to leave a message: it's in her and her children's best interest to forget about "the black-haired lady at the car wash" (Lydia). The police can never hear about her involvement with Walt. After Skyler promises that she has not and will not say anything. Todd believes her though he gravely warns her that she really does not want them returning (as she will be killed if they do). Todd and the neo-Nazis leave the house, leaving Skyler severely shaken. The next day at a café, Lydia and Todd meet back-to-back, with Lydia insisting that, despite Todd's assurances to the contrary, intimidation is not enough to silence Skyler: she best be eliminated. Todd assures her they they have intimidated her enough and she will pose no threat to her at all. Lydia wants to call the partnership off but Todd tells her that, with Jesse cooking for them, they have produced meth with 92% purity, as well as the signature blue color. He also tells her that he values their partnership, and Lydia reconsiders.

Walt collects his money at New Hampshire.

Walt is transported while sitting in the tank of a propane truck. Arriving in the middle of a snowy, forested reservation, Ed lets Walt out and says, "Mr. Lambert, welcome to New Hampshire" ("Live Free or Die"). Walt enters his new home — a cabin with no external utilities. Ed says he'll return monthly for grocery runs in exchange for tens of thousands of dollars. Walt complains about living here with no electricity or contact with anyone. Ed informs him that if he leaves the cabin's surrounding two-acre property, he will be caught, as his face is all over national news. If Walt leaves his sanctuary, Ed will cut off his contact and support, a safety precaution for himself rather than Walt. Ed takes off and suggests Walt take the opportunity to clear his head. Once he's alone, the first thing Walt does is stuff his pockets with bundles of cash and prepares to leave, but he stops and remembers something he brought with him inside one of the bags. He opens the bag and takes out his Heisenberg pork pie hat. He dons the hat and goes outside, heading to his property's gate. He opens it, but stops and looks at the long, snowy road ahead ... "Tomorrow," Walt mutters to himself, returning to the cabin and lighting a fire instead.

Andrea is shot dead as a result of Jesse's failed escape attempt.

Back at Jack's compound, Jesse uses the paperclip to unlock his hand- & ankle-cuffs, and tries to reach the cage bars above his head. Hearing Todd approaching, he quickly puts the cuffs back on and pretends to be resting. Bringing Jesse some ice cream to celebrate their latest 96% pure batch, Todd congratulates him and tells him to get ready to cook another batch in the morning. After Todd leaves, Jesse frees himself again and manages to escape the cage. He heads to the fences, but unknowingly runs past a security video camera and is caught by the white supremacists while trying to climb the fence. Refusing to cook meth for them anymore, Jesse tells them to just kill him. Instead, they take Jesse, bound and gagged, to Andrea's house. Todd walks to the front door and rings the doorbell. Andrea answers and believes Todd's story that he is a friend of Jesse's and brought him to see her. Jesse, terrified and horrified, despairingly tries to scream from inside the car to alert her, but Andrea is unable to see him before Todd pulls a silenced pistol out and shoots her in the head from behind. Jesse wails with remorse as he witnesses her drop to the ground, dead; as Jack tells him, "Remember, there's still the kid." Jesse continues to cry uncontrollably, wracked with sadness and guilt, likely both at Andrea's death because of his actions, and that Brock is now an orphan because of it.


Ed performs makeshift chemotherapy for Walt.

Months later, Walt walks up to his property's gate as Ed arrives for another supply drop, and eagerly lets him in. Walt now has a beard and full (albeit patchy) head of hair. Walt's vision is going bad so he grabs a new pair of glasses from a selection box Ed brought him, since he didn't know his prescription. He avidly reads through newspapers from Albuquerque, looking for articles about himself and his family. Ed tells him Skyler is living in a place just off of Eubank, working as a part-time taxi dispatcher, still has custody of both children, and is now using her maiden name. Walt's now-abandoned house has become a macabre tourist attraction, and due to the neighbors' complaints the bank has erected a fence around the house. Ed then hooks up a homemade chemotherapy rig for Walt, injecting him with a drip, then prepares to leave, saying that he has a long trip ahead of him. Out of loneliness, Walt asks him to please stay a little longer, even offering an extra $10,000 for another two hours. Ed agrees to stay for a single hour (for the $10,000), and the two play seven-card stud to pass the time. Seemingly resigned to his likely fate, Walt asks Ed if he would give the barrel of money to his family when he dies. Ed asks if Walt thinks he can trust the man with such a task and Walt seems to dismiss it. Later, alone again, Walt wakes to the sound of his wedding band falling off his thinning finger. After looping a string through it and making a necklace, Walt spots the box of Ensure Ed left on the counter in an attempt to help him gain more weight. He empties the box and fills it with $100,000 from his money barrel. In the morning, Walt heads toward the property gate once again, but this time he leaves the the reservation and walks along the snow-covered road to the nearest town and pub.

Act IV

Walter Jr. receives a call from his dad.

At the J. P. Wynne High School, Walter Jr. (addressed through the PA system as "Flynn White") is called out of class by Principal Carmen. She takes him to her office and tells him that his aunt Marie is calling and it seems to be important. When Jr. answers the phone, it is actually Walt on the other line, calling from a tavern in New Hampshire and having paid a barfly to pose as Marie on the phone. Walt instructs his son not to alert anyone and tries to explain his actions, but is unable to quite find the words, attempting to explain that a lot happened that wasn't his intention. Walt checks if Louis Corbett still lives at the same address, and tells Jr. that he will mail Louis a package containing $100,000, which Jr. can pick up. Walt tells him to keep it a secret or the police will take it. The money is for him, his mother, and his sister, which is all he ever intended. "It can't all be for nothing," Walt cries, "Please!" However, distraught that Walt is trying to send them his 'ill-gained' money, Jr. begins yelling at his father, repeatedly saying, "You killed Uncle Hank!" Refusing to accept his help, Jr. furiously wishes Walt dead - "Why are you still alive? Why don't you just die already? Just die!" - then hangs up. Defeated, Walt calls the DEA office in Albuquerque and asks to speak with the agent in charge of the Walter White case; when the receptionist asks who is calling, Walt gives his true name and leaves the phone off the hook so they can trace the call and send police to arrest him.

Elliot and Gretchen talk to Charlie Rose.

5x15 angry Walt.png

Walt walks to the bartender and orders a Dimple Pinch Scotch whiskey, neat. While Walt is drinking, something on the television catches his interest while the bartender flips through the channels. Gretchen Schwartz and Elliott Schwartz are being interviewed by Charlie Rose, who asks them about their recent donation of $28 million to fund drug rehab clinics throughout the American Southwest. Rose asks if they made the donation to make amends for "your association with Walter White," who helped start their very successful and profitable technology company Gray Matter Technologies, now worth over $2 billion. Both claim that Walt has not been associated with Gray Matter since its earliest days. When asked what Walt's contribution to the company was, Elliott untruthfully says that it was "essentially nothing." Gretchen agrees, saying the only thing Walt contributed was the company's name. Elliott explains: "Schwartz" (German for "black") plus "White" equals "Gray". Rose next asserts that Walt's iconic blue methamphetamine is still circulating in the southwestern United States and has even been seen in Europe, implying that Walter White is still active and that Elliott and Gretchen must know something about this.

Walt's unfinished Dimple Pinch.

As Walter watches the television interview and listens to Elliott and Gretchen's lies, he becomes increasingly and visibly angry. Gretchen says she can't speak for the "Heisenberg" person, but that Walter White, "the sweet, kind, brilliant man that we once long ago knew - he's gone." Walt, his face hardening, jaws and fist clenching in anger, has a change of heart on hearing his old girlfriend's words. Four Crawford County Sheriff's Deputies arrive at the tavern with their guns drawn and storm the establishment, but Walt has already left, his unfinished Dimple Pinch, a $20 bill left to cover it, and a crumpled napkin sitting on the bar.

Official Photos


  • This episode was the series' most-watched episode at the time of its airing with 6.58 million U.S. viewers, but was later passed by "Felina", which had 10.28 million.[1]
    • This is the first episode in the series to take place in a snowy, "white" atmosphere. Also mirroring the theme of change in the series.
    • Vince Gilligan originally planned to direct this episode along with "Felina" but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts.
    • The "Granite State" is New Hampshire, where Ed sends Walt to start his new life. This was alluded to in the first episode of the season, where Walt's fake ID says he is from New Hampshire. ("Live Free or Die")
    • During the production for the episode, the footage of Walt's phone call to Walter Jr. had to be filmed again because the footage from the first time was accidentally crushed by a 737 after the footage fell out of a truck. Ironically, this is the same plane model as one of the planes from the Wayfarer 515 incident in "ABQ".
    • The bar and cabin in New Hampshire are set in the fictional Crawford County in the White Mountain region. However, There is a well-known mountain pass called "Crawford Notch" that crosses the White Mountains, to which this name probably refers. Various New England writers explored Crawford Notch, including Nathaniel Hawthorne.
      • In Breaking Bad Insider Podcast of this episode, Peter Gould told a rather funny story on the bar scene. A Police Tech Adviser asked them "What are you gonna do with the Cactus ?". The production did not realize that there was a cactus right in front of the bar, so they ended up painting it white.
      • The hockey game was NCAA DI game shown on the bar TV was from February 13th, 1998. Wisconsin played Denver at Wisconsin and won 7-4 but only after pulling off one of the biggest upsets in college hockey history[2]
      • PBS talk show host Charlie Rose makes a cameo appearance as himself in this episode. This was revealed by him during his August 8, 2013 episode that featured Anna Gunn, Vince Gilligan, Aaron Paul, and Bryan Cranston as guests.
      • In the interview, Charlie Rose references a New York Times column written by Andrew Ross Sorkin. The column was actually written and an excerpt appears on the New York Times website.
      • This is the only episode in the series that contains the full version of the "Breaking Bad Theme" scored by Dave Porter outside of the credits. It plays in the final scene, while the police are raiding the bar in New Hampshire. In Felina, and possibly other episodes, the same extended theme plays over the credits.
  • Walt regains his hair in the main timeline for the first time since Season 1's "Crazy Handful of Nothin'", although he was seen with hair in a few flashbacks.
  • Skyler spaces out while discussing with the lawyers the same way Walter spaced out in while receiving the news of his cancer. ("Pilot")
  • Walt and Skyler still have the same last names since Walt was named Lambert and Skyler goes by her maiden name, which is Lambert too.
  • Although he doesn't physically appear on screen, we hear Hank say "Now, this is Todd Alquist we're talking about?" during the recording of Jesse's confession.
  • When Ed is dealing out playing cards for him and Walt to play stud, he deals two kings, referring to the two men playing cards. This continues the theme of a king from the prior episode "Ozymandias". In that episode, a close up of a white king on the chessboard in the fire station is zoomed in on, and also the title Ozymandias, refers to a king that has lost all his power and glory.
  • In Ed's bunker, Saul says "If I'm lucky, a month from now, best case scenario, I'm managing a Cinnabon in Omaha." This is exactly where he ends up in the pilot episode of Better Call Saul
    • Saul tells Walt that Skyler and the kids got RICOed out of their house after Walt's crimes were uncovered, just as he said would happen if Skyler gave him up in "Caballo Sin Nombre".
    • Walt's unsuccessful attempt to intimidate Saul early in this episode is a clear reference to his successful intimidation of him in "Live Free or Die".
    • This is Saul's last appearance on Breaking Bad, though Bob Odenkirk is still credited as main cast member for the series finale.
  • When Todd kills Andrea, the scene of Jesse screaming in agony in the truck is very reminiscent of Gus's agony cries when Max Arciniega is killed, and Walt's cries when Hank is killed. The camera angle is very similar and the head positioning of Jesse is similar as well, along with the uncontrolled misery in the cries. Walt and Gus were both lying down with their heads turned sideways, while Jesse begins sitting up, but then lies down partially against the door, and then finally for a moment is lying fully down with his face turned as Gus and Walt's were.
    • Andrea is the second romantic interest of Jesse's to die in the series, the first being Jane. Jesse also learns the truth about Walt's role in Jane's death in the previous episode.
    • Walt is also responsible (albeit indirectly) for Andrea's death, as he attempted to use her as bait to draw out Jesse in "To'hajiilee", which is how Jack's gang knew to use her as leverage against Jesse.
  • Walt packs his money in an Ensure box to "ensure" his family's financial security after he dies.
  • Walt Jr.'s last words to his father in this episode are similar to his words to him in "Cancer Man", "Why don't you just die already?", and are also the last words they will have before the death of Walt.
  • Several characters, who were close acquaintances of Walter before he became Heisenberg, make their return in this episode:



Guest Starring


  • Julianne Flores as Waitress
  • William Stafford as Government Lawyer
  • Deborah Martinez as School Office Worker
  • Kurt Soderstrom as Bartender
  • Leslie O'Carroll as Barfly
  • Charlie Rose as Himself

Filming Locations

  • The outdoor New Hampshire scenes were filmed in the Sandia Mountains of New Mexico. The tavern scenes were filmed in the Manzano Mountains. The tavern itself is the former Ponderosa Eatery and Saloon which is on NM Hwy 337 just north of the intersection of NM Hwy 217 and the unincorporated village of Yrissari, NM. [3]

Featured Music

  • "Sign of the Gypsy Queen" by April Wine (Jack and crew watch Jesse's confession video)
  • "Salvador" by Philip E. Baker (when Todd meets Lydia at The Grove)
  • "Girl from Sao Paolo" by Vince Constantino (when Walt meets Todd and Lydia at The Grove)
  • "The Final Hat" by Dave Porter (when Walt puts on his hat and heads towards his gate for the first time and over the end credits)
  • "Dimple Pinch Neat" by Dave Porter (as Gretchen and Elliott talk about Walt and the police raid the bar)

Memorable Quotes

Saul: "Hey, I'm a civilian. I'm not your lawyer anymore. I'm nobody's lawyer. The fun's over. From here on out, I'm Mr. Low Profile. Just another douche bag with a job and three pairs of Dockers. If I'm lucky, month from now, best-case scenario, I'm managing a cinnabon in Omaha."
Walter: "You're still part of this. Whether you like it or not."
Saul: "I'm sorry. I don't think so."
Walter: "You remember what I told you? It's not over. Unti... [Walter erupts into a severe coughing fit and collapses onto the bed]"
Saul: "It's over."
―Saul and Walter in Ed's bunker.

US Attorney: "Do you understand what's happening here?"
Skyler: "Yes. I understand. I understand I'm in terrible trouble. I understand that you will use everything in your power against me and my children unless... unless I give you Walt. But the truth is, I can't give you what you want. I don't know where he is."
―US Attorney pushing Skyler for information about Walter.

"I just think we work together good. We make a good team. I think it's kind of mutually good."
―Todd to Lydia after raising the purity of his meth.

Walter: "One of these days when you come up here, I’ll be dead. My money over there–What happens to it then? What if I ask you to give it to my family? Would you do it?"
Ed: "If I said yes would you believe me?"
―Walter and Ed in the cabin in New Hampshire.

"Will you just–just leave us alone. You asshole! Why are you still alive? Why don’t you just–just die already? Just–just die."
―Walter Jr's final words to his father.

Charlie Rose: "Is Walter White still out there?"
Gretchen: "No, he's not."
Charlie Rose: "You sound very sure."
Gretchen: "I am. I can't speak to this Heisenberg that people refer to, but whatever... whatever he became, the... the kind, sweet brilliant man we once knew, long ago, is gone."
―Charlie Rose interviewing Gretchen about Walter.


  1. TV by the Numbers
  2. Ryan Lambert tweet
  3. Inside Breaking Bad: Granite State