"Phoenix" is the twelfth episode of the second season of Breaking Bad and the nineteenth episode altogether.



Having successfully delivered the meth to Gus, Walter White races into the parking lot of an abandoned motel where he calls the hospital and learns that Skyler White has given birth. He ditches his spare tire and stashes a duffel bag in the tire well.

At the hospital, Walt greets Skyler and tenderly holds his daughter before noticing Ted Beneke standing behind him, who had driven Skyler to the hospital. "I just wish you had been here," Skyler tells Walt after Ted leaves. Later, Walt runs home to retrieve Skyler's overnight bag and unload his duffel, which is packed with his million-plus of cash.

Act I

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The next morning, Jane Margolis is roused by a phone call from her father, Donald Margolis. She tells him that she overslept and is running late, but she'll see him soon. "Somebody broke in," she tells Jesse upon seeing his busted back door. Jesse races into the kitchen and finds the meth gone, and spins into a total panic.

At a Narcotics Anonymous meeting, Jane sits next to Donald and fiddles with her sobriety chip, looking sheepishly guilty. Afterwards at a coffee shop, she blames her lateness and weary look on a complex tattoo she's creating that keeps getting amended. Donald asks if she's seeing Jesse, as he seemed to have expected an intoduction. "No", she insists, "Why would I get involved with a tenant?" Her father is not convinced...

Walt Jr. answers a silent call, Walt fights for the phone when it rings again, and pretends it's a call enquiring about the new arrival. When he's out of earshot, "You junkie imbecile, what the hell are you calling this number for?" snaps an angry Walt at Jesse. "Yell at me or something," Jesse says, but Walt silently hangs up on him after hearing that the meth is gone and that Jesse doesn't remember what went down. A few moments later, Jesse notices four messages on his answering machine.

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That evening, Hank and Marie Schrader head to Walt's house for a family dinner: chicken from Los Pollos Hermanos, Walt notices with some apprehension. While they eat, Skyler reveals her plan to return to Beneke; with Walt's upcoming surgery they'll need the cash. Walter Jr. may work too. "Everybody pitches in," Skyler says. Late that night, Walt shows his new daughter, Holly, the cash he's hidden in the garage. "Daddy did that for you," he says.

Act II

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"You took the stash," screams Jesse the next day in Walt's classroom. "I heard all those phone messages and figured it out." Walt castigates him for getting high, but Jesse says that isn't Walt's business. They were on call, Walt says, "for the biggest deal of our lives." "And because you once again dropped the ball, I missed my daughter's birth," Walt retorts angrily.

Jesse demands his share, $480,000 after Saul Goodman's cut, but Walt says that Jesse would be dead within a week if he got the money. Walt will pay Jesse when he's clean. Jesse insists he is clean, that he didn't like the heroin anyway as it made him ill, but balks when Walt hands him a glass beaker and challenges him to take a urine test. Jesse, realising he's caught out, hurls the beaker against the chalkboard after Walt insults Jane, narrowly missing Walt's head, and storms out in a huff.

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Back at home, Walter Jr. proudly unveils his new website:, where visitors can donate funds for Walt's operation. Walt is mortified by the appeal for charity, but Skyler says that it would crush their son if Walt made him take it down, that he only wishes to help. Then questions why Walt always says the word 'charity' like it's a dirty word?

At Saul's office, Walt complains about having to hide his newfound wealth. Luckily, Saul knows of a hacker in Belarus who could launder Walt's money through his son's website. It would look like thousands of people were donating to "Mr. Walter H. White… Cancer Saint," Saul explains. "I'm getting a warm and fuzzy feeling just thinking about it." Walt, meanwhile, is resentful that would mean his family would never know he was responsible for the cash.

Jesse, meanwhile, prepares a meth and heroin speedball under Jane's direction. While he does, he grouses about Walt. As Jesse nods off from the shot, he tells Jane that Walt owes him $480,000. At first hearing only $480, Jane is shocked when she realises he means thousands not hundreds, then adjusts Jesse's body so he's on his side, "in case you throw up," she says, as thoughts of '$$$' run through her head.


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Donald attends another Narcotics Anonymous meeting, but Jane never shows, having 'overslept'. Later, standing outside the duplex, Donald catches Jane exit Jesse's apartment, as she lies to him on the phone. Barging past her, Donald searches the apartment and spots the heroin supplies. Enraged, Donald tries to throw Jesse out, but Jesse grabs a baseball bat. "I pay my rent, bitch!" he shouts. Donald, exasperated after a ten-year battle to save his daughter, calls the police to report Jesse and Jane, but relents when Jane begs her father to reconsider by promising him she will go to rehab the following day. Jesse is visibly relieved when Donald hangs up the call.

After Donald leaves, Jesse asks Jane if she really meant what she said, and is going back to rehab. "I don't know," she replies, "I just think if we had enough money nobody could make us do anything."

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Jane calls Walt, identifying herself as "Jesse's junkie girlfriend," and demands that he pay Jesse his share. Walt accuses her of blackmail and says that he won't contribute to Jesse's overdosing. Jane initially resists the "blackmail" label, but changes her tune when Walt still refuses to pay. Jane reveals that she has enough salacious information about Walt - his position as a high-school teacher, his brother-in-law in the DEA - to break a story that could make "national news." "Do right by Jesse," she says. "Tonight! Or I will burn you to the ground."

Act IV

"He’s not stupid," Jane tells Jesse. “He'll pay.” Jesse, somewhat uncomfortable with the proceedings, says that he's not the type to rat out a partner. "I'm your partner," Jane insists.

That night, Skyler sends Walt to the store for diapers. Walt grabs Jesse's share of the cash and heads to his apartment. When Jane answers the door and tries to grab the duffle bag, Walt insists "Only to Jesse, not you." "Nice job wearing the pants," Walt adds, when handing a shamefaced Jesse his money. "How do I know she'll keep quiet?" "I guess you don't," a defiant Jane responds, then slams the door in Walt's face.

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Giddy, with bundles of cash in both hands, Jane says that the cash frees them to go anywhere and be anybody they want. Jesse, caught up in the moment, chooses New Zealand, "where they made Lord of the Rings." Jane can do her art — and "I can be a bush pilot," he says. "But first we gotta get clean," Jane adds. "We can choose to do it for ourselves now, and not because someone is telling us to."

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Walt, on the phone at a bar, lies and tells Skyler he can't find the right size diapers. "Well played," says the man seated next to him, who happens to be Jane's father, Donald. The two men talk about daughters and family. Referring to Jesse as a "nephew" who's in trouble, Walt describes the frustration of knowing what's best for kids who refuse to listen. "Family," Donald concludes. "Can't give up on them. Never."

After taking the conversation to heart, Walt returns to Jesse's apartment in the hopes of talking sense to Jesse. After no answer, and breaking in as before, he finds Jesse and Jane passed out in bed. He's saddened by the used syringes on the bedside table, where a candle still burns dangerously. He attempts to wake up Jesse to no avail. Jane flops onto her back when Walt tries to rouse Jesse. Moments later, Jane starts retching and choking. Walt moves to help her — she’s still passed out — but after some contemplation, he pauses...

With Jesse still obliviously passed out beside her, Walt watches Jane struggle as she asphyxiates on her vomit until she finally lies still and dies. Shaken, Walt puts a hand to his mouth and tries to recompose himself, as a tear runs down his cheek...

Official Photos


  • In the original script, Walter was supposed to enter Jesse's apartment and shoot Jane up with an extra dose of Heroin in order to purposefully kill her.
  • When Walt first walks into the Jesse's room, you can clearly see that Jane is awake as you can see her blink despite not being able to see her face clearly.
  • The episode begins on a birth, Walter's daughter, Holly, and ends in a death, Donald's daughter, Jane. During the episode, Walt and Donald meet in the bar and briefly discuss their respective daughter. This discussion with Donald causes Walt to worry about Jesse and go home to find out if he is alright, which results in Jane's death, without Walt knowing at this time that she is Donald's daughter.
  • His hesitation at helping Jane live obviously stems from his fears she could still be a threat, knowing his identity and all. Plus, her regretful demise might be the best hard lesson for Jesse to learn, in order to frighten him off his burgeoning heroin addiction - (whether that instead backfires remains to be seen...)
  • In the next episode it is revealed that Phoenix is Jane Margolis's place of birth, The episode Phoenix is presumably based on the fact that Walt & Jesse's drug deals were operating again after aligning themselves with Gus due to the fact the Phoenix revives from it's ashes after death, as well as the birth of Holly and the death of Jane.
  • Phoenix is also the name of the Mars lander which found water. Walt and Jane's father talked about the discovery in the bar after seeing a television report.
  • Jane's convulsions as she is asphyxiating to death mirror those of No-Doze right before he died in "Seven Thirty-Seven".
  • The scene where Walt watches a documentary about elephants and listens to Skyler sing "Hush Little Baby" over the baby monitor will be referenced heavily in "Fly".
  • Bryan Cranston said the scene with Jane affected him as a father, and that although it was very difficult for him to film, it is one of his favorite scenes.
  • Walt leans Holly on her side with a towel in case she spits up, which is a reference to his newfound fears from the death of Jane. This is further referenced before, when Jane tells Jesse not to lie on his back in case he throws up.
  • In the fourth opening "still" of the motel, we see a pink fluffy heap, closely resembling the pink teddy bear.
  • is a real web page in real life.
    • If you click on the "donate" button it will automatically take you to AMC's Breaking Bad home page.




  • Tomas Potts as Tattooed Biker
  • Cydne Schulte as Tattooed Woman
  • Tony Whitecrow as Addict
  • Wendy Scott as Nurse
  • Erik J. Bockemeier as NA Sponsor

Filming Locations

  • Meth Drop Point - The very beginning of the episode shows Walt dropping of the bag full of meth at the De Anza Motor Lodge. The building is located at the corner of Washington and Route 66, Albuquerque NM. **Update 2020** Google satellite photos and street view show the hotel has been mostly demolished and a new structure is being built in its place. Google Maps
  • AA Group Meeting - Later in the episode Jane and her father go to a AA meeting, the outside of the building shown is located at 800 Barelas Rd SW, Albuquerque NM.

Featured Music

  • "Baby's Coming" by Dave Porter (as Walt delivers the meth and rushes to the hospital)
  • "Desperate Times, Desperate Measures" by Susie Boehm (in the background during dinner with Hank & Marie)
  • "Hush Little Baby" performed by Anna Gunn as Skyler (sung to Holly while Walt watches TV)
  • "Green Grass & High Tides" by The Outlaws (playing in the bar when Walter talks to Donald)
  • "Jane's Demise" by Dave Porter (when Walt goes back to Jesse's apartment)

Memorable Quotes

"This is blackmail. Do right by Jesse. Tonight. Or I will burn you to the ground."
―Jane talking to Walter.

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