Mike’s growth as a character forges onward as he keenly visits “his guys” as a lawyer’s paralegal to discuss the major issue brought to his attention in last weeks episode.
No one has any money after the police froze all of the offshore accounts found in Gus’ photo frame. Unbeknownst to Jesse and Walt, Mike has agreed to cover for this foul up by paying his former cohorts from the revenue of his new endeavor.
There’ll be more on that later. Moving on …
Walt and Jesse convince Saul to get on board with Mike joining the team—as if Saul really had much say in the matter—and discuss how management will be handled amongst them. A very quick conversation that handled succinctly by Mike the moment he enters the room:
“Here are the ground rules—division of labor: I handle the business, making the stuff that’s your end. I don’t tell you how to mix your chemicals and whatnot, and you do not tell me how to take care of business. Is that absolutely clear?”
This is where Walt’s ever growing audaciousness first makes an appearance. Rather than letting his issues with that statement be known, Walt answers with, “Sure.”
I know that’s what I said. But when Saul asks if he’s actually OK with that arrangement, Walt replies “Yes. He handles the business and I handle him.”
And so we know the already embattled relationship between Mike and Saul now has a fuse waiting to be lit.
From here on, the new regime deals with the familiar task of finding a safe location to cook their product on a regular basis. The process once again highlights Walt’s ability to think outside of the box, but also gives us a glimpse of Jesse’s improved critical thinking.
Saul showcases several facilities similar to the one Gus had set up for them, but the team found issue with all but one. The final facility belongs to a pest control company.
When the pesticide tent catches Walt’s eye, you can already see the gears turning in his head.
Cut to the four men sitting in the car outside a house being covered with one of the tents in preparation for it to be bombed with poison to kill insects. Walt points out that nobody goes inside a tented home or pays any mind to strange smells.
Each week they’ll pick a house, cook a batch and then fumigate the house as normal. Saul talks Mike through the four-person company, owned by a pony-tailed man named Ira.
He says the company is legit and they do a good job, but occasionally they will burglarize one of the homes after casing it during the bombing process, or they’ll sell casing information to other robbers.
Walt gets the opportunity to spend some time with Jesse outside of their normal all business meetings when Andrea and Brock interrupt one of said meanings.
There are two awkward moments between Brock and Walt where Brock ignores Walt’s greeting and then later the two share an acrimonious stare. This could be relate to Walt having poisoned Brock or just be coincidence.
Anyway, after a long montage of the two on the first cook at a house, the always calculating mind of Walt once again manages to make a play when he brings up the topic of Andrea to Jesse.
Walt has always been able to toy with his closest associates mind at will and this case was no different. It becomes clear that he wants Andrea and Brock out of the equation, but doesn’t want to tell Jesse what to do.
Instead he plants the seed of having to share one’s whole self with the person you love. And that was enough to get Jesse to break things off with what appeared to be a happy relationship.
Despite Jesse’s growing maturity and critical thinking ability, his loyalty to his partner is what ultimately keeps him unhappy and obedient.
The three meet up again to divvy up the money from their first cook, starting out with $367,000 apiece. Walt’s lack of knowledge for taking care of those around him is weak and it shows in this scene.
From the start, Walt questions a missing $275,000 which has already been earmarked for their drivers at a flat rate of 20 percent. Mike also says the chemicals are going to cost more from now on, obviously a reference to Lydia.
Jesse gets $40,000 from each, as he fronted the cash to get the operations off the ground. Ira gets $45,000 from each of them, along with $10,000 per cook for each of his guys and Saul gets $18,000 from each of them.
Mike then takes a “legacy cost” of $117,000 from each them, which Mike plans to give to “his guys” that I mentioned earlier. Walt takes issue with all the expenditures involved with the process but eventually agrees to go along with it, leaving them with a take of $137,000.
It’s going to be a hard lesson for Walt to learn that his arrogant view of his ability to cook the best meth in the world does not make him unreliant on those around him.