Say My Name (Breaking Bad)
"Say My Name" (originally titled "Everybody Wins") is the seventh episode of the fifth season of the American television drama series Breaking Bad, and the 53rd overall episode of the series. Written and directed by Thomas Schnauz, it aired on AMC on August 26, 2012.
|"Say My Name"|
|Breaking Bad episode|
|Episode no.||Season 5|
|Directed by||Thomas Schnauz|
|Written by||Thomas Schnauz|
|Produced by||Bryan Cranston, Diane Mercer|
|Featured music||Dave Porter|
|Cinematography by||Michael Slovis|
|Editing by||Skip MacDonald|
|Original air date||August 26, 2012|
|Running time||47 minutes|
This episode marks Jonathan Banks's final appearance as a series regular. Banks and Bryan Cranston both received high praise from critics for their performances. Banks later returned as Mike for the Breaking Bad prequel spin-off, Better Call Saul, and currently stars as a series regular.
Walt, Mike, and Jesse meet with Declan, their Phoenix-based competitor. Instead of agreeing to Declan's offer to purchase the heisted methylamine for $15 million in exchange for removing Walt's blue meth from the drug market, Walt offers a counterproposal: to sell his superior product through Declan's distribution network in exchange for a substantial share of the business and a one-time, $5 million payment to Mike for his share. Frustrated with having to negotiate with Walt, Declan demands to know who he is. Refusing to back down, Walt insists that Declan already knows his name and demands that he say it. When Walt informs him that it was he who killed Gus, Declan resignedly realizes and acknowledges Walt as Heisenberg.
As Mike leaves with his $5 million, he informs Walt that he will continue making hazard payments to Gus's men out of his own money. He also advises Walt that the bugs planted earlier in Hank's office must be removed before a sweep is performed by the DEA. Walt avoids Jesse's attempts to leave with his share of the money. Meanwhile, Mike learns through the bugs that the DEA has a search warrant for his house. He stashes a car with a go bag with cash, a passport, and a gun in an airport parking lot. When Hank and Gomez search his house, they find nothing. Later, Hank is told to end his surveillance of Mike due to budgetary considerations. Not being instructed otherwise, he decides to have Gomez follow Mike's attorney, Dan, who has been placing cash in various safe deposit boxes to facilitate the transfer of the hazard payments and to set aside money for Mike's granddaughter Kaylee. Gomez catches Dan in the act and apprehends him.
Jesse confronts Walt and demands his share of the money. Walt becomes hostile and accuses Jesse of having nothing in his life, but his attempts to manipulate Jesse fail and he ultimately leaves without his money, angering Walt further. Walt is forced to cook his next batch of meth with Todd, who proves to be much more subordinate and better at following orders than Jesse. Pretending to be distraught over Skyler, Walt visits Hank at his office and manages to remove the bugs, but overhears Gomez telling Hank that they have arrested Dan and that he plans on telling everything he knows about Mike. Walt frantically calls Mike, who is at a park with Kaylee, and tells him the DEA is coming for him. Upon the arrival of the police, Mike is forced to flee the park without saying goodbye to his granddaughter.
Mike asks Saul to retrieve the go bag for his getaway, but Saul fears the DEA will follow him. When Jesse volunteers to help, Mike refuses his assistance out of concern that Jesse would be spotted, leaving Walt to retrieve the bag. When Walt meets with Mike, he refuses to hand over the bag unless Mike tells him the names of the nine men he is paying off. Mike refuses and, angered by Walt's insistence that Mike owes him gratitude, proceeds to attack Walt's ego, insisting the entire situation could have been avoided if he had continued to work for Gus and had not killed him. Walt storms off momentarily, but then approaches Mike's car. Mike realizes his gun is missing from the go bag, just as Walt uses it to shoot him through his car window. Mike tries to get away, but – mortally wounded – ultimately resigns himself to sitting on a log by the river. After Walt catches up to him, Walt realizes he could have just asked Lydia for the names and that shooting Mike was unnecessary. As Walt stammers an apology, Mike tells him to shut up and let him die in peace; after a moment of silence, he falls off the log, dead.
The episode was written and directed by Thomas Schnauz and aired on AMC on August 26, 2012.
|“||In season 5A, as we call it, the character of Mike gets brought down by Walt in a moment that Walt himself I don’t think sees coming, and it’s just a sad moment, beautifully written and directed by one of my oldest friends, a writer named Thomas Schnauz, who I’ve known since NYU film school, and in his first professional directing gig he just did a fantastic job with that episode and that scene.||”|
The episode received highly positive reviews from critics with many critics singling out Jonathan Banks and Bryan Cranston for particular praise. The episode is recognized by many critics as one of the best in the series. TV Fanatic's Matt Richenthal gave "Say My Name" a five-star rating, calling it "one of the best in series history." Seth Amitin of IGN gave the episode a 9 out of 10 rating, calling it "mind-blowing", but stating that "I hate to see Mike go out like that. He deserved more. I literally can't give this higher than a 9.0, it was just too sad of an ending." Alan Sepinwall of HitFix thought the episode was "a mostly tremendous episode of a drama", adding the death of Mike "is just a gorgeous, devastating scene", but he was unimpressed by the plotting that led to Mike showing any trust for Walt in that situation, writing that it was a contrived way to ensure that Walt would be in a position to kill Mike per the requirements of the overall show story.
Thomas Schnauz was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series for writing this episode.
- "The Futon Critic - Breaking Bad schedule". Retrieved September 10, 2012.
- Molloy, Tim. ""Breaking Bad" star Jonathan Banks: "The bad guy's gotta die"". Yahoo! News. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
- Plumb, Ali (May 30, 2013). "Vince Gilligan's Five Favourite Breaking Bad Moments". Empire. Retrieved April 23, 2018.
- Kondolojy, Amanda (August 28, 2012). "Sunday Cable Ratings: 'True Blood' Finale Dominates, + 'Keeping Up with the Kardashians', 'Breaking Bad', 'Real Housewives of NJ', 'Army Wives' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
- Richenthal, Matt (August 27, 2012). "Breaking Bad Review: Simply the Best". TV Fanatic. Retrieved August 27, 2012.
- Amitin, Seth (August 26, 2012). "Breaking Bad: "Say My Name" Review". IGN. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
- Sepinwall, Alan (August 27, 2012). "Review: 'Breaking Bad' - 'Say My Name': I like Mike". HitFix. Retrieved August 27, 2012.
- "Breaking Bad". emmys.com. Retrieved September 17, 2013.