Be warned: Spoilers for the entire run of “Breaking Bad,” up to and including the series finale, are below.
“Breaking Bad” ended its run on Sunday night by providing clear, cathartic closure for its central character. Things were also neatly resolved for several other characters (“neatly resolved,” in the “Breaking Bad” universe, means they were murdered). But the futures of several other key players were ambiguous.
Here’s a look at where we left the main “Breaking Bad” players.
The show’s star player spent the final episode on a catharsis kick, finding closure with his former business partners (whom he terrorized and tasked with funneling his remaining money to his son), Skyler (he finally, finally admitted to her that he did all of this for himself and not for his family), the Nazis who murdered Hank and kept churning out meth (gunned down by one last Walter White invention), Lydia (the ricin was finally used, slipped into her stevia) and Jesse (freed and given the option to finally, freely kill Walt). And then he died, killed by his own bullet, after closing up all of the loose ends.
Living in a small apartment, working as a taxi dispatcher and using her maiden name to blunt her infamy, Skyler is left raising their two children and holding a potential way out of her legal quandary. It’s important to note that we don’t have any guarantee that Walt’s last attempt to help her (giving her the coordinates to where Hank’s body is buried as something to trade the authorities as part of a deal) will work. As the penultimate episode showed, his phone call tirade this season meant to showcase her innocence didn’t do much more than keep her out of jail. And even if Walt’s gambit works and she is free, she’s still the famous widow of a meth kingpin. But at least her relationship with her sister seems to have improved by the end.
Poor, broken Jesse is finally a free man — freed from the Nazis and free from Walt’s abusive, corrosive presence in his life. (In the end, he refused to kill Walt, tired of all the violence and tired of doing such things for Walt.) Perhaps the only truly triumphal moment in the finale was Jesse’s reaction to speeding off into the night, his glee at escaping. Of course, we don’t know what comes next for Jesse. The authorities clearly know who he is and will be looking for him. He has been emotionally and physically ravaged, so it’s unclear if he will finally head to Alaska, if he’ll get caught, if he’ll turn himself in or if he’ll try and raise the orphaned Brock.
Dead and buried in the desert next to Steve Gomez. Given the hints about how much information became public about Walt’s activities, we have to assume Hank’s investigation pointed the way for the DEA, so it’s possible he is looked at as the guy who helped authorities stop Heisenberg after all (rather than the guy who didn’t realize he was investigating his own brother-in-law).
We skipped right over her mourning period, so we don’t know exactly how she handled Hank’s disappearance and death, nor the investigation, the media spotlight or any of that. She does retain some of her stubborn, clear-eyed faith in Hank and in the idea that the authorities will catch Walt. And she reaches out to Skyler to warn her when Walt is in town, so she hasn’t completely written off her sister.
He got his closure in “Granite State,” last week’s episode, which saw him yell at his father, refuse his money and wish for his death. Poor Flynn deserves a lifetime of good breakfasts. He’s also going to get millions of dollars when he turns 18, and while we can guess what he’ll do based on that last conversation, we don’t know for sure how he will react to receiving his father’s blood money.
Holly, showing the consistent storytelling that is this show’s trademark, remained a baby at the end of the series.
Saul didn’t appear in the finale. In his final appearance last week, he was off to a new life with a new identity after telling Walt to turn himself in. (A Saul-centric prequel series has been announced.)
Poisoned, as many predicted, via the stevia she dumped into her tea.
He’s gone to the great Crucifictorious concert in the sky, thanks to Jesse choking the life out of him. Todd never seemed to win over Lydia, as evidenced by his clumsy compliment in the finale, so Todd never got any closure.
Jack and his crew
Dead, their compound about to get picked over by the police as the series wrapped up.
Elliott and Gretchen Schwartz
They’re the petrified custodians of Walt’s remaining money, with strict orders to deliver it to his son (and not contribute a dime of their own money). They also believe that hitmen are watching their every move, which will surely lead to a lifetime of paranoia and crippling fear, because even as Walt does good things (leaves money for his family, eliminates a meth operation) he’s still not above doing bad things.
Badger and Skinny Pete
The Rosencrantz and Guildenstern of Albuquerque are still using meth, still being hired by drug lords and, hopefully, awaiting for a spin-off where they go into business as private detectives in Buffalo.
Remember Gus? Gus was the best. He’s still dead, missing half his face and busy being far too good for NBC’s “Revolution.”