Well, hang on. Walt realizes Mike is about $275K short. Mike, pissed to get called on his shit, tells Walt that the take is smaller because they have to pay the extermination company drivers for distributing the drugs. These drivers are their distribution system and they have to be compensated for the risk. Gus didn’t have to do that because Gus had built up his own distribution. (Like Standard Oil! Thanks, history class!)
Then there’s the money Jesse fronted to everyone to get started. Mike takes that out of everyone’s piles. Then there’s the methylamine cost itself. It was free this time but won’t be next. And then there’s the cut to Ira. And then the cut to Saul. Finally, Mike still has to settle his debts to his old crew, which we saw in the Cold Opener.
This is the last straw. Walt will pay the other fees, but he refuses to give a cut to Mike’s old employees just so they don’t talk to the cops. In Walt’s eyes, they don’t actually contribute to the new business. So now Walt pushes back.
Mike says this is the cost of doing business, but Walt calls it a shakedown. He won’t let Mike take the cut out of his own share. Jesse tries to smooth things over and offers to let them take it out of his cut.
Mike and Walt have a staredown. But Walt finally gives in for the sake of peace. Mike warns him this will be an ongoing expenditure.
Walt looks over his final cut. A little over a hundred thousand. He grouses that this is less than what he made every week with Gus. Mike sums things up: just because you shoot Jesse James doesn’t mean you ARE Jesse James.
Mike heads home, leaving Walt and Jesse. Walt asks Jesse how he’s doing. Jesse starts telling him that he broke up with Andrea, unable to bring her into The Lie. But Walt doesn’t care about that right now. (As if he ever did).
Jesse isn’t too bothered with taking a lesser cut nowadays. He makes a good point: now they’re owners, not employees.
Walt has been thinking about the time Gus killed Victor back at the beginning of Season 4. Walt’s always thought Gus did it to send Walt and Jesse a message, not to fuck with the boss. But now, Walt is starting to think Gus did it ONLY because of Victor. Remember, Victor had begun to cook meth on his own. That wasn’t allowed. Maybe Victor was taking liberties that weren’t his. Maybe these are things you have to think about when you’re the boss.
In other words…bad news for the coolest character on the show.
-The button on the end of the Cold Open had me wondering today…when Mike pounded on the door, he totally revealed to everyone that he was the one in charge of the situation. He barely bothered to pretend to be a paralegal. Mike’s frequently in a situation where he has to lie to the authorities, like he is now. Most of the time, he barely even puts up an effort to hide the fact that he’s really a criminal, or at least that he’s not who he says he is. The authorities have to notice when he does shit like pound on the door and yell, but it’s like they can’t do anything about it anyway. Mike probably knows that, and that’s why he’s lax with his behavior most of the time.
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