Buyout (Breaking Bad)

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Breaking Bad episode
Episode no. Season 5
Episode 6
Directed by Colin Bucksey
Written by Gennifer Hutchison
Original air date August 19, 2012 (2012-08-19)
Running time 47 minutes
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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"Dead Freight"
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Breaking Bad (season 5)
List of Breaking Bad episodes

"Buyout" is the sixth episode of the fifth season of the American television drama series Breaking Bad, and the 52nd overall episode of the series. Written by Gennifer Hutchison and directed by Colin Bucksey, it originally aired on AMC in the United States on August 19, 2012.


Upon returning from the train heist, Walt, Mike, and Todd dismantle the dirt bike belonging to the boy that Todd killed, dissolving the pieces in barrels filled with hydrofluoric acid. They prepare another barrel for the boy. While Todd and Jesse are smoking outside, Todd glibly dismisses the tragedy, leading an incensed Jesse to punch him. After a heated debate, Walt, Jesse, and Mike agree to spare Todd's life and keep him on the payroll with Vamonos Pest, in order to monitor him.

While visiting a park with his granddaughter, Mike detects a DEA stakeout and taunts them by faking a dead drop and leaving a vulgar message placed under a garbage can. Mike, under pressure from the increased surveillance, and Jesse, still shaken over the boy's death, decide to leave Walt's meth operation and sell their shares of the stolen methylamine to Declan, a Phoenix-based competitor, for $5 million apiece. However, Declan insists on buying the entire lot — including Walt's share — and remove the competing blue meth from the market. Elsewhere, while visiting Holly, a tearful Skyler is tempted to confess to her sister Marie, but stops short when Marie discloses her knowledge of Skyler's affair with Ted. Marie mistakenly believes this to be the reason for Skyler's mental anguish.

Jesse comes to Walt's house to discreetly discuss the deal offered by Declan. Walt rejects the sale, reasoning that the methylamine is worth $300 million when cooked, and correlating his buyout from Gray Matter Technologies for only $5,000 when the company is now worth well over $2 billion. He admits for the first time that he isn't cooking meth for his family, as his children live elsewhere and his marriage is in shambles. He tells Jesse he isn't in the meth business, or the money business, but rather is in the "empire business." Skyler arrives home and Walt insists that Jesse stay for dinner, leading to an awkward meal. After Skyler excuses herself from the table, Walt tells Jesse that his meth business is all he has left.

Walt tries to hide the methylamine, but Mike anticipates the move, tying Walt up in the Vamonos Pest offices. Mike and Saul meet with Hank and Gomez at the DEA to advise them Mike has obtained a restraining order preventing their continued surveillance of him. Meanwhile, Walt breaks from the plastic restraint and hides the methylamine before Mike comes back. When Mike arrives, he instantly notices the methylamine is missing and is about to shoot Walt, placing the gun to his head. Jesse interrupts and says Walt has a plan to get all three of them their money, while still letting Walt keep the methylamine. Mike asks Walt if what Jesse says is true. Walt replies, "Everybody wins."



"Buyout" was watched by 2.81 million viewers and received a 1.3 rating among viewers aged 18–49.[1]

Critical reception[edit]

"Buyout" received positive reviews. Donna Bowman of The A.V. Club gave it an A rating and called it a "standout episode" for how it "shows Walter offering up two sides of the truth of his life."[2] IGN's Seth Amitin rated the episode 8.5 out of 10, adding that he "love[s] that this show still deals with the emotional impact of [the characters'] own messes."[3] However, Sean T. Collins of Rolling Stone felt the episode "stumbled" when it came to "compelling drama in which everyone involved acts in character and within the bounds of recognizable, reasonable human behavior."[4] HitFix's Alan Sepinwall thought "Buyout" was "a bit more muddled" when compared to the previous episodes, adding, "There are incredible individual components — the pre-credits sequence, Walt's improvised blowtorch, even another awkward meal at the White house — but they didn't entirely work together."[5]

Aaron Paul was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his performance in this episode.


  1. ^ Bibel, Sara (August 21, 2012). "Sunday Cable Ratings: 'True Blood' Wins Night, 'Fallling Skies', 'Breaking Bad', 'Army Wives', 'The Newsroom','Leverage' & More". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  2. ^ Bowman, Donna (August 19, 2012). "Buyout". The A.V. Club. The Onion. Retrieved August 20, 2012. 
  3. ^ Amitin, Seth (August 19, 2012). "Breaking Bad: "Buyout" Review". IGN. Retrieved August 20, 2012. 
  4. ^ Collins, Sean, T. (August 19, 2012). "'Breaking Bad' Recap: The Aftermath Doesn't Add Up". Rolling Stone. Retrieved August 20, 2012. 
  5. ^ Sepinwall, Alan (August 19, 2012). "Review: 'Breaking Bad' - 'Buyout': Quitting time?". HitFix. Retrieved August 20, 2012. 

External links[edit]