Like, say, the kid, that poor dirtbike-riding boy that eager beaver Todd (Jesse Plemons) shot dead at the end of last week's train robbing excursion. Everything in the heist went almost eerily well until that point, until the team's unexpected encounter with that young observer, to which Todd reacted just as he'd been told. "At the end of the day, it was him or us -- and I choose us," he argued to Walt, Jesse (Aaron Paul, particularly good this episode) and Mike (Jonathan Banks) at the start of this week's episode, sounding a lot like Walt in his early days, turning an incident around and around in his head until it could have only gone one way, the way it had to go. "Buyout" was a good example of why "Breaking Bad" can be so difficult to watch sometimes -- because it's not a show that takes the easy cut away, it's one that has us watch as the crew slowly disassembles the bike before readying another container with acid in which to dissolve the body.
And he doesn't -- he fights tooth and nail, literally singing his skin for the chance to keep his business, and we see that not having anything to serve as an excuse has become Walt's new excuse. "This business is all I have left now -- it's all I have, and you want to take it away from me," he tells Jesse, who he makes sit through that miserable parody of a dinner with Skyler (Anna Gunn) and her giant glass of white wine and the green beans from Albertsons. It's clear, after this episode, that Walt will never run out of excuses and justifications for his involvement in meth, even without a good reason to keep on in a dangerous, illegal and destructive industry that's wrecking his life.
"Buyout" is also the first time Walt's really let Jesse into his home life -- what remains of it -- and what a difference from those early days when he juggled two cell phones and was paranoid about the very idea that his secret side gig might come in contact with his domestic universe.
"I look it up every week," Walt says, terribly and tragically, about Gray Matter's worth, summing up just how much acrimony he bears, how much the past still eats at him and how much he thinks he's owed. He's never going to quit, because he wants to prove he's the best at something, even if that something's making meth, and even if, as Jesse points out, a meth empire isn't really something to be proud of. And no matter how weary Mike and Jesse might be of the whole business, they seem to be tied to Walt and the methylamine (the business deal proposed by Mike's contact Declan (Louis Ferreira) turned out to be just as much about getting the blue meth off the market as it was about the chemical), and he's not going to let them go easily.
And as for Todd, there in the car with his eye swelling, looking at the tarantula that used to belong to the kid -- he looks like trouble just waiting to happen.