The A.V. Club: Last season ended with an episode that was reasonably conclusive, whereas this season ends with a cliffhanger. Why’d you choose to end on an ambiguous note?
Vince Gilligan: Well first let me ask you: When you say “ambiguous” do you mean ambiguous in the sense of did Jesse shoot Gale or not?
AVC: Among other things, yes.
VG: Gotcha. That’s interesting, because I’m hearing that from some folks, that question. To me, for what it’s worth, it’s not actually meant to be ambiguous. It’s meant to be, “Oh my god, Jesse shot poor Gale.” But I’m realizing now that when people see the camera come dollying around so it’s looking down the barrel of the gun, some are reading that as maybe he’s changing his point of aim. But that’s not what we intended. Apparently it’s not as clear as I thought it would be. [Laughs.]
There seems to be a gaping hole in the plot (or at least in Walt's line of thinking. Maybe they address it in a way that makes it seem like less of a hole next season, which would make this criticism moot, but we'll see). You can't tell me that there aren't 1,000 chemists--ranging from people with good jobs in pharmaceuticals to college students to other high school teachers--who would cook meth in that lab for $1 million a month. It might not be as good as Walt's recipe, but it would certainly be better than anything else on the street made using brake fluid and WD-40 and whatever else goes into meth, plus Gus doesn't have much competition as it is. It seems to me that Walt shouldn't be as important as he's being made out to be (or as he thinks he is, depending on how it plays out). I really liked this season...there were a couple of episodes that were hit-or-miss, but overall a good season. Gus's cleaner (can't remember his name), is one of my favorite television characters ever. He's right up there with Omar from The Wire as far as anti-heros go.
Yeah, they have the whole setup and way of doing things that's pretty specific to making meth. I'm sure there are lots of little things that need to be done and tests and whatnot that aren't all perfectly documented. It's not like they're making acetone. Gale didn't seem confidant in taking over quite yet despite doing everything first-hand for a while. Obviously he's replaceable in the long-run, but this at the very least buys him some time. It'll be interesting to see what Gus does with him. If this was real life and he wasn't so important to the show, Jesse would be dead before Gale's body turned cold. Then again if it was real life he would have been dead a long time ago.