Breaking Bad : Season 2 : Episode 1: “Seven Thirty-Seven”
Season 2 kicks off with an enigmatic post-apocalyptic scene in what looks to be Walt’s swimming pool, and then drops us in the scrapyard right where season 1 left us. The dissemination of scientific knowledge is a little lacking in this episode, which is understandable when there’s an insane drug dealer after you. In this post, I’ll be talking about ricin.
As Hank watches the CCTV footage of Walt and Jesse’s methylamine heist, he mentions “P2P” when Gomez tells his what was taken. This doesn’t refer to some kind of distribution network, but rather phenyl-2-propanone, another name for the phenylacetone that will be converted into methamphetamine.
Tuco is significantly better protected than Krazy-8 was, and Walt comes up with a proven method to quietly bump him off – poison. His weapon of choice is ricin, a tremendously toxic substance that is easily extracted from the seeds of the castor oil plant (Ricinus communis), which in turn is easily found as ornamental foliage or as a source of castor oil. Walt mentions the infamous 1978 “umbrella murder” of Georgi Markov, who was injected with a ricin-filled pellet from the tip of an umbrella.
Unfortunately, it looks like our would-be assassins have stumbled over a questionable recipe that has been circulating the internet for decades. During the quick cuts of the cooking process, we can see the liberal use of drain cleaner (sodium or potassium hydroxide, commonly called lye) and acetone – this tells us that they’re going down the “Poisoner’s Handbook” route instead of the “US Army” route (which uses acid). Both methods are significantly more complicated than the recipes would suggest, so we can only hope that Walt knows what he’s doing.
Elements in the credits
|Steven MicHael Quezada||Hydrogen|
|Robb Wilson King||Tungsten|
|MiChael Slovis||No such element|
|StewArt A. Lyons||Argon|
I’m not sure why Michael Slovis wasn’t assigned iodine (I), carbon (C), hydrogen (H), sulfur (S), oxygen (O) or vanadium (V).