Breaking Bad was always driven by decisions. The decision that triggered all the chaotic events was that of Walter “Walt” White deciding to quit his teaching job in order to cook meth. Every other decision after that either benefited the characters involved or proved to be their downfall. While there were plenty of smart decisions made, some were totally baffling.
Given how quickly events unfolded, characters were sometimes forced to act on instinct. There was no time to deliberate about things. But the impulsive actions normally brought more harm than good.
Gus Fring Opting To Kill Hector Himself Instead Of Let Victor Do It
Despite being a generally intelligent villain, Gus Fring’s hatred for Hector Salamanca led him into Walt’s trap. Walt made a deal with Hector to portray him as a DEA informant in order to force Gus to take action. When Gus Fring’s henchman Victor saw Hector at the DEA offices, he informed the drug trafficker that Hector was ratting.
As expected, Gus made his way to the Casa Tranquila nursing home to kill Hector. Victor offered to kill the Salamanca family member, but Gus refused as he wanted to relish in the pleasure of doing it himself. Little did he know that Walt had planted a bomb under Hector’s wheelchair.
Jesse’s “Santa Claus” Moment
Later in the series, Jesse refused to keep what he deemed blood money. When a homeless person requested him for cash, he gave him a bundle, before driving around the streets and throwing money out of his car. That’s an admirable Santa Claus move but he didn’t think it through.
He should have considered the fact that such an act would have attracted the cops. His decision to become charitable with nearly all of his money also came to haunt him in the sequel film El Camino where he struggled to come up with $250,000 to pay Ed “The Disappearer” Galbraith to set him up with a new life.
Walter White Quitting Teaching To Manufacture Drugs
Walt’s intentions were good when he decided to manufacture methamphetamine. He loved his family and wanted to make enough money for them before he died of cancer. He had regrets too, after selling his stake in a company that went on to become wildly successful. In short, he was tired of being a loser.
But Walt was somewhat myopic in his thinking. Did he think the trug trade would just be stress-free like his teaching job? He never factored in the risks. He only saw the money, something an intelligent person like him shouldn’t do. As expected his new profession broke his family and eventually led to his death.
Skyler’s Affair With Ted Beneke
Skyler’s decision to have an affair with her boss Ted Beneke cemented her place on the show’s hate list. She was so eager to hurt Walt that she initiated the first act of intimacy with Ted. And when Ted developed deep feelings for her, she refused to begin a serious relationship with him.
Her decision to reject Ted’s proposal to move in with him meant she still loved Walt. But hurting her husband that way then confessing about it with no remorse put an irreparable dent in their marriage. They possibly could have worked things out, if not for that incident.
Gale Informing Gus About The 99% Quality Meth
Gale’s death at the hands of Jesse was sad but he was responsible for setting off the chain of events that led to his demise. Initially, Gus wanted Gale to be his sole meth cook. Instead of protecting his position, he informed Gus about Walt’s 99% quality meth, thus making Gus hire Walt and look down on him.
Walt was cold towards Gale and undermined him in order to convince Gus to bring in Jesse. Soon, Gale was left without a job. What Gale should have learned how to make 99% quality meth too without praising Walt’s superior product to Gus. Gale was smart enough. He could have come up with something close if he put his mind to it.
Mike Paying Off “Loose-End” Associates
After Gus Fring’s empire crumbled, Mike was clearly upset. He blamed it on all Walt. He also decided that he was going to keep paying his former associates (who knew about the operation) to keep them quiet. He should have known that this wouldn’t be sustainable in the long term.
He also forced Jesse and Walt to help cover the expenses for the associates. This brought plenty of animosity between him and Walt, resulting in Walt shooting him for refusing to give out the names. Cold as it may sound, Mike should have eliminated the associates instead of having to pay them to be quiet.
Jack Sparing Walter’s Life
Jack Welker didn’t manage to fit into the boots left by Gus as the show’s main villain but he was an effective killing machine. The only major mistake he made was sparing Walt’s life during the desert shootout.
After killing Hank, a criminal like Mike should have known that a heartbroken Walt would have come after him someday. Instead, he was merciful to the meth cook and even left him a barrel containing $11 million. Walt eventually tracked him after returning to Albuquerque and took out his gang.
Tuco’s Disregard For No-Doze’s Body
Tuco’s temper was laughable but his decisions were even more comical. When No-Doze told Walt and Jesse to remember who they were working for, Tuco beat him to death for speaking without permission. He then ordered Gonzo to hide the body under a pile of old cars at the junkyard instead of burying it. This turned out to be a huge mistake,
Gonzo returned later (without telling Tuco) to retrieve the body in order to give it a proper burial. However, the pile of vehicles collapsed on him and he died. The police found the bodies, and the DNA led them to Tuco. Tuco was forced to flee. He tried to take Walt and Jesse with him to Mexico but before his plans came to fruition, Hank caught up with him and killed him.
Todd’s Execution Of Andrea Cantillo
When Jesse tried to escape from Jack Welker’s compound, Todd punished him by killing his girlfriend Andrea Cantillo. He then warned him that he’d kill Brock too if he tried to escape again.
Previously, Brock had shot an innocent boy who witnessed the train heist. Since Jesse loved kids, the murder haunted him for a while. Todd wasn’t doing himself any favors by hurting Jesse further. He only increased Jesse’s rage and thirst for vengeance. Jesse eventually got his chance for revenge and strangled him
Hank’s Handling Of The Desert Incident
Hank made two bad decisions in the desert scene. His first plan was to call the police to come and dig up the money after arresting Walt. Instead, he decided to call Marie first to boast about arresting his brother-in-law. If he had called the police first, perhaps they could have arrived in time to back him up as he faced off against Jack Welker’s gang.
The second mistake he made was refusing to cooperate with Jack Welker’s gang. First, they asked him to show his badge, which he refused, leaving no choice for them but to become brutal with him. And despite the fact that he and Gomez were way outnumbered, he didn’t see the need to drop his weapon. He could have just let them take the money (as well as let Walt escape) to save his own life.