In Cornered (Season 4. Ep. 6) of Breaking Bad, Jesse has been assigned to help Mike. They are covering a house with a pair of heavy meth users who happen to have 3 pounds of the blue meth, but did not buy it off them.

Jesse wants to rush in, but Mike explains that 90% of their work is waiting and that he is not in the habit of rushing in on meth addicts, since they can be unpredictable. Jesse takes the initiative and decides to approach the house as a user that wants to purchase. Mike has misgivings about this approach, but does not stop him. He is rebuffed at the door by Tucker, one of the addicts, and returns to the car. Knocked down but not beaten, he decides to try again. But this time gets a shovel from the back of Mike's car, goes to the front yard of the house, and starts digging.

Tucker appears at the door, while Jesse digs. Then Tucker comes outside to stare at him. They have this conversation.

Tucker: What are you doing?
Jesse: Digging.
T: Why?
J: Oh.. you know why.
T: (wipes nose) How deep are you going?
J: I don't know, how deep do you think it is?
T: ..pretty deep.
J: Hey ah.. Do you mind takin' over for a minute?
T: Yeah ..sure.
J: Hey ah. Mind if I use your John?
T: (digging now, distracted) Yeah..

The word 'it' makes me think they both knew what Jesse was trying to dig up. What did the meth addict think was there? More meth? Money? The green fairy?..

  • The holy grail.
    – eYe
    Commented Sep 2, 2015 at 16:49

2 Answers 2


This scene was playing on the many negative behaviours of a meth addict. Many users of meth experience increased paranoia, energy, a greater sense of alertness and very unpredictable behaviour.

Jesse, knowing a lot about meth, plays on this by creating a scene with the shovel and pretending he's looking for something. The paranoid, curious Tucker can't understand why and is stoned enough to believe there's something really there. Jesse's determination to find whatever is there leads the paranoid and alert Tucker in to taking over and becoming determined to find whatever is there himself.

When Jesse refers to "it", the "it" can refer to whatever Tucker wants it to. Rather than describing something in particular, Jesse leaves it open for interpretation and allows Tucker to imagine whatever he wants, which spurs him on to continue digging and ignore Jesse. In fact, when Jesse finally leaves the house we still see Tucker digging, even more frenetically than before, demonstrating the heightened sense of energy combined with paranoia.

Ultimately though, there's nothing in the hole.

  • This is definitely the right answer. Jesse clearly used the digging ruse to trick Tucker.
    – Shiz Z.
    Commented Jul 9, 2014 at 17:16
  • 1
    One of my favorite scenes! Commented Jul 9, 2014 at 17:41

I am reminded of one of the girls who inhabit Nacho's home in BCS -- one of them may be a user of meth, but the other is a full-blown addict who similarly engages in absolutely pointless and potentially destructive behaviors. She is attempting to dismantle the tv remote so that she can "clean it." Nacho does not even attempt to explain how silly this is but simply gives her a jigsaw puzzle.

The idea again is that meth addicts have a lot of undirected energy which awaits direction no matter how pointless. I think in real life I have heard of addicts dismantling machines like motorcycles and then reassembling them.

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