At around 2 minutes into the season 5 episode 'Gliding Over All' of Breaking Bad, Walt stares at a fly on the desk lamp at the 'office' supposedly a little while after...

shooting Mike.

Todd walks in and says "Should we deal with this other thing now?" To which Walt replied: "Yeah". He puts on his glasses and as he leaves the frame, the shot focuses on the poster depicting various flies on the wall behind him.

Is there any significance or symbolism behind this shot?

Shot of Fly poster


3 Answers 3


Flies were a common insect that appeared in Breaking Bad. It has been speculated that the fly represents guilt, contamination, irrational obsession, and the loss of control in Walter White's life. In this case, it would represent his shooting of Mike. If you haven't completed the entire series yet, I won't give up the ending but I will tell you to notice the use of the fly in the very last episode.


By the way it's "Gliding Over All" and as far as I can tell, the fly is a recurring symbol primarily of Walt's guilt (starting in the episode "The Fly" and his guilt related to Jane's death), in addition to other things like contamination / inability to control everything as mentioned in that Breaking Bad Wiki link above.


Answers in the comments on recurrent fly reference: https://breakingbad.fandom.com/wiki/Fly_(symbol)

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