Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Hank Detail You Missed In Breaking Bad's One Minute Episode

Breaking Bad is a series so stacked with nuance that, even seven years after its finale aired, fans are still uncovering new Easter eggs in their rewatches of the celebrated AMC series. The latest finding is a doozy and proves that when it comes to the series' episode titles, there's always a deeper meaning just waiting to be unearthed. Specifically, the name of one of the series' all-time best episodes, season 3's "One Minute," has even more significance than fans might have initially perceived. 

The episode centers on the fallout from Hank Schrader's (Dean Norris) brutal attack on Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul), which results in Hank's temporary suspension from the DEA and potential charges brought against him by Jesse. Walter White (Bryan Cranston) quickly intervenes and manages to get Jesse a full-time job working with him at Gus Fring's (Giancarlo Esposito) lab and thus prompts Jesse to drop his charges against Hank. However, even with his legal problems ending, the trouble is far from over for Hank.

As Hank gets into his car after buying his wife some flowers, he receives an ominous call — likely from Gus, who ordered the hit in the first place — warning him that two men are approaching his car to kill him, and he has exactly one minute to prepare for this attack. While that warning might seem like the most obvious reason for the episode to be called "One Minute," there's yet another meaning for the moniker if you look close enough (and equip yourself with a timer). 

Set your stopwatch during this key scene

Though Hank initially believes that the "one minute" call is merely a bad prank, he quickly discovers that it is a deadly serious warning. As predicted, the Cousins, Leonel (Daniel Moncada) and Marco Salamanca (Luis Moncada), proceed to ambush Hank in the grocery store parking lot. 

Hank is able to thwart Leonel's attack from behind by backing up his car and crushing him into another vehicle. However, Marco shoots Hank through his driver's side window, and while Hank manages to slip away and use Leonel's gun to initiate a counterattack, Marco's bullet proof vest leaves him uninjured by Hank emptying a clip into his chest. Marco returns fire and moves in to finish the assassination, but before pulling the trigger, he decides on a more grisly fatality and sets off to retrieve his axe. Before Marco returns, Hank finds the hollow point bullet that Marco has accidentally dropped and manages to reload Leonel's pistol with it. As Marco lifts his axe to finish the job, Hank fires just in time, and both the axe and Marco's lifeless body fall to the ground beside him. 

Reddit user Flyaway_5 recently discovered that the titular stretch of time factors into this critical portion of the scene as well because the moment between Marco deciding a bullet would be too easy and Hank putting one into Marco's head lasts for — you guessed it — one minute. So next time you get to this episode in your inevitable Breaking Bad re-binge session, make sure to bring a stopwatch and check out this cool detail for yourself.