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Remembering Jane, The Most Tragic Character From ‘Breaking Bad’

Jane Margolis (Krysten Ritter) from Breaking Bad was certainly no saint. She was a recovering addict who got Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) hooked on injecting heroin mixed with crystal. The 26-year-old tattoo artist also had a sinister side. We saw it when she blackmailed Walt (Bryan Cranston) for Jesse's half of the money. Then again, it was Jesse who got her off the wagon in the first place, and Walt had little right to keep Jesse's money. 

During Season 2 of the AMC series, Jesse's girlfriend became the love of his life. Theirs was a passionate story of two young, lonely, broken outsiders who found refuge in each other. But they never stood a chance - not with Walter White still manipulating and controlling Jesse's life. 

Of all the surprising and devastating deaths to occur over the course of five jaw-dropping seasons of Breaking Bad, Jane's was perhaps the most shocking. The moment Walt simply stood by and let a young woman perish, when he could have easily saved her, served as the true turning point for Walt's transition from Mr. Chips to Scarface.

This is in dedication to Jane - a tragic Breaking Bad character who was trying to put her life back together. It all changed when she made one seemingly innocent but ultimately fatal decision: to rent out the next-door apartment to Jesse Pinkman.

  • She Understandably Lies To Her Dad About Jesse, Leading To Her Apology Girl Sketch

    Photo: AMC

    In the Season 2 installment "Over," Jesse and Jane have settled into a steady relationship. At the beginning of the episode, Jesse cooks up a breakfast of huevos rancheros and the loving couple lie in bed together on a lazy day. Jane is flipping through a book of Jesse's superhero drawings - all of which sort of look like him - when she hears a knock on her apartment door.

    She leaps from the bed, sneaks out the back, and stealthily works her way back to her own apartment. The knock is from her father/landlord, Donald, who's in a state of constant concern over his daughter's past dependency issues. It's an uncomfortable moment when Jesse walks out of his place to introduce himself to Jane's dad. She panics and breaks Jesse's heart when she introduces him as just "the new tenant" and not her new boyfriend.

    Jesse later tells Jane how angry he is about the introduction, but Jane doesn't back down. She claims she was trying to protect him, and that she can't tell her perpetually worried father that she's hooking up with someone like Jesse. 

    Jesse drowns his sorrows in crystal. A piece of paper works its way under his door. Jane has drawn a self-portrait sketch of a female superhero named "Apology Girl." It's a gesture that not only makes Jesse happy but also shows that Jane can recognize and atone for her mistakes.

  • Because Jesse Doesn't Get The Help He Needs, He Reintroduces Narcotics Into Jane's Life

    Photo: AMC / https://www.amazon.com/The-Break-In/dp/B001TXWJ4M/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=breaking+bad+season+2&qid=1599264183&sr=8-2

    In Season 2, Episode 11, "Mandala," the inevitable finally happens. Jesse is grieving his friend Combo's (Rodney Rush) demise. He feels responsible because Combo was out selling Jesse and Walt's product in new territory when he was taken out by rival dealers. As usual, Jesse carries all the guilt, even though the blame for the new location falls on Walt. 

    Jesse is despondent and won't let Jane help him. His escape, not surprisingly, is crystal. He asks Jane to leave - the last thing he wants is to be responsible for her relapse. But Jane makes the decision to stay and smoke with Jesse. It's her way of trying to make her boyfriend feel better. This is the moment their relationship takes a fatal turn.

  • Jane Begins Using Again, And Introduces Heroin To Jesse

    Photo: AMC / https://www.amazon.com/The-Break-In/dp/B001TXWJ4M/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=breaking+bad+season+2&qid=1599264183&sr=8-2

    Toward the end of "Mandala," the whole game changes for Jane and Jesse. Jane has once again found her taste for H, completely leaving her sobriety behind.

    Jesse is still despondent over Combo's passing. Jane presents a pair of hypodermic needles. She adeptly concocts a speedball, mixing crystal and heroin. Jesse injects it - his first time with H - and the high is instant and intense. He euphorically floats up, up, and away, the narcotic consuming his body.

    At this point, there's no turning back.

  • Jane Shoots Between Her Toes To Hide Her Relapse

    Photo: AMC

    Reddit user u/KittyMuffins noted in the sub-reddit r/TVDetails that Jane shoots into her foot (possibly around her ankle). This is to hide the needle marks from prying eyes, particularly her father's. Jane's secrecy in this moment reveals both her past behaviors and an attempt to conceal this relapse from her father; she knows it is wrong, but she cannot help herself.