Breaking Bad

Mike Ehrmantraut

Mike Ehrmantraut is Saul Goodman's fixer, his cleaner, his go-to guy for sticky situations. Jesse first meets Mike after the death of his girlfriend, Jane. Mike removes evidence and prepares the shell-shocked Jesse for his interview with the police. Mike sums up his M.O. as he prepares to leave Jesse's duplex: "Do I need to state the obvious?" he says. "I was not here." Although he works for Saul, Mike's chief loyalty is to another employer: Gus Fring. On behalf of Gus, Mike single-handedly outmaneuvers four Cartel gunmen sent to Albuquerque. When Walt angers Gus by killing two of his dealers, the responsibility for murdering Walt also falls to Mike, who makes a rare slip-up allowing Walt to call Jesse, ostensibly to get a line on his whereabouts. Walt uses the opportunity to instruct Jesse to kill Gale, Walt's former lab assistant and the only other person who could cook Walt's meth formula for Gus. After watching Gus kill Victor in cold blood, Walt urges Mike to help him kill Gus, lest they receive the same treatment someday. Mike responds by punching Walt in the face, and later participates in Gus' ploy to drive a wedge between the partners by taking Jesse along with him to various money pick-ups. Mike accompanies Gus and Jesse on a high-stakes trip to Mexico that ends in the death of Cartel boss Don Eladio and his capos. Mike is shot as the three flee the hacienda. Mike is too injured to return to Albuquerque with Gus and Jesse, so he stays in Mexico to recover. When Mike learns that Walt has killed Gus, he hastens to New Mexico for revenge. Instead, he ends up helping Walt and Jesse destroy surveillance evidence that could incriminate them all. He initially turns down their offer to partner up in a new meth operation, but changes his mind when he learns that the DEA has confiscated money he had put away to keep the rest of Gus’ men silent and to provide for his granddaughter. Mike constantly finds himself at odds with Walt as the business progresses. “You are a time bomb,” he tells Walt. “I have no intention of being around for the boom.” Walt hates Mike’s insistence that the partners pay legacy costs to Gus’ imprisoned former employees in order to keep them silent. Meanwhile, the DEA closely surveils Mike to tie up loose ends in the Gus Fring case. Between the DEA surveillance and the death of an innocent boy during a methylamine heist, Mike decides to quit the meth business for good. He arranges to sell his and Jesse’s shares of the methylamine to Declan, a rival dealer in Phoenix. When Declan realizes that this deal won’t take the blue meth off the streets, he refuses to go through with it until Walt sells his share, too. Walt rejects the buyout, but convinces Declan to take over for Mike as his distribution network. When Walt learns that the DEA is on the verge of arresting Mike, he helps Mike avoid capture. However, when Mike refuses to hand over the names of Gus’ imprisoned men, Walt shoots Mike. As Mike bleeds out, Walt tries to justify his actions. “Shut the f---- up,” Mike interrupts, “and let me die in peace.”

Played by Jonathan Banks

Born in Washington D.C., Jonathan Banks' career has spanned five decades in film, television, and theatre. Banks began his career in the musical Hair in 1968. Among his hundreds of film and television credits are Beverly Hills Cop, 48 Hrs., Dark Blue, Flipper, Freejack and Reign Over Me. He was nominated for an Emmy Award for his role in Wiseguy as Frank McPike. Read an interview with Jonathan Banks for Season 2 » Read an interview with Jonathan Banks for Season 3 » Read an interview with Jonathan Banks for Season 4 » Read an interview with Jonathan Banks for Season 5 »

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