Will Jesse Stay Sober?

Jesse has struggled with addiction off and on throughout the series.  In his introduction, we learn that his meth addiction has contributed to his inattention at school, which causes him to flunk out of Walter’s chemistry class, and also prompts his parents to kick him out of their house.  From there, we’ve witnessed multiple attempts at quitting drugs for good, with a couple of serious relapses.  It might seem as though he’s finally kicked his meth habit for good, but there are a few factors weighing heavily against him.

Once an Addict, Always an Addict

It’s a widespread belief that even a sober addict is still an addict—and that anyone who has suffered serious addiction is merely one high away from falling back into full-blown addiction.  Jesse has a definite track record and, although that doesn’t necessarily mean he is sure to fail again, the possibility is always there.  Most recently, when Walt goes to his house to drop off a duffel bag of cash, Jesse hides a bong.  While marijuana is clearly not Jesse’s drug of choice and hardly makes him a junkie, it does provide that open door for more substantial abuse.  Most recovering addicts feel the need to avoid all drugs and alcohol, with any form of intoxication providing a gateway to their drugs of choice.  Jesse’s impulse to hide the bong suggests a sense of guilt on his part, which indicates that he knows the risk he’s taking by getting stoned.

Outside Influences

Jesse’s last big relapse comes when Jane introduces him to heroin.  In an instant, he goes from cleaning up his life to full-blown junkie—and that escalates exponentially when Jane dies.  The loss, and his inability to cope, leads him to a short but dramatic stay at a crack house, where he hits rock bottom.  His recent break-up with Andrea might have a similar effect on him, even if he feels he’s done the right thing by pushing her out of his life.  His marijuana use might be hinting to just that, foreshadowing the possibility of an explosion of drug use yet to come.


Jesse has proven repeatedly that he can’t be trusted with large sums of money.  The last time he had a duffel bag of cash, he turned his home into one non-stop party central, blowing every last dollar on drugs.  This most recent sum of cash now at his disposal, given his grief and history, might be the final piece to the perfect storm that sends him over the edge for good.

Conditions in His Favor

Despite all he has working against him, Jesse has proven himself to be a smart and resilient kid.  He has survived much, and he has been the brains behind some of the most resourceful plans engineered between him, Walt, Mike, and Saul.  Given this resourcefulness, he might come through the end of Season 5 on a surprisingly positive note.

Only time will tell.

Leigh M. Lane is a speculative fiction author whose works span from sci-fi to horror. Her most recent full-length works are The Hidden Valley HorrorFinding PoeWorld-Mart, and Myths of Gods. For more about her work, go to her website at http://www.cerebralwriter.com.


  1. shulgidude says:

    Once again you have molded the actual occurances to suit your opinion. He still has a lrage amount of money, incase you forgot. He was the one out of everyone who had money left to fund the coalition of mike and walt and himself. he has kept his money and has stayed sober out of choice. His addiction was comparable to many other people in life where they have given their all to something that was taken from them.

    I can tell from your wrtitings that you have never been on the wrong side of any laws or an addict. It is very nice to view the world in that manner, however thaqt is why addicts get a bad reputation in alot of ways. What people dont understand they fear, and what people fear they try to destroy. Althopugh jesse was a serious addict, he has proven that he comes to his senses when its needed the most. Losing so many people in his life has only made him strong about emotions. The party at his house was to always have enough people around so that he wouldnt get killed by Gus and his crew. he didnt even party with them, he just kept them there to have people around. Maybe you should rewatch some of the episodes if not all of them since you seem to be missing some seriously important parts of the whole story.

    • Lynn says:

      Dear Shulgidude-
      I agree with most of what you said, except for the party at his house….I think Jesse was feeling bad about all the murders Walt committed and the murder Walt forced him to do…….Jesse is NOT a killer by nature and Walt IS….the party stuff was a distraction, a loud sound to prevent him from hearing the softer sound of grief from his soul…..and don’t we JUST KNOW that Walt is gonna try to kill Jesse? And I have a feeling that Walt is messing with the wrong man there-Jesse is tougher and braver than Walt knows-and Jesse IS NOT USING METH and likely never will again (even though he DID for awhile)……Jesse is my favorite character on the show and I am old enough to be his GRANDMA!!!!!!

      • shulgidude says:

        dear lynn-
        i agree , jesse is my favorite too :) He represents the underdog that has had to struggle very hard to get where he is. I believe that his character is showing that even waht people call an addict, a loser, and waste of a life can and will overcome any obstacle fi they are given a chance. Not only will they overcome, but they will become stringer than the people who ridicule them and put them down, because they already know what its like at the bottom.

        I honestly dont believe that Walt or Jesse are killers by nature. I believe that Walt became more tolerant of it simply because he was the one being hunted for most of the the series. Simple case of the hunted becoming the hunter.


  1. […] blows Walter’s out of the water.  He is a murderer, an addict (even if in recovery—see my November 12 article on whether or not that will last) and every bit as cunning as Gus, made evident by his magnet idea […]

Speak Your Mind