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Gustavo Fring: Enjoy Your Meal


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#1

SultanOfSurreal

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Posted Apr 13, 2010 @ 10:59 AM

After the last episode, I'm wondering when Gus is going to inevitably show a more cut-throat side. He's been playing pretty nice up until now, but he didn't climb to a position from which he can command rival cartels by using only pleasantries and delicious fried chicken. So like a lot of you, I think the decision to get involved with him is going to end up being the biggest mistake in a life full of mistakes for both Walt and Jesse. There's just no way he's the low-key gentleman he's been posing as.

So what's this guy's nationality anyway? Cuban or Haitian, perhaps?

Edited by SultanOfSurreal, Apr 13, 2010 @ 11:00 AM.

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#2

thatguy01

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Posted Apr 13, 2010 @ 11:28 AM

delicious fried chicken


mmmmmmmmm

I'm gonna speculate that he's the inside man and his brother/cousin/uncle is a scary guy in Mexico.
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#3

birdythurs

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Posted Apr 14, 2010 @ 7:36 AM

My guess is Gus views violence like he views firing Pollos employees. Something to be avoided, if possible--you don't remain inconspicuous if you leave a trail of dead bodies--but sometimes necessary. I find it interesting that he does not like fear as a motivator; you can't predict what people will do if they panic or get desperate. He's all about predictability and stability.
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#4

Constantinople

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Posted Apr 14, 2010 @ 11:33 AM

I think it's interesting that Gus isn't just a "respectable businessman", but someone who has a legitimate territory (for his fried chicken restaurants) and his illegitimate territory (for his meth distribution and who knows what else). I presume the chicken restaurants are partly to launder the money, but I wonder if Vince Gillian & Co. are trying to say something more than that.

ETA: It's also interesting that Gus met Hank in Season 2 as part of some drug outreach program sponsored by the DEA. I forget what the program was exactly about, and so far I don't think they've followed-up on it. But it would be interesting to know what contacts, and what kind of contacts, Gus has with the DEA.

Edited by Constantinople, Apr 14, 2010 @ 11:38 AM.

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#5

Kel Varnsen

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Posted Apr 14, 2010 @ 12:39 PM

I also think it is interesting that Gus is pretty much the exact opposite of Tuco. Tuco runs on all emotion and let it influence pretty much every decision. He had no problem killing people for any reason. Gus is all business and decides things based on how they will help him make money, he doesn't seem to let emotion cloud his judgment at all. In the world of BB both those extremes led to Gus and Tuco becoming very successful in the drug business. I wonder part of the reason Walt is having so much trouble is that he is stuck in the middle, he tries to be about business but he lets emotion influence his choices and it usually backfires. If he could just go all the way to one end, he might do better.
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#6

jbethea

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Posted Apr 14, 2010 @ 12:41 PM

I think Tuco was successful DESPITE being controlled by his emotions. didn't he inherit the business from Tio? (also, he was on the stuff, that certainly doesn't help with controlling the business OR the emotions.)

Edited by jbethea, Apr 14, 2010 @ 12:42 PM.

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#7

scowl

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Posted Apr 14, 2010 @ 1:44 PM

A preview of next week's episode was shown on the Daily Show and it looked like Walt was in a conventional job interview with Gus, as if he were applying to cook chicken instead of meth. I'm hoping this will give us a little insight on how Gus runs his operation, although the preview was (surprise) mostly Walt rambling about himself.
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#8

iggypop123

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Posted Apr 15, 2010 @ 12:54 AM

A preview of next week's episode was shown on the Daily Show and it looked like Walt was in a conventional job interview with Gus, as if he were applying to cook chicken instead of meth. I'm hoping this will give us a little insight on how Gus runs his operation, although the preview was (surprise) mostly Walt rambling about himself.


is there a link to this or was this just shown live during the show?
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#9

ReadIshmael

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Posted Apr 18, 2010 @ 10:24 PM

Man, his "A man provides for his family" monologue was so chilling. It was exactly the right thing to say to Walt to get him cooking again, just a frighteningly precision-guided piece of manipulation, and it was horrifying.
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#10

SultanOfSurreal

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Posted Apr 18, 2010 @ 11:35 PM

I'm starting to wonder what drives Gus to do what he does. Seeing that superlab made me think about how much he's invested into his little criminal empire. The amount of effort laundering all that money through legitimate businesses, concealing everything... he clearly works way more than the average stiff does. And though it pays nicely -- wouldn't he be just as comfortable if he really were a legit businessman? It's much less risky, and he's a cautious man. Much less work too.

What's his motivation in dedicating his life to this world?

Edited by SultanOfSurreal, Apr 18, 2010 @ 11:36 PM.

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#11

Kris

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Posted Apr 19, 2010 @ 4:58 PM

Man, his "A man provides for his family" monologue was so chilling. It was exactly the right thing to say to Walt to get him cooking again, just a frighteningly precision-guided piece of manipulation, and it was horrifying.


It was chilling. And he didn't need to raise his voice, get angry or otherwise try to "strong arm" Walt into cooking again. He was being truthful when he'd previously said that fear wasn't a good motivator - he used psychology instead. And he was successful. Gus is smart.
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#12

Evilida

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Posted Apr 20, 2010 @ 2:33 PM

It's interesting that Gus is able to read Walt's emotions so well and manipulate his irrational needs. So far, from what we've seen, Gus is a calm, dispassionate businessman. We have no idea what drives him, or what he is passionate about.
Once he no longer needs Walt, Gus will just step aside, and the Mexican cartel will kill him. No need for Gus to intervene. It shows a kind of ruthlessness, but the same kind of carefully-considered, impersonal ruthlessness that you see in corporate culture. (For example, a car company which decides not to fix a problem that they know will result in accidents, because a cost benefit analysis shows that's its more profitable to pay off the killed and injured rather than fix the problem. )
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#13

Mincow

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Posted Apr 22, 2010 @ 12:47 PM

I liked how Gus apologized for being so transparent, as if to say he would not try to motivate or manipulate Walt again (or maybe he actually did say he wouldn't? I can't remember). Then Gus proceeded to metaphorically cattle-prod Walt through the chute right where he wants him and it never even occurred to Walt he was being played. I think if Walt realized Gus was still trying to manipulate him, he would've objected again and refused to go down into the lab. That's the work of a master.
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#14

ReadIshmael

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Posted Apr 25, 2010 @ 10:25 PM

Sending the Cousins after Hank was a really smart move (though, of course, an awful one). I didn't think he had another card to play until he played it, and I was kind of worried they were going to kill him.
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#15

LethalCandy

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Posted Apr 26, 2010 @ 12:09 PM

Maybe someone can clarify this for me, but I'm not totally sure why Gus thinks it's worth it to be involved with Walt at all. He has already said that he believes Walt is a poor businessman and is foolish for choosing to work with "junkies," so I took it he considered Walt to be a high risk. I mean, he dismissed Walt right off the bat for that reason. He already knew all about the special meth but he was not interested because he regarded Walt as irresponsible. Not to mention he has a DEA agent for a brother-in-law. As careful and calculating as Gus is, I'm not sure what made him change his mind and decide to go into business with Walt, even if it's just for 3 months. Maybe Walt's product is "the bomb", but it seemed like Gus was already doing pretty well for himself in the first place.

I wonder what he would do if he found out how close Walt came to getting himself caught...

PS. According to DListed.com, it's Giancarlo Esposito's 52nd birthday today :-)

Edited by LethalCandy, Apr 26, 2010 @ 12:17 PM.

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#16

Doorlocks

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Posted Apr 26, 2010 @ 2:13 PM

LethalCandy, I read a really brilliant bit of speculation last night, and, among several brilliant points, the person suggested that Gus' plans for Walt go much deeper than meth. Other drugs, explosives, poisons, biological weapons...as the guy said, there are many, many uses for a genius chemist. The show may not go in this direction, but I've been wondering the same thing as you and this is the first idea that's really held up to me. After a few months, maybe sooner, Walt's new assistant will have learned the formula enough to emulate it and at that point Gus will tempt Walt with even bigger challenges and even better ways to feel important. It seems to me that Gus is really chafing under even the slightest rule from the Cartel, and might be looking for all out war with them. Going the route suggested will both bolster his defenses and will expand his business to clients who might have the ability to intimidate even the cartel.

Also, I must say, I really hope the Gus makes it to the end of the show. I think Gus is the most hardcore and badass character we've seen so far (including the cousins, and with the only possible equal being Tio), and it would be a damn shame if the character were wasted as a fall guy for Walt.
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#17

Ankai

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Posted Apr 26, 2010 @ 8:59 PM

That is an interesting theory, and quite scary.

Walt may be a bit of a loose cannon, but Gus may feel as if he can control Walt. So far, he has done a pretty good job. On the other hand, he may be underestimating how crazy Walt is or how close he can get to getting caught. But what is life but a bunch of variables? Besides Walt is not a drug addict.

I had not really thought about it, but during the meeting between Gus and the Cartel members back in the third episode, it came across like the vendetta against Heisenberg was limited to the close family of Tuco. The big boss guy did not really seem to care. There have been people guessing that Gus guided them towards Hank to get them killed. If they die by the hand of a DEA Officer, then the vendetta against Walt is over, unless Don Sal...Tio can bring in someone else. And, really, the anger will be against the DEA this time. Hank getting killed may make the DEA take it personally, and any resulting investigation will clear the way for Gus to operate more freely. Of course, who knows how Walt would react if Hank gets killed, even if he has no idea why.
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#18

birdythurs

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Posted Apr 26, 2010 @ 9:52 PM

I kinda wanna be Gus when I grow up. Well, not the criminal, life-threatning evil Gus, but just the sheer balls and quick thining to almost immediately determine what needs to be done, how to go about doing it, and remain smooth and calm without being a pushover. My Mom's comment ("Sunset" was her first episode since the pilot) was "I like Gus. He's kind of like Spock!" Hee. Gus would totally be running Mirror Enterprise, even without a goatee...

Earlier I thought that Gus would offer up Skyler and Walter Jr. But in chatting, lately, I don't think he would. Even if Walt never knew Gus was behind it, that loss would just send him way off and over the edge, beyond the point where Gus could manipulate. But he didn't tell the cousins that Hank is not only the triggerman for Tuco, but also Walter White's family. Does he think that knowledge would make the Cousins escalate? Or is he just keeping all the cards close to his chest to spring it as needed?
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#19

LethalCandy

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Posted Apr 26, 2010 @ 10:43 PM

Doorlocks, that's very interesting, and something I had never even thought of... It's a terrifying idea, that he has plans of Walt getting involved in even more dangerous projects, but it does make a lot of sense. The insane amount of risk associated with Walt would be worth it if he had a much bigger payoff in mind than a mere 3 months of work.

Gus truly is the scariest character on the show because we have no idea what he is planning or what he is capable of. You know exactly what to expect from a pair of ax-wielding maniacs with a vendetta, but someone who meticulously plans every tiny detail and clearly has a lot more in the works than he lets on? That's nerve-wracking.

birdythurs, I'm curious whether the Cousins are aware of Walt and Hank's connection.. They've never made that clear. I guess it's possible they could have seen Hank hanging around Walt, since they were watching him. For some reason I thought Tuco found out that Walt knew a DEA agent (obviously before he was gunned down by one), but I may totally be wrong.
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#20

birdythurs

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Posted Apr 27, 2010 @ 10:20 AM

I don't think they would know. Tio knew Heisenberg's real name from when Tuco went through the wallet--which is how he knew that family would make nice collateral, pictures fo Skyler and Junior. Hank only called out Jesse's name when he arrived, not Walter's.

AMC has a quick interview with Giancarlo Esposito about cramming the Spanish and Gus's calm confidence. Link in the Media thread.
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#21

Scary Spice

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Posted May 9, 2010 @ 2:51 PM

So what's this guy's nationality anyway? Cuban or Haitian, perhaps?

In real life, Giancarlo Esposito is the child of an African American mother and Italian father. On the show, who fricken knows.

Found this description on the AMC website: Obama/Manuel Noriega/ Colonel Sanders

Edited by Scary Spice, May 9, 2010 @ 4:14 PM.

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#22

gcheckov

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Posted May 9, 2010 @ 9:56 PM

The more of Gus I see, the more I love him. He says "it's unlikely the surviving assassin will make it" and poof, the guy's dead 45 seconds later. He's my bleeping hero.
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#23

iggypop123

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Posted May 9, 2010 @ 10:04 PM

This guy is truly "the wire's" version of Brother Mozoune. He is making some power moves, and Walt is only starting to realize this isnt some random docile guy he is working with, he means business.
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#24

Kris

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Posted May 9, 2010 @ 10:12 PM

All I have to say, Gus is GANGSTA!
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#25

scowl

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Posted May 10, 2010 @ 6:34 PM

This guy is truly "the wire's" version of Brother Mozoune.

It would be great if he has his criminal organization meetings in a Holiday Inn conference room like they did in the Wire. Just a regular bunch of local businessmen.
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#26

isiscloud

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Posted May 11, 2010 @ 11:24 AM

PS. According to DListed.com, it's Giancarlo Esposito's 52nd birthday today :-)

My 42nd!

The more of Gus I see, the more I love him. He says "it's unlikely the surviving assassin will make it" and poof, the guy's dead 45 seconds later. He's my bleeping hero.

Bring in some chicken to calm the natives and "poof," indeed. Gus and Mike are a very scary team!
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#27

Xbones

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Posted May 11, 2010 @ 3:44 PM

Happy Birthday isiscloud
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#28

Scary Spice

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Posted May 11, 2010 @ 5:15 PM

So what's this guy's nationality anyway? Cuban or Haitian, perhaps?


According to the last episode, Tio says that "you can't trust a South American." Guyana, Brazil, and Panama are all majority Afro-Latino countries, so I'd say he's from one of those. I was leaning towards Panama because of the bad-assness regarding the drugs trade, but his reluctance to speak Spanish with Bolsa makes me think that he might not be from a Spanish speaking country. English is the language of Guyana, but his first name is Gustavo, so that makes me think Brazil is our best option. Also, the last name Frings is German and Brazil has a high population of ethnic Germans, so I'm leaning Brazilian.

Yes, I am way overthinking this show.
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#29

LethalCandy

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Posted May 11, 2010 @ 6:11 PM

Happy Birthday isiscloud!

Thanks for that post, Scary Spice! Very interesting. Admittedly I don't know anything about South American countries, but you sound very knowledgeable, so your speculation sold me at least :)
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#30

Ankai

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Posted May 18, 2010 @ 12:11 PM

While I am not totally sold on the idea of dropping a bag of meth into a bucket of batter, I am going to let that slide, since I am far from an expert in that matter.

Still, I am confused about the idea of whether there is Blue Meth in ABQ. Is it that Gus does not want his people to sell it there himself or that he does not want it there at all? It might make sense if it is the former, but would not the latter end up becoming suspicious if it is the only place in the Southwest that does not have Blue Meth? Sure, he might want to know how Blue Meth gets into the ABQ (and may get really upset with Jesse if he finds out that it came directly out of the laundry factory and not rerouted through several hands in different states), but it would not be him shitting where he eats; it would be someone else, using his...okay, I am not completing that line of thought. Turing ABQ into a little oasis, on the other hand, may get even the dumbest within the DEA eventually wondering what is going on. As long as his people are not directly involved, it is not his problem and he still gets paid. Jesse selling excess meth would not get Gus paid, though.
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