I would have bet good money this was the series finale. But according to the post-episode preview, we have two more to go for this season. But I'm not sure I need any more.
This seemed like the end of the show because we have the culmination of Tate's master plan: Take Marco to the spot where Tate's son died and make Marco a bad man. It's more than a little reminiscent of "Seven." Tate's wired to blow with a dead-man detonator, and Tate claims he'll give up Gus's location if Marco kills Frye. He's partially responsible for all this, Tate argues, and he covered up the truth to save his buddy and his own hide.
Meanwhile Sonya has an epiphany about Gus's potential whereabouts in a kinda-sorta cheat where the show reveals something previously unknown. We have two clocks running out: Gus's life in the fast-filling water tank, and Marco's ability to keep it together.
The pre-credit scene is Ray dragging the body of Jim through the tunnel to deposit in Mexico. He finds a massacre and kills the lone survivor. He plants Jim on the scene to make it look like he killed Ray's victim and leaves right after he swipes a mystery package-souvenir from the poker table.
So we have the Charlotte "breaking bad" story and Linder's story and the redemption of a badly injured Frye, and they're all connected to the bridge, but they exist now outside the main plot: Tate's complicated revenge.
And here's what we're left with on that: Gus is dead, and Sonya hobbles Marco to prevent him from killing Tate, and she wings Tate to keep him away from the bomb. And within five minutes, I'm pissed by two oh-come-on decisions:
1) Sonya finds Gus and races to the bridge in a cop car. She does not call ahead to tell Hank what she found. At the time, when we didn't know Gus was dead, this seemed like a cheap way to stretch the suspense. Not for Gus's life, but for preventing Marco from killing someone. She tries to talk Marco down, but she can't lie very well. The whole time between her getting into the car and talking to Marco, The Lovely Mrs. Tracker and I are screaming at her to call ahead on the CB. She didn't trust anyone to keep the information from Marco, but she also didn't consider that they could lie better then she. She has to shoot two men because she's too honest.
2) Tate is shot and lying on the pavement parallel to Marco. When the cops take Tate away, he calmly stands up and walks with them. But he was shot! Did we forget that? It just happened! Marco, by contrast, is hospitalized. He says goodbye to Gus's body in the morgue (in a scene I thought was a dream sequence) and leaves the hospital out the back, toward the light outside the loading dock. He's limping, just as he was when the show began, and this seemingly full circle (combined with his emotional dismissal of Sonya) is one reason I thought the show was over.
3) Just a thought: How does anyone get from Mexico to Charlotte's ranch through the tunnel when both entrances lock from her side?
We'll check out the next two epsiodes, but unless we get one whopper of a season finale (like Sonya and Charlotte also finding themselves knocked up by Marco), we might be done with the show. Not because we're unhappy with it, mind you, but because we're content to treat the end of this chapter as a proper conclusion to the whole story.
"To be the man, you gotta beat demands." -- The Lovely Mrs. Tracker