Why Skyler White Is The Worst Wife In The History of Anything
I hate Skyler White. Hate. Until recently, I had no idea anyone actually liked her. I don’t know what Walt sees in her, except that she’s sort of pretty. In a nutshell, Walter White’s wife a petty, selfish, demanding bitch who in no way practices what she preaches. Let’s examine the facts, shall we?
When we meet Skyler, she is married to Walter White, a man roughly ten years older than she. She was a waitress and he was…was he a teacher? Or did he sell out his share in Grey Matter Industries because of her? My guess is that he did—that Skyler was pregnant with Walt Jr. and he desperately needed the money. Whether or not that’s true—we do know that while Skyler consistently complains about their finances, she has not kept a full-time job for the length of the show. At the open, she’s a “short story writer.” * eyeroll * That aside, her birthday gift to Walt was a halfhearted hand job that involved no kissing and no eye contact. Why be married at all if that’s how little passion you have for your spouse?
When Walt is diagnosed with cancer, Skyler is furious that he waited to tell her. She doesn’t just tell him this, she grinds it into him like a smoldering cig in the arm. She raves on and on about what she’s supposed to do, what she’s supposed to tell their son, how this affects her. When she learns that her husband, with cancer, bought some pot—she flips out about it. Seriously. Flips out. And why? Because pot is illegal; and they are related to a DEA agent. Never mind that Walt has cancer, or that medical marijuana is gaining in acceptance. Never mind that Walt supports their whole family while she’s mainly in charge of complaining. To Skyler, the illegality of pot is enough reason for her to chastise her husband, who supports her, like a child. Ugh.
During Season Two, Skyler actually has something to complain about. Walt has a secret cell phone–which almost always means that a married man is having an affair. Not sure why wives who refuse to have sex with their husbands are surprised when there’s an affair, but there you are. I admit, I’d be pretty pissed about the whole fugue state lie. But see, Skyler has already established herself as someone who is intolerant, judgmental and unyielding. Her sister Marie is a serial shoplifter. It’s obvious that Marie has deep seated emotional problems that she isn’t admitting. Skyler does literally nothing to help her, raving once again that no one is thinking about Skyler’s feelings. Marie should apologize to Skyler because Skyler was upset by Marie’s emotional problems. Poor, poor Skyler.
As Skyler silently judges everyone she knows, she goes back to work part-time for a man whose sexual advances led her to quit the company previously. Ted Beneke is a good-looking man who has even less respect for the rules than Walt. Skyler and Beneke have an emotional affair. Eventually, Skyler leaves Walt. No, I don’t mean that she went out to get her own place, find suitable work, or do anything at all for herself. She moves in with Hank and Marie—who Skyler is suddenly able to talk to again.
Eventually Walt is driven out of his own house by Skyler, who simply can’t abide any illegal activity. She fails to communicate openly with her son, who is certainly old enough to be given some explanation for what’s going on. Again, everything is about Skyler. She sleeps with Ted, her boss. Disgustingly, Mrs. White informs Walt of this as if her infidelity is some sort of punishment he deserves for daring to cause her unhappiness. When it turns out that Ted Beneke is also a criminal and requires her help in cooking his books, Skyler suddenly and drastically changes her attitude about illegal activities and her role in them. She helps Ted, cooks his books, and later, gives him over half a million dollars in cash—cash that she has stolen from her husband.
The next thing we know, Skyler wants total control. She now knows all about Walt’s meth-related activities and wants to be intricately involved in every detail. She contacts local business people and Saul Goodman without Walt’s knowledge or consent. The woman who couldn’t shun her husband fast enough in the face of illegal behavior is now a black-mailing, money-laundering, accomplished liar. After telling Marie and Hank the self-serving lie that Walt was a compulsive gambler—she’s affronted that Walk would actually tell the self-serving truth that she broke her marital vows with a criminal like Ted Beneke.
In Season Five, one might be tempted to praise Skyler for the due diligence she displays in keeping her children safe. But see, they aren’t any safer with Hank and Marie than they were at the White home. Everybody in the drug world knows who Hank is, and Skyler knows that they do. It’s really just another way for her to be punitive and controlling—and put out because she’s lost total control over her husband. In the end, Skyler tells Walt that if he agrees to sending the children to live elsewhere, that she’ll stay and be whatever he wants her to be. Walt accepts this. But wait—did he ask her to be a complete bitch who drinks all the time and smokes around him? Because that’s what she’s been doing.
Even if Skyler was a wonderful wife at the beginning of the show, telling your husband that you’re gonna sit back and wait for him to die of cancer? That’s evil. That’s has more evil intent than Gus Fring and Tuco Salamanca put together. I really can’t imagine what Walter sees in her. She’s a petty, heartless, controlling manipulator who thinks her personal feelings at a given moment matter more than anyone or anything else.
And that’s why I hate Skyler White.