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Better Call Saul

Click here for our past discussion about the show.

From now on, because only a few of us are watching, starting with S02E04, I will be blogging my impressions in comments. SPOILER WARNING!

Other Links:

Fresh Tomatoes
BCS Music
A.V. Club Episode Reviews
Den of Geek Episode Reviews
Better Call Saul Guardian coverage

5 Comments leave one →
  1. March 10, 2016 8:26 pm

    S02E04 “Gloves Off”


    Showing the end from the beginning, not my favorite film making device, but done well nevertheless.

    Conversation between Mike and the Gun salesman that Walter bought from, nice fan service/continuity.

    And I quit the law. For. Good. No more Jimmy McGill Esquire. Poof! Like he never even existed!
    Foreshadowing the transition from Jimmy McGill Esquire to Saul Goodman. Nothing Chuck said was untrue, or even cruel considering the circumstances.

    But hands-down, the best scene, perhaps even of the season thus far, was Mike and Tuco at the restaurant, right down to the camera work when the cars bump.

    Raymond Cruz is an exceptional actor, and he was brilliant in this scene. As we saw in Season 1, he loves his mother dearly and anyone who calls her a “Biznotch” can expect to have their lives ended, or at least their legs cracked around until they lie backwards.

    Here he was dealing with an old man who just bumped his car pretending it didn’t matter. When Mike first walks into the restaurant, Tuco is almost heartbroken that he is going to have to confront an old man for bumping his car. In fact, he waits to allow Mike to confess first. Tuco’s internal conflict, explicit in the dialogue (swearing but still addressing politely), couldn’t possibly have been done better. Had Mike been a young banger, Tuco would almost certainly have done major harm. As it was, even after a polite conversation in which “Mr. Magoo” did everything he could to be irritating, Tuco still addresses him as “sir”. It is that Spanish-speaking, Catholic-raised Mexican, taught no doubt through slaps on the head, to respect his elders. And it is expertly portrayed.

    One of my favorite scenes in a very long time.

    Absolutely brilliant TV.

  2. March 17, 2016 1:56 am

    S02E04 “Rebecca”

    This episode was “quiet” but chalk full of important background. Chuck’s story of Jimmy and his father served to further round the edges of already complex characters. Part of me does wonder if it is all true (though Chuck, whatever else he may be, doesn’t seem given to stretching the truth). Kim’s thread was amazing and heart-breaking and amazing again. She is like the anti-slacker. If ever you get tired of watching people being their own worst enemy, she is the cure: perseverance, grit, inner strength, self-sacrifice, driven. I enjoyed every minute of the whole show, but the last scene in the restaurant with Mike and Tio was (obviously) the highlight.

    And Rebecca, in case I forget, is/was Chuck’s wife. Apparently, her name was on the sheet music that Chuck played at the beginning of S2E2. Which reminds me, I have to find the name of that song!

    So get this. The song, “Sicilienne“, that Chuck plays at the beginning of S2E2 was first used in the play “Pelléas and Mélisande“, in which the wife of one brother fell in love with the other.

    Vince Gilligan and his writers put some time into their stories. Multiple viewings will be rewarded.

    From S2E2

  3. May 16, 2016 6:26 am

    Skipping a couple of episodes for write up. I really enjoyed Jimmy getting himself fired. His clothing, but best of all, his idea to “save water”. ROFLMAO. One of the best practical jokes you can pull on a person is to leave your dookie unflushed, but you really crank it up a notch if you also dispose of the toilet paper via another toilet, so that when people look in the bowl, all they see id Dookie! Some people miss it, but others think, “Hey, this guy didn’t even wipe!!!”

    Tonight I started S2E9, “Nailed” and the opening sequence was brilliant. One of my favorite characters of all time is Omar from The Wire. And Mike went all Omar in those minutes. SO GOOD! Ok, now I gotta get back to it.

  4. May 16, 2016 6:52 pm

    S2E10 Season Finale “Klick”

    Some of the best writing in any medium. Always in a direction I don’t expect. Back in E7/8, we see Jimmy as a kid lookin’ at the Playboys in his dad’s store, and recognizing the grifters for who they are. Trying to help his dad, but losing all respect when his dad doesn’t listen. Then Chuck keeping secret their mom’s last words.

    This episode was gripping, and hysterical. First, Mike’s thread, I don’t know who or how he was warned. More on that in a bit. When Chuck was wheeled into the emergency room, and the doctors first violate him with the pupil test, then the operating table lights and ear checks, all the while describing the tests they will perform, from EKG to CAT scan. I was laughing so hard I had to turn it off. I couldn’t risk waking the household. Literally, I had to turn it off and finish it this morning.

    And then we end the episode with the brothers in Chuck’s house again. And just like last year, it ends on an ominous note.

    As a whole, I don’t think there is a series that demonstrates the consequences of our immoral actions, from lies to vigilantism, better than this one (and its source, BB). Mike makes Salamanka pay, and does so without hurting the driver, but then the good Samaritan who comes to rescue the driver, and the driver himself both get killed. There are ramifications for our actions, and they move out from us like a circular wave. Jimmy forges the documents, which puts his brother in the hospital and worse. Then, Chuck uses Jimmy’s compassion against him to trap him. We shall see the fallout of that next season.

    So incredible. What a great series and completely misunderstood if people think it glorifies the grifter, or the criminal. It is more the opposite of that than any other show/movie I know.

    And, oh, did I laugh.

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