Active Topics | Member List | Search | Help | Register | Login
TV
Byrne Robotics > TV << Prev Page of 6 Next >>
Topic: BETTER CALL SAUL, season 4 Post ReplyPost New Topic
Author
Message
Bill Collins
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 26 May 2005
Location: England
Posts: 10187
Posted: 22 August 2018 at 7:32am | IP Logged | 1 post reply

The symbols are back, but only on Greg`s posts!
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Vinny Valenti
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 17 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 6373
Posted: 22 August 2018 at 7:44am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Brutal episode. I think at this point I can finally start feeling sorry for Nacho. Interesting bits of misdirection in this episode - we quickly learn what was in Chuck's letter - and it's pretty anti-climactic. That's fine with me. I'm not sure if I would have liked seeing a post-mortem revelation from Chuck. And Mike quickly turns down Jimmy's offer - and I also prefer it that way. I was thinking in-between episodes that I couldn't see Mike taking on such a silly job, especially at this point in his life as a "Security Consultant" for Madrigal - and I was right. Whew.

Jimmy's progression to Saul seems near complete, but Mike still has a way to go - he's still not comfortable with killing yet, so I'm eager to see what gets him there.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 22 August 2018 at 8:28am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

If someone could please translate the characters, that might solve Bill’s mystery. Ancient Chinese curse, maybe?
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Michael Roberts
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 20 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 12165
Posted: 22 August 2018 at 10:03am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

I’ve seen a lot of reviews citing Jimmy’s blasé response to Chuck’s letter as a sign of his transformation into Saul, but honestly, how else should Jimmy react? The letter is perfectly in line with Season 1 Chuck, with Chuck playing the part of a supportive brother despite his differences with Jimmy. Before he died, Chuck left Jimmy with no doubt that was all bullshit.

Despite all the darkness surrounding the cartel stuff, I loved that there was still room for comedy, with Ira’s ill-timed Hummel heist. 
Back to Top profile | search
 
Bill Collins
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 26 May 2005
Location: England
Posts: 10187
Posted: 22 August 2018 at 11:46am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Regarding Kim`s ponytail being limp, i just thought it
was because she has her arm in a sling and is unable to
get it tight, or Jimmy is doing it for her and isn`t
very good at it!

Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 22 August 2018 at 8:40pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Regarding Kim`s ponytail being limp, i just thought it 
was because she has her arm in a sling and is unable to 
get it tight, or Jimmy is doing it for her and isn`t 
very good at it!
++++++++

That’s the obvious, in-universe explanation, of course. I’m talking about the subtext of it. Nothing on this show is an accident, and the crew sweats the small details like this, especially when it comes to costumes and props. In both BREAKING BAD and BETTER CALL SAUL, costumes, props, and hairstyles are always expressive of character. The limp ponytail is clearly a visual representation of Kim’s current state of mind.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Rob Ocelot
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 07 December 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 959
Posted: 23 August 2018 at 5:46pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Lots of carefully-laid threads being slowly drawn together, in this one. It’s clear that Gus faked the hit on Arturo and Nacho for three reasons: 1) To make use of (and dispose of) Arturo’s corpse; 2) To make Nacho appear to be a loyal Salamanca man who was shot twice in the line of duty by mysterious rivals; 3) To manufacture an imaginary threat in order to get Juan Bolsa to loosen up and allow Gus to seek a drug manufacturer on our side of the border. 

There was also a chance that Nacho might not have survived which would also serve Gus' desire to keep the Salamancas in disarray.   Gus seems the type to carefully construct both an A plan and a B plan.

This of course, brings us to Gale. I had a feeling he’d be showing up, sooner or later. I also have a feeling that this was just a fun cameo, rather than the beginning of a new subplot. The scene serves a good purpose, though. We see that Gale is testing the purity of meth from various chemists for Gus.

... and I think we'll find out of those cooks is 'Capn Cook' or someone he associates with, perhaps the person who trained him.   By the time of the BB pilot the Salamancas are reduced to relying on small local cooks rather than product made by the Cartel in Mexico -- possibly because Gus has made it all but impossible for them to get product across the border.   Gus would absolutely enjoy seeing the Salamancas bleed money slowly to death selling a substandard product from a cook that he had rejected.  Jesse's age is never stated onscreen in BB but I'd venture mid-late twenties topps -- which would put him at least one or a handful of years out of high school in the BCS timeframe.   I doubt Jesse will show up in BCS in other than a cameo but I think we will see a new character this season or next who will be the person who teaches Jesse and Emilio how to cook (badly).

And, based on Gus’ dialogue, he’s clearly already thinking ahead of employing Gale in his secret superlab, which BCS season three had established is already under development during this period. Of course, we all know how that turned out, after Gus was convinced by Gale that Walt’s 99.1% pure meth was the way to go.

It's crazy how in retrospect that Gus' construction of the superlab and Walt's emergence on the scene is a case of right-place-right-time.

Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 23 August 2018 at 6:51pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Jesse's age is never stated onscreen in BB but I'd venture mid-late twenties topps -- which would put him at least one or a handful of years out of high school in the BCS timeframe.   I doubt Jesse will show up in BCS in other than a cameo but I think we will see a new character this season or next who will be the person who teaches Jesse and Emilio how to cook (badly).

++++++++

In “Crawl Space”, Gus’ doctor says that Jesse is 25. The episode takes place around 2008 or so, and I believe the official stance is that Jesse was born in 1984, which would place him around 19 at the point where BCS currently stands (2003-2004).

Personally, I get the vibe that Jesse’s “Cap’n Cook” operation hadn’t been going for too long before he partnered up with Walt. I don’t think that Idiot Jesse of BB’s first season could have run a successful meth operation for literally years before Walt came along. 
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 23 August 2018 at 7:01pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

It's crazy how in retrospect that Gus' construction of the superlab and Walt's emergence on the scene is a case of right-place-right-time.
++++++++


Something I appreciate about BCS is its making very clear the how and why of Gus taking a chance on Walt and his product. Gus’ original plan was to use Gale as his chemist, but Gale himself talked Gus into taking advantage of Walt’s 99.1% pure formula. BCS has shown us Gus’ first moves to consolidate power and build a manufacture-distrubution system under his control and on his side of the border.

Of course, that risk of taking Walt on as a chemist proved disastrous in the end. Yes, finally Gus got his revenge on the cartel, but Walt caused him any number of major problems, and also caused his death, by way of Hector. And, despite all of the buildup of Gus’ backstory and his desire for vengeance, Hector got the last laugh!

As I’ve noted, BCS is very much a parade of future BREAKING BAD corpses. Most of them killed either directly or indirectly by Walter White. 


As I’ve also noted, rewatching BREAKING BAD after BETTER CALL SAUL is complete will be a fascinating experience. So many characters and moments will now be informed by all of this new information and backstory. Our perception of the clownish, criminal lawyer Saul Goodman alone will be completely transformed.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Trevor Krysak
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 4050
Posted: 23 August 2018 at 7:06pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Based on Jesse's age for the BCS time frame there seems to be no way to get Aaron Paul on the show without a solid dose of de-aging like the Marvel movies have gotten decently good at doing. For a modestly rated series like BCS it seems a stretch to have him on there. Let's say it's a five minute scene and it gets a lot of word of mouth. That's still a bit of a crap shoot. All for what is mostly a stunt.

Bryan Cranston is a bit easier to include but seems even less likely. Unless "Saul" shows up at the car wash or something similar what would be the reason for any of our cast to cross paths with him? I'm sure you could find something but then it's just a marketing stunt.

The only characters that seem possible at this point and could be useful in the story are Hank and Gomey. The issue with that is how that muddies the waters even further. We have a lot of stories and characters going on. Adding in the law enforcement side of things makes it even more crowded. But a nice way to tie in the end of the series to the beginning of Breaking Bad.

Fortunately the people making the show are interested in making the show work as well. So stunt casting, even of people in the BB/BCS universe, hasn't been a priority. If the story dictates it and they can do it I'm sure they'll add in who they can when they can.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 23 August 2018 at 8:11pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

Exactly, Trevor. I’d rather not see Cranston or Paul unless it’s in a way which makes sense, and isn’t a stunt that overpowers the story BCS is telling.


Fortunately, story and characters are the primary focus of the BCS writing staff, not “Wouldn’t it be cool if...?” stunts.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Bill Collins
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 26 May 2005
Location: England
Posts: 10187
Posted: 24 August 2018 at 12:33am | IP Logged | 12 post reply

I don`t think Aaron Paul has aged that badly, i think
they could get away with a cameo quite easily with
costume, hairstyling and maybe a bit of make-up, not
that i`m dying to see a Jesse cameo!
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Bill Collins
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 26 May 2005
Location: England
Posts: 10187
Posted: 24 August 2018 at 6:11am | IP Logged | 13 post reply

http://www.itv.com/news/2018-08-24/drug-smuggling-
tunnel-from-mexico-to-abandoned-kfc-restaurant-
discovered/

If only it was a Los Pollos Hermanos restaurant!
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 24 August 2018 at 9:37am | IP Logged | 14 post reply

I don`t think Aaron Paul has aged that badly, i think 
they could get away with a cameo quite easily with 
costume, hairstyling and maybe a bit of make-up, not 
that i`m dying to see a Jesse cameo!
+++++++

It should be noted that BCS has already employed some digital de-aging techniques for several of its flashback sequences, so a Walt and/or Jesse cameo would likely get the same treatment.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Rob Ocelot
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 07 December 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 959
Posted: 24 August 2018 at 3:40pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

I have a feeling any cameo would be of the 'blink and you'll miss it' variety.   Like someone talking to someone offscreen and you hear Aaron Paul say a line only Jesse would say.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Shane Matlock
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 August 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 1321
Posted: 25 August 2018 at 2:44am | IP Logged | 16 post reply

This and the Orville are my two favorite current TV series. I've been enjoying the hell out of the new season so far and, as always, really enjoy your reviews, Greg. 
Back to Top profile | search
 
Brian Miller
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 28 July 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 25336
Posted: 25 August 2018 at 8:21am | IP Logged | 17 post reply

I’m really enjoying what’s going on with Howard. He’s actually reaching emotional depths we’ve not seen from him. When Kim called him out, he seemed genuinely remorseful. Fabian is doing a bang-up job with him. 
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 25 August 2018 at 8:44am | IP Logged | 18 post reply

Fabian’s great, and Hamlin’s journey has been really interesting. When the show started, he seemed to just be a foil, a bad guy. This is because we were seeing him from Jimmy’s point of view. Of course, we later learned that Howard had actually liked Jimmy, but had not hired him as a lawyer specifically at Chuck’s request. Chuck had basically maneuvered him into looking like the bad cop who was blocking Jimmy’s career growth, while Chuck played the role of the loving-yet-ill brother, who mouthed platitudes to Jimmy so long as he didn’t succeed as a lawyer.

As things have played out, Howard has become a sympathetic and complex character. Trying to be loyal to his mentally ill friend and partner, and coming off as a jerk for doing so. In point of fact, Howard has very much been a good person and voice of reason thoughout the series. Not always, of course, but that’s what makes him a three-dimensional character.

The level of vulnerability we recently saw with Howard’s admission that Chuck’s suicide might be his fault (and his reaction to Kim’s outburst) really feels like a nice payoff to years of character development. However, I do find myself wondering how much longer he’ll be involved with the show, since his friendship with Chuck was the main reason he was still in Jimmy and Kim’s orbit. We’ll see what happens, but there doesn’t seem to be much story reason for him to still be involved in their lives, at this point. Neither of them work for HHM, anymore, Chuck is dead, and Mesa Verde is Kim’s client.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Steve De Young
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 01 April 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 2976
Posted: 25 August 2018 at 8:47am | IP Logged | 19 post reply

I can see a potential situation where Kim's stress/workload forces her to get HHM involved with Mesa Verde again, and Jimmy sees her going back there as a betrayal.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 27 August 2018 at 10:08pm | IP Logged | 20 post reply

“Talk”.


A grim and low-key episode, but one with a lot of understated and important character stuff. 

Mike is particularly grumpy in this one. His contempt for the guy leeching off of the grief support group is palpable. One of the lingering questions hanging over BCS is how Mike goes from the Mike we’ve seen to the stone-cold killer of BREAKING BAD. I think that the opening teaser is a big clue as to what’s going on here: Mike is still consumed with guilt over the death of his son. But, in a classic case of “Do as I say, not as I do”, he calls out the fraud in the group, and then tells the rest how pathetic they are to wallow in their grief. He’s also practically eager to hear Gus’ job offer, at the end. I think that the toxic brew of guilt and pain underneath Mike’s stony facade is slowly eroding his compassion.

And so it is with Jimmy, too. He blows off Kim’s attempt to get him to see a shrink, actively lies to her about taking the C.C. Mobile job, then actually takes the job. These are the actions of a man who is clearly dealing with a lot of sublimated self-loathing and emotional confusion. I find myself wondering if he didn’t take the crushingly-boring job just as a way of punishing himself, rather than trying to retroactively not-lie to Kim. His chat with Ira clearly inspires him to make the job his own, though, and perhaps also (eventually) inspires him to acquire all of those disposable cell phones (Hello Kitty!) which will be kept in Saul Goodman’s desk drawer. Jimmy’s arc in this season—thus far—seems to be about his being totally lost and off-balance, emotionally: Backsliding into Slippin’ Jimmy’s old con-games for comfort, punishing himself by sabotaging one job opportunity, then taking another job which he’s bored to tears by.

Meanwhile, Kim is trying to rekindle her passion for her job, since her relationship with Jimmy is floundering. And it’s a painful thing to see the growing distance and lack of communication between them. Nice to see Ethan Phillips as the judge, though!

The best moment in the episode might just be when Nacho starts laying out a plan to hit the rival gang, and then the Salamanca Cousins just silently look at each other and walk in there to massacre everyone. There’s a nice moment of reconnection between Nacho and his father, too. The episode’s title carries a lot of weight, since things both said and unsaid drive the action and the relationships, this week. 
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 27 August 2018 at 10:15pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

Something else—this episode feels like necesssry connective tissue, and is not a “big” or “important” episode. However, as with BREAKING BAD before it, BETTER CALL SAUL makes sure that every scene and every moment is important, be it in terms of character, themes, or plot. Every moment is part of the overall jigsaw puzzle, and there are no “skippable” episodes. That’s part of what makes both shows so brilliant. Even a low-key episode like this one is full of important, character-building material.

Heck, a lot of things which seemed unimportant and/or one-off from the first season of BCS has proven to be vitally important foundational material for later seasons, such as Mike’s tragic backstory and the senior citizens’ Bingo games at Sandpiper Crossing. It’s much the same as how Walt’s backstory with Gretchen and Elliot Schwartz in B.B. proved to be the Rosetta Stone to understanding Walt’s character, as well as proving very important in bringing Walt’s story to a close in the series finale.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 27 August 2018 at 10:38pm | IP Logged | 22 post reply

Interesting interview with Michael Mando:

Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Trevor Krysak
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 4050
Posted: 28 August 2018 at 5:50am | IP Logged | 23 post reply

It's been pointed out that at this point Jimmy, Mike and Gus are all people that haven't fully processed grief they have for loved ones. And the baggage they carry may have put them on the paths they're on or later take on BCS and BB.

Walt's path, on the other hand, was due to his own impeding death. But ended up ruining the lives of those three. Among others.

Seeing everything that Mike has been through his death scene seems far more poetic now. It likely wasn't written with it as a consideration but it's hard not to picture him reflecting on the path he took since his son died and wondering if he'll be with him shortly after. No wonder he wanted Walt to shut up and let him die.

We're basically mid-way through the season and it's hard to say where we'll be by the end. At this point last season we were close to Chuck's big public downfall. We could see Jimmy wasn't going to be a lawyer for a while. We've got another 10 months in their time frame to get to the Saul days. Or the public legal aspect at any rate.

Is a time jump coming? Or would they build up to a good blow out and pick up the pieces next season with Jimmy further down the road? I'm not sure.

The series is able to get a lot out of so many little moments. It's one of the shows I could see going 8-10 seasons and still have more to cover. But I don't know how quickly they're going to accelerate everything And how patient AMC is. BCS is not exactly a big earner in terms of ratings. I'm hopeful we get a sixth season for sure. Fortunately season five is already a lock so we know they've got another 10 episodes to flesh things out.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15145
Posted: 28 August 2018 at 8:26am | IP Logged | 24 post reply

These first four episode have featured most of the cast emotionally adrift, and the various plotlines in something of a holding pattern. I have a feeling that a shifting of gears will be coming very soon. This all feels like the calm before the storm, to me.

At the very least, we have a sense of where things are going. Mike is dealing with bubbling rage and guilt, and is reaching a point of just not caring. Jimmy looks to be taking his innocuous new job and using it as a means to attract criminals who can make use of burner phones. Kim is becoming disconnected from Jimmy, and is uninterested in Mesa Verde’s desire to expand for the sake of expansion. And Nacho is stuck in an impossible situation which keeps getting worse and worse.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Steve De Young
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 01 April 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 2976
Posted: 28 August 2018 at 11:33am | IP Logged | 25 post reply

What Kim is going through could be a healthy thing.  She's been a workaholic since we met her, subordinating everything in her life to her career.  It might be interesting if the writers flip expectations on their head, and instead of Kim meeting some kind of horrible end, she finds fulfillment somewhere else, and just outgrows Jimmy.  Maybe she goes to work for some charitable cause overseas and has a great life.  That would certainly heap a lot more self-loathing on Jimmy's head, and confirm what so many people have already said to him, that he's just a lowlife and not good enough.  And then he decides to just embrace that.
Back to Top profile | search
 

<< Prev Page of 6 Next >>
  Post ReplyPost New Topic
Printable version Printable version

Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot create polls in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

 Active Topics | Member List | Search | Help | Register | Login