|Posted: 13 August 2018 at 10:41pm | IP Logged | 8
An episode full of simmering tension...and several small explosions.
There’s Jimmy’s job interview and his extra-tough pitch, which gets him the job. Then, he turns it down. This is perhaps a case of Jimmy not wanting to work for people who could so easily be conned...or maybe he just wanted to see if he’s still got his old magic. Perhaps it’s all because he caught sight of that valuable figurine (a callback to season one’s “Alpine Shepherd Boy”) and decided to botch the interview in favor of stealing the figure and making some quick cash.
We also get a nice, subtle foreshadowing of Saul Goodman’s eventual mullet/combover hairstyle, as Jimmy brushes away a lose strand of hair prior to his interview.
As with the previous episode, Odenkirk doesn’t get a lot to do, but there’s a subtle difference in his performance, now. When Jimmy is happy, he’s too happy, since he’s clearly both coping with his grief yet also just not caring, anymore. When he’s on the muscle (as in the deliberate botching of his interview), there’s an underlying serio-sarcasm and sternness which we haven’t see before. An anger. There have been any number of scenes in BCS where we’ve seen Jimmy try to woo potential clients and whatnot. Scenes where he’d be joking and pitching and conning, but with a certain charm and warmth in his presentation. Now, however, the warmth is gone. And it’s kinda disturbing. Makes me think that the early Saul Goodman whom BCS will inevitably present us with will be less of a comedic character and more twisted and sad than anything else.
Meanwhile, Rhea Seehorn delivers a powerful performance when Kim chews out Howard. Of course, neither of them know that Jimmy set Chuck’s suicide into motion when he revealed Chuck’s mental illness to the insurance company. And it seems we now have a Chekhov’s Gun in the form of Chuck’s letter.
The ending of this one is pretty terrifying. Shades of “Box Cutter”, with Gus very literally taking a hands-on approach in suffocating Arturo in order to send a message to Nacho. There’s even more resonance, since Victor is there, and will of course be similarly killed by Gus to send a message to Walt and Jesse. “From now on, you...are...mine” is absolutely chilling.
Ever since last season, when Hector began planning to make use of Nacho’s father’s business, Michael Mando has done a fabulous job of conveying Nacho’s growing tension—and quiet terror. This episode takes that to new extremes, as Nacho is compelled by the Salamanca cousins to speak encouraging words to Hector about his recovery, and as Gus asserts control over him. This poor guy has been between a rock and a hard place for some time (beginning with his time in Tuco’s crew), but things are really serious, now.
Yeah, there’s been a major tonal shift, here.