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Better Call Saul!

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28 minutes ago, Chadruharazzeb said:

I don't know why he made them wear a hood in a windowless van. 

 

Was it shown to be windowless?

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7 hours ago, Wroth said:
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Poor Howard :(

Also, as much as I'll always take whatever Mike time I can get

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Did we really need an explanation for the origins of the secret meth basement?

 

 

I thought the same about Mike's bit. Both interesting and unnecessary at the same time. That's Better Call Saul for you.

 

Spoiler

Was that Howard's walk into the sunset, then? I can't see a place in the series for him now. I guess he's another casualty of Jimmy's transformation into Saul.

 

Spoiler

Great to see that flash-forward to the Breaking Bad timeline. Am I right that they just used an outtake from that series rather than film something new?

 

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I’m guessing it because BCS is set a while ago, but...

 

Why is everyone in need of a burner? Surely all the dodgy folk around there would already have them.



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I do enjoy Better Call Saul for many reasons but from a storytelling perspective, I’m finding it a bit frustrating. The problem I have is the reliance on Breaking Bad characters. It’s the classic prequel problem: the use of characters that we know die later really zaps the tension out of some scenes. We know that The Twins, Fring and Mike all die in Breaking Bad, so every time they come into contact with other characters, we already know the basic outcome.

 

Also, Breaking Bad set up Fring and The Twins as forces of nature, evil people seemingly able to do the impossible, able to withstand actions that would have taken out mere mortals. Delving into these characters’ backstories removes some of their mythos. Now that we’ve taken a peek behind the curtain Fring and The Twins seem more grounded in reality: the twins visit their uncle’s bedside in hospital and Fring is worrying about construction work. With Mike it’s less of an issue, his character has always been rooted in reality, he has a methodical nature and Better Call Saul keeps to that. But do we really need to know how Fring and The Twins became who they are? For me, I don’t mind them being in Better Call Saul, but building a significant chunk of the story around them devalues them a bit. A comparison I suppose is how I really liked Obi Wan in ANH when I thought he was this mysterious cool warrior who had gone a bit mad when he went into hiding after the Clone Wars, but after the prequels we find out he was actually a pretty dull character with a fondness for lame jokes. Obviously Lucas fucked that up royally, and Better Call Saul is a lot, lot, lot better written than the prequels, but the point about removing his mysterious nature is the same.

 

I find it more interesting to explore the characters that don’t appear in Breaking Bad – Kim, Howard, Chuck, Nacho, etc. With the exception of Chuck, we don’t know if they will make it through Better Call Saul or not, and we don't know what their future holds. There’s a fair chance that Better Call Saul will jump forward at some point to explore what happens after Breaking Bad, and I’m interested to see what characters reappear and what their future roles will be. I assume Kim will make it, will anyone else?

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Is this the first time that they’ve done a 

 

Spoiler

Flash forward that wasn’t in black and white? I enjoyed seeing Saul’s horrible office again. I hope we get to see the pick up that he called in as he goes into hiding. 

 

I also noticed that Jimmy still has his office in the nail salon too. Interesting that he kept that even after he had gone into a partnership with Kim. 

 

Speaking of Kim - continuing with the self sabotage and pissing off Mesa Verde. It seems to me that she could end up in a business partnership with Saul at some point in the future, which likely doesn’t end well with Kim  

 

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29 minutes ago, JPL said:

I’m guessing it because BCS is set a while ago, but...

 

 

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Why is everyone in need of a burner? Surely all the dodgy folk around there would already have them.

 

 

 

 

Is BCS set around the same time as The Wire? In that show the cops were only just cottoning onto the idea of burners so I guess small, cheap PAYG handsets were just becoming practical for nefarious purposes. Plus Jimmy is offering them unregistered.

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51 minutes ago, JPL said:

I’m guessing it because BCS is set a while ago, but...

 

 

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Why is everyone in need of a burner? Surely all the dodgy folk around there would already have them.

 

 

 

 

 

Do you know what a burner is?

 

Hint. They will continue to need to buy more forever.

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2 hours ago, Timmo said:

I think you just answered your own question.

Thought so. It must be set 10-15 years ago, right? Probably the perfect time for them to start making an appearance.

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BCS started off in 2002 but it feels like a couple of years have passed since then. It might even be one season per year.

 

Despite it effectively being a period show, being set almost 15 years in the past, it doesn't really have much to signify the times unlike say Mad Men, which name-dropped every major cultural event or Fargo season 3 which was set in 2006 and had everyone going around talking about poking on Facebook.

 

As far as I can tell the mobile phones are the only thing to date it.

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2 hours ago, tomakasatnav said:

It's 2003 (as seen when Kim went to see Howard about Chuck's will, and Mikes Madrigal pay)

Cheers. A lot happened in a year then! I guess technically it could be just shy of two years.

 

So yeah, just around the time when The Wire popularised the phrase 'burner' :)

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I enjoyed the Jimmy selling phonesmontage but the rest of it, save for Howard and the opening flash-forward were a bit of a dud. Mike's always great TV but it seemed to take a very long time to get to somewhere we know. Perhaps not everyone watching this has watched Breaking Bad so we have to consider that but that episode felt a bit like a filler to be honest. We got the first proper scene with Jimmy and Kim that pointed towards a big crack in their relationship and also Jimmy declaring he'll be a lawyer again with Kim once his sentence is served but he didn't look very convincing saying it. I think this episode was probably the point of no return for Jimmy. 

A lot happened but it just felt like a bit of a montage episode mostly - there wasn't that much dialogue. 

 

Ozark is back but I don't want to start watching that before this is finished.

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Now more than ever it does feel like Breaking Bad fan service, and “filling in the gaps” to an extent. It does make it a less interesting show, despite how lovingly well made it is. 

 

They’ve obviously written themselves into this corner by having it as a prequel, but I’d like to think it could really speed up now and perhaps get to a post-BB world and we follow what happens to Gene. 

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3 hours ago, neoELITE said:

Ozark is back but I don't want to start watching that before this is finished.

 

You could do the whole of Ozark S2 before the next episode of BCS drops. 

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Another good episode, although after two 'filling in the gaps' episodes, I'm looking forward to a bit more action and/or drama next week. No Nacho this week was a bummer.

 

Also, my  belief in Gus's character is starting to wane a little. What's his motivation, apart from to torture Hector Salamanca? Why would a super-smart, poly-lingual, mega-rich owner of multiple businesses bother to spend thousands, if not millions of dollars building a super-secret underground meth lab? 'For the money' seems like a bit of a cop-out. He's increasingly becoming a Lex Luthor-type evil comic book mastermind rather than a ruthless drug lord. I'm hoping to see his, Mike's and Nacho's storylines interweaving with Jimmy and Kim's more in future episodes, as at the moment they seem entirely disparate. It's like watching two different programmes.

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That’s kind of the problem with his character in Breaking Bad too though. Ultimately what does he get out of it? He’s a drug lord who lives the life of a chicken shop owner.

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2 hours ago, Shimmyhill said:

I always though Gus was paying for a war somewhere, it’s hinted about his militant past and as you say he isn’t living the life him money could buy him.

I thought that in BB we were just seeing the tail end of his years long campaign to be free of the cartel so he can run his business independently. The underground lab is about producing a superior product with minimal chance of attracting attention. 

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12 minutes ago, Pob said:

I thought that in BB we were just seeing the tail end of his years long campaign to be free of the cartel so he can run his business independently. The underground lab is about producing a superior product with minimal chance of attracting attention. 

 

Yeah he was moving the cartels meth, the lab was a way to get free of Don Eladio and eventually his revenge for killing his lover and business partner.

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6 hours ago, thefriscokid said:

Was the underground lab created for Walter White to make his meth or was it already there?

 

I think it was already there. Gale designed it and I think he was Walt's first assistant. 

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It was meant to be for Gael but Gael admitted he couldn't make meth as good as the Blue that was around, it was covered earlier in the series or in Breaking Bad, I've just finished a re-watch so may be confusing the two but it was definitely for Gael. Gus had been grooming him for years. 

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37 minutes ago, jonamok said:

What happened to Gael in BB? Can’t remember. Spoiler me please.

Gale is

Spoiler

killed by Jesse, under orders from Walter. Walter had tried to kill him earlier by making it look like an accident but was interrupted.

 

The reason for killing him is because Gus was going to replace Walter with Gale (after learning from Walter) and kill Walter and Jesse.

 

 

 

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