Better Call Saul Episode 5 – Alpine Shepherd Boy

Review by: Mark Salcido

Last we left off; Chuck fought all odds and faced his fears head on. He marched into hell to retrieve what so desired and his deepest hearts. He battled all terrors of man made weapons to quench his thirst for knowledge. Chuck stepped at the foot of theImage 6 mountains of madness only to come out on top. His body mind and soul ached all at once. But was it all worth it? Yes.

But to the rest of us, he just looked like a crazy man covered in an aluminum blanket taking a copy of the local newspaper from his neighbor’s driveway. That’s what his old lady neighbor saw as well and so the cops come a knocking on Chuck’s door.

Welcome back to Better Call Saul.

This week’s episode didn’t start with the ALPHA FLASHBACK but picks up right where it left us. Let’s start off by saying that this was a not a very “technical” episode. There were no series of grand shots or awesome angles that the audience had never seen before. There was however, a bad ass transition but we’ll get to that later.

This was more of a “lets follow the results of Jimmy’s actions” episode. In doing so, we get a colorful cast of would be clients for Jimmy. Steps in his first potential client; Big Ricky Sipes.

Automatically you can guess from the name that this guy loves his unnecessary military laced civilian vehicles (I.E. Armored Jeep and Hummer) and to hunt. This guy is the right Image 10wing America to the umpth degree. Big Ricky believes that Jimmy is the lawyer he wants for his cause. “I want succeed from the United States”. This causes pause for Jimmy until the promise of being hired as retainer. A retainer totaling to a million dollars; five hundred thousand up front five hundred thousand when they win. Shit, this is the opportunity was looking for. Until the money is presented to Jimmy, which is stack and stacks of 100 dollar bills with Big Ricky printed on it…I laughed as fast and hard at the same rate of Jimmy speeding off in his car. Next client.

Rollins J. Cox. Jimmy decides to try is had at maybe doing patent law with this client. Seems this client has come up with a great idea. A method that helps parents teach their kids to be pointy trained; an idea probably worth millions. Until Rollins gives Jimmy a demonstration. Take a dump and the voice box throws a bit of encourage to the tune of “Ooohh yeah that’s the way.” and “Gosh you’re big, you’re so big” and  “Fill me Chandler put it in me”. What 1-3 year old doesn’t want to hear that when they’re dropping a load?  Any other lawyer would laugh this client off, but not Jimmy.  Jimmy still Image 12tries will find a way to sell this device by suggesting the people of the Pacific Rim nation would buy this…hehehe “rim”. Alright, enough of the toilet humor. Rollins, who probably has sex through a bed sheet with a hole cut out(I apologize to my Amish reader or friends of Amish), calls Jimmy a perv and demands him to leave. “Hey buddy, you’re the one with the sex toilet.” Whoever wrote that, I’m letting you know I’m stealing that comeback from Jimmy.

The next scene must’ve been titled “Slow”. Slow for the elderly client to come down the stairs and slow to reach Jimmy in her living room. The old lady, who reminds me of the typical tropes of someone’s grandma, (useless trinkets and a roll of money in her coin purse) in this scene is saying something about the show; a slow burn. The lady is slow down the stairs, slow to meet Jimmy in her living room and is slow in counting the cash and paying Jimmy. Slow burn for a well deserved payment.

So we have another alone time with Kim and Jimmy. There’s Image 7not much development here but it is enjoyable when these two interact. It looks as when with every episode they become more and more comfortable. I mean you just don’t paint anybody’s toe nails unless they’re someone you care about. Or being paid to do and I don’t think is aiming for that career. Thanks to a suggestion from Kim, that actually might be in Elderly law.

Let’s jump back to what happened to Chuck. The cops had broken down door to his home, believing Chuck was a tweaker or a squatter. He’s tased and brought to the hospital. A great slow down to this comedic centric episode. Chuck’s condition starts to be questioned from the doctors to Kim and even possibly Jimmy. When Howard comes to the hospital to check on his old friend Chuck, Jimmy is there to intervene. Their back and forward is there to remind us that neither side will budge in their dispute and help remind of us of Jimmy’s commitment and trust to his brother.

Back to the elderly law idea, Jimmy takes notes as best as he can from a master on how to approach potential elder clients. From the master,Image 11 Mattlock. So Jimmy dawns his Mattlock light grey suit, cleverly puts his calling card at the bottom of every Jell-O cup (actually slow clamped when I saw the Jell-O) and makes his way to an old folks home to stir up new business. He even puts on a southern accent in his “Hello” for good measure. Any man who’s this clever deserves my business. But still, not my trust.

Seeing that Jimmy has finally found his calling, he makes his normal rounds at the court house but not before stopping at the entry gates with Mike to greet him. Jimmy hands him a new business card that says “Need a will? Call McGill”. This is when the bad ass transition I had mentioned earlier comes in. When Jimmy leaves, its night, but the transformation from day to night is so perfectly seamless. Almost like no edit was made. That, was fucking awesome.

With the transition also comes a change of story from Jimmy to Mike. As Mike’s shift ends he makes a trip to a local diner and to a mysterious woman’s home. They cross stare without saying a word and Mike heads home.  When Mike rests in his lounge chair, a knock is at the front door. Mike’s opens Image 8it and his greeted by two detectives and two cops. Mike: “Long way from home are you?” Guy at door: “You and me both.” End. All that screams is “What the fuck?” Mike’s past is catching up to him and it looks like the next episode will be Mike centric. I’m already salivating at the idea.

Like I said early, this is not a very “wowing” technical episode, par from one transition, but it feels like a break from everything from the previous episodes. Like a side step from the journey into a bit of shenanigans, all to bring us back on course into these characters lives and history. A filler episode, but still one worth watching.

Next episode is titled “Five-O” and I’m sure it’ll be a good one. So come back here and feed your Better Call Saul reviewing fiening next time.

“Better Call Saul” airs Monday nights on AMC

“Better Call Saul.” A TV Review

Season 1, Episode 3.  “Nacho”

Reviewed by: Mark Salcido

BETTER CALL SAUL premiered on AMC on February 8, 2015.

Created by Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould, the show is a spin-off, prequel, and sequel to “Breaking Bad” which was created by Gilligan.

Set in 2002, “Better Call Saul” is about small-time lawyer, James McGill, well portrayed by Bob Odenkirk, seven years before his appearance on Breaking Bad–though events during and after the original series are also explored.

Before I get started on this review of episode 3, you might be wondering, “where the reviews for episode 1 and 2” might be found? Well my mouse clicking friend, there is no review for those episodes. It’s not because I’m lazy, it is because if you are reading this article, you are already watching the show and do not need to be told to do so. And if you have 1423600761166not jump on this very stable and very worthy band wagon, what the hell are you doing? Go watch it…now on to the review.

Since the shows premise is to tell us the early years of Jimmy McGill who would later be known as Saul Goodman, it’s not afraid to let us go even further back. We find a more coherent Chuck (Jimmy’s brother) as he is called on once again to help Jimmy out of a jam that may follow him for the rest of the life. This scene reversals what we have known so far of the brother’s relationship. Chuck, the prodigal lawyer son and Jimmy, the fuck up. As we jump back to the present, Jimmy is much better off, but not far from finding himself in another jam.

On last week’s episode, Nacho, a man with ties to the criminal underworld, presented a proposition for Jimmy that might be too good to pass. Find out whether or not the Kettlemans (Jimmy’s missed opportunity clients) did indeed steal the money they embezzled and if so, where is it?  better-call-saul-episode-103-post-jimmy-odenkirk-9801Jimmy walks that fine line of “concerned citizen” and “opportunist” when he calls his friend Kim (a lawyer at his brother’s firm HHM played by Rhea Seehorn).

Jimmy makes an anonymous call to warn the Kettlemans and things are set in motion that may blow up in his face. When the Kettlemans disappear, Jimmy is pursued by the police when a detained Nacho calls him his lawyer. Once the two are alone, Nacho blames Jimmy for the Kettlemans’ disappearance, believing that Jimmy is working with another crew and that Nacho is to be the fall guy. Jimmy races against the clock to find the Kettlemans when Nacho presents him two options; get Nacho out of jail or Jimmy won’t see tomorrow.

Jimmy continues his parking sticker debate with parking lot guard Mike (Jonathan Banks)better-call-saul-episode-103-post-jimmy-odenkirk-9801 to a point where Jimmy says “fuck it” and dashes out of the parking lot without paying the fee or getting the right amount of stickers.

When Jimmy makes it to the Kettlemans’ home to view the crime scene, he is able to deduce that maybe the family staged the kidnapping and is hiding.

Though Jimmy may try his hardest to convince Kim as well as the detectives working the case, they don’t buy it. With his theory in hand, Jimmy hurries back to tell Nacho only to be stopped by an already annoyed Mike. A small physical confrontation, started by Jimmy, ends with Jimmy at the other end of arm twist that would make any man submit.

The detectives use the assault in hopes that Jimmy will finally help make the disappearance case stick to Nacho.

Before Jimmybetter.call_.saul_.thm_1 can be taken away to booking, he yells out his findings, making sure Nacho can hear it in the hopes of saving his ass. Mike eventually decides to have the charges dropped.

Jimmy, shocked by Mike’s help and asks, ‘why”? Mike reveals a bit of his past by telling Jimmy of a similar case he had as a detective. Same results, and the people where closer to home than anyone suspected.

Jimmy finds a camping decal placed on one of the Kettlemans’ vehicles and makes the trek through a desert trail behind their home.  He stumbles upon the Kettlemans; gleefully singing camp songs.

Jimmy makes a phone call to Kim and confronts the Kettlemans only to have a struggle ensue when Jimmy grabs one of their camping bags and rips it open, revealing the embezzled money.

This episode leads you to believe that this would be a Nacho heavy episode but it’s easily stolen by Mike and the beginnings of his relationship with Jimmy. As Mike becomes a more of a crucial character in this show’s universe, I only hope more of his past and badassism becomes revealed.

Kim’s history with Jimmy is sprinkled a tidbit in an early conversation with the line “You’re calling me to talk dirty again, are you?” Along with a bit of comfortable back and forward with the two, you can bet there was definitely “something” there between the two.

Everyone here, expect for Mike, thinks they’re pulling one over each other only to show that maybe, they aren’t as bright as they might think. Nacho driving his own vehicle on the night in question, Jimmy trying a ridiculous muffled voice when he calls the Kettlemans, and even the Kettlmans themselves trying to hide their crooked ways.

Plots have become thickened and more characters have been brought in to keep the tires spinning on this enjoyable ride of “Better Call Saul.”

The score, writing and direction is awesome as it gets you more into the life of a good lawyer turned sleazy andI highly recommend you tune in for next week’s episode called “Hero”.

“Better Call Saul” airs Monday nights at 10pm on AMC.