Jimmy McGill is in an interesting place right now. By all means, he should be emotionally devastated, the loss of his brother hits with a heavy magnitude, but if the ending of “Smoke” is any indication then we’re witnessing a Jimmy who is separating himself from emotion. Four seasons into Better Call Saul, which gives enough episodes to play with when comparing Jimmy McGill to Saul Goodman, and the difference between the two primarily has to do with emotions. The fact that Jimmy McGill, despite taking part in some shady actions, is rooted in emotional consequence is the biggest separating factor. Look at some of his actions over the last few seasons, I really can’t think of many that didn’t carry the burden of guilt with them. Jimmy may not be ruled by that guilt but he also doesn’t ignore it, Saul Goodman, on the other hand, has no ties to guilt. Saul Goodman does what’s best for him at all times despite the toll it takes on others. Last week Jimmy took a giant step towards becoming Saul, and I’m starting to wonder if at this point in the series if there is any turning back.
Jimmy allowing Howard to shoulder all the burden in Chuck’s death is probably the worst thing we’ve seen him do thus far. I would argue the way he turned that old folk home against that old woman last year was top of the list, but this has a different type of heaviness. Granted, Howard has always been the shows resident jerk but to allow him to believe that he’s single-handedly responsible for Chuck’s suicide is a special type of cold. There is no love loss between Howard and Jimmy, and one has to wonder just what the motivation for Jimmy here is. Is it revenge for Howard’s treatment? Is it Jimmy finding a way to push off the burden of his own guilt? Or is it possible that Jimmy, despite cluing the insurance company in on Chuck’s mental state, doesn’t see himself responsible? We aren’t done with the ramifications of the death of Chuck and I’ll be curious to see if in quieter moments if we see Jimmy really address his guilt and/or responsibility.
Elsewhere Hector Salamanca finds himself in the hospital and out of the drug game for a bit which might be the door opening Gus Fring needs to take his little empire to the next level. Gus is a genius, we know this, and his ability to exploit weakness or openings without seeming like he’s exploiting them is a gift. If Gus uses his business savvy mind to take control without looking like he’s trying to push Hector out the Cartel won’t be angry, just happy that business is flourishing. Hector on the other hand… well, we know Hector isn’t going to take kindly to that. The only question is where does Nacho factor into all of this?
It’s clear that Gus is on to the fact that Nacho has some kind of involvement with what happened to Hector, and if he hasn’t fully figured it out yet he soon will. Is this something that Gus can possibly use, maybe put leverage on Nacho or use Nacho’s disdain towards Hector for his own personal gain. We also know that Gus’s lifetime crusade has been centered on the revenge which could mean Nacho needs to be removed from the board. No one can touch Salamanca but Fring.
Besides all this, we have Mike who can’t half-ass anything and even takes his non-existent job seriously. Watching him last week as the security officer was the levity that the episode needed, but I’m curious if it comes with ramifications. Mike is supposed to be Gus’s man, somehow I think Lydia is going to have a massive problem with this. She loves things being kept off the radar and Mike’s actions didn’t really result in that. It’ll be fun to see if Lydia can reign him in.
There you have it Geeklings, a new episode of Better Call Saul drops tomorrow night at nine, and this season is just getting started. Time to turn it over to you guys, how are you feeling? Do you think Jimmy really doesn’t feel any guilt for Chuck’s death? Is Nacho in trouble? How will Howard and Kim respond to Jimmy’s cavalier attitude? Sound off in the comments. If you’d like to talk more Saul with yours truly you can find me on the Twitter @iamgeek32. I don’t think I’ll be live Tweeting the full episode again tomorrow night, but I’ll be there for sure. Be sure to head back here Tuesday for my latest episode review!
Images from AMC