Active Topics | Member List | Search | Help | Register | Login
TV
Byrne Robotics > TV << Prev Page of 22 Next >>
Topic: BETTER CALL SAUL, season 4 Post ReplyPost New Topic
Author
Message
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15659
Posted: 04 September 2018 at 9:58am | IP Logged | 1 post reply

Is anyone here reading the AV Club reviews of BCS? Donna Bowman started with BB and often has some really good insights into the episodes. Good place for reviews and occasionally interviews. 
+++++++

Yep. Great stuff!


And I do think “Tell ‘em Jimmy sent ya” is ambiguous enough that it could mean Kim, although that seems unlikely. We’ll see. There’s also the whole phone call as 3:00 on November 12th thing, which we’ll surely learn more about.

Anyway, on a core level, this show is about Jimmy wanting to show the world who he is and what he’s capable of. He tried to play it straight to impress Chuck, and got nowhere. He tried to be a conman in a tracksuit who sells phones to criminals, and got mugged because his instincts have been dulled. This is a guy who keeps trying to make a name for himself and impress other people, and keeps becoming determined to “show them” after every attempt fails.

If BREAKING BAD was about Walter White slowly coming to embrace his true self, then BETTER CALL SAUL is about Jimmy McGill’s true self constantly derailing his attempts to become who he thinks other people want him to be.
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Thomas Woods
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 09 June 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 1356
Posted: 04 September 2018 at 10:10pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

Great episode
Back to Top profile | search | www
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15659
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 12:27am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Chuck really was dead on about Jimmy. He does just corrupt or destroy anything and anyone he comes into contact with. Even Kim has fallen for his schemes on a small scale. She's a strong-willed person so his influence has only reached so far. 
+++++++

I can see it both ways. There’s a certainly case to be made that Jimmy does indeed corrupt everything and everyone he gets involved with. However, there’s also a case to be made that it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy on Chuck’s part, because his ongoing judgment, jealousy, and deliberate holding back of Jimmy’s career is in many ways what forced Jimmy down the path to Saul Goodman. Sure, he bailed Jimmy out of legal jams and got him a job in the HHM mailroom, but he also balked at Jimmy’s efforts to become a successful lawyer and actively tried to undermine him by telling Hamlin not to give him a job at the firm. His contempt at what he saw as Jimmy mocking his own chosen profession resulted in the sabotage of Jimmy’s honest efforts to make something of himself. Maybe those efforts would have failed, and Jimmy’s conman nature would have asserted itself no matter what. But, because Chuck couldn’t bring himself to give Jimmy a real chance to prove himself, we’ll never know.

Point of view is important on this show, and new pieces of information can radically change our perceptions. Chuck assumed for decades that Jimmy was robbing their father’s store blind. However, we later learned that Jimmy was apparently just taking rare coins from the cash register for safekeeping after he saw that his father was an easy mark for scammers. So, I think the implication is that their father’s business failed because he was a “sheep” who threw money away on conmen and charity cases, but Chuck mistakenly believed that it was because Jimmy had been pilfering the register for years. Remember, Chuck had been jealous of Jimmy being their mother’s favorite ever since childhood, and that surely put a filter over his perceptions of Jimmy’s actions and motivations. Perhaps Chuck saw Jimmy grab a rare coin or two out of the drawer just once or twice, and that planted the seed in his already-jealous head that Jimmy “robbed (their parents) blind” for years.

Maybe—MAYBE—if Chuck had been legitimately supportive of Jimmy’s endeavors beyond what he considered to be an acceptable point (i.e., Chuck supporting Jimmy in becoming a successful lawyer, be it in elder law or otherwise), then Jimmy’s psyche may not have become so damaged as to send him down that path to Saul. Chuck held fast to the idea that Jimmy would inevitably ruin anything he got into. Yet, at the same time, we in the audience were privy to Jimmy’s legitimate efforts to build a straight law practice for himself, in those early episodes.

It’s very much a chicken vs. egg situation, I think. And not exactly clear-cut. Another testament to the quality of the writing, for sure. There’s a lot of depth and ambiguity to these characters, which goes a long way toward making them feel like three-dimensional people. 
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Trevor Krysak
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 4076
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 8:57am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

I'd be willing to buy that if we didn't have Slippin' Jimmy in the rear view mirror. James McGill learned it was possible to grift people, figured out he was good at it and then did it for as long as he possibly could.

Now he can also do good things too. He was a good brother to Chuck in his own way. In spite of Chuck's bad habits and inclinations. But with Jimmy I think it's a continual 49%/51% battle between right and wrong. It just flips over which is which.

He figured out how to do the right thing with the Sand piper stuff but it got muddied up and then his issues with Chuck dragged things back to the bad side. He just can't help himself.

Regardless of how you, me or anyone else sees Jimmy it's great that the show has given us such a complex portrayal of what was originally a mostly one-note comedic character. When the show was announced I doubt dew people figured this could be where we'd end up. Even the creators figured it'd be sitcom-y. It's a huge success that we have all these grey areas and nuance to fuss over.

BCS is my favorite show now that The Americans is over. It's really hit a strong groove the last few years.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15659
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 9:36am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

It’s very much in the BREAKING BAD mold, with good people doing bad things, bad people doing good things, and a lot left open to interpretation.

Perhaps the main subtext of the series is Jimmy constantly trying on new identities rather than embracing who he really is. The question then becomes, “Who is he, really?”. Is Slippin’ Jimmy just another facade? Or is that his true self?

Odenkirk and the showrunners have noted what a thing it is to see both Saul Goodman and Gene in light of Jimmy’s story, since they are such shallow and compartmentalized versions of the Jimmy McGill we’ve come to know during the bulk of BCS. Odenkirk has noted how much fun it was to play Saul, again, but also how much more complex and satisfying Jimmy is to play. 

I must again note what a fascinating bait-and-switch this show has become, not unlike BREAKING BAD. We all thought we wanted to get to Saul ASAP, and now his imminent arrival is something people are fearful of, because Jimmy has proven to be such a likable and complex character. In this new context, Saul has become the polar opposite of the one-dimensional guy we knew on BB. He’s just a sad and horrible mask for a broken man who once had a chance at a good life.

So, how much of Jimmy McGill is left in Saul and/or Gene, and will he ever come out again? There have been some rumblings that future season(s) may take place entirely in Omaha, and continue the story with Gene. 
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Trevor Krysak
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 4076
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 4:59pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

I think focusing on Gene may be a challenge. My biggest concern would be that if they've run through the Saul years the real focus of the series may be gone at that point. Not unlike how Twin Peaks lost its audience after they revealed who killed Laura Palmer. 
It's hard to say for sure.

Perhaps Gene's story leads to something completely different than the day to day grind of a a guy managing a Cinnabon. He obviously wants to get back to some of his old ways. But how far can he go?
Back to Top profile | search
 
Michael Roberts
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 20 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 12769
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 5:09pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Kim's client with the drug charge has me hoping she takes on a similar case, allowing for a cameo from Jane Margolis. There'd be a sad symmetry there if Kim helps her get her life back on track and Saul is indirectly involved with its end. Plus more Krysten Ritter is always good.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Vinny Valenti
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 17 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 6582
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 5:21pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Hmm. That could be an interesting intersection, but I feel like Ms Ritter may have aged too much to be able to pull that off - She'd be a 36 year old playing someone in her early 20s.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Michael Roberts
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 20 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 12769
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 5:31pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

Hmm. That could be an interesting intersection, but I feel like Ms Ritter may have aged too much to be able to pull that off - She'd be a 36 year old playing someone in her early 20s.

----

But this show stars Bob Odenkirk playing a guy in his early 40s! :) Besides, to my eyes, Krysten Ritter doesn't look markedly different from how she did nine years ago, and looking slightly older works to her advantage if she's playing Jane while she's still working to get clean.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15659
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 9:37pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Doing the math on this, Jane would be around 22-23 during the “current” time period of BCS (which is 2003-2004, with Jane dying in 2009). I think they could pull it off if they tried. I wouldn’t be surprised if they had something clever like that in mind, although it might seem a little too fannish and world-shrinking. Maybe if she was shown in a montage of different clients Kim was helping. One of those blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameos that you either notice or don’t depending on how familiar you are with the parent series.


The REALLY weird thing is that, as I type this, my TV is on as background noise. I just tuned it to a random channel, and, lo and behold, friggin’ Krysten Ritter herself is onscreen right now, in CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC. Talk about coincidence!


Some kind of sign, maybe?
Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 
Steve De Young
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 01 April 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 3254
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 9:58pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

Or don't show Jane, just show Kim talking to her father about getting his daughter help before its too late.
Back to Top profile | search
 
Greg Kirkman
Byrne Robotics Member
Avatar

Joined: 12 May 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 15659
Posted: 05 September 2018 at 11:52pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Regarding other BREAKING BAD crossovers, it’s been said that we’ll finally be meeting Lalo, this season. Lalo, of course, was mentioned by Saul during his very first appearance. And, judging by Saul’s great relief that Walt and Jesse were not Lalo’s goons, he’s probably a pretty rough customer.

That same scene also gave us the seed for Nacho, since Saul tried to blame whatever got him in trouble with Lalo on “Ignacio”. 

Back to Top profile | search e-mail
 

<< Prev Page of 22 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