Summary: Jimmy is taken into custody by the police. Kim arrives to help represent him but Jimmy wants to represent himself. After getting a PPD from Chuck intended to get Jimmy out of his situation without jail time but at the expense of his law career, Jimmy finally agrees to let Kim help him. Mike and Gus meet and come to an agreement: Mike can sabotage Hector's business but not kill him. Mike complies and enacts a plan, allowing for Hector's Regalo Helado trucks to be suspected for transporting contraband at the border.
The Good: This was another solid and easy to enjoy episode.
I really enjoyed Mike's storyline in this episode. His meeting with Gus was long awaited and I was a little surprised to see it happen so quickly in this episode. I expected a longer wait, but I'm honestly pleased that we were given this meeting sooner rather than later. after all we waited three seasons to see Gus and it made sense for him to reveal himself here, and so he did. Their conversation was excellent fun and helped organically fill us in with Gus' current position in the business when compared to Hector. He is on good terms with he cartel at this point it seems, but he is competing with Hector's drug business as well. Mike's half of the conversation as good too as we got to see him try and fail to get over Hector, as h simply couldn't give up on the idea of getting revenge. This decision feels logical too and consistent to Mike's character as we have seen him go for vengeance back in "Five-O" when he killed Hoffman and Fensky.
Mike's actual plan was tremendous. I loved the cold open which built up a lot of mystery regarding the shoes, and it was great to see what happened with hem, though it seems that there is more story to be told at that location (see: The Unknown). I enjoyed seeing Mike go through with his plan. We have no idea what he is planning and are genuinely confused when we see him put the cocaine inside the shoes and when he shoots the sniper rounds into the air. But then, masterfully, the show gives us enough information so that we can figure out what Mike is doing at the exact time the show wants us to figure it out. This is a perfect example of how to show off an intelligent character going through a well-thought out plan. We are immersed by the mystery an extremely impressed once we finally figure out what the plan was and how many layers there were too it. The whole sequence was a real joy to watch and was nearly as enjoyable as the excellent Los Pollos Hermanos scene from last episode.
Now onto the Jimmy half of the story which was a little less impressive, but still very good. This episode was mostly Jimmy/Kim centric as it focused more on their current relationship and it culminated with a very good final scene where both of them ally with each other. In most shows it would feel unrealistic that Jimmy doesn't want Kim's help, but here it makes sense as it isn't just down to the clichéd reason of pride, but it's down to Jimmy feeling guilty for getting Kim involved with this in the first place and not wanting to have her waste more time with his family drama. That extra layer makes this story work so much more than it should. The final scene is a very good closing point too as we get to see Jimmy and Kim finally agree to take this on together while also getting significant plot progression with the reveal that Chuck isn't going to put Jimmy in prison, but he is instead going to take away his law career.
There were several other short scenes in this episode which I really enjoyed. Jimmy and Chuck's brief conversation at the start of the episode was incredible as always (see: Best Moment). I also liked seeing Jimmy talking with Bill who makes a great return. It was a nice look at Bill's crappy life which Jimmy had barely escaped from. The scenes were easy to enjoy and had some great humour, though they weren't without fault (see: The Bad). It was great to see Doctor Barry Goodman from Breaking Bad once more. His scenes were nice and it was good to see him establishing a connection with Mike. Ernie and Kim was another good scene as we got the unfortunate reveal that Chuck fired Ernie after using him. It was sad to hear as Ernie had become pretty likeable in the past few episodes but it also helps us continue to dislike Chuck desite him doing what he believes is right.
The Bad: This episode had some major pitfalls though unfortunately. Without them, it could have been just as good as the last episode, but these really detract from the several quality scenes we got.
There were a lot of scenes which felt entirely skippable which is quite rare for Better Call Saul, a show which has always used its time wisely to develop characters and add new layers to the story. This time we get some rather pointless scenes which stand out pretty badly. The Kim montage was a very impressive feat of cinematography, but what was the point? All I learned was that Kim goes to the gym, which is completely unnecessary. Also, did we really need s many scenes with Bill? Sure it was good to see him again, but he got far too much screen time which isn't really used to help the story along in any way. Jimmy's growth since season 1 should not be the focus right now as he prepares to enter a legal battle with Chuck and the lack of ay urgency in the Bill scenes really hurt them for me.
In addition to feeling pointless, the show kept its slow pace. Now I have praised the show's deliberate slow pace before, but when there are so many seemingly pointless scenes in an episode, the pace stands out much more and it can really test your patience if there isn't much interesting going on. This affected this episode and really hurt the final scenes as my interest was quickly dwindling under the fatigue of so much time-wasting. The scene with Chuck and Ms. Hay and the last scene with Jimmy and Kim were both hurt by this.
Rather, the entire Kim/Jimmy story was hurt by this. It was obvious that they would end up working together but it should have been fascinating to see them work to get to that point. But everything felt so slow and pointless, that a story with such a predictable result like this one doesn't work nearly as well. This was good content, but unfortunately there was a lot of padding which took away from the main storyline and really hurt the show's momentum coming off of 2 excellent opening episodes.
The Unknown: What else will go down with the trucks? It seems that Los Pollos Hermanos trucks will take over Hector's route, but it definitely seems like there is more story there. In the cold open we see bullet holes on the stop sign. We haven't been shown the cause of said bullet holes so I anticipate seeing what happens to cause them.
How will Jimmy and Kim try to fight against Chuck to get Jimmy out of his situation? Or will Jimmy lose? This entire thing may be why Jimmy goes as Saul Goodman if he has to change his name because Jimmy McGill is no longer able to practice law.
Best Moment: The Jimmy and Chuck scene was tremendous. Chuck tried to talk to Jimmy, trying to cool the flame, but it is so easy to hate him despite what he's saying. Though Chuck's argument makes sense, it's easy to relate to Jimmy's anger and it allows us to get just as annoyed with Chuck as Jimmy is. But then the scene takes a dark and brutal turn as Jimmy tells Chuck that he will die alone some day. It was a really chilling sequence and it is powerful to see the relationship between these two brothers so badly fractured. Excellent television.
Character of the Episode: Jimmy.
Conclusion: This was more excellent content, but it also featured some major flaws in execution, which is rare for this show. Hopefully it's only a single hiccup, and I firmly believe that it is since this show has been putting out extremely polished content since its started.
Just a university student who loves to watch TV. And criticize it like hell.