Actor who appeared on Better Call Saul confesses to cutting off his own hand

Today, in news designed to make us all go, “Ugh, that’s a rough one, even for Halloween”: A one-handed actor who appeared on a recent episode of Better Call Saul has publicly confessed to cutting off his own limb, and not losing it during military service, as he’d previously claimed. Local New Mexico actor Todd…

The judges will decide, the likes of us abide—unless you're Jimmy McGill and it's the Better Call Saul season finale

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Most of us guessed earlier in the season that when Jimmy got his law license back, he’d start practicing as Saul Goodman. But what kind of break would that represent from his life as Jimmy McGill? Underneath the events of this fourth season, a current has been gaining strength, an undertow that now has Jimmy firmly in…

Guillermo Del Toro is one of those "Better Call Saul is better than Breaking Bad" people

Better Call Saul is better than it has any right to be. A Breaking Bad prequel about huckster lawyer Saul Goodman, the show (and Bob Odenkirk’s nimble performance) deftly works to explore a different kind of moral failure than that of its predecessor. Saul, a.k.a. Jimmy McGill, isn’t sacrificing his soul with pulled…

Almost everybody says or does something stupid on a momentous Better Call Saul 

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Even on a show known for its cold opens, this is one for the ages. The screen split vertically down the middle, DePalma style, Kim and Jimmy go about their increasingly separate lives. We see them walking through the same routine on different days, wearing different clothes: Jimmy puts toothpaste on Kim’s brush for…

Better Call Saul can’t defy gravity, but still turns a few scenes upside down

B+

After last week’s “Quite A Ride,” a high point for the season and for the series, a letdown was inevitable. Tonight’s workmanlike episode features one dizzying setpiece, introduces one new shady character, and moves the Jimmy and Kim storylines along for their next acts. It won’t set your television on fire, but the…

Masterful editing propels a pivotal Better Call Saul

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What strikes you first is the color. The cold opens so far this season have been black-and-white (the flashforward in “Smoke”), dark (Hector’s hospital room in “Breathe”), sun-bleached (the desert in “Something Beautiful”), and nostalgically muted (Mike’s front lawn in “Talk”). Suddenly the screen is practically…

Better Call Saul traps its characters and sends them scrambling for escape

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The writers on Breaking Bad, it’s said, used to maneuver their characters into an impossible position — stuck in the desert, trapped inside an RV surrounded by DEA agents, that kind of thing. Then they’d write their way out. The jaw dropping pace and unpredictability of that show came from the absence of a fixed plan.…

Bob Odenkirk brings his entourage and Jonathan Banks impression to Conan

On a day when a real-life shady lawyer appears to be headed for his own personal Cinnabon franchise after possibly flipping on his powerful criminal associate, it’s nice to reflect on everyone’s favorite morally suspect attorney, Saul Goodman. Or Jimmy McGill. Or Gene Takavic. Look, when you’re laundering drug money…

Fring lays his empire's foundations while Jimmy hardens his heart on a cold-as-ice Better Call Saul

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In case you didn’t realize it two weeks ago, the theme for Jimmy’s arc this season was set by the last scene of “Smoke”: whistling a cheery tune, liberated, Chuck and all his torment in the rear view mirror. The last scene of tonight’s episode sets it in concrete. Jimmy has spent years tamping down his anger and…

Jimmy and Kim keep secrets while Mike and Gus put their cards on the table, as Better Call Saul kicks into gear

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One of my favorite things about the way Bob Odenkirk plays Jimmy McGill (and the way the writers write the character, and the way the directors direct Odenkirk, and the way the editors cut his scenes) is that at important moments there is a pause, and we get to see what’s going on inside Jimmy. Generally when this…

Better Call Saul gives its characters time to react to last season's chaotic end

B+

Like many fans, I paper over the slow stretches in TV’s scheduling cycle with binges. The adults in my house have kids and jobs, so those binges aren’t stay-up-all-night marathons—just two or three episodes whenever our night isn’t taken up by sports or movies, getting through a season in a few weeks, and then wishing…

Better Call Saul hits new heights by finding the chemistry in grief

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Charles “Chuck” L. McGill, Jr., Esq. is dead. There’s no use in eulogizing him here, not when Better Call Saul devotes most of its fourth-season premiere to that act, while also rattling off a touching newspaper obituary. But some acknowledgment is in order: This is a loss for the characters, and it’s a loss for the…

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