Sunday, March 15, 2015

What I’m Watching: Better Call Saul

Better Call Saul: Season 1, Episode 6 “Five-O” (B+)

Now here’s an argument for this show to exist: Mike Ehrmantraut getting to do more than just sit behind a tollbooth. Jimmy played second fiddle in this hour to Mike, who got his entire backstory revealed and got to call none other than Saul (well, Jimmy) to defend him when Philadelphia cops tried to interrogate him about his alleged role in the death of two of their best and brightest. We’ve only really known about Mike in relation to this granddaughter, and now we learn that his son, a cop in Philadelphia, was killed. He still maintains a relationship with his granddaughter and his mother, who is played by the lovely and very talented Kerry Condon, who here is too smart for her own good, trying to be a do-gooder when Mike has already taken care of the matter. The flashbacks to that fateful night in Philadelphia where a drunken Mike was nearly put out of his misery before he turned the tables and shot the two corrupt cops who had killed his son were enormously effective, and it helps to explain some of his eternal stoicism, though I imagine some of it existed before his son was murdered. I liked how Jimmy strolled in to the station and how he responded to the quits about his outfit that he got. The best part was unquestionably his asking Mike how he knew that he would spill coffee on one of the detectives so that Mike could seize the opportunity. We know this is the beginning of a long and fruitful partnership, and it’s the best plot development this show has featured yet.

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