Better Call Saul

Started by Kal, September 11, 2013, 04:29:39 PM

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wilberfan

I'll eat  your share...still working for me.
"When something doesn't resonate, it quickly becomes a tedious endurance test."

Jeremy Blackman

I thought it was a top-notch episode as well.
Living life big time

Kal

Boy I haven't been on here for a long time and forgot how cynical we can be.

TV writing and production in general has improved 100x since Xixax first started. We've always been great at looking for the plot holes and the nonsense in everything, but Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul have always been some of the best at making sense of their decisions. Even if we don't like the particular choices or outcomes, they are usually not sloppy.

I have been enjoying this last season especially because of these little moments, the cinematography, the twists, even predictable ones and ones where we already know the outcome. I think the writers continue to be smart and thoughtful, and the acting is wonderful.

This last episode was a great example of how quickly the pace changed from the previous two episodes, and how it all quickly seemed to change once again towards the end. The final 4 eps should be fun to watch.

WorldForgot

I am terrified of this show these days. Moreso than Breaking Bad, even, it breaks my heart.

Drenk

The main story beats of the last episodes are*:

"I'm too sad to date"
"This isn't justice, this is revenge"
"We're bad for each other and make other people suffer"


You either believe this could be the trite ending of a soap opera from the eighties or that the cinematography elevates it.

I dislike how Gilligan & Co can't finish a story without doing whatever the Book tells you to do at the end of The Story, as if they somehow became haunted by Aaron Sorkin.

They refused to believe that Jimmy and Kim would find joy in their schemes without being (artificially) punished by the American storytelling machine. Doing that, they also sucked the joy out of the show for me because you've got characters feeling sorry for themselves or...breaking bad and the show judging them for it.

The same way they made Walter White, a narcissist who doesn't care about his family or "friends", feel sorry about himself at the end of Breaking Bad because, after all, he was Bad, instead of ending the show after season 4 when the guy was at the top, enjoying himself to death, and obviously terrifying his wife.

I believe Better Call Saul is way more interesting than Breaking Bad because Jimmy and Kim aren't cartoons; the moral world in which they evolved is way less obvious, way more murky. Well. It used to be.

Twenty years ago, The Sopranos was airing. This was a show about saying "Fuck you" to all the usual American tropes from television that David Chase hated. BCS in its last season is prestige TV, which means immaculate production value and the same stuff that Chase was hating, coming back with a vengeance because, hey, at least it looks good!

That said, the first scene I liked in weeks was when Kim had to talk to Howard's wife. Something complicated and thrilling, a real Kim moment in a season where she had nothing to do because the writers hate the idea of Kim because AN ENDING IS COMING.

*I'm not counting Gus hates the Salamancas and the Salamancas hate Gus, it has been 50% of the season so far.
Ascension.

ono

Thread needs some rebalancing here.  I'm with Kal.  I too dislike the cynicism of this forum at times.  Smacks of sour grapes.  Last episode was a masterpiece.  It really left a bad taste in my mouth, and that was the point.  It was like we, the viewer, were broken up with.  That kind of a gut punch.  You missed something if you thought the gist of Gus's story was "I'm too sad to date."  He was celebrating, attempting to flirt with the sommelier he crushed on.  Then realized he couldn't get too close because of the decisions he made in his life.  It was all about endings for everyone in this story.  Not just Jimmy and Kim.  Mike realized he's just a gangster.  There's no good, no nobility, in his path.  Gus can't have a normal life.  He only allowed himself a second to breathe before reality came back to him.

Kim was the only one who did the smart thing.  She pulled herself out of an unhealthy situation in her way of atoning.  Maybe she went a bit too far, but can you fucking blame her?  One minute, you're fucking with a douche who was mean to you, just playing pranks with the mister, NBD.  The next minute said douche is dead on your apartment floor and you have to go shoot some librarian or the gangster who came back from the dead will cap hubby.  I love it.  And I can't wait to see what becomes of Kim.

WorldForgot

Quote from: Drenk on July 20, 2022, 05:04:21 PMThey refused to believe that Jimmy and Kim would find joy in their schemes without being (artificially) punished by the American storytelling machine. Doing that, they also sucked the joy out of the show for me because you've got characters feeling sorry for themselves or...breaking bad and the show judging them for it.

The same way they made Walter White, a narcissist who doesn't care about his family or "friends", feel sorry about himself at the end of Breaking Bad because, after all, he was Bad, instead of ending the show after season 4 when the guy was at the top, enjoying himself to death, and obviously terrifying his wife.


Bro what, lmao. When was Kim ever going to find joy in treating life as frivolously as Jimmy does? Part of what this episode reinforced iz that Jimmy can move on past this, while underlining the question of whether Kim can or can't.

Because we know the 'eventual' trajectory of these characters, this show has always leaned on its 'supporting' cast to provide characters that give questions to its moral character. As a thematic plot and as character arcs.

Quote from: Drenk on July 20, 2022, 05:04:21 PMThat said, the first scene I liked in weeks was when Kim had to talk to Howard's wife. Something complicated and thrilling, a real Kim moment in a season where she had nothing to do because the writers hate the idea of Kim because AN ENDING IS COMING.


For sure agree that this iz where the show's mana thrives.

Kal

#232
SPOILERS

This probably won't happen, but what if we see Future-Kim and she ends up being worse than Saul ever was? The only big mystery left for this show to answer before the end is what happened with Kim, because we know the fate of everyone else (other than maybe Jimmy post Saul post Gene that we've seen so far), and everyone has been so concerned that Kim dies, but I am wishing or hoping that she didn't die, and she didn't suddenly become a good person, a housewife, etc, but someone super sketchy or absolutely badass. Part of what I do love about this show is that we don't know, and there could be so many answers here. Even with Sopranos, we knew the paths were limited at the end. Same with BB even. Kim and Saul's endgame is completely TBD.

Jeremy Blackman

Spoiler: ShowHide
My first idea was that Kim goes into law enforcement and is somehow involved in hunting Saul. That's probably too cheesy though.
Living life big time

WorldForgot

How to spin a yarn ~

A con series where each pace feelz waywardly homebound.

Drenk

Absolutely loved that one. What a relief. One of their best. Turns out that getting rid of the retrograde cartel show that was poisoning their story was a liberation. I said that I felt like the previous episodes were sucking the joy out the show, it came back for me. Even the suspens was killing me; my heart rate was going way up at some point. There's something endlessly fascinating about Jimmy's addiction for that kind of schemes, and when you can share the rush it is television gold. Also, the fact that

Spoiler: ShowHide
...the department store is...untouched...as cosy as usual, despite the theft, is a very interesting thing to watch considering how much time in prison all three involved are risking, and more subversive than the last nine episodes combined.
Ascension.

WorldForgot

Mmm, yes. Have a caper with your heartbreak.

Jeremy Blackman

One of the series' weakest episodes followed by one of its strongest, imo. This was a great one from top to bottom. Full of the smallest brutal details and even some quirky delights.
Living life big time

wilberfan

I started my first-ever rewatch of BREAKING BAD a week or so ago. Last night I binged [checks notes] FIVE episodes from Season 2--hitting "Better Call Saul" (S02E08) just before bedtime.

Incredibly satisfying to hit that point and close the circle after the recent "Breaking Bad" episode of BCS.

In the intervening 14 years I've forgotten so much of it--it's almost like a fresh watch--but with the advantage of just enough familiarity to make things easier to follow this time. It's also a different (better?) experience to see episodes closer together than once-a-week--or to have to wait months for a new season.

Might actually be enjoying it more this time than the first pass!

[edit] And yes, it's already occurred to me that by the end I might be ready to revisit BCS as well...  It might very well turn into something akin to painting the Golden Gate Bridge...
"When something doesn't resonate, it quickly becomes a tedious endurance test."

Drenk

Bryan Cranston's acting makes Breaking Bad unwatchable for me now; I've never thought that what he did was great acting, or even particularly good, but I can't stand it today. It's cringe inducing.

I rewatched Ozymandias recently and it was painful.
Ascension.