Things have gotten heavy with Better Call Saul this week as Jimmy came to the realization that whatever he thought he had with Kim is a farce. Jimmy’s life is a lie. Though we as a collective audience knew this, it’s still heartbreaking to watch Jimmy’s dreams lay dashed on the concrete. After the constant stream of Mike’s storyline, it was inevitable for a Jimmy heavy episode to arise. One of the coolest sources of contention today came in the form of a flashback to Jimmy’s childhood. After Chuck let Kim know the score last week, it felt obligatory. Jimmy is a kid, silently scamming his father into thinking he’s working while he oogles a girly mag. A man walks in with an obvious con looking for some money to “get medicine back to his kid”. Jimmy’s father is soft-hearted, and his kindness would be what led to his demise.
The heartbreak in the scene is Jimmy’s father’s solid interest in showing his son the “right” thing to do. His hesitance is an indication that he too knows the con is happening, and yet he happily gives up money, time, and goods to be a decent person. The man reveals himself to Jimmy, explaining that there are wolves and sheep in the world. That’s it. Jimmy’s reticence leads to acceptance, and in a moment of weakness he steals money from the register. We likely just witnessed the emergence of slippin’ Jimmy.
Though it is disappointing to see Jimmy’s unwillingness to change, it’s also integral to his character. Jimmy isn’t for change; he needs to do things his way to keep himself as honest as possible. Con-man honest at least. His road to getting fired was glorious, the colorful suits, the juice maker, and to top it off, the bag pipes. One thing we learned for sure is he’s definitely not in it for the money. Jimmy’s insistence on partnering up with Kim comes from a place of love but also foolishness. He wants to be himself, but how can he with someone who doesn’t even know who they are? All around this episode was definitely building to learning experiences for the characters, but fuck was it dull.
Mike’s story line took an interesting turn as it looks like he’s plotting his revenge against the Salamanca’s. We know Tio ends up in a wheel chair, we know he’s already getting older than he has any right to be, and that there’s a persistent cough showing his weakness. Mike’s vindictive nature tells us it’s only a matter of time before things get heavy, which is ridiculously exciting.
It’s understandable that Kim doesn’t have any intention of joining Jimmy’s practice; if she can’t handle an accounting of his dealings how would she be able to handle working with him? It seems even after he’s left Davis & Mane, Jimmy will never be able to find happiness unless it’s through the acceptance of others. Even then it’s only surface area happy- where is it that Jimmy can be himself?
Overall the episode was generally just ok; an off kilter version of itself. The welcomed monotony that usually occurs became a hindrance this time around. Which is crazy upsetting considering this was only the second time we see slippin’ Jimmy in full effect. Again based on last week’s Breaking Bad drop-ins, part of it is likely because of our innate wish to see characters we’ve known and loved, keeping us at an arms-length during this new series.
There’s only a few episodes left this season, and based on upcoming clues it looks like Chuck may no longer be a problem, but Kim is just getting started. Perhaps it is she who ruins the McGill name for Jimmy forever, leaving him with one option to become the greasy lawyer we all know and love.