‘Better Call Saul’ and ‘Breaking Bad’ Crossover, Gene’s Call Explained

SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not seen Better Call Saul Season 6 Episode 11 entitled Breaking Bad.

Better Call Saul fans have been waiting for more than seven years for the Bob Odenkirk-led series to intersect with the world of Walter White (Bryan Cranston) and Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul). This week’s episode of the spinoff, aptly titled Breaking Bad, provided viewers with all that and more.

The episode goes back and forth between the black and white timeline starring Saul’s post-Breaking Bad personality Gene Takovic in Omaha and the world of Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad Season 2. Sadly, Jimmy McGill and Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn) remain in the past (at least for now).

In the Gene timeline, our favorite Cinnabon exec relives his days in Albuquerque and orchestrates another plan with cab driver Jeffy (Pat Healy), who recognized Gene from his Saul days. Together they steal enough personal information to steal the identities of a few dozen guys, but it’s clear that Gene/Saul/Jimmy aren’t really in it for the rewards, but because he misses “the game.” In last week’s episode “Nippy,” Gene arranges a mini store heist for Jeffy in exchange for hiding his true identity. This time Gene is there for the thrill.

In the Breaking Bad Season 2 flashback, Saul is tied up in a recognizable, bullet-riddled RV before being dragged to a shallow grave by two mysterious men. “Oh no, no, no!” he asks. “It wasn’t me, it was Ignacio! He’s the one!” We’ve seen this exact scene before, in the season 2 episode of Breaking Bad entitled “Better Call Saul,” when Albuquerque’s most famous meth chefs first meet theirs criminal Attorney. Back then it was a throw away line. Now, six seasons into the spinoff’s inception, with Nacho’s (Michael Mando) dramatic death fresh in our memories, he puts everything into context and ties the two shows together. Throughout its run, Better Call Saul served as a prequel series that also teases the aftermath of Breaking Bad. At this moment, however, the two series unfold simultaneously.

Walt and Jesse first met Saul in “Breaking Bad” because he was representing one of their dealers, Jesse’s friend Badger, who was arrested for meth distribution. Fearing that Badger would hand Heisenberg (aka Walt) over to the DEA, Walt enters Saul’s office, posing as Badger’s uncle and offering him $10,000 to advise Badger to keep quiet. Saul throws him out for bribery. As a last resort, Walt and Jesse kidnap Saul and intimidate him in the desert, assuring him that he will tell Badger to keep calm. They wear ski masks to hide their identities, but Saul recognizes Walt’s cough and demands that he and Jesse put a dollar in his pocket…you know, for attorney-client privilege. In a pickle, Saul agrees not to cut a deal with the DEA.

Now we’re treated to a new scene in Better Call Saul’s flashback, taking place as the trio re-enters the RV, and we finally see the faces of Walt and Jesse (13 years after Cranston and Paul recorded that pivotal sequence in the filmed for the first time). ). Saul admires the makeshift meth lab and correctly suspects that Walt is actually Heisenberg. Walt and Jesse argue (oh how I missed “Breaking Bad”) and Saul, minutes after he’s being held at gunpoint, slams her hard on his advance. After a short silence, Jesse Saul asks, “Who is Lalo?”

In the Breaking Bad version of the intimidation scene, Saul asks Walt and Jesse if Lalo sent them. Back then, Lalo was just a random name, too, and not the infamous Salamanca villain we learned to fear in Better Call Saul. The attorney pauses for a moment – maybe he’s thinking about representing Lalo, carrying his bail across the desert, the failed assassination attempt, the fraud against Howard, Lalo’s surprise visit, Howard’s murder, the loss of Kim – and then simply replies: “It’s nobody. ”

Later in the episode, Saul is in his office with Mike (Jonathan Banks), who gives him information about his potential clients. “Even if this guy survived, I wouldn’t get too close to him. He’s an absolute amateur,” says Mike of Walt. “If the cancer doesn’t get him, it’ll be the cops or a bullet in the head.”

“I have a feeling for it,” Saul replies. “This Heisenberg guy has something. It’s a top-notch product, it’s the trend on the street, and I think with the right management…’ But Mike cuts him off. “Leave it,” he says. Saul ignores his advice and arrives at JP Wynne High School, where Walt teaches chemistry. He heads towards the science building, but that’s all we get in this episode. Of course it doesn’t matter. We know what happens next.

Not to mention, this bombastic episode opens with Gene’s phone call to Francesca (Tina Parker), his former secretary. It’s been a while since the events of Breaking Bad and the spinoff El Camino, so Francesca (who is now a landlady and helps her 20-something tenants clean their sinks) updates Gene on the status of his friends and former ones Staff up to date in Albuquerque. Here’s what we learn:

  • Things have cooled off, but Francesca is still stalked from time to time. She says her mail is being opened and her phone is tapped at home. “Skyler White got her deal, so the only ones left to follow are you and Pinkman,” she tells Gene, “and I heard they found his car down the border.” Francesca relates actually based on Skinny Pete’s car, the Ford Thunderbird, that Badger drives to the Mexican border to fend off the cops in “El Camino.” As far as we know, Jesse lives peacefully in Alaska after escaping Nazi compound and starting a new life via Ed the Disappearer.
  • The police are still looking for Saul Goodman.
  • The FBI found the nail salons, vending machines, and laser tag arena that Walt, Jesse, and Saul used to launder money.
  • When asked how Saul’s henchman, Patrick Kuby (Bill Burr), is doing, Francesca replies, “I don’t know,” but says Huell Babineaux (Lavell Crawford) is back home in New Orleans. Apparently he walked because the DEA was holding him under false pretenses.
  • Bill Oakley (Peter Diseth), the district attorney who appears in Better Call Saul, has “switched sides” and become a defense attorney.
  • At one point, Kim called Francesca to check on her and asked about Jimmy and if he was alive. Francesca says she didn’t tell Kim about Jimmy’s current whereabouts (or his new identity).

This latest realization encourages Gene to call Kim, who we learn is now working in Titusville, Florida, presumably not as a lawyer since she gave up her license. We don’t hear any audio from their conversation, and it’s not clear if they’re even getting connected. But whatever happens on the other line upsets Gene, who slams the phone against the dial pad and kicks the glass payphone until it shatters.

There are two episodes of Better Call Saul left and we haven’t seen Kim since she left Jimmy, so let’s hope for a black and white happy ending.

https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/better-call-saul-recap-walt-jesse-breaking-bad-1235329653/ ‘Better Call Saul’ and ‘Breaking Bad’ Crossover, Gene’s Call Explained

Charles Jones

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