SPOILERS ALERT: Don’t read if you haven’t seen Better Call Saul Season 6 Episode 8 called Point and Shoot.
After shooting Howard (Patrick Fabian) in the head and holding Saul (Bob Odenkirk) and Kim (Rhea Seehorn) hostage in their own home, Tony Dalton’s fearsome yet suave villain Lalo Salamanca has finally died, and at the hands by Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito), no less. And as the icing on the cake of Better Call Saul’s thrilling return in Season 6 Part 2, it’s revealed that Lalo is buried beneath Gus’ meth super lab.
Lalo came this close to exposing Gus to the rest of the Salamanca cartel. Very calmly and thoroughly he explained to Saul his plan to drive to Gus’ house, ring his doorbell and shoot him – while Lalo stands over Howard’s body. However, Saul convinced him to send Kim instead, saying that she would be less noticeable in the middle of the night when approaching Gus’ house. Before Kim can pull the trigger inside Gus’ safe haven, Mike (Jonathan Banks) steps in and stops the attempted hit – which was really just a distraction for Lalo to get video evidence from Gus’ secret meth lab. However, Gus decides to check his lab and encounters Lalo, who murders his guards, takes Gus hostage, and puts a bullet in his bulletproof vest.
At gunpoint, Lalo foolishly allows him to say his last words to Don Eladio (Steven Bauer) and the cartel on camera. While delivering a scathing monologue to the drug lords downstairs in the high-tech meth lab that Walt and Jesse will later use in “Breaking Bad,” Gus turns off the lights, grabs a gun, and fires the magazine at Lalo. As the lights come back on, we see Lalo choking on his own blood from a fatal throat wound. He flashes Gus a startling smile and then dies.
With diversityDalton collapses while filming his death scene, his fatal showdown with Gus and Lalo’s influence on Breaking Bad.
When did you find out that Gus was going to kill Lalo this season?
It’s been a while but I got a call before we started filming during the pandemic. I got a call from Zoom [creators] vince [Gilligan] and Peter [Gould]. It was more about how excited they were about what was happening than about my death. Like, “Oh my god, it’s crazy what’s going to happen.” They talked about Howard’s death and me killing him, and then they said, “And then you die.” I was just grateful to get the job and worked with these guys, and the character became such an integral part of the story. You don’t get gigs like that very often.
When Saul convinces Lalo that Kim should be the one who should go to Gus’ house, do you think Saul was trying to protect her? Or did Saul think Kim could actually do the job better than him? When I watched it, I thought the latter, but Kim later mentions that Saul was watching over her.
It’s funny you saying that because when we saw that in Tribeca and Saul said let her go, everyone in the theater started laughing. When we all got together, Bob said, “Do you think they’re going to think I just threw them under the bus?” I said I don’t think so. We never thought about it while filming or reading it. But when you see it, it might look like what you said it would. It didn’t even occur to me that that would happen, but it could look like it. More power for the writers and creators because it’s like, “You motherfucker, did you just send your wife to kill someone?” Bob and I, talking over dinner, he thought as she left the room , she would have more chances to live – period. It’s on his mind, and that’s what I thought too, get her out of here. Those who stay here can die, and those who leave can simply drive away or have better chances.
Did Lalo just send Kim as a distraction or did he think she had a chance to kill Gus?
When you see it, you think he’s trying to make his plan work. Then when you see he’s in the lab, he just wanted someone to show up there. That’s why he doesn’t care who shows up. He just wanted attention for this house so he could take up the lab. That was his plan all along. When Gus shows up, he says, “I was about to take up the lab, but now that you’re here, it’s even better.”
How weird was it seeing your dead body?
Very strange. They aired the episode in Tribeca and when they saw me and Howard dead in the pit it was like, ‘Damn, man. So am I on ‘Breaking Bad’? You’re walking on my grave?” That’s crazy. I would never have thought of something like that.
Why did Lalo let Gus do a monologue and not just shoot him?
The more Gus says, the better Lalo looks to Eladio. If he just shot him, that would be fine, but the fact that he talks so much shit about Eladio like, “That’s even better. See I was right all along. This guy is a piece of shit.” He couldn’t just shoot him in the face and be done with. He wanted to be happy. Because it’s Lalo, he wanted to show off, and that ultimately became his downfall, basking in the glory.
How long did you have to lie there and spit blood in your death scene?
Forever. It feels like I’m still in this hole now. They pumped so much blood all over my face and back. I was in a huge pool of blood. That took forever. The smile at the end, that’s not how it was written. It was like I started dying and then I smiled and Vince said, ‘That was good, more like a cynic now. ‘You lucky bastard, you got away with it and I’ll see you in Hell.’” Then he says, “Now relax when you die.” We went on and on and more blood, more blood, more blood. I thought, “Damn, Vince.” But we knew it was an important scene, so everyone was very focused.
What did that smile mean to Gus?
I think it was like, “You got lucky man. The lights were out, there was a shootout, we pointed our guns at each other’s faces and you hit me in the neck. You were so lucky it could have been the other way around in a second.”
So was it just luck? Do you think if it had happened again, Lalo would have killed Gus?
Yes, nine times out of ten Lalo would have won. I think even Gus knows that. He sits down and says, “I’ve never been this close to dying. That was pure luck.”
How does Lalo’s death affect the Gus we see in Breaking Bad?
I talked to Giancarlo about it, the whole part where Gus worries that Lalo is going to get him – you don’t see any uncertainty in Breaking Bad. You can see it a little bit here, that weakness and Achilles’ heel. After Lalo dies, it cements Gus into the person he becomes in Breaking Bad.
Do you think he’s having nightmares about Lalo in Breaking Bad?
Hopefully. I hope Saul has nightmares about Lalo too.
https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/better-call-saul-lalo-dead-dies-scene-1235313974/ Better Call Saul: Lalo dies, death scene explained with Gus ending