Better than ever, 'Better Call Saul' returns on AMC

Saturday, 22 February 2020 12:00 AM Written by 

 

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“Better Call Saul,” (10 p.m. Sunday and 9 p.m. Monday, AMC),the “Breaking Bad” prequel series that completely stands on its own as a character-driven thriller, returns after an extended absence for its 10-episode fifth season, just as excellent as it’s always been.

Read more after the jump. ...

As the new season begins, Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) has taken on the new personal of Saul Goodman (as in, “it’s all good, man”) as he’s schemed his way back into having a law license. His scams and deceit continue to the distress of girlfriend Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn) who is torn between following the rules and being seduced by Saul’s shortcuts.

Episode one does some cleanup of fourth-season plots, particularly around the German construction workers Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) hired to build out what will become a meth lab for Walter White in “Breaking Bad.”

At an AMC press conference during January's Television Critics Association 2020 winter press tour, showrunner Peter Gould said the secret formula for the show is the balance of comedy and drama.

It's like one of those ice cream flavors that has two flavors, and somehow the one flavor makes the other flavor more intense,” Mr Gould said. “The drama makes the comedy funnier. I think the comedy on our show is not aiming to be strictly comic. It's always within our world. But I think the drama makes the comedy funny, and it gives a sense of relief. And there are episodes I can feel myself wanting to laugh, just to relieve the tension.”

It was in writing this penultimate fifth season that Mr. Gould said writers realized the show would wrap up with a sixth season in 2021.

“How it ends? I would say, the truth is we didn’t have much of an idea of it either. For the first, I’d say, four seasons, it was very foggy,” he said. “And then during the breaking of season five the fog started to lift a little bit. The headlights started to reach that much further down the road. We started to see where we think it ends, and I have to say none of it is what I would’ve expected when we started.”

 

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