Better Call Saul -

KillThemCrackasBabies

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inb4 "I will murder your infant daughter", that was different.
Yeah that's the same thing when people do the "But he said fear wasn't an effective motivator!" argument, the situation was completely different. I feel like Gus would have children killed the same way he killed Victor; he didn't go around slaughtering his henchman willy nilly, but if it came down to it and he thought that's what needed to be done, it was getting done. He never told the dealers to shoot Thomas, but if he was wiping out Walt's family, meh, gotta do what you gotta do.
 
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AnOminous

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He never told the dealers to shoot Thomas, but if he was wiping out Walt's family, meh, gotta do what you gotta do.
He'd have no particular reason to wipe out Walt's family if Walt was dead, but he knew Walt was so fucking nuts just threatening to kill him wasn't going to get him to comply.
 

Bender

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The alternative explanation is that Gus was feigning outrage and didn’t really give a shit if kids were killed or used as drug mules. His story of the coati and his mysterious past with Pinochet’s government indicate Gus likely didn’t care. He was content letting street dealers do whatever so long as there was no blowback on him or the distribution network.
I'd assume a kid getting shot to death in public would cause an investigation that Gus would prefer to avoid, Walt and Jesse likely could've gotten them killed by Gus instead of doing it themselves.
 

murgatroid

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I have a question about the Season 5 finale.

When Lalo pulls off the the facemask of one of the assassins it looks like it's sticky and painful being pulled off. Can someone explain what that was? I've tried reading some episode re-caps but none of them mention it.

There's a really minor thing they do with the audio at the end of the episode I really liked. As Lalo walks away from his compound with anger in his face you hear his steps on the gravel and they quickly start to sound deep and muffled. I thought it represented Lalo's deep emotion in his head, being submerged/consumed by his anger in that moment and possibly also the temporary deafness from the firefight that had gone on.

Lalo is a deranged psycho, but I can't help but root for him.
bcs10-lalo-window.gif
 
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Bender

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I have a question about the Season 5 finale.

When Lalo pulls off the the facemask of one of the assassins it looks like it's sticky and painful being pulled off. Can someone explain what that was? I've tried reading some episode re-caps but none of them mention it.
Wasn't that the dude who had a pan full of oil thrown in his face?
Beaten to it by a second.
 
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Clem Fandango

Can you hear me?
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I'm getting in my prediction now that there will be a "Gliding All Over" type montage of Saul finally being a full on criminal lawyer (perhaps after Kim is dead / leaves). In other words, this show will never be what I thought it would be - Jimmy doing his Breaking Bad schtick before meeting Walt. And I'm really glad about that. There's a weird parallel to Breaking Bad where you're watching the protagonist overcome obstacle after obstacle trying to get to a 'steady state' where they finally get to where they want to be.
 

AnOminous

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Said Gould, “If I were going to tease something I would say keep your eye on the stopper. Remember, there’s a stopper? Jimmy and Kim open a bottle of Zafiro Añejo and that stopper, we’re not finished with that stopper. I will say that.”
What did he mean?
 

AnOminous

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The stopper also made its appearance in Season 4 Episode 10 as well in Breaking Bad when the tequila was poisoned and killed the cartel leadership. I guess it could be referenced to prank someone but it could mean it will be used to kill someone.
I'm wondering which because the item has such grim connotations in BB.

And all of Vince Gilligan's works seem to be Chekhov's Gun the TV show.
 

Bender

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I'm wondering which because the item has such grim connotations in BB.

And all of Vince Gilligan's works seem to be Chekhov's Gun the TV show.
It has grim connotations in BCS, too. It's a corrupting influence on Kim, she had it in her desk when she came up with the Mesa Verde plan with Saul, she took it with her when she left and gave Lalo a verbal beatdown. I have a theory on what it means to her but I'm too dumb to put it into words, lol.

I think I read somewhere that Gould was either the showrunner or main writer for the last couple of series, taking over Vince's position.
 

KillThemCrackasBabies

kiwifarms.net
I think I read somewhere that Gould was either the showrunner or main writer for the last couple of series, taking over Vince's position.
Vince has often given Gould credit for being the primary creative force behind the show, and though he'll often trip over himself to dish out praise to the rest of the creative team I think BCS is far more of a Gould project than Vince's.
 

frozenrunner

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I finally finished this season.

One of the things that make a great drama great is not just the creation of a compelling story with characters you care about but also the writers being perpetually aware of what the audience knows, when they know it and why, and what the audience is (probably) thinking at any given point.

That sounds absurdly obvious, I know. That's fundamental shit. You should always be thinking about those things while writing. But before Breaking Bad I had never seen a show where it was so clear the writing staff was consciously aware they needed to stay several steps ahead of an intelligent audience using all the tools at their disposable. And Better Call Saul continues in that vein.

A lesser show would tell a prequel story with a similar structure, maybe, with new characters. It might do a solid job and be enjoyable and even worthwhile. But Better Call Saul is clearly the product of people asking themselves all the right questions.

"What, in this show, is the central source of tension for/greatest unanswered question of the audience?" (The answer: "what happens to the new characters?")

From there, the events of every episode are structured with this in mind:

"How do we get the audience to care about these new characters?"

"What does this scene/plot point imply about the future of these characters?"

"How do we ramp up the tension as time goes on given that we know these events already took place?"

"If one of the characters were to actually die now, could the story (as we know it eventually plays out) feasibly and believably continue?"

Etc.

Aside from some Saul storyline-based lulls across seasons 2 and 3, this has been a hell of a ride. (Not as great as Breaking Bad, it should be admitted. But very close.) If only everyone writing for television was so conscious of and capable of utilizing storytelling fundamentals.

And I want to give special recognition to the character of Kim. They could easily have made her an innocent but naively trusting party to Jimmy's chicanery. A lesser show would have done that, setting her up to suffer because of his hubris. But instead they've given us an appropriately layered, complicated, and damaged person, a woman we could actually see being in a long-term relationship with Jimmy and who isn't being tricked into it. I believe that.

It has grim connotations in BCS, too. It's a corrupting influence on Kim, she had it in her desk when she came up with the Mesa Verde plan with Saul, she took it with her when she left and gave Lalo a verbal beatdown. I have a theory on what it means to her but I'm too dumb to put it into words, lol.
I have to disagree with that characterization. As the show continues, we're learning that Kim isn't a "straight-and-narrow" innocent who is being corrupted. She may not even be aware of it, but she's with Saul for a reason, and it's not because she mistakenly thought he was a boy Scout.

The dynamic is (somewhat) reminiscent of the one between Walt and Skyler. A lot of people see Breaking Bad and feel sorry for Walt's family because of the decisions he makes and the roads it leads them down. They're right to feel that way... but Skyler is not a fully innocent party like her children. She is with Walt, who has this dark side, for a reason, and it's not because she didn't know, on some level, that he had a dark side. That's a baked-in (though perhaps subconscious) part of their relationship dynamic.

My point is saying or implying that Kim is being corrupted is infantilizing her character. She's an adult who is making choices, and many of them aren't good ones, but she's not an agency-free victim. That's good writing.
 
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