‘Better Call Saul’: The best writing in TV history

Ashton Mineo

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“Better Call Saul” is an American drama series by Vince Gilligan following criminal lawyer Jimmy McGill’s transition into the character Saul Goodman. Saul Goodman is a character from award-winning series “Breaking Bad,” also created by Vince Gilligan.

“Better Call Saul” is a spin off series taking place in the “Breaking Bad” universe. The show dives into the life of lawyer Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk), both before and after the events that took place in “Breaking Bad.” The sixth and final season of “Better Call Saul” finished up this past July, thus wrapping up a franchise that started in 2008 with the first season of “Breaking Bad.” The first few seasons of the show start out sort of slower because the writers need to establish background  and introduce lots of new characters. The audience is quick to find out that Jimmy McGill is the real name of the infamous lawyer. In the beginning of the series, the show is about Jimmy rather than Saul. Although the show is primarily based on events prior to those of “Breaking Bad,” every once in a while the show will convert to black and white  as it peers into the life of a post-“Breaking Bad” Saul Goodman. This pattern goes until the events inevitably collide in the show’s breathtaking final season.

Vince Gilligan was masterful with the way he wrote this show and its characters, specifically Saul. What makes this show so great is Jimmy McGill’s transformation into Saul Goodman. Obviously his name changes, but the differences between Jimmy and Saul go so far beyond that. Gilligan does such a marvelous job building up this transition just as he did with Walter White and his alter ego, Heisenberg. The great writing does not stop with Saul Goodman though. New characters such as Chuck McGill or Lalo Salamanca are great additions to the show. I would argue that all of the characters in the show are extremely influential on the character of Saul Goodman and the show as a whole. I think it is amazing how Gilligan ties past and future together, as well as creating closure for the “Breaking Bad” universe. I thought the ending was very poetic and I believe it was really the only way the show could have ended.

Additionally, the production and acting elevate this show to new heights. I love how the picture goes to black and white when the show pans to Saul Goodman in the future and it has a sort of hopeless vibe. I am a huge fan of all of the different camera angles that are presented throughout the show. The cinematography is on point. The acting is also phenomenal across the board. Bob Odenkirk leads the way with stunning performances in all six seasons. Rhea Seeborn puts on an exceptional, emotional performance playing Kim Wexler. Michael Mando and Giancarlo Esposito also standout with big time performances, but it doesn’t stop there because each character is played to perfection.

I would highly recommend this show to anyone who has or hasn’t seen “Breaking Bad.” The show can be dark and gritty at times, so I definitely wouldn’t say the show is for everyone, but if you are someone that is into that sort of thing it is a must-watch. The show is slower and lighter in the earlier seasons, but the action and intensity pick up tremendously as the show goes on. There is a great deal of suspense throughout and the audience is always on the edge of their seat. I would give this show a 5/5 rating and I would argue that “Better Call Saul” is a top three TV show of all time.