On the Feb. 16 episode of ‘Better Call Saul,’ we saw an arrest, a very serious murder threat and the disappearance of an entire family– all of which can be accredited to Jimmy. The episode was the first– and probably will not be the last– where Jimmy’s tendency for chaos was truly astounding.
On this week’s episode of Better Call Saul, we pick up pretty much where left off (with a quick detour), and we learn just how much willpower Jimmy (Bob Odenkirk) actually can find within himself (spoiler alert: more than you might think!). We also learn that, behind that mouth of his, Jimmy’s got himself an intuitive brain– well, when his life depends on it, anyways. Check out a full recap!
The Last Five Years
We begin this week with “Charles McGill” (Michael McKean) whom we know better as Chuck, in what is obviously a flashback.
He’s paying brother Jimmy a visit…in jail. He’s facing potential sex offender charges. Not light stuff.
“I need you to make this whole thing go poof,” Jimmy says to him.
Turns out, Jimmy hasn’t spoken to Chuck or the rest of the family in five years. However, now that he’s found himself in a little pickle called “prison,” he called to mommy who called to the elder son to bail him out.
“Jimmy, if I do this, do not make a fool out of me,” Chuck says.
Jimmy is desperate, clearly, and vows to give up all the sketchy antics which landed him in the slammer. Well, we know how true that turns out to be.
Back in the present, said antics are tempting Jimmy via that phone number which Nacho (Michael Mando) left for him, were he ever to change his mind and join “the game.”
He does cave and make a call, though not to Nacho. A woman. “I just wanted to call you,” he says.
“Jimmy, no. I’m not talking dirty to you,” the Lady Friend on the other end of the line says.
Clearly Jimmy’s reputation proceeds him. Turns out, Lady Friend is a lawyer as well, working on that big Kettleman case which, according to Jimmy, Lady and her boss stole right from under him.
Enter The Kettlemans
Kettleman, if we recall, is the man whom Nacho plans to scheme. Jimmy lets it slip to Lady that Kettleman and his family might be in danger, but then (unconvincingly) attempts to backtrack. Lady doesn’t buy it.
Jimmy can’t sleep so he decides to do a little arts and crafts. He unrolls an entire paper towel roll in order to get to the cardboard center and then wraps a piece of tissue paper around it. He drives to a payphone, and calls the Kettleman house– we are forced to endure the Kettleman’s excruciating Team Kettleman voice mail not once but twice.
Turns out, the paper towel roll is a voice disguiser. He warns the Kettlemans that their whole family is in danger.
In the morning, Jimmy is back to his noble public defense duties– where else?– in the courthouse bathroom.
He gets a call from Lady Friend whose name, it turns out, is Kim (Rhea Seahorn). Apparently it’s some sort of emergency and he rushes out only to, you guessed it, get stopped at the toll booth by Mike (Jonathan Banks).
Honestly Jimmy, at this point please let me give you the stickers so you can save yourself the time every day.
Jimmy arrives at the Kettleman house, which is teeming with police cars. Apparently, the family’s gone missing and the entire house had been ravaged.
“Why did you come here?” Kim asks Jimmy, annoyed. Jimmy won’t open his mouth so she pretty much orders him away. He’s trying to talk himself down as he drives away (remember, this whole situation is, in no uncertain terms, his fault).
From a different payphone now, he calls Nacho. “I want to help you deescalate your situation–legally,” he says on his voicemail. He calls again, “just to clarify,” he says. “I don’t know anything. I’ve spoken to no one. There are no rats on this ship.” Then he calls again. And again.
Yup. He’s panicking.
He gets back in his car and waits for a call back. But then, he sees two men approaching in his rearview mirror. He so wisely starts to sprint before he is of course tackled.
Turns out the dudes are cops and the reason Nacho wasn’t answering the calls was because he’s now in jail, and has sent for Jimmy.
Nacho had parked outside the Kettleman home the two nights prior to their disappearance. Someone noted his plate numbers so they searched his van and found blood. As Jimmy said, it’s “very bad.”
“Tell me the family is okay,” Jimmy pleads to him. “Tell me the kids are okay.”
“You set me up,” Nacho said. “I was casing the place. They were fine when I left. I was never in the house.”
Actually, the blood belongs to Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb skater bros, and no one else. That doesn’t matter much, though, because now the cops are poking into Nacho’s other affairs and unless Jimmy can get him out of jail that day, he’s “a dead man.”
A Mind To Match The Mouth
With his life on the line, he demands to the feds that he is taken to the crime scene himself. Turns out, Jimmy’s got a brain behind that mouth of his. While inspecting the young daughter’s room, he notices the doll, which would accompany all her doll accessories, is missing.
Jimmy suggests the family kidnapped themselves. It doesn’t exactly go over well, so he fesses up to Kim that he anonymously warned the Kettlemans. Well, Kim is pissed but at least she believes him.
And then! We find ourselves back at the tollbooth of doom. He apologizes to Mike for being a jerk, but as we know, Mike isn’t major on second chances.
“I suggest you find somewhere else to park,” he tells him.
When Jimmy approaches, Mike slams him to the ground. They take it inside, where the cops tell Jimmy that Mike won’t press charges if he can get Nacho to talk. He refuses. Just as they begin to book him, Mike changes his mind and decides not to press charges.
Jimmy runs after Mike and gets him to admit that he believes him. “When I was on the job back in Philly…” Mike begins, letting us know that he is an ex-detective. He tells the story of a guy who had been hiding two doors down from his home for six months back when he was on the forve.
“Nobody wants to leave home,” he says, being quiiiiite suggestive of the Kettlemans’ whereabouts.
So back to the Kettleman residence Jimmy goes. With the hours ticking by, he only has a bit of daylight left before Nacho puts in that order for Jimmy on the barbie (that was a euphemism for murder. How’d it go over?).
He scours the land around the home with no luck. Finally, as night has set in, he hears the sound of campfire singing. Guess who? The Kettlemans are camped out–literally– in a tent.
“Here’s Jimmy!” Jimmy says as he terrifyingly unzips the tent. As he tells them they need to head home, Mrs. Kettleman objects, causing she and Jimmy to enlist in a gruesome battle of tug of war over a canvas duffle bag.
They each pull and pull and finally–rrrrip– the bag flies open, allowing stacks and stacks of bills to pour onto the tent’s floor.
“Yeah,” Jimmy says, speaking for us all, I think.
What did you think of tonight’s Better Call Saul? Is Nacho a good guy or a bad guy? Has Jimmy really changed his ways? Tell us!
— Casey Mink