selenak: (Jimmy and Kim)
[personal profile] selenak
Yep, Saul Goodman has most definitely arrived.



Not that Jimmy has done a Jekyll and Hyde, and he never will - the Saul persona is growing, not suddenly sprung on us. But still: there's a difference between, say, the end of s1, where Jimmy after first learning the truth about Chuck and feeling his efforts flung in his face goes for a nostalgic con man marathon with Marco, and this episode, where Jimmy while feeling humiliated and foiled at every turn (the community service sucks, his salesman magic fails with the advertisement gig until he's reduced of offering to work for free, and his malpractice insurance not only refuses to take his one year break into account but gives him the prospect of raising his premium to unaffortable heights there after) twice attempts to use his con man skills. Once he doesn't actually get around to it because Kim stops him with her "we're not seriously doing this?" question/statement, and the second time he does go through with it, "it" being vengeance on Chuck by slipping the lawyer insurance woman the information that Chuck is mentally ill and had a break down in court.

Both times, vengeance is the basic impulse here, or maybe Jimmy would say "getting even", and that's what's different. Maybe Slippin' Jimmy also picked his targets in a "they're jerks, they deserve it" way, but he was in anything but a playful mode when describing the con to Kim, he was seethingly furious and wanting to make this particular jerk at the bar pay for his miseries, and not just financially. You could tell Kim got more disturbed by the second, and not just because this particular con would have been a crime for which she most certainly would be disbarred if it ever was discovered. (I'm assuming Jimmy and Kim never cashed in the cheque from their shared con back in early s2, so Kim can tell herself in this case, she's clear, since nobody forced that mark to pay for their expensive drinks.) It's that she's never experienced Jimmy in that kind of mood (and mode) before. And yes, that bar guy was a jerk, but I think here you can see the part of Jimmy that later will enable Saul to suggest people's deaths on occasion.

You can also see it in the final scene, and it's another acting showcase for Bob Odenkirk, because at first it's really impossible to tell whether or not Jimmy is faking it. In fact, the episode encourages you at first believe he's sincere, crying at the end of his terrible day and breaking down. It's only when he mentions Chuck's illness that you can see why he's doing this, and connect the dots. And there's a difference here between what he did in the courtroom - where indeed Chuck had brought everything that happened on himself by his own deeds -, and what he does here, where it's not about self defense anymore, but acting out on the general principle that if his life as a lawyer looks like it's ruined/impossible, then so will Chuck's be.

Meanwhile, Kim's emotions are going in just the opposite direction; her friend's praise for hers and Jimmy's courtroom destruction of Chuck make her feel guilty. (Though I guess that feeling started with Rebecca last episode, in retrospect, since Kim brings up Rebecca later to Jimmy.) Enough so that she does the unthinkable - snap at a client (and via insistence she's right about numbers no less, aka Chuck's fatal display of arrogance that put Mesa Verde as much off him as the supposed mistake did). And while she's still gladly willing to play make believe with Jimmy re: cons to make themselves feel better, she's most definitel put off at the idea of actually relieving a man off thousands of dollars, and off Jimmy in vengeance mode. The signs are looking increasingly bad for my favourite couple, but it's entirely logical given who they are.

On the Mike side of the show: go, show, for finding a logical way to bring back the hilarious guest star from late s1 and early s2 and Nacho's plot to take out Hector Salamanca the medical way gets set in motion. Methinks Mike's actually a bit concerned for Nacho, not just that an investigation of Hector's death might lead back to him. Nacho, after all, is a good worker whose named prime motivation is protecting his father. A father/son relationship where one part is honest and the other is trying to keep him this way (as opposed to trying and corrupt him, too) = pushing all of Mike's backstory buttons.

The widow Mike gets friendly with is very likeable, but if she's set up as a love interest, I foresee nothing good for her future, which would be a shame, because this 'verse didn't have middle aged sympathetic women of colour in important roles before.

Date: 23 May 2017 20:50 (UTC)
hannah: (Robert Downey Jr. - riot__libertine)
From: [personal profile] hannah
The sound editing in the bar scene was some of the best atmospheric effects the show's ever used.

I think there was just enough truth in Jimmy's breakdown that it wasn't entirely an act. Most of it, but not entirely. Which makes the scene that much more satisfying to watch, and painful as well.

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