AMC’s Breaking Bad spinoff, Better Call Saul is going strong five episodes into its first season. The show’s production team have made some connections between the two series (“Uno’s” opening sequence, Saul’s relationship with Mike, etc.), but have largely stayed true to their word by first and foremost telling interesting stories about Jimmy McGill – how he rose from struggling defense attorney to the criminal lawyer Walter White and Jesse Pinkman hired.
As enjoyable as the show has been so far, fans are nevertheless wondering if Saul’s two most famous clients will be showing up at some point in the series’ run. It has been confirmed that neither Bryan Cranston nor Aaron Paul will appear in season one, but the door for their return is being left open later down the line (assuming it makes sense for Better Call Saul‘s narrative). That stance hasn’t changed, but Paul is hoping he can guest star one day.
While at Variety‘s unite4humanity charity gala, the actor revealed that he’s talked with chief members of the creative team about a role, but nothing has come into fruition just yet:
“We always have fun having that discussion — Vince [Gilligan], myself, Peter [Gould], the writers. We just have no idea how that would happen. But hopefully one day.”
As exciting as it would be for longtime Breaking Bad fans to see the Emmy winner reprise his iconic character one more time, it’s best that nobody’s rushing anything for the sake of nostalgia. Where we’re at in Better Call Saul currently, Jimmy has only begun to form the identity of Saul Goodman and still has a long way to go before he’s the character we all know and love. It wouldn’t make sense for Jesse to show up right now, and there will be plenty of opportunities in the future for a cameo or two.
That said, it is interesting to hear that Paul has discussed the possibility with Gilligan. It sounds like a Saul and Jesse reunion is something all parties would be interested in seeing, they just need to find the right circumstances. Artistically, it’s more important for Gilligan and Gould to make the spinoff stand on its own without relying too much on fan service to get by. Once the program’s identity is firmly established, though, everyone (viewers included) would certainly be enthusiastic about old favorites coming back.
It’s something that director Michelle MacLaren (who helmed several Breaking Bad episodes, as well as the second Better Call Saul) touched on while she was interviewed at Variety‘s event:
“I think it’s open to whoever Vince and Peter decide to bring in. I would imagine that everyone who would ask would say yes, but I have no idea what they’re going to do with it.”
Whether she’s playing coy or not (though, she does have Wonder Woman to focus on), it’s best fans not hold their breath for any obvious callbacks for the time being. One of the most infamous downsides of prequels is that those behind the scenes have a tendency to shoehorn references to the original material just to entice a response from the audience, and it would have been extremely easy for Gilligan to make Jesse the first client of Jimmy McGill. That they’re fighting off the temptation and making sure the character’s inclusion is for all the right reasons is something that should be commended, while possibly making Paul’s highly-anticipated hypothetical cameo worth the wait.
Better Call Saul airs Mondays at 10/9c on AMC.