Over three seasons, Better Call Saul has become one of the best shows on TV, an involving family drama against the backdrop of New Mexico legal procedure. But, of course, it’s also a prequel to Breaking Bad, charting the rise (or fall, depending on how you look at it) of the well-meaning Jimmy McGill from conman doing good to sleazy criminal lawyer Saul Goodman, and so is full of connections and characters to the Walter White crime odyssey.
Obviously you have Bob Odenkirk in the lead and Jonathan Banks a series regular as Mike Ehrmantraut, and Season 3 has put a spotlight on the conflict between cartel faction leaders Gus Fring and Hector Salamanca, but that’s far from the limit. Better Call Saul is chock full of Breaking Bad cameos; so many, in fact, that they’re easy to miss. We count twenty-five overall, so here’s a definitive breakdown of every single one.
Saul and Mike (This Page)Gus Fring, Madrigal and Associates Hector Salamanca and the Cartel Other Obscure Characters
Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman
This one’s obvious as it’s his show, but for completion it’s worth citing. We actually see Odenkirk’s character in three different guises – mainly as Jimmy McGill slowly evolving into the Saul Goodman we know, but also him in hiding following the events of Breaking Bad as Gene, working in a Cinnabon.
While the show has finally seen him start using the Saul moniker (a play on the phrase “S’all good, man”), we’re yet to see him use it for lawyering or bring in many of his close associates from the show. Two, however, have appeared.
Saul Goodman’s secretary in Breaking Bad, Francesa Liddy (Tina Parker) was a constant presence in his offices throughout the show. Although she definitely got more than she bargained for, she came out of the whole affair safe (and $25000 richer after getting money out of Walt for smashing down Saul’s door).
Liddy returned in Better Call Saul Season 3 as the shared receptionist for Jimmy and Kim Wexler, hired by the former after a very brief interview for her can-do attitude. She’s already started going above and beyond, helping Jimmy in his court case against brother Chuck, and at this point is one of the few close people to Jimmy who will stand by him.
Everybody loves Huell (Lavell Crawford). He’s one of the biggest (literally and figuratively) fan favorites from Breaking Bad. Introduced as Saul’s bodyguard, he became a regular in the lawyer’s schemes, remarkable for his size and opposite demeanour. While mostly harmless, Huell eventually is used by the DEA into giving up the location of Walt’s millions.
Huell returned in Better Call Saul Season 3 as part of Jimmy’s plan against Chuck. Hired through the same vet with criminal contacts that Mike uses to find jobs, the apparently deft enforcer planted a charged phone battery in the electromagnetic hypersensitivity sufferer’s pocket. As he wasn’t hired for full-time protection until Walt’s scheming ramped up, it’s unclear if we’ll see him again before the show wraps up.
When it comes to Breaking Bad connections, most of these come through Mike Ehrmantraut and his increasing involvement with the Albuquerque crime scene. In the parent show, Mike was an associate of Saul but ultimate enforcer for Gus Fring, pragmatic muscle who clashed with Walt’s power grabs.
Obviously through him experience the cartel story in Better Call Saul, but we also learn his tragic origins – he was a bent cop who learned to regret his past after his righteous son Matt was murdered.
Stacey and Kaylee Ehrmantraut
Mike’s daughter-in-law and granddaughter are the main motivation in his life of crime. Stacey (Kerry Condon) and Kaylee only appeared briefly in Breaking Bad (the former appeared only once), but have been an essential part of Better Call Saul, with Mike trying hard to build a relationship with them after Matt’s death. Due to the timeline, Kaylee has been recast for the prequel and actually played by two actresses in the show.
Next Page: Gus Fring, Madrigal and Associates
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