Better Call James M. McGill doesn't have much of a ring to it, and so AMC's upcoming Breaking Bad spinoff/prequel Better Call Saul instead uses the adopted name of Bob Odenkirk's sleazy lawyer in a title so catchy that it even has its own theme song. The upcoming series is set in the days before Saul was an established and respected strip mall lawyer and was still known as the humble Jimmy McGill, who had never even heard of Walter White or Jesse Pinkman.
A new trailer for Better Call Saul puts the emphasis on humility as Jimmy is shown grandstanding in front of unimpressed rival lawyer Howard Hamlin (Patrick Fabian), getting kidnapped and dumped in the desert and using an office that has a taped-up bit of paper with his name on it instead of a proper plaque on the door. Much like Walter White at the beginning of Breaking Bad, it seems like Better Call Saul's story arc will begin with Jimmy as quite a down-on-his-luck character.
Better Call Saul will introduce Michael McKean as Saul's brother, Chuck McGill, and will also see the return of Jonathan Banks as former cop and Jimmy's right-hand-man-to-be, Mike Ehrmantraut. According to a recent clip from Better Call Saul's series premiere, the two characters will meet when Mike is working as the attendant at a multi-storey car park and is forced to get a bit hands-on with the obnoxious lawyer trying to park there.
THR also dropped a new clue about Better Call Saul recently with this image of Jimmy and Chuck... collaborating? The reasons for the survival blanket are unclear.
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A continuation of Breaking Bad really isn't necessary but a journey into the past of one of its more popular supporting characters could definitely work, and this show looks like it contains the same blend of drama, humor and sharp writing that made Breaking Bad such a success. Since Better Call Saul was also created by Breaking Bad showrunner Vince Gilligan, anyone who was a fan of the original series should definitely be checking in for the premiere next year.
Better Call Saul premieres Sunday, February 8th, 2015 at 10/9c on AMC.