Better Call Saul has been a miraculous television series. The fears of prequelization hung heavy over the series when it first started, but the team behind this look into the origins of Saul Goodman have managed something truly remarkable: a prequel that stands on its own. While knowing about Breaking Bad certainly enhances one’s experience with Better Call Saul, the series has earned so much of its own merits without resting on the laurels of what came before. And with the final season on the horizon, creators Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould are determined to go out on the highest of notes.
Season 6 of Better Call Saul opens with a scene that spells ultimate doom for both Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) and Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn), and it’s done in the show’s patented flamboyant style of showing instead of telling. It’s a montage that confirms a lot of what the audience has suspected, but it also has some revelations that will surely be given deeper examination as the season progresses. The show has always been about the inevitable end these characters are barreling towards, and there is no doubt that this season is ready to finally deliver on just how resplendent and joyous things will be before they all come crashing down.
Better Call Saul is the kind of show that is easy to spoil, so I will have to tread carefully with what Season 6 has in store but rest assured, those who have been paying attention this whole time are in for phenomenal rewards. There is a callback to the very first season that also sets up one of the most memorable pieces of imagery in Saul Goodman’s iconic inventory. It’s a masterfully handled return that shows how far certain characters have come while others are just as crooked as they have always been. The show has always put its characters first and fans will be giddy to see how these people are behaving as the finish line creeps ever closer.
Special mention needs to be made of Rhea Seehorn. It is a true crime that she has not been more widely awarded for her portrayal of Kim Wexler in Better Call Saul. She is giving life to one of the most complex, compelling, and captivating characters that has ever crossed the screen. Seeing how much Kim has embraced another side of herself as opposed to where she was at when the show began is nothing short of breathtaking. While we know certain trajectories for carryover characters, Kim’s path is the one that is shrouded in mystery. We get a peek at things when the season opens, but it’s little more than an ominous hint at what’s to come. It’s going to be a sad day when Kim Wexler’s story is finally over.
And for those who enjoy the more heightened crime aspects of Better Call Saul and Breaking Bad, this final season does not disappoint. There is action, tension, and horror aplenty in these remaining adventures. A major part of that effectiveness is in the cinematic power of the filmmaking behind these shows. Most movies don’t look nearly as good as a single episode of Better Call Saul, which is an even more polished product than its predecessor. Light and shadows are controlled with laser precision to create spaces that can feel like paintings when everything is still and quiet. The world of cinema will also be losing a valued asset when this show ends its unbelievable run.
It’s hard not to just spend the rest of this review gushing about every single detail about Better Call Saul Season 6. Society has a real tough time when it comes to ending stories, and most endings are looked at with disappointment. It would take the most epic fumbling of all time to close out this show on anything less than a profound conclusion. The talent involved are so assured of the story they are telling that it’s time to simply savor every last moment we have with this show. Breaking Bad was landmark television that will always be viewed as classic but with this final season, Better Call Saul has assuredly eclipsed that show and has entered into a realm that very few television series ever achieve. We should thank our lucky stars to have lived in a time when this show was airing.