Trying to follow on from one of the most popular TV shows in history was never going to be easy. Essentially, you are bringing two characters who were introduced during Breaking Bad Season Two and making them the lead stars in a spin-off set before we met Walter White. There have been a few shakes and some uneasy steps, but finally we get to the finale of a rather great Season One and leave off on what will take us into the rise of Saul Goodman. Throughout this series we have been learning about James McGill, or “slippin’ Jimmy” to his friends. We see a con-man turn into a lawyer, hoping to become a man of note and do a good job. $1.6 Million was in his hands at one time and he returned it, he saw off Tuco Salamanca in a tense showdown in the desert and has cared for his brother whose “illness” perplexes many. Jimmy has in ten episodes gone from little court lawyer to the grace of Albuquerque. We have seen him go from cons with his friend Marco to saving the lives of those he just met. But, the finale goes so far and yet still not too far as to bring us into Breaking Bad territory.
So, Jimmy finally hands over the Sandviper case to HHM, after learning that his brother Chuck does not have faith in him as a lawyer. For weeks we thought Hamlin was the man who’d keep Jimmy out of HHM, but we were wrong, well a bit. Jimmy gives the case, though with resent, and wishes Kim and HHM the best of luck. After he is paid, he goes to Cicero to visit Marco, the man that Jimmy used to pull cons with and via flashback we see how the friendship started between the two. Meanwhile, Jimmy begins to go back to his old ways as him and Marco go on more cons, while Marco seems to not be in the best of health. Following an unfortunate event during the supposed last con, Jimmy finds himself without his friend and with a new feeling in his heart. Jimmy eventually returns to Albuquerque and finds out he has been offered a job as an associate with law firm Davis & Mane. Why is this happening? Well, the case is apparently too big for Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill to handle alone so they team up with the other firm. They see Jimmy’s potential and like how he has been able to hold a loyalty with his clients and the loyalty they have back for him. Expect to see more of D&M when Season Two arrives. Jimmy is finally being given a shot with a real firm, but his life has forever now changed and believes he has to make things work for himself, not for others. We finally see the morally righteous Jimmy transform into Saul 0.5 as he begins his change.
So, with Jimmy about to go to work for a firm that wants him and still not talking to his brother following the revelation, there is a lot to hit the ground with next season. Saul Goodman is finally coming out, and we need to embrace it. There will be less morality and more money in his future, and Bob Odenkirk is doing a brilliant job with expanding the life of Jimmy. Though his presence was restricted for a number of episodes, Mike will hopefully get more screen time in the next season and Jonathan Banks can give Mike a more involved role as Saul shall look to have him as his man who will do the job he is given, as we have seen in recent episodes. Also we must see more of the past that Jimmy and Kim have as well as some resolution for the McGill brothers. So, we got some time to wait now but hopefully it won’t be that long. The line about The Hills Have Eyes being a documentary is humourous and his breakdown while doing bingo for the elderly is just a wonderfully written piece. Written by co-creator Peter Gould, this is probably his best script post Breaking Bad and also a great writer who could include ‘Smoke On The Water’ in key places during the episode. Plus, at least we now know how Jimmy got that pinky ring and I now know what a “Chicago Sunroof” is!
Final rating: 9.5/10
Written by Jonjo Cosgrove