MOVIE NEWS – Fans will soon be saying goodbye to Bob Odenkirk’s Saul Goodman, but the actor feels they’ll be happy with how things end.
The mid-season finale of Better Call Saul is bittersweet for fans. Since Bob Odenkirk has perfected the role of fan favourite Saul Goodman for so many years on two different TV series, many are sad to say goodbye to the character. At the same time, people have also been waiting for years to see what will finally become of Saul, aka Jimmy McGill, who lives his life on the run under the pseudonym Gene Takavic.
At the start of the first five seasons of Better Call Saul, flash-forward scenes would have given some clues about Saul’s new life as manager of Cinnabon. He may have avoided the law and all other potential threats, but life in hiding took its toll. Last we saw, a stranger recognised the character, which initially made Saul decide to leave town in search of a new identity. At the last moment, he changes his mind and it becomes clear that “Gene Takavic” has stopped running away from his problems.
What comes next? Season 6 opened the series with an unconventional “Gene scene”, revealing the next chapter of the present’s black and white timeline. That’s probably because it’s saved for the end of the season, where viewers learn Saul’s final fate. It’s unclear exactly what will happen, but in a new interview with the Los Angeles Times, Odenkirk promises fans a great TV show. It begins with Jimmy McGill making the decision to keep running or let Saul Goodman return.
“He looks back on his whole life and asks himself, ‘Am I reacting the way my instincts tell me to, the same instinct that got me stuck in an Omaha f-place, baking cinnamon rolls? Am I still following that instinct?’ He’s still Jimmy McGill. He’s still Saul Goodman. I promise you that. But in his evolution, he asks himself: “Really? Is it all worth it?’ And in that moment, we can see that he can’t hold this shit in any longer. He has to give himself.”
Bob Odenkirk admits that Saul Goodman is a pretty “selfish” man, but he also wanted the character to learn the right lessons from his life falling apart after getting too involved with Walter White and other dangerous criminals. The actor says he would throw it to series creators Peter Gould and Vince Gilligan that sometimes people can learn the right lessons from “challenges and traumas” and maybe McGill can come out of his bad days a better person.
“You know, I’ve had my share of bitterness and frustrations, but when I see that play out, especially in a decision that I’m going to make, I say, ‘This is bullshit-. This is not the way to move on.’ And with Saul, I always told Peter and Vince that sometimes people learn the right lesson, not the most selfish, hurtful lesson from the bad things that have happened to them. They become bigger and more gracious, not smaller and more down-to-earth.”
Odenkirk can, of course, reveal exactly what happens, but he doesn’t want fans to read too much into his interview and assume he’s saying Saul Goodman will end happily ever after. Maybe the character will be shown to come to terms with the choices he made in his life and accept the mistakes he made, even if things don’t get much better for him from there. In any case, Odenkirk promises a satisfying ending, and seems to feel that fans will appreciate the story’s conclusion as much as he does.
“This is not a spoiler I’m saying here,” Odenkirk adds. “It’s weird because it sounds like maybe I’m throwing it in that Saul becomes such a kind-hearted, generous, caring man. I can’t tell you where he’s going, but it’s not that he’s having some human revelation. I think he gets to… I think I’ve said all I can say. But I like where his journey ends. And I think you’ll like it too.”
The midseason finale of Better Call Saul airs May 23 on AMC and AMC+.