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television -> Better Call Saul episode nine recap/ review

Better Call Saul episode nine recap/ review

Pimento

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Writer/ director Thomas Schnauz (writer of “Nacho” episode) wastes no time in where “RICO” left off with Chuck and Jimmy sitting on a park bench outside.  Chuck discusses his concern of Sandpiper Crossing filing a restraining order against Jimmy. However, Jimmy assures his older brother that he can handle it in court.  Across ABQ, Mike presents his granddaughter with a pet puppy that his daughter-in-law eventually accepts.  His phone rings and he excuses himself on a job tip. Later on, the camera jumps to Saul in court against SC’s top attorney concerning a restraining order.  The judge favors Jimmy, but upon coming home Chuck presents him with the daunting, aggressive amount of paperwork SC filed in response to Jimmy’s small court victory.  Despite Jimmy’s wishes, Chuck tells him they must team up with HHM to handle the groundbreaking case. Jimmy caves and agrees to call Kim in order to arrange a meeting at HHM headquarters.  As Jimmy sleeps at Chuck’s house that evening, Chuck sneaks out and makes a mysterious, uncharacteristic phone call against his better phobias.  The opening few minutes presented a quick, crackling pace that always held a measure of suspense throughout Schnauz’s penultimate “Better Call Saul” episode “Pimento.” Never before has an episode focused on the character dichotomy concerning the McGill brothers.  The Mike subplot also added an exciting change-up to the legal drama.  

At HHM the next day, an associate paces about the firm collecting cell phones in a plastic tote. Everybody’s (including Howard Hamlin) phone lands in the tote as a custodian cuts all electricity upon Chuck and his brother’s arrival at the firm.  The entire HHM staff greets the nervous return of a partner with standing applause.  In the meeting, Jimmy and Chuck present just how great their case could potentially turn out fiscally.  Howard earnestly agrees with the McGill brothers and they begin to talk Jimmy’s cut in the case profit.  Jimmy proposes an office for himself and Howard dismisses the entire present meeting sans McGills. Howard informs Jimmy that HHM won’t take him on as an associate, but will include him in all profits.  This obviously upsets Jimmy to vulgar anger and he abruptly declines HHM’s proposal.  After this we find an enormous giant of a man strolling alongside a professionally early Mike Ehrmantraut for his new job lead.  A third man with a big mouth rolls up last and can’t shut up about kind of guns he’s packing.  He asks Mike what he’s packing. “Pimento,” Mike replies, referring to the sandwich he’s taken along for the job.  Price, the opposite of Walter White, parks his mini-van and the big-mouthed gun-for-hire insists Price dismiss Mike because Mike isn’t presently packing heat.  Mike then takes out big-mouth and the giant flees in terror to leave Mike as the last able-bodied tough guy.  “Price” the awkward dork of a probable pharmacist and Mike agree that he will receive all three tough guys’ pay. After this, we skip back to HHM where Kim visits Howard and confronts him about cutting Jimmy out of the Sandpiper Crossing case.  Howard primarily shows Kim the cold shoulder but eventually has her return to his desk and close the door so he can be frank with her.


Pimento


Price nervously paces and discusses the deal aloud—nothing like Heisenberg before his first meeting with Tuco on “Breaking Bad.”  Mike discusses the process to calm his nerves before a van tools up the drive.  Price’s buyer is none other than the familiar face belonging to Nacho.  Nacho pays Price but comes up short $20 which Mike has Nacho immediately pay.  They eventually get past the deal and Nacho leaves with his pills as Price keeps his cash.  Mike instructs his new employer on the intricacies of the criminal life in yet another cold-blooded, chilling monologue from Jonathan Banks.  He warns Price about joining the drug business, a foreboding hazard that would’ve done wonders for Walter White.  After listening to Mike’s heavy warning, the camera falls on Kim catching up with Jimmy carrying a paper sack full of liquor into his office.  She suggests Jimmy take the deal, but no go.  When she leaves, he powers up his dead phone which takes us to the following day where Jimmy arrives at Chuck’s place to tell his brother that he’ll give in and hand the case over to Howard.  Bob Odenkirk gives his best performance as Jimmy when he finally shouts at Chuck—deducing that Chuck placed a call to Howard the night before the meeting to sabotage his involvement.  Chuck, and specifically not Howard, is the man behind hindering Jimmy’s success at HHM.  The elder brother confesses and bears his soul, saying that his younger brother isn’t a “real” lawyer because he takes short cuts and didn’t truly earn his standing as an attorney.  He knows his brother, “Slippin’ Jimmy with a law degree is like a chimp with a machine gun.”  Upon learning of his brother’s betrayal, Jimmy lists the groceries he just delivered, but informs Chuck that he’s done.

Schnauz’s “Pimento” offered hard-hitting monologues from its two leads—one emotional from Jimmy and one enlightening from Mike. Kim finally got to have her say with Howard, who quickly informed her of treading “out of her depth.”  We even found out that Howard is anything but the conniving, evil villain we expected, but, instead a “Jaime Lannister” of sorts where we learned a whole different, complex facet of his character.  Chuck pulled Howard’s strings from the beginning; making him deliver bad news and endure Jimmy’s tantrums (Odenkirk even dropped the “f” word on basic cable at Howard’s expense).  It’s difficult to say where the finale will go from here.  Mike’s criminal life just started to pick up as Jimmy’s legal career just hit a profitable snag.  Could he finally have enough to create “Saul Goodman?”

Keywords: Better Call Saul, Pimento, recap, review, episode 10, AMC, Bob Odenkirk, Jonathan Banks
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