‘Breaking Bad’ spin-off ‘Better Call Saul’ closer to reality

Senior Television Writer
09.11.13 46 Comments


The “Better Call Saul” spin-off from “Breaking Bad” has just moved one step closer to reality, as AMC has signed a licensing agreement with Sony (the studio that produces and owns “Breaking Bad”) for the spin-off – which will be “a one-hour prequel that will focus on the evolution of the popular Saul Goodman character before he ever became Walter White’s lawyer.”

Sony still has to cut deals with “Breaking Bad” creator Vince Gilligan, producer Peter Gould (who created Saul Goodman in a season 2 episode also titled “Better Call Saul,” and would be Gilligan’s partner on the spin-off) and star Bob Odenkirk, but based on the ratings for the final season of “Breaking Bad,” it’s safe to assume those deals will get done. A source close to the show suggests there would be no pilot, but that “Better Call Saul” would go straight to series.

That “Better Call Saul” will be a prequel is new information, and means there’s still a chance that Saul could die during any of the final three “Breaking Bad” episodes. And it also takes away pressure to have any surviving characters from the current series (other than pre-existing Saul associates like Huell, Kuby) to pop up on the show. Though it also creates the possibility of Jonathan Banks having a recurring role as Mike, and Bryan Cranston could always cameo as a meek, pre-cancer Walter White walking past Saul at a supermarket or whatnot.

Saul is a great accent to the meal that is “Breaking Bad.” Can he function as the main course of his own show? Will having to keep him on course for the moment we met him in season 2 hem Gilligan and Gould in at all? We’ll have to wait and see (assuming everyone signs a deal). I don’t know that “Better Call Saul” is a show I need, but after the last five seasons, Gilligan has accrued so much goodwill that it’s a show I will watch.

What does everybody else think? Would you rather the show take place after the events of “Breaking Bad”? Can Odenkirk in this role carry a show? Do you want Jane, Combo and other dead “BB” characters popping up as Goodman clients?

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