Better Call Saul continues it’s brilliant fifth season, with it’s new episode, “JMM”. In this episode, continuing on from the cliffhanger in the previous episode, Jimmy (Bob Odenkirk) and Kim (Rhea Seehorn) get married, however, they make it clear it is a business arrangement so that now, Jimmy can tell Kim about his cases without lying.
Meanwhile, Jimmy starts to help out Lalo (Tony Dalton), who has been charged with murder. Gus (Giancarlo Esposito), along with Nacho (Michael Mando) and Mike (Jonathan Banks), wish to get Lalo released. Also, Howard (Patrick Fabian) continues to try and talk Jimmy into taking a job at HHM. The title of the episode comes from the initials on Chuck’s briefcase, which stands for “James Morgan McGill”, which he has re-named “Justice Matters Most”. Lalo jokes at one point that it should be renamed “Just Make Money”.
The first opener in this episode was really, quite charming. Seeing Jimmy and Kim get married is quite a cathartic experience as we have invested 5 years into their relationship. The scene is also lovely in how sweet and subtle it is, and Odenkirk and Seehorn have great chemistry. This also very much hints that the reason why Kim is not in Breaking Bad is not because she just leaves Jimmy, or moves away. She now must have to die, or maybe be incarcerated. Either way, I hope it is shocking and well-written.
This episode is also very interesting as we are now starting to see a different side to Lalo. Over the first few episodes of the show, he was a refreshing and different villain for the show in how he was a charming and charismatic presence. However, now we are seeing a quieter and more sinister part of his personality, and this makes him a much more interesting character.
Gus also some intriguing developments this episode. There is a terrific sequence where Gus and Nacho, acting out orders of which Lalo gave Nacho, destroy a Los Pollos Hermanos restaurant. The scene is very thrilling and well-directed, and is a highlight of the episode. It is also interesting to see Gus being a subtly less darker character than he was in Breaking Bad. In the parent show, he never would of gone out of his way to save someone like Nacho, but in this show, we are seeing a lighter side to him.
There is also another intriguing scene where Gus has a meeting with his CEO, Peter (Norbert Weisser), and Lydia (Laura Fraser), the former of which was also a recurring Breaking Bad character. The scene, much like the destruction of Los Pollos Hermanos, is also very thrilling and gripping. However, I would say that Lydia’s role on the show, as of yet, has been slightly disappointing, and it feels like the show hasn’t properly utilised Lydia yet.
Odenkirk and Seehorn also continue to have great chemistry throughout the episode. The scene in which the two debate about a new house they will get is very playful and funny. Also, this chemistry is again, put to good use in the bedroom scene where Jimmy tells Kim he could become a “friend of the cartel”. This chemistry will make it all the more heartbreaking when they will inevitably be split apart.
The last scene in this episode, however, is the real highlight. This focuses on Howard (Patrick Fabian) continues to ask Jimmy about the job offer at HHM, and Jimmy berates Howard with a rant, saying he is too big for that job. The scene is absolutely brilliant, with a real masterclass in acting from Odenkirk. The fact that he has not joined Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston in winning a lot of Emmy’s or Golden Globes for his performance is a real tragedy.
During this speech, he shouts and yells that he is a “god in human clothing” and “lighting bolts shoot from my fingertips”. The speech has a lot of echoes to Walter White’s iconic “I am the one who knocks” speech, and is only made better by Odenkirk’s loud, flamboyant but still quite tragic delivery. Also, Fabian makes a great sparring partner, having to say a lot with just his facial expressions.
In conclusion, this episode was really great, and has a lot of great developments. It does feel slightly like an “in-between” episode for the season, as there are no really major moments, or story progression, but it is still essential to the story. It would possibly be better in a large binge of the season or whole series. That being said, the episode is still operating at Better Call Saul’s brilliant quality, and I really loved it. There are only 3 episode remaining, and it would a shame to see it end, especially because we have only one season left.