Better Call Saul had a tough act to follow, spawning from one of the most critically acclaimed TV shows of all time, Breaking Bad. However, now in its third season, the prequel spin-off focusing on the origin of motormouth lawyer Saul Goodman has proven, in its own right, that it is a worthy addendum to its predecessor.
Thanks to the meticulous storytelling of Vince Gilligan and commendable performances from Bob Odenkirk, Jonathan Banks, Rhea Seehorn and the rest of the cast, Better Call Saul has become one of the best shows currently airing on television — irregardless of callbacks and references to its older sibling.
That being said, the Breaking Bad references, Easter Eggs and characters add a nostalgic richness to #BetterCallSaul Season 3, and will only increase as the two narratives edge closer and closer. So, what better than collecting them all in one place, from the obvious to the obscure? Meth. But we don't have meth, so we'll give you this instead.
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Episode 2: 'Witness'
Los Pollos Hermanos: If there's one thing Better Call Saul does to perfection, it's taking its time, never rushing, showing events to viewers and letting them piece things together. Ever. So. Slowly. The highly-anticipated, finger-licking reveal of one of the most infamous fictional fast-food chains in history was no different.
As Mike uses his tracking devices to get a tail on the person who left him a cryptic message in the desert, he stakes out in a "dead end" (hat-tip to Gilligan for the symbolism) opposite a restaurant. After scanning the building through his binoculars, Mike drives away, and the camera pans (ever so slowly) to reveal the sign.
The Introduction Of Gustavo Fring: Of course, with the introduction of Los Pollos, comes the introduction of its criminal mastermind owner, Gus Fring. In trademark style, Gus is hiding in plain sight while Jimmy scans Los Pollos looking for clues on behalf of Mike. Gus's faux pleasant interaction with Jimmy is indicative of his ability to hide his sinister, ruthless nature behind a seemingly innocent smile.
Widely regarded as one of the best TV villains of all time, Gus oversees a powerful drug empire. In #BreakingBad, when Walt is looking for a new buyer for his meth, Saul Goodman tells him he can connect him through "a guy who knows a guy who knows another guy." Gus ends up buying 38 pounds of meth for $1.2 million, and later, Walt spends three months cooking for him, in exchange for $3 million.
The Introduction Of Victor: As a black SUV leaves Los Pollos later in the episode, a familiar face is revealed as the mirror roles down. Victor is a loyal henchman to Gus; he oversees the cooking process of Walt and Jesse, but, despite his loyalty, meets a grisly demise at the hands of his boss.
The Introduction Of Francesca: In one of the more surprising origin stories, Francesca — a loyal assistant to Saul Goodman through Breaking Bad — is shown applying for her job. She is, by all accounts, a completely different person at this stage, suggesting Jimmy will have a transformative effect on her. Not in a good way (throwback — she bribes Walt for $25,000 in Season 4).
Give Me A Dollar: One more subtle callback this episode of Better Call Saul comes after Kim discovers that Jimmy had falsified evidence to ruin Chuck's court case with Mesa Verde. Before confronting Jimmy, Kim asks him to give her a dollar, so that the pair are bound by client confidentiality. If that seemed familiar, it's because Saul uses the same line when first introduced to Walt and Jesse.
This scene also illustrates how Jimmy is inspired by those close to him. In a symbolic moment earlier in the episode, Jimmy is seen rolling the tape away from the freshly-painted sign with his thumbs, in the manner Chuck had suggested in the previous episode. When he loses his cool for Chuck taping his confession, he then tears the tape, making the "M" even more crooked, alluding to the defining moment his transition to Saul becomes inevitable.
This article will be updated after every episode with all the new Easter Eggs, references and characters from Better Call Saul Season 3. So, check back here each week, bookmark it, set it as your homepage or get the URL permanently tattooed to the inside of your eyelids.
Have you spotted any other Breaking Bad Easter Eggs not mentioned above?