And what happens to Kim? If she survives, does she wind up with Jimmy?
It was easier to root for an Omaha reunion before Operation Frame Howard ended with the words “There’s really no need to … ” and a corpse on the floor. But that might be the ultimate point of this suddenly grim chapter of “Better Call Saul.” It gave Kim a chance to demonstrate moral complexity. She’s come a long way from the strait-laced attorney we met early in this show. Nor is she any match for the guy who’s about to interrogate her and Jimmy in their home. Like many of the best characters to emerge from the mind of the creators Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould, she’s a mix of compassion and malignancy, sympathy and cunning.
The Return of ‘Better Call Saul’
The “Breaking Bad” prequel returned April 18 for its final season.
If her destiny is tied to Jimmy’s, it’s safe to assume that it will be determined by how the couple handle the realization that their larky stratagems have ended in blood. Which doesn’t mean that Jimmy and Kim will cope with whatever comes next the same way. The first episode of this season is called “Wine and Roses,” a reference to the 1962 film, “Days of Wine and Roses,” about a couple, played by Lee Remick and Jack Lemmon, who are alcoholics. Lemmon’s character gets sober. Remick’s character remains in love with Lemmon’s but refuses to stop drinking, and they part. This is either foreshadowing or a fake out, but it raises the possibility that Kim will continue trending toward the wicked and Jimmy will not.
Although, who knows? The reverse could be true.
Regardless, R.I.P. Howard. You were much derided, mostly because of your smooth manners, good looks and old-timey shirt collars. They made you seem haughty and foppish. You were far more thoughtful than your enemies realized. If it’s any comfort, Patrick Fabian played you with an impeccable mix of confidence and vulnerability.
The plot against you will not be missed. It was a ridiculous endeavor and never more so than in the middle of this episode, when Jimmy and Lenny, the aspiring actor/shopping cart wrangler, played by John Ennis, are photographed in a park, pantomiming a bribe. The point is that Lenny looks a lot like the Sandpiper mediator, Rand Casimiro (John Posey).
The effort to settle the Sandpiper case and humiliate Howard had a few twists for viewers, like the realization that Howard’s private detective was a mole. But it was ultimately a Rube Goldberg contraption, fanciful to the point of absurdity and somehow effective nonetheless. About the best that can be said for this scheme is that it’s over. Plus, it seemed to have a profoundly aphrodisiacal effect on its perpetrators.