Better Call Saul: Breaking Bad spin-off for Saul Goodman confirmed
James R | On 11, Sep 2013
Photo: © 2013 Sony Pictures Television Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Created a hit TV show? Seeing your baby come to a bitter end? Don’t know what to do with your life next? Better Call Saul!
That’s what AMC is doing: the network has officially confirmed plans to creating a Breaking Bad spin-off about Saul Goodman.
Walter White’s sleazy, smiley and ruthlessly smart lawyer, Bob Odenkirk has fast become one of our favourite characters on the show with his Lionel Hutz-like attitude to life and that inconvenient thing known as the law. The spin-off show, tentatively called Better Call Saul, will be a prequel following the “evolution of the popular Saul Goodman character before he ever became Walter White’s lawyer”, AMC has announced.
Breaking Bad’s creator Vince Gilligan has been working on the programme for some time, even as the award-winning show steams ahead to its presumably grisly finale.
Saul first arrived on our screens back in Season 2 of Breaking Bad, when Walt and Jesse hired him to defend clueless dealer Badger after his capture by the DEA. By making Saul’s solo outing a prequel, of course, Vince’s spin-off still leaves room for him to die horribly in the coming weeks.
Gilligan has been open about his desire to create the spin-off show, while Odenkirk has been equally enthusiastic. “I would love to do it,” he told the press on the Season 5 promotional tour. “I’d do it in a second, because if Vince wrote it, it’s going to be awesome. Other than that, for me, the spinoff was just having been on the show. Everything good that’s already come for me being on this show is all I’d ever need to be happy.”
Gilligan told members of the press at a recent roundtable interview: “Our best guess at this moment, with the caveat that it could change, our best guess is it would be an hour long and the best way to describe it would be, we put as much humour as we could into Breaking Bad to leaven the extraordinary darkness, so to my mind roughly Breaking Bad was 80% drama to 20% comedy or humour, maybe this would be the flip of that.
“It would be 70/75% comedic to 25% dramatic because just turning Saul Goodman’s world into a sitcom, a 30 minute sitcom, it wouldn’t quite feel right to me, it wouldn’t feel authentic. Saul Goodman is a funny character but he lives in a very serious and dangerous world, so if we gave that short shrift it would feel inauthentic, and it would reduce the tension. Comedic tension versus dramatic tension, they both operate using a great many of the same principles, so to make it more sitcom-y, if you will, would be to do it an injustice I would think.”
Given the role Netflix has played in the phenomenal success of Breaking Bad, we firmly expect them to take the same on-demand distribution route with Better Call Saul.
For more meth-cooking goodness, read our Season Five Part 2 reviews. A new episode is added to Netflix UK every Monday.