Oh hey! There have been a number of Breaking Bad actors to pop up on this spin-off for a while now, but this time there’s one who was there from the start as a main member of the cast: DEA Agent Hank Schrader, as played by Dean Norris. Oh, and he brought Steven Michael Quezada’s Gomez along for the ride. Makes sense since they are partners and all.
They have never had to deal with Jimmy McGill before.
I rather like the way this episode is set up. Jimmy is digging himself in deeper to hard crime than he probably ever wanted to. Kim is feeling guilty about her own, much more highly lucrative career. And Mike, well, his choices got a nice German man killed, and unlike Kim and Jimmy, Mike might be even worse at expressing his feelings in a way that won’t get someone else hurt.
Jimmy, at least, got there by accident when Nacho recommends Jimmy/Saul’s services to obvious drug lord Lalo Salmanaca. Jimmy doesn’t really want any part of that, but he can’t exactly say no. What he can do, instead, is try to quote a price so outrageously high that Lalo can’t afford it. But then it turns out Lalo has more than enough of that in cash in his pocket right now. Oops. Granted, Jimmy’s job here is to go see the recently arrested Krazy-8 in prison and get him onboard with a plan to tell the DEA only what Lalo wants them to know in a way that get everyone off the hook while giving away details on Gus’s operation, and with Nacho working for both, well…it’s not like Gus won’t know what happened, but likewise, he can only do so much about it without revealed he has a spy in Lalo’s inner circle.
Not that I think Gus cares at all for Nacho, but Gus would need a new spy after all that.
But seeing Jimmy run rings around Hank and Gomie…man, that was a thing of beauty. I know Hank isn’t really stupid (there’s a crafty intelligence there when he wants to use it), but it did take him an awful long time to realize the drug kingpin he was looking for was a regular guest at his house.
Kim, though, she likes doing the pro bono work, so evicting a stubborn old man out of his house to build a bank call center doesn’t really work for her. She loses her temper but then tries to make up for it. Kim has slid into places she never really wanted to go just as much as Jimmy has, the only real difference being Kim’s slide is into morally dubious but entirely legal work. Jimmy’s work is a lot of fast-talking cons. He didn’t set out to represent major criminals, but it’s hard for him to say no for multiple reasons. Kim could walk away. But somehow, that seems unlikely for other reasons like she needs to pay rent and the like.
As for Mike, he’s getting drunk and breaking the arms of punks who try to rob him. Neither seems like a good way to go.
Still old man Acker got through to Kim in ways that I haven’t really seen before. She wants to help him, but he doesn’t think she does. Shaken Kim is an interesting Kim. It’s a lot like Scared Jimmy. It’s not something I have seen too much of before, and I like that direction for the character.