Better Call Saul Continues The Breaking Bad Legacy In the Perfect Way

I don’t think there will any, but Matty D requires it just in case:

SPOILER ALERT

For those that were never sucked into Breaking Bad, there’s still time! As a wise man (who has seen every episode of Breaking Bad except for the finale) once said: “Netflix will still be there in ten years.” Well regardless, Vince Gilligan isn’t done showing us scenic Albequerque yet. This past Sunday night, Gilligan and AMC premiered Better Call Saul, the prequel to Breaking Bad focusing on fan-favorite supporting character Saul Goodman. While it’s only two epsiodes in, Better Call Saul is fantastic–and not just for Breaking Bad fans. Combining the witty writing styles we’ve seen from Gilligan in both Breaking Bad and The X-Files with Bob Odenkirk’s incredible job as Saul/Jimmy McGill is television gold.

Gilligan has figured out how to do something that other showrunners should take note of: refreshing and retooling said television gold. Granted these shows run on AMC, a cable network, so that gives more flexibility than network TV shows have–both  in content and number of episodes. That’s not to say Network TV hasn’t successfully retooled a show. NBC and Greg Daniels changed up Parks and Rec going into its second season to differentiate Leslie Knope from The Office’s Michael Scott and most recently with its final season taking place in 2017. While Parks is one of my favorite shows of all time, it, like many Network TV shows, has been stretched out over the course of so many seasons, hence the need for a change.

The refresh/retool method certainly has been used to create new storylines within existing shows as well as in new shows altogether (see: any spinoff in the history of television) but what Gilligan has done here is genius. He didn’t necessarily need to end Breaking Bad, but did so anyway on an EXTREMELY high note–leaving us wanting so much more. He (and AMC) didn’t need Better Call Saul to happen to milk the Breaking Bad cow dry–like many showrunners/networks have done *cough* How I Met Your Mother. Gilligan did so because he firmly believes in the universe he’s created but realizes what the limitations are to it. While we may have gotten close to that limit for our friends Walt and Jessie, we’re not even close for Saul.

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