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Better Call Saul – S3E8 – Slip
As the season draws to a close, several plot lines are near their boiling point. But with the deliberate, slow burn pacing of Better Call Saul, “Slip” is less of an explosive episode than one suffused with a creeping sense that our characters are all taking crucial steps.
Jimmy is merging his bitter vindictive side with his ability to provide legal assistance to those who might otherwise be crushed by the system. Mike has struck a handshake deal with Gus Fring to launder his ill-gotten money so that Stacy and Kaylee can benefit from it. Chuck appears to be making an honest run at recovery but is about to receive bad news about this malpractice insurance. And Kim is taking on extra business in order to be prepared for the day when Jimmy may be unable to uphold his part of their financial bargain, if not their personal relationship as well. Even Howard seems to be at his wit’s end with regards to the complications surrounding Chuck’s condition and the ways it effects business at the firm.
Everyone is at the top of their respective roller coaster, setting us up for an eventful end to the season. And it comes at a time when our protagonist is losing his incentive to walk the straight and narrow. We learn from the flashback that begins “Slip” that Jimmy places a lot of importance on the idea of being ready to do whatever it takes —to survive, to thrive, to screw the other guy before he screws you. On one hand, Jimmy’s outlook is darkening. On the other, he’s showing flashes of the fast-talking, deal-making Saul Goodman we came to know on Breaking Bad. It’s as exhilarating to watch as it is worrying.