Better Call Saul: Inflatable
March 28, 2016 9:07 PM - Season 2, Episode 7 - Subscribe

The one with the bagpipes.

Best montage ever?
posted by Sys Rq (110 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
Music in the flashback: "Sweet City Woman" by the Stampeders, "Dancing in the Moonlight" by King Harvest.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:16 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]


Also: "Scorpio" by Dennis Coffey.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:35 PM on March 28, 2016


Mike did not like Saul saying he did this because he was scared at all. I think in his head he was telling himself it was more about the money than the threats and that he had proven he wasn't scared by going face to face.

Funny how in many ways Jimmy is right back where he started but so much is different. He has confidence, he has a plan, he moved back into that office because he's comfortable there...not because he has no choice.
posted by Drinky Die at 9:42 PM on March 28, 2016 [4 favorites]


"Howard."

"It's Rich."

Ouch.

Also, it sometimes takes me a few times to get my answering machine message right. I wonder how many times it takes to film a scene about getting your answering machine right.
posted by SpacemanStix at 9:44 PM on March 28, 2016 [6 favorites]


I can't think of the last time I laughed as loud or for as long as the "Jimmy tries to get himself fired" sequence
posted by The Gooch at 9:46 PM on March 28, 2016 [4 favorites]


Well this comes to mind for me.
posted by Drinky Die at 9:48 PM on March 28, 2016 [2 favorites]


Mike did not like Saul saying he did this because he was scared at all. I think in his head he was telling himself it was more about the money than the threats and that he had proven he wasn't scared by going face to face.

Yeah, and it's worth noting that when Jimmy was telling Mike about the horrors Salamanca put him through, he's talking about the Salamanca that Mike was supposed to kill.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:48 PM on March 28, 2016 [4 favorites]


Half measures.


/literally tears card in half
posted by Drinky Die at 9:50 PM on March 28, 2016 [3 favorites]


Rainbow. Juicer.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:13 PM on March 28, 2016 [3 favorites]


Loved the resolution of the question "Was Chuck telling the truth about little Jimmy and their dad?" "Well... Yes and no."
posted by bleep at 11:15 PM on March 28, 2016 [9 favorites]


Well and for multiple values of "the truth". Did Chuck know Jimmy's side of the story? Probably not. Would he care about it or be capable of believing it? Probably not.
posted by bleep at 11:19 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]



"Howard."

"It's Rich."


It took me a good 40 minutes after the show to realize that was her subconscious telling her that this new law firm was just more of the same. She would have the same dynamic there of HHM. She wouldn't have "More".
posted by bswinburn at 11:48 PM on March 28, 2016 [9 favorites]


Pops McGill was a sap.
posted by rhizome at 1:52 AM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Maybe Pops McGill was setting up the con men of Cicero for the ultimate long con!

More realistically, I'm guessing young Jimmy starts learning to con by ripping off the con men after they rip off his dad.
posted by isthmus at 2:39 AM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


God, that scene with the inflatable and Jimmy working his transformation! I can't recall the last time I saw such a brilliantly edited scene on any show. Perfect music, too.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:57 AM on March 29, 2016 [12 favorites]


So I guess I'm the only one that didn't like the transformation montage. It really pulled me out of the show and I felt like they were hammering me over the head with "JIMMY HAS CHANGED AND WAS INSPIRED BY AN INFLATABLE MAN". I liked the parts where he was trying to get fired, but the rest of it just wasn't my cup of tea.
posted by LizBoBiz at 6:14 AM on March 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I think in his head he was telling himself it was more about the money than the threats and that he had proven he wasn't scared by going face to face.

Agreed -- and I think Mike didn't like hearing about the kind of danger he'd brought so close to Kaleigh and his daughter-in-law. I think he'd forgotten that he had that kind of vulnerability.

"That ocular migraine you call a business suit," Ed Begley, Jr. was really well cast as Cliff. I liked that Cliff was completely aware of Jimmy's plan but gave it because Jimmy wasn't worth the trouble. And, I loved Jimmy's truthful talk with Kim that he needed to be himself. They're going in with both eyes open -- if Kim actually leaves -- but I dread where it will leave Kim.
posted by gladly at 6:56 AM on March 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


So I guess I'm the only one that didn't like the transformation montage. It really pulled me out of the show and I felt like they were hammering me over the head with "JIMMY HAS CHANGED AND WAS INSPIRED BY AN INFLATABLE MAN".

You are not alone. That's the first time I've really been like "Hrm...not so hot that scene" with this show.

I mean, great editing - I just think they were belabouring the point.

Just the shot of Jimmy looking out the window and inflatable man flapping in the reflection as he's stopped in traffic would have been sufficient. YMMV.

Loud suits?

Check.

Second thoughts about who he wants to be on his voicemail message?

Check.

The Goodman cometh.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 7:07 AM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Stray thoughts:

* The fact that Kim never shows up in Breaking Bad (at least, I don't remember her in it, but I may be wrong) implies that something awful is going to happen to her any episode now, doesn't it?

* Anachronism that bugged me more than it should have: In the opening flashback, cans on the shelves in the c-store were of the "P$$T" brand, which didn't exist back then. I was also thrown by Omar's use of a Levenger Circa notebook, which I think didn't exist in that timeframe either. But those are stupid piddly things that shouldn't have bugged me.

* Between this episode's "transformation scene" and the second season of "Fargo," I have the sinking feeling that the whole split-screen thing is going to become the next storytelling cliche that shows up everywhere and gets really old, really quick.
posted by jbickers at 8:07 AM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


That was Saul in the room with Mike and the detectives. It was good to see Saul.
posted by bondcliff at 9:51 AM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Whoa whoa whoa. Gene's in Omaha and Kim's from some nowhere on the Kansas/Nebraska border?
posted by whuppy at 9:54 AM on March 29, 2016 [14 favorites]


Another anachronism: A timelapse shot showed a changing billboard. I'm pretty sure those didn't happen until the last 5 years or so.
posted by whuppy at 10:05 AM on March 29, 2016


Hmm, so Kim has a past she wants to be vague about, wonder if we'll get to find out any more about that? Something in her past that prevents her from resisting her attraction to a charming but morally flexible guy who she knows is nothing but trouble?

Everything on this show feels like forshadowing:
Omar: I have to get home to my kids
Jimmy: Drive safe!
Me: Shit...


It just occurred to me, it is perhaps interesting that his last words to Cliff were "I think you're a good man". Goodman. What was Cliff's reply? I don't remember.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 10:20 AM on March 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


His reply was: "And if I'm being totally honest, I think you're an asshole."
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 10:24 AM on March 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


The real estate agent showing the house to Mike and his daughter-in-law is the same agent who busted klepto Marie in Breaking Bad. The production crew even used the same company logo on the for sale sign in front of the houses in both scenes.
posted by peeedro at 10:30 AM on March 29, 2016 [23 favorites]


Another anachronism: A timelapse shot showed a changing billboard. I'm pretty sure those didn't happen until the last 5 years or so.

I didn't happen to catch that. Was it one of those billboards that have rotating panels? If so, those have been around a whole lot longer than the last five years. If it was LED, though, yeah. Not period correct.
posted by Thorzdad at 11:11 AM on March 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


Thanks Peeedro: she looked familiar but I couldn't place where I'd seen her before.
posted by cardboard at 11:28 AM on March 29, 2016


The fact that Kim never shows up in Breaking Bad (at least, I don't remember her in it, but I may be wrong) implies that something awful is going to happen to her any episode now, doesn't it?

FWIW, at the Better Call Saul panel at Paleyfest a few weeks ago, this very topic came up. Rhea Seehorn, Vince Gilligan, and others all said -- while steadfastly not giving any spoilers away -- that they are presently refusing to assume that that's the case.
posted by the return of the thin white sock at 11:40 AM on March 29, 2016


Between this episode's "transformation scene" and the second season of "Fargo," I have the sinking feeling that the whole split-screen thing is going to become the next storytelling cliche that shows up everywhere and gets really old, really quick.

Fargo got away with it because it used it in service of its seventies setting. BCS seems to be using it very sparingly; the only other occasion I remember it using such a stylized montage was the grifting-in-Cicero episode in S1.

(Which I think was another Kelley Dixon edit? Makes me wonder how much these are storyboarded versus how much they're "film a bunch of shots and drop them in Kelley's lap with a note that says 'have fun'.")
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:49 AM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Was it one of those billboards that have rotating panels?

I love you guys. I knew someone was gonna counter with that. Definitely current-day LED stylee.
posted by whuppy at 12:10 PM on March 29, 2016


The wacky inflatable man montage initially grated but I also found it kind of fun. Like, it had a charm and momentum. On the other hand, everything amazing about this show so far has been a product of subtle character work, so it did feel kind of non-compelling in terms of what this show is capable of.

The intro has vindicated me. However, I really disliked Pops McGill. I thought they were going to make him a grizzled yet kindly farmer type, with a quiet dignity and a goodly, godfearing heart. Not a COMPLETE IDIOT.
posted by stoneandstar at 12:28 PM on March 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


He did look really hard for those spark plugs, though.
posted by minsies at 12:43 PM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah, Pops McGill didn't work for me either. Growing up with a fool of a dad and watching him being swindled would probably make you value honesty and protect the foolish. I have a hard time believing, like Sawyer in Lost, watching your daddy get cheated by a conman will make you a conman. Quite the opposite I'd think.
posted by peeedro at 12:45 PM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah, but seeing your dad ignore your true warnings might quickly lead to enough resentment in the moment that you raid the register just to say FUCK YOU DAD, and then, once you see you can get away with it, you keep doing it and it just becomes second nature.
posted by Sys Rq at 1:15 PM on March 29, 2016 [8 favorites]


They could have just gone with the rainbow shirt shot and cut to new-Jimmy, but this episode felt evaluative, like it had a lot of space it was working with. Lots of quiet parts and pauses, exhaling, looking. I felt the last two episodes were kind of cruising an in-between'ness of the plot (more development than conclusions), and if that's so, then this episode was a fermata and next week might have some surprises. This is the second no-Chuck episode, after all.
posted by rhizome at 1:31 PM on March 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


I also thought the choice of a band named "King Harvest" during the con scene was on-point.

Both of the bands in that scene were one-hit wonders, btw.
posted by rhizome at 1:32 PM on March 29, 2016


Yeah but Jimmy didn't just watch his Dad get swindled once. He watched it over and over again. His dad was just rigid and unchangable and on the losing side. The bad guy is then saying "You don't have to be your dad." It reminds me of a lot of the scene in Mad Men where young Don/then-Dick has the hobo staying with them and he's like "You don't have to be like your dad." Very similar circumstances- the dad behaving in a way the son disapproves of towards the stranger. The stranger saying to the boy "There's other types of men you can be. You don't have to be him. You can be me!" The boy growing up and literally changing his identity. The boy growing up to do what they saw the stranger dong.
posted by bleep at 1:44 PM on March 29, 2016 [12 favorites]


Both of the bands in that scene were one-hit wonders, btw.

Not in Canada! The Stampeders had a long string of hits up here, though that was their biggest. So it goes with first-wave CanCon.
posted by Sys Rq at 1:59 PM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Some interesting behind the scenes of the podcast about the merch/magazine wrangling that went on for the store scene - apparently clearing the rights for all the brands/titles was bananas.

Also, they get into the vagaries of editing and tendering massive 4K video files. Neat.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:14 PM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


"rendering" not "tendering."
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:39 PM on March 29, 2016


I'm sure there's a lot of tendering going on too.
posted by bleep at 3:44 PM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


I liked seeing the Jay's chips. We still have them here. They're good.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 3:53 PM on March 29, 2016


* The fact that Kim never shows up in Breaking Bad (at least, I don't remember her in it, but I may be wrong) implies that something awful is going to happen to her any episode now, doesn't it?

There are a lot of different ways that they can go with Kim; I thought it was significant that, last episode, she initiated the con. She could be in jail; she could be running cons elsewhere. Something tells me that it's not as simple as "well, she isn't around in BB, so..." (ominous discordant piano chord). The thing where she's talking about her past--or, really, seeming to try to talk about it as little as possible--did strike me as maybe being pretty significant. If I had to bet about it coming up again next episode, I would venture that Schweikart et al. might just run a quickie background check on her and find out something that might have kicked her out of the running for the job; that may, in fact, be the real reason why she wants to go solo. She may end up calling a certain vacuum repair guy for reasons that have nothing to do with Jimmy. One of the themes in this episode is how many of the principals--Jimmy, Kim, Chuck, even Mike despite his daugher-in-law and granddaughter--are essentially isolated, and while we kind of know what's up with the guys, I don't think we've quite got what the deal is with Kim.

Also, WRT Chuck Senior, it would be easy to conclude that he went out of business because he ended up literally giving the store away, but I still think that there may end up being a bit more to it than that. Also, the actor playing him, Raphael Sbarge, has done a lot of interesting work, everything from a small bit in Risky Business to voicing Kaidan Alenko in the Mass Effect videogame series and having a short-lived recurring bit in Star Trek: Voyager.
posted by Halloween Jack at 6:25 PM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Speaking of anachronisms, I didn't bring it up in last week's thread, but the Moscow Mules in Bali Ha'i really pulled me out of the episode. Yes, they've been around since the 1950s, but who was drinking/serving them in 2002? In Albuquerque?
posted by HumuloneRanger at 6:35 PM on March 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'm on Team Inflatable Man because it's all about the Inflatable Man's dancing disco arms. You Go, Inflatable Man YOU GO.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:39 PM on March 29, 2016 [12 favorites]


Yeah, and it's worth noting that when Jimmy was telling Mike about the horrors Salamanca put him through, he's talking about the Salamanca that Mike was supposed to kill.

It's funny how BCS is kinda-sorta tackling a dilemma that Walking Dead has been failing to pull off. If you show someone mercy, are you responsible for what they do afterward?

I can't tell if Mike is plotting to kill one of the Salamancas or if he's surveilling them for some other purpose. We know Hector ends up in a wheelchair some time between now and BB. The assumption has been that it was a naturally-occurring stroke or degenerative disease, but what if it's fallout from an assassination attempt by Mike? Mike didn't share scenes with either Tuco or Tio in BB, and trying to kill a "Don Salamanca" would certainly attract Gus' attention...

But that's probably too easy for this show, which is part of why I love it.

Whoa whoa whoa. Gene's in Omaha and Kim's from some nowhere on the Kansas/Nebraska border?

Gene is so defeated because Kim, who is now a massively successful lawyer, stopped by the Cinnabon on her way home for a parent's funeral or something. Hey, why not, right?

It's something I can see going either way: Either they split because Kim is frustrated that she can't be as successful as Jimmy by playing it straight... or she gets fed up with Jimmy cutting corners all the time, because she's getting along just fine without the shortcuts. The separate-practices-in-the-same-office plan feels like Kim might be trying to set a good example for Jimmy and show him that there's a third option that lets you be your own boss while still playing it straight.

I especially think Kim's practice bombing, if that's what happens, won't cause the two to split because Kim has shown that she's willing to play Jimmy's game sometimes. If her solo practice truly bombed, I could see her swallowing her pride and being a "colourful" lawyer with Jimmy. And probably being ok with it for a while.

The wacky inflatable man montage initially grated but I also found it kind of fun. Like, it had a charm and momentum.

It had charm and momentum, and more importantly it goes to show exactly what kind of lawyer Jimmy's going to be, as well as conveying Jimmy's sense of relief at being able to do what he loves best -- break the system in his favour. We get to see it not only in the scenes of Jimmy pushing boundaries and wearing colourful suits, but also in the very style of the montage itself. In any other show, I'd say it was heavy-handed, but BB/BCS rest so heavily on character work that I'm willing to indulge occasional extravagances like this. When they're done in service of a similarly extravagant character, that is.

Yeah, but seeing your dad ignore your true warnings might quickly lead to enough resentment in the moment that you raid the register just to say FUCK YOU DAD, and then, once you see you can get away with it, you keep doing it and it just becomes second nature.

Exactly. With a side of "well, if everybody's getting away with conning this sap, I'm gonna get my piece as well".
posted by tobascodagama at 7:02 PM on March 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm assuming that Jimmy accepts Kim's counter-offer, just because he's such an obvious sap where she's concerned. But I could be wrong! Maybe what breaks them up is Jimmy's indignation over Kim's proposal. It is kind of an insult, after all, that she'll share an office with him but not a practice.
posted by tobascodagama at 7:22 PM on March 29, 2016


as well as conveying Jimmy's sense of relief at being able to do what he loves best

That was my impression, too. Anyone else, it would have been dumb and highly painful/embarrassing to watch, but for him it's just what he does best. They didn't build too much because it's predictable Jimmy, but they also telegraphed the huge relief that it probably was for him by making it ridiculous.

If he's insulted by Kim's offer I'm going to be kind of ticked. He doesn't have to take it, but she's clearly showing she likes and respects him (despite everything), but knows they have incompatible work styles. Which should be fine! How many people work with their SO? Most people, I think, would go crazy.
posted by stoneandstar at 7:51 PM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


I agree!

But Jimmy being a major dick to Erin in the scene where he leaves D&M feels ominous to me. Is he actually capable of respecting someone who plays strictly by the book? Especially after all the shit Chuck put him through?
posted by tobascodagama at 8:12 PM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Growing up with a fool of a dad and watching him being swindled would probably make you value honesty and protect the foolish.

I figure you'd go one of two ways... Either this or deciding "the world is full of con men and victims, I don't want to be a victim like my Dad."

Chuck went one way, Jimmy went the other. But you can see that Jimmy got some of his Dad's qualities too -- like going out of his way to help Chuck long after Chuck stopped deserving it.

But Jimmy being a major dick to Erin in the scene where he leaves D&M feels ominous to me. Is he actually capable of respecting someone who plays strictly by the book? Especially after all the shit Chuck put him through?

I thought Jimmy respected Omar just fine, and even Clifford Main. But maybe Jimmy has a problem respecting women... he does after all grow up to be the guy that calls his secretary "honey tits".

I'm on Team Inflatable Man because it's all about the Inflatable Man's dancing disco arms. You Go, Inflatable Man YOU GO.

There are not enough favorite buttons for this on my screen. Not nearly enough.

I loved the inflatable man montage because it's the sort of fun musical scene they did on Breaking Bad, like my favorite one, but it's done purely for fun and levity and there's no lingering darkness in it.

Also I was dancing along with Mr. Inflatable and you can't take that moment away from me
posted by mmoncur at 8:41 PM on March 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


But Jimmy being a major dick to Erin in the scene where he leaves D&M feels ominous to me.

She might show up again to get some revenge at an advanced position, but here she was the guy getting the hamburger in the face while Cliff and Omar make the cut.
posted by rhizome at 8:48 PM on March 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


When it comes to the subject (of Kim not being in Breaking Bad) between my friends and I, I always remind them (and myself) that Breaking Bad wasn't the story of Saul Goodman, and it DEFINITELY wasn't the story of Jimmy McGill. There's gotta be a limit on supplementary characters somewhere.

Also, if she were in his life at that point, he might try very hard to keep her separate from his criminal work dealings, so we'd have never seen her. We know she asked/demanded that he never tell her about his rule-breaking ways. Even stopping by his office on a lunch break would destroy that separation.

So, yeah, the nice lady doesn't necessarily have to die, okay!? (please)
posted by destructive cactus at 9:41 PM on March 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I think Jimmy is going to go for Kim's offer, because his highest priority is being together, and he hasn't been able to find a good way to resolve their tension over the way that they conduct business. But yes, if he's ticked, I'm going to be ticked, because it's a perfect solution at this point, and his option would require Kim to make moral compromises that are pretty unfair. My guess is he goes for it, and it still creates a rift in their relationship as she observes him from a little further away. Or else Jimmy's business brings in some unsavory people, and it puts Kim at risk. Oh no, I'm worried about Kim again. Or, given my track record, this show is going to do something entirely different, and probably better, than what I always feel is a good guess.
posted by SpacemanStix at 9:50 PM on March 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


But Jimmy being a major dick to Erin in the scene where he leaves D&M feels ominous to me.

It reminds me that every once in a while I also don't like Jimmy very much, even though he's an eminently sympathetic character. The whole "getting fired" scene made me feel bad for Cliff, because he really didn't do anything to deserve what happened, and Jimmy was pretty much, "Oh, well." Sorry, Jimmy, inherent vices or not, you were pretty much a jerk to get what you wanted. And thinking about that, it makes me feel pretty unsettled, as my big fear is that Jimmy eventually turns to Saul not because of reasons outside of himself, mixed with a little bit of vice that you sort of understand; but that the unsavory side of him is going to be primarily responsible, it's going to be painful, and he won't be able to blame anyone but himself.
posted by SpacemanStix at 9:56 PM on March 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


I have to speak up in defense of Jimmy's treatment of Cliff and the firm here. The thing that sticks with me is that Jimmy had a good idea that worked -- the commercial -- and while it's fair to say Cliff was right to be pissed that Jimmy didn't consult him before airing it, Cliff let something get in the way of doing the sensible thing and keep running the commercial. That weirdass psychedelic test pattern ad replaced it, running in the dead of night (and not in the prime slot Jimmy's knowledge of his audience allowed him to select), and was surely much less effective. A stodgy, behind the times firm that's so protective of its rep that it can't risk letting its advertising actually look like an advertisement? What a bunch of priggish d-bags. They're too afraid of looking cheap or silly to do their job. I'm watching the OJ show in tandem with this one, and I can't help but see some of Johnnie Cochran in Jimmy -- he seems kinda tacky, kinda gauche, and no one takes him seriously until they find him suddenly kicking their ass.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 11:03 PM on March 29, 2016 [14 favorites]


That interview at Schweikart et al was screaming that Kim has a shady past that is going to come back to bite her, like, this season. I'm not even convinced that that's her real name. I'm not saying that she ran cons like Jimmy has (that seemed to be a little new to her although she took to it suspiciously well), but I wouldn't be surprised if she has a criminal record, even just due to something stupid.
posted by dfan at 5:24 AM on March 30, 2016 [3 favorites]


Wouldn't a criminal record have come up before at Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill ?
posted by Pendragon at 5:46 AM on March 30, 2016


Wouldn't a criminal record have come up before at Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill ?
Under her real name, yes. That's why I'm hypothesizing that she changed her identity and started over before coming to New Mexico.
posted by dfan at 6:25 AM on March 30, 2016


Do a backgound check on Gisele St. Clair.
posted by snofoam at 6:39 AM on March 30, 2016 [9 favorites]


I loved the part where the camera lingered on a rack full of Conn's potato chips after the dad followed the con man out of the store. I had to look up if they are/were an actual brand. (Yup, made in Ohio.) So on top of the store being well set up for period accuracy, there was also some intent in product placement as well.
posted by Seamus at 6:41 AM on March 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


She might show up again to get some revenge at an advanced position, but here she was the guy getting the hamburger in the face while Cliff and Omar make the cut.

Oh, I don't mean ominous because Erin is going to get back at them. That would be kind of silly, to be honest.

What I mean is that Jimmy specifically chose her to be the hamburger-in-the-face-guy on his way out of D&M. He fucking apologised to Cliff, he went out of his way to say "you're cool" to Omar on multiple occasions, but he grabs Erin's drink and bins it. And what did she do to deserve this? Tried to help him fit in. And she put in long after-work hours to do so.

(The other thing about Omar: As far as I can tell, he's not a lawyer like Erin is, he's just a clerk.)

Jimmy's anti-authoritarian streak seems to extend not just to authority figures but even to peers (shit, Erin was technically junior to him, even though she had more time at the firm and probably more time as a lawyer overall) who are simply willing to play along with the system. Wolves and sheep, right? It's easy enough for Jimmy to pretend that Kim isn't like that when they're working in separate offices -- or both down in the mail room -- and occasionally hooking up. But when she's across the hall?
posted by tobascodagama at 7:26 AM on March 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


But Jimmy being a major dick to Erin in the scene where he leaves D&M feels ominous to me.

Did you note her mean-girl eyebrow flip as he came out of Cliff Main's office? She was all about the schadenfreude and showed it. He saw that eyebrow flip and reacted in the moment with many weeks of pent-up frustration, forced to submit to her micromanagement and babysitting, when she is technically his junior both in age and at the firm.

Jimmy is a misogynist, definitely that's a thing. But Erin is not a total innocent- I've known a lot of Erins. Erin is at one edge of a continuum and the other side of that continuum is Dolores Umbridge.

I very much look forward to the inevitable court showdown between Erin and Jimmy sometime in season 4.
posted by aabbbiee at 7:27 AM on March 30, 2016 [5 favorites]


Whoa whoa whoa. Gene's in Omaha and Kim's from some nowhere on the Kansas/Nebraska border?

The Hinky Dinky reference was a great one. It was a supermarket chain out of Omaha. There weren't many near the Kansas-Nebraska border, but Reddit thinks they've found the city mentioned in the show:

Hamlin, NE. It's a 16 minute drive from the Hinky Dinky that used to be in Falls City. It's only about two hours from Omaha.
posted by maxsparber at 8:22 AM on March 30, 2016 [5 favorites]


What I mean is that Jimmy specifically chose her to be the hamburger-in-the-face-guy on his way out of D&M. He fucking apologised to Cliff, he went out of his way to say "you're cool" to Omar on multiple occasions, but he grabs Erin's drink and bins it. And what did she do to deserve this? Tried to help him fit in. And she put in long after-work hours to do so.

Yes, in the most obnoxious way possible, hovering over him like some kind of style guide gargoyle, offering advice no one asked for, picking away at his every move, despite his outranking her, despite his giving every indication that her advice wasn't wanted, clinging to his side at all times such that his only escape is the men's room. Erin is the soul-crushingest cog in the D&M machine.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:55 AM on March 30, 2016 [8 favorites]


Hamlin, NE.

Hamlin, KS.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:58 AM on March 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


If anybody watches "Togetherness" (RIP), I see similarities between Erin and the blonde charter school woman.
posted by rhizome at 9:29 AM on March 30, 2016


All we need is a town called McGill, and we can have a veritable law partnership of towns.
posted by tobascodagama at 10:20 AM on March 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yes, in the most obnoxious way possible, hovering over him like some kind of style guide gargoyle, offering advice no one asked for, picking away at his every move, despite his outranking her, despite his giving every indication that her advice wasn't wanted, clinging to his side at all times such that his only escape is the men's room. Erin is the soul-crushingest cog in the D&M machine.

Haha, ok.

Look, I know Jimmy is Our Hero or whatever, but he was an absolute prick to Erin for no good reason from the very moment she appeared. Cliff sensed that Jimmy was having trouble fitting in, so he assigned someone to help him with the stuff he never had the chance to learn as a solo lawyer. And Erin did her assigned job with appropriate professionalism, full stop.

Fuck's sake, how many Skylers are we gonna have to burn through before we figure out the pattern?
posted by tobascodagama at 10:22 AM on March 30, 2016 [17 favorites]


Cliff assigned Erin to watch Jimmy after the Sandpiper ad fiasco, not because he sensed there was a culture mismatch, not because he needed helping. Because the partners believed Jimmy needed a babysitter.

Erin relished the role of Jimmy's babysitter and held her authority over his head. Note the scene where she is checking his paperwork in the last episode (or maybe 2 weeks ago), where he is reading dates straight off the pages but she still leans over to double-check every single one of them. Note the time when she insists on them both staying late so that she can teach him how to create a bulleted list. Jimmy chafes at this kind of thing; many of us (not just men!) do.

Is there a level of misogyny involved? Sure. Mrs. Nguyen (at the nail salon) is a similar character, cut from the same cloth as Erin, and Jimmy loves to poke at her as well. Neither of them like Jimmy, both want to control his behavior, both relish their own superiority and authority over him. And neither do a very good job of hiding obvious disgust, annoyance, condescension, irritation at him, much of which is openly hostile. He reacts to that, much like a teenager would, by poking and prodding and provoking more hostile reactions. To ignore this give-and-take of the relationships is to handwave away a big part of this series.
posted by aabbbiee at 10:56 AM on March 30, 2016 [18 favorites]


Erin is not Skyler, but she isn't some misunderstood heroine, either. Yes, she's doing her job, and yes, Cliff sent her to Jimmy to try and get him flying right. But she's also a snotty toady who took obvious joy in riding Jimmy's ass and clearly was working out a lot of aggression (in the extremely formal, clenched-sphincter, passive-aggressive way of the firm in general). Erin is a jerk.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 10:58 AM on March 30, 2016 [8 favorites]


And Erin did her assigned job with appropriate professionalism, full stop.

Yeah, but no. She works by the book, but, like, it's not "appropriately professional" to condescendingly correct your boss like he's a shmuck who doesn't know anything. You don't treat your superiors like children who need constant supervision. If part of her her job is making sure documentation looks right, then she'd save a lot of grief if she'd just rewrite it herself and say, "I edited it to conform to our house style; would you like to look it over before I send it out? Here's the style guide if you'd prefer to do it yourself."

But it's not really so much about her personally, though their personalities certainly do clash; it's more that she is the hand directly holding Jimmy down, and that's the one thing he resents the most.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:10 AM on March 30, 2016


So Erin is sneering and mean unless she actually does Jimmy's job for him?
posted by tobascodagama at 11:22 AM on March 30, 2016 [5 favorites]


(Contrast her to Omar, who is welcoming and encouraging at every turn, even going so far as hauling that cocobolo desk -- which he'd procured in the first place without the slightest hesitation -- out to the nail salon, despite being under no professional obligation to do so. He's what keeps Jimmy wanting to be there, even if it's just to get fired.)
posted by Sys Rq at 11:29 AM on March 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


I dunno with Erin. My interpretation was that she was particularly an asshole because he treated her like shit from the beginning. It's part passive aggression how much she rides him going forward. Jimmy at no point shows any sign of working with her, he abandons her to sit and fucking wait for him in an empty office. Be an adult and say no instead and maybe the relationship doesn't double in sourness.

I just go back to what I said before.

She is trying to save your job! Acknowledge to yourself you need the damn help or quit the damn job because you don't want to do it, not because Chuck doesn't want you to do it.

Erin IS Davis & Main. She is the kind of lawyer they want him to be. Either take the help or, like he eventually did, acknowledge you have to leave. No need to keep being an asshole to her about it, but he is right up to the end.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:39 AM on March 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


So Erin is sneering and mean unless she actually does Jimmy's job for him?

Correcting his mistakes is her job, surely, or she wouldn't be doing it, especially once it was clear he hated it. It's doing it to his face that's shitty -- especially if it isn't her job.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:41 AM on March 30, 2016


Having gone through the big law experience myself, similar to Jimmy, I can tell you how they handled the 'house style' thing when training new attorneys where I was.

They put the house style on the local intranet. They told us where it was during orientation. We gave copies of every brief, memo, or motion to our seniors. The seniors either edited and red-lined it themselves or edited it for content and gave it to their secretaries for format red-lining.

The red-lined document was returned to us. We fixed it. Secretaries fixed nothing.

This repeated until everything was perfect.

Later in my career, at a smaller firm, I had a secretary who was a freaking genius and I gave her my documents for a content (she might not know the law, but she had a great eye for if something was just confusing to her) and style markup before bothering to hand it to my boss. Again, she fixed nothing.

The lesson is clear, you clean up your own messes.

This training worked great and in very short order there was I had almost no style edits at all at both firms.

Erin's style of training was condescending and demeaning and implied that Jimmy couldn't read a style guide on his own and had to be spoon fed everything.
posted by bswinburn at 11:55 AM on March 30, 2016 [16 favorites]


it's not "appropriately professional" to condescendingly correct your boss like he's a shmuck who doesn't know anything.

Jimmy was not Erin's boss. He had a higher job level, but that doesn't mean he's her boss.
posted by primethyme at 12:20 PM on March 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


(Contrast her to Omar, who is welcoming and encouraging at every turn, even going so far as hauling that cocobolo desk -- which he'd procured in the first place without the slightest hesitation -- out to the nail salon, despite being under no professional obligation to do so. He's what keeps Jimmy wanting to be there, even if it's just to get fired.)

Omar is a total bro, for sure, but he's absolutely going out of his way in his desire to help Jimmy. Partly because he's more of a subordinate than a peer, but maybe partly because he's just the kind of guy who likes going the extra mile.

But it really is the extra mile that Omar is going, as Jimmy himself acknowledges. One should not have to do anything extra to earn basic consideration as a human being, which Jimmy denies to Erin at the very start.

The most charitable reading of Jimmy's treatment of Erin is that he sees her solely as a symbol of everything he hates about D&M. But he had a choice to also acknowledge her as a human being worthy of a basic level of respect, and he made the other one.

Describing her as the hamburger-in-the-face-guy upthread was extremely apt. What did that guy actually do to the quitting employee in the scene? Fucking nothing! I don't care how much you hate your job, throwing a burger at some random guy on your way out is still a dick move.

The situation with Erin is worse than that, because she's actively trying to teach him how to be a lawyer at D&M. Jimmy doesn't want that, but it's not Erin's fault that he doesn't want that. Yes, she could hand him the style book and walk away, but she's offering him one-on-one help in case he needs it. She's really going above-and-beyond as much as Omar is, it's just that Jimmy doesn't like it when she does.

The only person who actually "wronged" Jimmy in any way -- if you see assigning him a babysitter as a "wrong" rather than a second chance he honestly didn't even deserve -- was Cliff. He's the one who sent Erin to watch over him. I'm sure she sees it as a demeaning assignment, too, being asked to babysit a fellow lawyer who technically ranks above her and therefore really shouldn't need babysitting in the first place. And if she didn't at first, she surely did after he ghosted on her that first night and Jimmy made his contempt for her so crystal clear.
posted by tobascodagama at 1:10 PM on March 30, 2016 [5 favorites]


So when someone aggressively imposes on a second party against the second party's express wishes, that's okay, and doubly so of they're just following orders?

A couple things...
posted by Sys Rq at 2:29 PM on March 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


My guess about Kim's background: she's Howard's little sister -- Kim is to Howard as Jimmy is to Chuck. Kim got in some dicey trouble as a youngster (maybe in an early marriage to a sleazy Mr. Wexler), and her successful older brother bailed her out and gave her a second chance by hiring her in his firm's mail room.* She proves herself, goes on to law school (on loans from big brother's firm), and is hired as an attorney. There seems to be more resentment between Howard and Kim than the explicit story would account for (Howard keeps tossing her out of her hard-earned office for fairly minor missteps), which would make more sense in the context of a fraught sibling history. Then when Chuck's little brother needs similar help, the firm takes him into the mail room too, where he finds a natural ally in Kim.

Kim and Jimmy are both rebellious younger siblings, somewhat jealous and resentful of the successful, tight-assed (also admired and beloved) big brothers who helped them out of a jam.

*I've wondered from the start who the other Hamlin is in HHM -- presumably Howard's father, or mother? and maybe also Kim's?

question for you guys: Kim seems kind of defensive about the fact that she owes her law school tuition debt to HHM. I've never heard of a law firm financing law school for anyone in this way in the absence of a close family relationship. Does this strike anyone else as odd, or is this a thing that's done?
posted by Corvid at 2:34 PM on March 30, 2016 [3 favorites]


tobascodagama, you're not describing the show I'm watching.
posted by aabbbiee at 2:39 PM on March 30, 2016


Jimmy is definitely mean to Erin, but it is justified by Jimmy's impression of the situation. His impression IS WRONG but it explains his behavior, and I think if there was a male "Aaron" instead, he would have treated him the same.

From our point of view, Clifford is making an extra effort to help Jimmy rather than firing him, so he sends young Erin to work with Jimmy and teach him the ropes. Erin doesn't like the assignment much but does her best.

From Jimmy's point of view, Erin is constantly sticking her nose in his business and acting condescendingly toward him even though he's supposed to be her boss. She's the personification of Davis and Main trying to force him, the square peg, into a round hole. She's trying to force him to focus on things that don't matter and stopping him from doing the "important lawyer stuff" like cultivating relationships with the clerks at the courthouse.

Jimmy's completely wrong about all of that, but his motivation does make sense.

And Jimmy could have risen above it and treated everyone with respect, but Jimmy is CHILDISH. He's not mature enough or conventional enough to be a lawyer at D&M and that's the whole point.
posted by mmoncur at 3:13 PM on March 30, 2016 [5 favorites]


Is being conventional the same as being mature? I think one may look a lot like the other, but conventionality can be a learned behavior; maturity is not something you can force on a person, but you can threaten/bribe/coax/educate people into acting the way you want for sure. Some people will choose to go along to get along (Omar), but I don't know that I would call this maturity, per se. We find out in our last scene with him that Omar has kids. He needs this job, and he could do worse. Is this understanding really maturity? Is Erin really mature? She seems to take a bullying delight in needling Jimmy, which does not seem terribly adult, but she does it all within the social boundaries of the firm; she knows how to play the game that looks like maturity to the casual observer. As long as you stay in your lane, you can be as awful as you want and no one can do anything about it. She's mature the way a manipulative teen who knows how to suck up to authority figures is mature. She's a nasty person, but she probably isn't a bad person. She's living life by the rules as she understands them.

Mike's story, and even the cold open, seem somewhat disconnected from the main plot of the episode, but the thematic link is there. What lumps must you take? Mike felt like he'd gotten over on the Salamancas until Jimmy told him he shouldn't feel bad for backing down. Jimmy relates to Tuco pretty much the same way Omar probably relates to Cliff, but Mike sees Tuco a little more like Jimmy sees Cliff...or Erin. Will you be a sheep, or will you be a wolf?

The mature thing may just be to reject the dichotomy altogether. I don't know how many of us are that mature. I think we should be. I don't know if we are. It's a pretty big deal.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:36 PM on March 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


Erin doesn't like the assignment much but does her best.

Yeah, my impression was that she actually LOVED the assignment, because she got her little bit of petty authority over him. Sometimes she was right, but you know. Grey areas.

She's a nasty person, but she probably isn't a bad person. She's living life by the rules as she understands them.


To me she seems like the type who could easily be a bad person! Or at least definite Milgram experiment material.
posted by stoneandstar at 6:34 PM on March 30, 2016 [3 favorites]


I'm sayin' it here because tonight's the first night I've thought it: I am from now on going to assume that Kim Wexler survives this show. I'm going to assume that because now I'm waiting (patiently) for her to be handed her own show. I would gladly watch such a thing if created by the same team that's doing this one.
posted by komara at 7:09 PM on March 30, 2016 [10 favorites]


Erin's great because she's the gunner associate who makes partner in record time, because the other partners know she'll do all the work so they can play more golf and practice the set list for their respective Chicago tribute bands.

Erin will get her own Vince Gilligan spinoff set about 10 years later, when she realizes, to her horror, the importance of work-life balance, namely, she'll have worked 80 hour workweeks with little to show for it other than maybe she's finally paying down the principal on her student loans and she's amassed an impressive collection of Hummel figurines (she'll undervalue her own work and will only make 1/3 of what the other partners make). If only she'd listened to Jimmy and Omar.

She'll redeem herself, though, because she'll be the one who saves Saul's ass when he needs it.

TEAM ERIN, Y'ALL!
posted by Dr. Zira at 7:39 PM on March 30, 2016 [5 favorites]


Yeah I'm not on Team Kim-dies, but she may skip town like she has before, once Jimmy is being Jimmy for the last time and HHM is still going nowhere for her.
posted by rhizome at 8:36 PM on March 30, 2016


My guess: Kim will be concerned but fine when Jimmy-being-Jimmy leads to Jimmy nearly losing his license to practice law. Then she'll be concerned but fine when it leads to Jimmy nearly being arrested. Then one day it leads to a bunch of thugs with automatic weapons showing up and filling the office with holes, and she's not fine with that so she skips town.


But really I'm still imagining that Kim is waiting at home for Jimmy during Breaking Bad, and he just tells her to stay far away from the office as soon as all the Heisenberg stuff starts.
posted by mmoncur at 2:12 AM on March 31, 2016 [3 favorites]


I love how this show challenges my expectations with its filming style.

Example: After they look at the house, Mike tells Stacey "I'll see you there", they hug, and then the camera follows Mike as he slowly walks down the driveway, walks toward his car, gets out his keys, then opens the door, while Stacey's car backs out in the background.

Watching this, I think "Oh no, something's about to happen"-- like one of the cars exploding or Mike getting hit by a car or something -- because in any other show, the only reason not to cut away right after "see you there" is if you're going to have something shocking happen. I've literally seen so many cars explode on spy and cop shows, when they linger on someone walking to a car I expect that.

But this show just has its own pace. And I love it.
posted by mmoncur at 2:20 AM on March 31, 2016 [11 favorites]


the inflatable man sequence was so good i don't care about anything else.
that, and I'm starting to find Bob Odenkirk disturbingly hot again, inflatable man suit or no
posted by angrycat at 7:16 AM on March 31, 2016 [3 favorites]


I mean I'm having sexy thoughts about a character who left poop in the bathrooms I mean Vince Gilligan, you magnificent bastard
posted by angrycat at 7:22 AM on March 31, 2016 [7 favorites]


Boy this show is great. I love episodes like this, which are all about transitions. Nothing really gets resolved here but the show masterfully moves us from Step 4 to Step 5, in so many nice ways.

Also, this show is something different. It's not a serious Greek drama like Breaking Bad, it's a hucksterist goofy show with a backbone of goodness and soul. Just like Jimmy. It shows really strongly in this episode, both the over-the-top inflatable man montage and the corny and simplistic flashback at the start with Jimmy's dad. Both scenes are deliberately a little too much, just like Jimmy himself is too much. At least that's how it read to me.
posted by Nelson at 11:01 AM on March 31, 2016 [2 favorites]


Watching this, I think "Oh no, something's about to happen"-- like one of the cars exploding or Mike getting hit by a car or something

I thought the same thing. Might have even said it out loud. The whole end of that scene had me at high-attention.

The pace of this show is the most refreshing thing. Every scene breathes. Every scene is alive.
posted by uncleozzy at 11:09 AM on March 31, 2016 [8 favorites]


Couple of titbits from the Insider podcast:

* The flashback cold open was filmed for S1E9 but was cut from it for time; they've been sitting on it since then waiting for a space to slot it in. (They don't say this on the podcast, but my speculation is that they wrote backwards from this scene to the Chuck/Kim conversation.)

* The Schweikart/Cokely set was deliberately styled to be as opposite as possible to the HHM conference room: round table, soft armchairs vs HHM's long table and stiff chairs. Also: the two other S/C partners in the interview were both women; HHM is very male.

A few observations of my own:

* Jimmy literally puts Kim first in his let's-team-up proposal: "Wexler / McGill".

* The answerphone messages: in the first one he styles himself as "James M. McGill, Esquire"; in the second one he adjusts it to simply "Jimmy McGill". ("I got to go into it as me.")

* ...but that said, the whole "no point in me doing this if I can't be myself" thing is deeply ironic given that Jimmy will spend his time during and after Breaking Bad under assumed names. (Arguably "Saul" is a truer expression of himself, but he does tell Walt that it's an act -- or at least that the name is.)
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:46 AM on March 31, 2016 [4 favorites]


I think "no point...if I can't be myself" is a bit of a lie. Con men never present as themselves. Maybe the Kim-clusion will be Jimmy painted into a corner about whether his con tendencies are a choice or an unchangeable nature. He may not be able to tell himself.
posted by rhizome at 11:54 AM on March 31, 2016 [2 favorites]


Whether she dies or not, Kim will be destroyed by Jimmy and that will be a (the) catalyst for him becoming Saul.
posted by essexjan at 3:18 PM on March 31, 2016


He's already becoming Saul and Kim's just fine.
posted by mediareport at 6:16 PM on March 31, 2016 [4 favorites]


Another anachronism: A timelapse shot showed a changing billboard. I'm pretty sure those didn't happen until the last 5 years or so.

Looks like Clear Channel had it's first digital billboards in Albuquerque in 2006. I think you're right that 2002 is too early, but not by much.
posted by oneirodynia at 8:01 PM on March 31, 2016 [2 favorites]


This show is make me thinking that a lot of things were frozen in the early 2000s-2009. Fashion, cell phone tech, billboard tech apparently...
posted by bleep at 8:48 PM on March 31, 2016


I am probably reading too much into this shot, but I think Jimmy's halo is slipping.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 10:04 PM on March 31, 2016 [3 favorites]


I don't think she dies but I have a bad feeling Kim gets disbarred.
posted by mlis at 10:09 PM on March 31, 2016


Someone mentioned that the color red is tied to criminality in this show, so I started looking for red things. When Kim left her interview and was smoking pensively on the garage rooftop, she was framed by two red cars. One looked like it was sitting on her shoulder, like a little devil tempting her to go Jimmy's way.

This might indicate that Kim is more tempted by the criminal path than she lets on. Maybe she is going to get her own self in trouble without more than a little push from Jimmy.
posted by isthmus at 10:16 PM on March 31, 2016 [1 favorite]


I am probably reading too much into this shot, but I think Jimmy's halo is slipping.

It's BCS, the odds you're reading too much into any given thing are surprisingly low.
posted by tobascodagama at 8:45 AM on April 1, 2016 [5 favorites]


that, and I'm starting to find Bob Odenkirk disturbingly hot again, inflatable man suit or no

I'mma tell you, I recently went to a q & a with him, and hoooooboy, the man is just getting better and better. /fans_self.
posted by ApathyGirl at 11:28 AM on April 1, 2016 [4 favorites]


This might indicate that Kim is more tempted by the criminal path than she lets on. Maybe she is going to get her own self in trouble without more than a little push from Jimmy.

My prediction is that she finds herself crime-adjacent, and the criminality may get too close and she may nope out of that.
posted by rhizome at 1:10 PM on April 1, 2016 [2 favorites]


I don't read Kim as someone with a shady past. I read her as someone who, when she was asked "What did you want," didn't know how to answer because all she could want was "more." She's had to grab whatever opportunity was in front of her for so long that now, she's not sure what to do with herself when she actually has *options*.

One of the subtle, running themes here is class. Jimmy's clashes with Howard last season were obvious, but here, we have Jimmy not knowing how high Kim's remaining law debts are. She keeps insisting that she *needs* this job every time Jimmy draws trouble her way, or suggests suing HHM, or whatever.

My read of Rhea Seehorn's superb microexpressions when asked, "what did you want," is that Kim did not choose Albuquerque and the legal profession. She chose Not My Dead-End Town and Not Cashiering, over and over again. ABQ and HHM were just where those grabs at opportunity led, where all her hustling took her. She has a talent for the law, so the law was her best bet. And she's very used to the penalties of low economic and social status, the invisible weight that means you get pushed down harder or fall further behind for making what someone else experiences as a small, recoverable mistake.

But now she has survived such a mistake, has discovered that it's not the end, that she had Made It and has Choices and Freedom. It's why she's intoxicated by getting to run a little con alongside Jimmy. Drinking is always a scene partner, in fact, when she does this; and there has always been a "regretful morning after" scene in which Kim swears she'll never do this again, this time she means it.

And it;s why this episode has Kim slowly pushing back, maybe for the first time, against all these Howards and Riches and, by the end, Jimmys. These well-connected, debt-free men who offer opportunities, who want to be the Big Daddy or the Wise Mentor, as long as you're loyal, as long as their egos and their careers benefit from you being there, a loyal, slick, well-molded subordinate. (The Erins of the world are leaning into this.)

She cals Rich Schweikert "Howard" because that conversation in the conference room was not a million miles away from some conversation, long ago, with Howard Hamlin, when he offered Kim her big break, her golden chance to be his masterpiece or legal mentoring. It's Richard who talks through the meeting and brushes off Kim's terse answers with his enthusiasm, while his (female) law partners ask quiet, probing questions and offer professional reserve to Rich's gushy recruitment pitch. (Davis and Main also gave us Cliff overriding his partners. The show has built a runner here.) One wonders if that gentle earth tone scheme is copyrighted too.

It's also why Jimmy's pitch to her is him in the only high-end suit we'll ever see, sitting in Howard's seat in the HHM conference room. Jimmy's con in that scene is not just that he'll be straight-arrow, but that he'll be the Howard or Rich who treats Kim like an actual partner. But Kim knows that she'll still be responsible for his messes just like she was at HHM.

And what Kim does is to seize her newfound sense of having Made It, and make a deal in which she is genuinely Jimmy's equal. A personal relationship and a professional life of wholly equal lawyers, equal tot he point of retaining their full autonomy while still being together. But this isn't the relationship Jimmy wants. He wants Kim infused with the soul of Marco, perhaps; that ring is Jimmy rebounding from his bro-ex. (How would Kim feel about "Kevin Costner's" little routine?) No, Jimmy wants Kim on his terms, not on equal terms.

That torn card is the beginning of their end, one way or another. And it's telling that even before it was torn in half, their link, their coupled letters, were not the substance of the matter but the hole in things.
posted by kewb at 5:07 PM on April 1, 2016 [21 favorites]


Yeah, when I first saw that business card I thought Jimmy had created a really cool design, but later I realized he'd created a design that was really, really easy to tear in half...
posted by mmoncur at 9:37 PM on April 1, 2016 [4 favorites]


She chose Not My Dead-End Town and Not Cashiering, over and over again.

Ridiculous new headcanon: Kim is from Natesville, and she's Virginia Slims Chance's other sister, who nobody else talks about since she skipped town.
posted by tobascodagama at 6:37 AM on April 2, 2016 [2 favorites]


It has never, ever occurred to me that Kim might die. My running assumption is that Jimmy lies to her again, or he crosses line that she can't live with, and they break up. Like couples do. In BB, Jimmy mentions three (I think?) ex-wives. Kim could be one of those.

If Kim dies in someway related to Jimmy's criminal lawyering, I don't see him sticking around Albuquerque and continuing down that path.
posted by donajo at 10:38 AM on May 23, 2016 [3 favorites]


Seconding the okay time frame on the digital billboards. I lived in miami in the late 90s early 00s and they were around then on a few boards though I don't know if they were Clear Channel, Lamar, CBS, or independent. They were BRIGHT. They were EXPENSIVE. They started improving about a decade ago (I had to do research for a client and just my personal observation).

Also, Circa were totally around then. I started getting Levenger catalogs and driving up to the Outlet store in Delray Beach (sadly closed now). It was crazy expensive (for me on a student budget) but not out of time or place there.
posted by tilde at 5:13 AM on June 10, 2017


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