Better Call Saul: “Slip” Season 3 Episode 8 Review

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Jimmy’s new way of making money? He’s going to threaten to sue the pants off of all of Albuquerque. “Slip” introduces us to this sad, hilarious, kind of dangerous notion as Jimmy continues to struggle in his year suspension. It’s a device that’s certainly going to give him ammo for his future as Saul Goodman, and it’s an important part of the puzzle to witness as his transformation continues. That said, Better Call Saul is entering a bit of a static period.

In the show’s present day, Jimmy can’t progress too far without the show pulling him back. The full Saul Goodman is a ways away yet, but the rivalry with Chuck has subsided. What’s next? What’s the end of Jimmy’s storyline for season three? Because it kind of feels like we already got one. A great one at that. I have no doubt that whatever Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould have cooked up for the end of the season will be exciting and rewarding, but at this point the show has me in a place where I’m more excited for season four.

The same goes for Mike and Gus’ budding relationship, which has seemingly had four different official initiations. We know Mike is going to work for Gus, yet the show is insistent on have him agree to do so every other week, taking a new step deeper into Gus’ machine. That idea in and of itself is exciting, but the execution is becoming a little bit sloppy.

Faring better, oddly, was Nacho’s storyline. Tense to the bone, and featuring the best performance from Michael Mando yet, his attempt to replace Hector’s pills was the most exciting sequence of the episode. Not only was it perfectly paced, to squeeze every drop of tension out, but this is the storyline with the most momentum on the series right now. Since Chuck’s fall in “Chicanery,” the clearest endgame for season three has been some sort of culmination in the various wars against Hector Salamanca.

Even so, “Slip” didn’t really feel like a late-season episode of Better Call Saul. The reset button pushed at the end of “Chicanery,” while entirely necessary, has put the writers in a difficult spot where it feels like they started a whole new season halfway through this one. If that were the case, it would still be a good start to a season for this show, but with two episodes left, it’s hard not to feel like the show’s grander ideas are farther away than within the next two weeks. Grade: B

By Matt Dougherty

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