AMC’s Better Call Saul
6×01: “Wine and Roses”
Directed by Michael Morris
Written by Peter Gould
* For a recap & review of the Season 5 finale, click here.
* For a recap & review of 6×02, click here.
The final season of Better Call Saul begins with a cascade of colourful ties with ridiculous prints, then more items in a beautiful mansion being pulled from the walls and packed, including everything in a room behind a wall (like bulletproof vests) and a massive supply of Viagra. There’s even a gold toilet, just like the Donald’s own. We see The Time Machine by H.G. Wells sitting on a table. In the pool is a life-sized cutout of Saul Goodman, which later gets tossed in a dumpster outside. In the driveway, the LWYRUP-plated Cadillac’s put on a tow truck. And left lying in the street is the cork of the Zafiro Añejo bottle we know so well.
Cut to: Nacho making a run for it. He manages to get away from his captors, slipping off into the desert. He hides until morning when he gets a call from Mike, who tells him it’s “Salamanca territory” so there’ll be all sorts from gangsters to Federales on the hunt for him. Mike’s getting someplace ready for Nacho to stay on the low. Though Nacho has to make it there safely first. Elsewhere, Lalo’s limping through the desert back to safety of his own at the home of a couple, Sylvia and Mateo. Unfortunately for the couple it doesn’t appear they’re too safe with Lalo in their home.
Kim and Saul are preparing for their respective days. Before they leave, she tosses away the World’s (2nd) Best Lawyer travel mug she got for Saul; the one that now has a bullet hole through it. Yes, things continue to change for them, and Kim keeps on adjusting. For how long, though?
Leonel and Marco Salamanca are at the scene of a familiar crime, where the presence of the cartel’s felt in the way they walk straight through the place and nobody says a word about it to them. They go straight for the corpse, cover it, and lay a Santa Muerte card atop the body. Supposedly it’s Lalo’s body, but we know different. Juan Bolsa calls Gus Fring to tell him what’s occurred. Nacho is being hunted down. Lots of nasty business going on in the cartel world currently. Bolsa warns Fring: “This is a dangerous time. No one is above suspicion.”
Mike and Tyrus go to see Gus. The chicken man and Mike talk alone, the latter pushing his boss to extend Nacho a helping hand and, above all, respect. This conversation doesn’t inspire confidence in Mike, who might be questioning his allegiances. If anything, Mike recognises hard work and he knows Nacho doesn’t deserve to be hunted down then killed like an animal. Problem is, Gus doesn’t see anybody, even Mike, as much more than a pawn on a chessboard to be moved wherever necessary.
Life for Saul only gets more complicated. His work for the cartel makes things trickier for him in the legal world. Although he talks a smart game to both cops and lawyers alike, until he slips up, calling Lalo by his name rather than the fake DeGuzman moniker. Hmm. Probably not good. Ole Saul and Jimmy are still two separate identities, in spite of how closely they co-exist, and he’s still trying to negotiate that at times, even now.
Poor ole Nacho. He’s on the run drinking water out of drainage pipes, not only dodging potential cartel members hunting him down but also border patrol and Federales. Eventually he makes it to a quiet motel somewhere along the road. He’s given a key without question, and without giving over any money. Seems like it’s probably a safe place to rest for the evening. Hopefully, anyway. In the motel room, Nacho finds a manilla envelope with cash and a gun inside, as well as a phone to use. He calls Mike to check in. It’ll take a couple days for Nacho to get picked up. Until then he has to stay on his guard. When Nacho tries calling Mike again, the latter hangs up the call instead of answering. Bad sign?
Kim and Saul are staking out Howard because they need to do some dirty business. Howard’s playing golf right now, giving Saul time to slip into the course clubhouse for a tour. Saul meets with Norm Wakely (James Urbaniak) to get a look around the place. Before that, Kevin Wachtell sees Saul and suddenly Norm claims there’s a “two–year” waiting list. There aren’t even any tours available now. Curious. And Saul doesn’t dig it. He questions what happened, then he starts making it about antisemitism, even though Saul’s name isn’t even Saul. This gets Kevin pissed off, causing even bigger of a scene. It all gives Saul access to the men’s locker room to use the washroom, putting him right where he wanted to be in the first place. He manages to track down Howard’s locker, but Kim messages to tell him Howard is on the way back with Clifford. Saul hides while Howard goes to his locker. A baggie of cocaine spills out of the locker when Howard opens it. Clifford sees it and questions Howard. Awkward. Will this work to Saul and Kim’s purposes? Clifford definitely seems rattled.
Back near the border, Lalo’s preparing to cross into the United States by way of a couple coyotes. Before he gets into the truck he makes a call to old Uncle Hector at the nursing home. Hector’s pleased to know his nephew’s still alive. Now he finds out it was “the chicken man” who tried to kill Gus. And Lalo’s planning to cross the border so he can come find and kill Mr. Fring himself after everything that happened. Also, he has proof for Uncle Hector. On top of that, Lalo’s decided he wants his money back from the coyotes. He kills the men and commandeers their truck, though not before giving everybody their money back first.