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S05.E09: Bad Choice Road


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sooooooooooooo tense. I was pretty sure once we saw that Mike had his sights on Lalo that no harm would come to Saul and Kim, but he might have had to shoot Lalo in front of Kim, which would drag Kim even further down bad choice road.

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OK I'm 5 minutes from the end. And the most satisfactory thing that could happen ... that would make this series truly great... is that Mike or Kim has a gun and puts a bullet through Lalo's head.

Edited by Pike Ludwell
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Such a fantastic episode. So much tension at the end.

Loved the cold open.

Kim continues to be awesome.

I feel sorry for Jimmy. Even if he is a con-man and a shyster, he is in over his head. Of course, we know he will come out of it, but at what cost?

Edited by WritinMan
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Welp, we got our answers as to Kim's relationship motivations:  She loves Jimmy and believes that is the man she married.  How tragic.

I can't recall an ep where Mike was so giving.  What did he get for his troubles?  Rejection.  

It was nice of Eladio to try to punish Lalo for messing with Gustavo.  A regular philosopher king, that one.

I didn't understand the great distance the cousins gave Nacho as he dropped off Lalo.  They were on the same team in getting him to Mexico.

The shock value of the prosecutor mocking Saul for screwing up in court was quite something.  I loved every instance of every spoken word by that guy.  I also loved that G/G used this as a device to show us just how messed up Saul really was.  Boy, did that point get driven home.

I was surprised when Saul confronted Kim about what she was gonna do for money that she didn't give him a "look" explaining that her husband would provide.  

Credit to G/G that I actually believed Lalo could shoot Kim there and then.  I was metaphysically screaming at Mike to take Lalo out when he had the freaking chance! 

 

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If you've ever driven through New Mexico signs with bullet holes in more out of the way places is common. In some places, it's hard to find a sign without a bullet hole in it if it's been there a year or two.

In the early 2000's in New Mexico, driving around shooting at stuff while drunk was the state sport for a certain type person. 

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5 minutes ago, scenario said:

In the early 2000's in New Mexico, driving around shooting at stuff while drunk was the state sport for a certain type person. 

yeah my first thought when Lao discovered the Esteem was "just say some yahoos must have shot it up after you abandoned it". I also thought that when Saul told Lalo the money was in the other room that he would take it and find the travel mug with the bullet hole.

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Goddamn...the last 10 minutes of that episode...I absolutely have not been that tense watching a TV show since Ozymandias. Ozymandias you knew was going to be insane because of the cliffhanger the previous episode, and that one didn't let up for damn near the entire show. This one was unexpected, and focused on the end. But, the same level of tension, which I never really expected another show to do. What incredible acting from all three in that scene. I need to take some deep breaths, maybe have a strong drink, and go to sleep, lol.

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4 hours ago, Pike Ludwell said:

Should be a good one. On the podcast last week, the moderator (Chris McCaleb - an editor on the show) emphasized there will be big surprises this week and the others agreed!

OK. The big surprise was in the last 5 minutes, with Kim's speech. Lots of drama. And Kim's action was dramatic, but for these guys to hype this as filled with big surprises was a bit much. Much bigger things could have happened. Still, an outstanding episode!

Edited by Pike Ludwell
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8 minutes ago, kieyra said:

Next week is the series finale, right? And we find out what happens to Kim and Saul? And Nacho?

It's the season finale. There is one more year to go after this year. 

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Wow...the last ten minutes were tense. Kim showed her inner strength and determination. Jimmy is truly in over his head and it is sad to watch. Luckily, Mike is always there to save his butt.

Continue to love the quirky visuals: Kim and Lalo looking thru the bullet holes in the mug and car, respectively. Both know that Jimmy is lying about his experience in the desert but neither are able to get him to break.

I say this every week and it doesn’t happen so I’ll try again: time for Kim to run as far (and as fast) as she can away from Jimmy.

I was hoping that we would be done with Lalo but...sigh...it seems that he is sticking around for awhile. And I could always do without a scene with Hector Salamanca. Still not thrilled with Gus’ scenes. Why has he been shrouded in dark lighting all season?

I adore Bob Odenkirk but, between the scene in bed a few weeks ago and now the bathtub, I don’t need to see THAT much of him.

Edited by Ellaria Sand
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Just now, Ellaria Sand said:

I adore Bob Odenkirk but, between the scene in bed a few weeks ago and now the bathtub, I don’t need to see THAT much of him.

It's like he's been working out and is super proud of his bod, so he gets these scenes in. Let's see comparable scenes of Kim!

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Good old penultimate episode time!  That's when shit really gets crazy on Better Call Saul, and this was no exception!

I know saying "it left me breathless/I could barely breathe" can be overplayed a lot of times, but damn, once Lalo stepped inside the apartment, I really was on the edge of my seat and barely moved.  That was some intense shit to put it mildly!  Obviously, I knew Jimmy was going to make it out no matter what, but I really was preparing myself to for this to be the end of Kim at worst or the end of Lalo at best, but even then, I imagine there would have been a shit ton of complications if Mike pulled the trigger (although I was still rooting for him to do it.)

But, holy shit, Kim was not fucking around!  While I still think she is destined to go down a tragic path, she really is going all in here.  Even though she knew Jimmy was lying to her about what really happened in the desert, she just straight-up got in the face of a fucking cartel gangster to pull her husband's ass out of the fire, and said cartel gangster actually backed down (for now?!)  You know, if one where to look past... well, all of the shady and illegal shit that is going on here, Kim is certainly going above and beyond being a supportive spouse.  Damn!

Assuming Gus does what Lalo to make it to Mexico still, I'm wondering how he would have reacted to Mike possibly pulling the trigger.  I guess Mike really does have a fondness for Jimmy, if he was willing to blow that all up tonight.

Oh, poor Nacho!  Even if he gets out from under the Salamanca's thumb, Gus has no intention of letting him go, unless he wants to leave in a bodybag.  I know all of this is on him for going into a life of crime, but I still want him to somehow make it through this.

Definitely not surprised that Hector isn't down with the birthday parties and celebrations at the retirement home.  DING!

Glad that they are showing that Jimmy has PTSD over what happened.  But I suspect that once that day comes where he will forget about it (like Mike said), is going to be the day Jimmy is truly dead.

Thomas Schnauz delivered behind the camera like he always does.

Don't want to even speculate over what will go down next week for the season finale.  Instead, I will once again declare that the Emmy voters are idiots if they don't at least nominated Rhea Seehorn this year, although I think she deserves the damn trophy.

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Oh, Kim.  You're as ferocious as hell and I could barely remember to breathe when you were going off on Lalo.  It was that tense.  But at the same time, all I could think was smart women, foolish choices.  It's so painfully obvious Jimmy is both lying by omission and in way over his head.  I know most of us have loved unsuitable men at some point in our lives and taken a trip down the bad choice road as a result.  But seriously, have you even thought about where this road likely bottoms out?

Mike is suddenly downright helpful and almost congenial toward Jimmy, when he's always given me the impression he found him more of a means to an end than impressive or even likable. 

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Am I the only one bothered by the fact that Victor and Tyrus's cleanup job somehow failed to account for getting Jimmy's car away from the ditch? I mean, if they managed to clear up all the other cartel vehicles, surely they could have done something with it, right?

Then when it wasn't found, even if Lalo came back to ask questions, Jimmy could have explained that it must have been towed off the road or something. At least no bullet holes to be found.

 

Edited by ahmerali
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2 minutes ago, ahmerali said:

Am I the only one bothered by the fact that Victor and Tyrus's cleanup job somehow failed to account for getting Jimmy's car away from the ditch? I mean, if they managed to clear up all the other cartel vehicles, surely they could have done something with it, right?

Then when it wasn't found, even if Lalo came back to ask questions, Jimmy could have explained that it must have been towed off the road or something. At least no bullet holes to be found.

 

Who would have towed a car left on a dirt road in the middle of the desert a hundred miles from anywhere? The cartel uses that road fairly often. They might look to see if the car really is there. But they are less likely to climb down and look at it closely. 

Two options: leave the car in the ditch and hope that no one bothers to climb down into the ditch and look at it too closely or tow the car and hope that no one bothers to look for the car. Either choice has its problems. 

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Just now, scenario said:

Who would have towed a car left on a dirt road in the middle of the desert a hundred miles from anywhere? The cartel uses that road fairly often. They might look to see if the car really is there. But they are less likely to climb down and look at it closely. 

Two options: leave the car in the ditch and hope that no one bothers to climb down into the ditch and look at it too closely or tow the car and hope that no one bothers to look for the car. Either choice has its problems. 

Yeah, but given that Jimmy concocted a story in the car, with Mike, Victor, and Tyrus, this is a ridiculous loose end for them to leave, and especially for Fring to leave left undone. If Jimmy's story is that the car died or ran out of gas, why is it in the ditch? They could have at least made a story about how it ended up in the ditch....

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29 minutes ago, nodorothyparker said:

Mike is suddenly downright helpful and almost congenial toward Jimmy, when he's always given me the impression he found him more of a means to an end than impressive or even likable.

Makes me think of Mike blowing up at Kaylee and feeling so terrible about it. Although Jimmy is no innocent, he was completely unprepared for the shootout and the whole situation. I can see Mike feeling sympathy for him.

Like everyone else, I feared what was going to happen in that apartment. Heck, I even thought Lalo might shoot the fish tank. But, yeah, talk about Chekov's gun, the one in Lalo's waistband. It didn't go off ... for now.

I so wanted Mike to shoot him, even though that would open up another can of worms. I can hear the neighbors now. "First broken beer bottles, then a cartel guy killed by sniper fire? What's next?"

And yet, I like Lalo. I mean, I don't REALLY like him, but the character is interesting and fascinating to watch.

I was so disappointed in Gus not letting Nacho go. Mean ol' Gus.

Question: Mike tells Gus about the tattoos he saw on the guys at the shootout. Did he say he saw the same tattoo on a job back east? Then Gus seemed to recognize the tattoo and said the men were hired. Am I forgetting Gus having a run-in with Columbians earlier? (or later, in BB?)

Edited by peeayebee
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2 minutes ago, ahmerali said:

Yeah, but given that Jimmy concocted a story in the car, with Mike, Victor, and Tyrus, this is a ridiculous loose end for them to leave, and especially for Fring to leave left undone. If Jimmy's story is that the car died or ran out of gas, why is it in the ditch? They could have at least made a story about how it ended up in the ditch....

Jimmy and Mike weren't thinking really all that well after being in the desert for two days without water. And  the more complex the lie, the more it sounds like a lie. Real stories aren't perfect. You don't want someone questioning you. 

"I drove the car into the ditch."  "Why? Were you driving drunk? You were drunk driving with my 7 million in the car."

"Someone drove me off the road." "And what happened then? Did they drive off? Did you get their licence plate numbers? What did the cars look like?"

"I lost control of the car while driving down a dirt road." "We'd better take a closer look at that car to see if someone did something to it."

You really don't want to say anything that will generate more questions. Any explanation of how the car ended up in the ditch is going to generate more questions. 

I'm sure Lalo suspects Saul but it's not that easy to find someone you can trust with 7 million dollars. Lalo suspects everyone.  

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1 minute ago, scenario said:

Jimmy and Mike weren't thinking really all that well after being in the desert for two days without water. And  the more complex the lie, the more it sounds like a lie. Real stories aren't perfect. You don't want someone questioning you. 

"I drove the car into the ditch."  "Why? Were you driving drunk? You were drunk driving with my 7 million in the car."

"Someone drove me off the road." "And what happened then? Did they drive off? Did you get their licence plate numbers? What did the cars look like?"

"I lost control of the car while driving down a dirt road." "We'd better take a closer look at that car to see if someone did something to it."

You really don't want to say anything that will generate more questions. Any explanation of how the car ended up in the ditch is going to generate more questions. 

I'm sure Lalo suspects Saul but it's not that easy to find someone you can trust with 7 million dollars. Lalo suspects everyone.  

I get that there's no perfect story. But Fring's style is to leave no evidence, rather than any evidence. The car just being 'gone' would be easier to explain than anything else.

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10 minutes ago, ahmerali said:

I get that there's no perfect story. But Fring's style is to leave no evidence, rather than any evidence. The car just being 'gone' would be easier to explain than anything else.

A car left in the desert in the middle of no where being just gone 24 hours later screams cover up to a suspicious mind. The better way would be to take an identical car with an obvious mechanical problem. Transfer over enough stuff from Saul's car to make it look like his and leave it there. But if they were going to do that Mike made a mistake in pushing it off the road. 

Edited by scenario
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The Lalo/Jimmy/Kim scene was indeed edge of the seat stuff. I was also worried that Lalo would kill the fish just to be mean. 😏

The make-up artists did great work giving Mike and Jimmy the burnt to a crisp sunburns. I hurt just looking at them. 😬

Was Kim an equity partner? Will the firm have to buy her out? 
only one more episode! ☹️

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3 minutes ago, scenario said:

A car left in the desert in the middle of no where being just gone 24 hours later screams cover up to a suspicious mind. The better way would be to take an identical car with an obvious mechanical problem. Transfer over enough stuff from Saul's car to make it look like his and leave it there. But if they were going to do that Mike made a mistake in pushing it off the road. 

Didn't Mike want to get the car out of open sight because he knew he and Saul would be hunted?  

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2 minutes ago, BradandJanet said:

Didn't Mike want to get the car out of open sight because he knew he and Saul would be hunted?  

But how long did it take Lalo to find it? It wasn't hidden very well. 

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4 minutes ago, BradandJanet said:

Didn't Mike want to get the car out of open sight because he knew he and Saul would be hunted?  

Yup, the immediate threat was the lone cartel driver going up and down the road.

Just wish I could come up with a better way of dealing with the car....I'm sure there's something, I just can't come up with it.

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24 minutes ago, peeayebee said:

Makes me think of Mike blowing up at Kaylee and feeling so terrible about it. Although Jimmy is no innocent, he was completely unprepared for the shootout and the whole situation. I can see Mike feeling sympathy for him.

Yep. His advice to Jimmy also reflects his own development after blowing up at Kaylee. At the time of that blow-up, he was still struggling with the feeling that murdering Werner meant he was a bad guy. He couldn't deal with Kaylee talking about her dad being a "really good policeman" like Pop-Pop. But his encounter with Gus in Max's village seems to have settled his conscience -- he's accepted Gus's premise that doing right by the people you love might mean doing monstrous things, because they're the ones who are meant to benefit from your actions, not you or your own sense of uprightness.

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Mike told Gus that fear was not a good motivator.  I recall Gus saying the same thing sometime in BB, and I think it was to Mike.

I suppose Jimmy was upset that Kim was leaving Mesa Verde after all he did to get them as her client.  Their conversation was interrupted by Lalo's appearance, so I wonder if that topic will come up again in the future.

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1 hour ago, nodorothyparker said:

I know most of us have loved unsuitable men at some point in our lives and taken a trip down the bad choice road as a result.  But seriously, have you even thought about where this road likely bottoms out?

And I have seen the other way around.  Women inciting their men to step up into violence and enjoying it at the same time.  She did pushed him to behave badly while putting a con on people, she is not as innocent as she looks.

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2 hours ago, Dianaofthehunt said:

“Shush”ing Kim Wexler IN HER OWN HOUSE?
I would have killed Lalo at that moment!

 

 

And he even kept tapping the fish tank!

Edited by qtpye
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Mike wasn't demonstrating any care for Saul, by warning him, and then getting his rifle scope on Lalo. Mike knew that if Lalo put a gun to Saul's head, or worse, to Kim's head, Saul might tell Lalo about Mike's involvement, which would greatly threaten Gus' business. Mike would have hated seeing Kim hurt, but if Lalo had found out about Mike, Mike would have needed to kill Lalo, before Lalo said anything to Eladio.

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Edited by Bannon
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God, Kim yelling at Lola was just so freaking intense! I knew that Mike was there, but holy crap! I thought that scene would end with either someone getting shot, or Lola hiring Kim as his new lawyer. As horrible as it is watching Kim throw her life away for Saul, she really does love that slimy son of a bitch, she is ride or die, for better or for worse, even as he lies, manipulates, and gets deeper and into into really shady stuff with really shady people. 

The talk that Saul had with Mike was quite interesting, not only did he show some empathy for how Saul was clearly struggling with everything that happened and seeing people die, but the whole Bad Road speech was a pretty solid summation of the franchises themes. People make seemingly small or justifiable choices, maybe for what they see as a good cause or just some tiny moral compromises, but it still takes them down a path that they might not really want, and even when they try to get off that road, its often times too late, and your stuck living with the consequences of your actions, and the person that you became, all because of that small choice. 

This is still a sort of transitional period for Jimmy/Saul, where he is working for these clearly awful people for personal gain, but is still capable of feeling guilt for his part in keeping these awful people on the streets, is upset by what his clients are doing, and is shaken by seeing the violence that is a part of this career path as friend of the cartel. When Jimmy wakes up one morning to realize he no longer cares about the killings and the innocent victims of his clients, I think that he will finally be fully Saul. 

Poor Nacho, freaking Gus.  

I just dont see Hector as the type to really get into party hats. Ding Ding Ding! Hector is just so interesting to me, so much evil in such a frail person. 

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I didn't comment last week on the previous episode, but that one was great and tonight's episode was even better. 

 

I thought for sure Lalo was going to shoot the aquarium or knock it off the counter to kill the fish because he was angry at Saul and Kim, which would have annoyed me because I am not on board with killing pets of any sort!

 

So Juan Bolsa was the one who was behind sending the guys to try to kill and rob Saul in the desert? Or was he acting on behalf of someone else?  I don't know if I missed something that clarified it.  Hmm...  Interesting.

 

I liked that the writers made sure to have Lalo specify to Hector how long it would be until Tuco got out of prison, so we now know where we are in regard to the Breaking Bad timeline -- and we're not that far away.  We are rapidly closing in. 

I also got a kick out of Lalo telling Hector that they'd have someone watching Tuco, or however he put it -- to keep Tuco in line.  Seeing that we all know how Tuco behaved in Seasons 1 & 2 of Breaking Bad, whoever was supposed to watch him to keep him in line did a horrible job.

 

As Lalo was walking out of Casa Tranquila, he looked at Hector as though it would be the last time he would ever see him... so I am guessing that is exactly what happens.  Lalo will probably be killed before he ever has a chance to see Hector again.  But, as we know, Tuco and the Cousins will eventually be spending time with Hector, and Gus will be visiting him often, so he won't be lonely for long.  lol

 

Nacho was probably so happy, thinking he was about to be rid of Lalo once he brought him to Mexico, and yet Lalo won't let him go.  Neither Gus nor Lalo will let Nacho get away -- which will not lead to anything good.

 

They are finishing up strong with this season.  I can't even imagine what's happening on the finale next week -- but even more suspenseful than that is how long we will have to wait to see the final season.  IF they had been able to start production in late March, which was a plan at one point, they probably were trying to to finish filming and post-production to get Season 6 on the air in February 2021.  But now, with no idea of when filming can actually begin, let alone wrap up, we might not see Season 6 until summer or fall of 2021, or possibly early 2022.  So frustrating.

Edited by TVFan17
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What is Kim's car?

So did they really accept the $7 million?  Are they going to do an investigation as to the where it came from?

 

Are they allowed to ask Saul where he picked up the money?

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41 minutes ago, TVFan17 said:

I liked that the writers made sure to have Lalo specify to Hector how long it would be until Tuco got out of prison, so we now know where we are in regard to the Breaking Bad timeline -- and we're not that far away.  We are rapidly closing in. 

Tuco has gotten into one prison fight already that extended his stay in prison.  I wonder if Gus will have Nacho do something that gets Tuco another prison sentence, and have Jimmy mess up Tuco's legal defense.  Jimmy has to be afraid of Lalo for something that he claims Nacho did.  It can't be the thing Nacho did with Hector's pills because Jimmy has no knowledge of it.

 

1 hour ago, tennisgurl said:

When Jimmy wakes up one morning to realize he no longer cares about the killings and the innocent victims of his clients, I think that he will finally be fully Saul. 

Nice.  

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1 hour ago, nuraman00 said:

I'm not sure if it was, but if THAT was Kim's first monologue of the series, that was a great time for one.

No, it wasn’t her first. That’s what I call great lawyering, and it echoed what Kim did two episodes back to convince that asshole Kevin of Mesa Verde to keep them on. And what she did to convince the guy who was holding out on his house. And what she said to Schweikart when he was accusing her of unethical behavior. She just gets in their face and they back down.  She has a real talent for it. She is saying something that is not true but it has elements of truth. 

BTW, what was the cork she went back for in her office?  Was that a souvenir of their first con with the expensive liquor?  I just love Kim. 

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Gus' guys cleaned everything up except Saul's car to go along with Saul's story. I mean, it would have probably been more suspicious if the old broken down Esteem was towed from the desert 35 or 50+ miles away to ABQ within a day.

Oranges that were left unpeeled were also seen in the previous episode. This episode, they were peeled and crushed. Definitely a nod to Godfather (Oranges appear whenever death is in the air).

A great detail IMO is Kim choosing the cork of Zafiro Añejo -- a symbol of Jimmy's and Kim's scam union (and not only this) -- instead of possibly the best legal job in her life. This detail is very similar to Jimmy going back to take the coffee mug "World's Second Best Lawyer" with a bullet hole that fit only in the old damaged car's cupholder, in a ditch.

As others have mentioned here, Saul and Kim did a great job of NOT giving out too many details to Lalo. Kim was that last push Saul needed not to get killed, or worse, have to explain to Kim the real story.

Still no idea if Kim makes it until the Breaking Bad timeline or the Gene timeline in Nebraska. On one side, Kim could be pretty good, and I think she might even shoot someone if needed in the future; but on the other hand, I have a hard time believing that during the events of Breaking Bad, Kim will be somewhere out there. Raising Saul's child and laundering money at Ice Station Zebra, ironically in real Belize or somewhere else?

Edited by Ed-
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The plotting right now is ridiculously good. Mike may be forced to tell Gus about Kim's knowledge of Salamanca business, because Lalo may talk about his lawyer's wife, and that may get back to Gus. Will Gus be as ruthless to Kim as he was to Nacho's dad? Where is Lalo going in Mexico, now with Nacho, with Kim's words about trusting his subordinates ringing in his ears? Mike's already told Gus that the way Gus treats civilians doesn't sit well with Mike, and Gus essentially told Mike to toe the line. Will he? Most of all, Kim and Jimmy both showed that they indisputably loved each orher. Will Kim let that love ruin her? Will Jimmy love Kim enough to try to drive her away from this disaster? Will Kim be too proud to let Jimmy do that? What happens to Kim before Walter White appears?

 

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, GussieK said:

No, it wasn’t her first. That’s what I call great lawyering, and it echoed what Kim did two episodes back to convince that asshole Kevin of Mesa Verde to keep them on. And what she did to convince the guy who was holding out on his house. And what she said to Schweikart when he was accusing her of unethical behavior. She just gets in their face and they back down.  She has a real talent for it. She is saying something that is not true but it has elements of truth. 

Good recap of Kim's style.  I'm not sure it would work for a man, particularly with someone like Lalo.  Lalo's macho self-image would never let another man talk to him as if he was being stupid, he couldn't even bear Saul telling him not to tease the fish and had to go do it again just to show he wasn't letting Saul boss him around, but he could let himself shrug off Kim's rant by telling himself she was just an hysterical woman.

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4 hours ago, nuraman00 said:

What is Kim's car?

So did they really accept the $7 million?  Are they going to do an investigation as to the where it came from?

 

Are they allowed to ask Saul where he picked up the money?

They can ask, but neither Saul or Jimmy can be compelled to tell them. In reality, of course, when somebody shows up with 7 million in cash for bail, a suspicious activity report gets sent to the Treasury Dept./IRS, and somebody in the prosecutors' office likely calls the IRS or DEA, while the money is being counted. I thought we might see Hank and Gomey tailing Lalo after being released, and Nacho and Lalo would have some machinations losing them. Ya' can't have every episode last 2 hours, alas (although I wouldn't mind), so I can live with that little deviation from reality.

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