Praise the Lord! Whilst this week’s episode of Better Call Saul may have adopted Homeland Season Four’s weird habit of “Episode named after random quote from episode that has absolutely no relevance”, it has improved greatly since last week’s dud episode. This week’s strengths include its humour and the chemistry of its cast, but most notably, the improved pace.
“The Alpine Shepherd Boy” is the funniest episode we’ve had so far, and subtly so; it’s contained in scenes that don’t seem important or feel like filler. Towards the beginning, we see Jimmy talking to several clients: A rich Texan wanting to make his land a sovereign state, a very slow elderly lady sorting out her will, and a guy who’s invented a majorly sexual potty training device, and each segment is hilarious. There’s no big jokes, just small gags that elicit a big laugh. Bob Odenkirk’s face when he’s handed dollar bills with the Texan’s face on them, or his face when he’s listening to the toilet talk is just priceless. It’s humour like this that the show needs to keep up.
Finally, we were left with an interesting cliffhanger as Mike waited outside the home of some woman, and was then met at his own door by police. What’s going on there? Could this be the mother of his granddaughter? Whilst the relationship between him and his granddaughter in Breaking Bad was lovely, you could tell there was some kind of friction with the other relatives. Hopefully Mike’s story will be as interesting as we’re expecting it to be.
So overall, this week’s episode finally reached its potential, with great performances, humour, camera work (The shaky cam shot of the hospital light from Chuck’s point of view was fantastic; it made the scenes very scary and uncomfortable) and an interesting cliffhanger. Roll on next week!