Better Call Saul 2×10 ‘Klick’: Coming clean

Better Call Saul 2x10 Cover

I hate raving about shows in my reviews, but man, Better Call Saul is ridiculously good. Almost as good as Breaking Bad. Now, I don’t think there’s much television that can top the frenetic insanity of Breaking Bad’s final eight episodes, but for a much, much quieter show, Better Call Saul succeeds on so many levels. It crawls at a relatively slow pace, but every scene of this show is dripping with nuance, with empathy for its characters, and often switches perspectives to push our allegiances from character to character. That ability to control the audience’s perspective, to push them back and forth, is an absolutely invaluable skill for a show to have. It shows that the writers are thinking from all perspectives, providing us two, three, four sides of a story.

Source: AMC

Source: AMC

“Klick”, another fantastic episode of Better Call Saul, shifts the perspective to Chuck, detailing the fallout of his injury and the nightmare that he goes through as a result of Jimmy’s actions. It shifts its focus somewhat away from Kim in order to focus on both Chuck and Jimmy, detailing the complexity of their reactions and how they end up at the remarkable final scene of the season. As a result of Jimmy’s actions, Chuck is forced to undergo medical treatment that uses electromagnetic waves (CAT scans, etc), essentially being tortured and driven into a panic-induced catatonia. The long take at the beginning of the episode, where Chuck is panicking as doctors shine lights in his eyes and suggest medical treatments, is probably the most affecting scene of the series. It quickly shows us just how horrific Chuck’s condition really is, highlighting the panic and the anxiety that he goes through because of Jimmy.

Source: AMC

Source: AMC

The flashback at the beginning of the episode highlights this as well, showing not only how Chuck feels abandoned and alone because of Jimmy’s immaturity, but also how the world seems to favor Jimmy’s fun nature over Chuck’s honest, serious nature. As much as Jimmy wants to believe that he can be a serious lawyer like Chuck, he can’t help but skirt around the rules, committing crimes in order to get his way. And he’s rewarded for doing so. Jimmy, in this episode, is continually rewarded for hurting Chuck, as Kim still has Mesa Verde as a client and he still gets older clients for his practice. The ramifications of harming Chuck to such an extreme extent are essentially nothing. Honesty and morals, in the face of such immorality and deception, are often beaten down, even if this only holds true in the short term.

Source: AMC

Source: AMC

But it isn’t that cut and dry. Chuck isn’t the paragon of morality and honesty, just as Jimmy isn’t the paragon of immorality and deception. Jimmy feels incredibly remorseful for putting Chuck through a nightmare because of him, a feeling that continues to compound as more and more happens to Chuck. It finally reaches its climax when the two swap roles, Jimmy coming clean about doctoring the court documents and Chuck being deceptive and taping Jimmy’s confession. It goes to show that both Jimmy and Chuck believe that they take on a specific role, only to forget that they’re complex people with parts of their identities that exist underneath the surface. Jimmy may play tricks and hurt people, but he feels horrible about it, sometimes not wanting that part of him to exist. Chuck may see himself as the honest, moral one, but he’s vindictive and vicious, now resorting to tricks to hurt those he deems worthy of that hurt. “Klick” does a brilliant job showing us just what it takes for people to cross that line, to unleash the darker part of themselves that lurks under the surface.

Better Call Saul 2x10-4

Source: AMC

Removed from all of this is Mike, who has spent a season pushing himself to exist in this criminal world that he is somewhat adverse to. He doesn’t want to kill, but he sees no choice, no way to create justice that doesn’t involve death. The Salamanca gang participates in so much death that it seems that death is the only proportional response. Only Mike can’t bring himself to respond in that fashion, as he is first unable to pull the trigger and then is stopped by somebody jamming a tree branch against his car horn. He’s stopped for now from sinking lower, but it’s only a matter of time before that criminal world sucks him back in.

Better Call Saul is a fantastic show. It takes everything it did so well in its first season and expands upon that, deepening the characters of Kim and Chuck to the point where they’re just as interesting and complex as Jimmy. It also further convolutes the concepts of social order, morality, and the ramifications of individuality, reminding us just how muddled it can all get as people go deeper down the rabbit hole, their actions darkening the world around them, no way to go back. At this point, there isn’t any going back for Jimmy. He may have come clean, but his actions have already irreparably damaged those he cares about. And it’s only a matter of time until that damage swallows everybody whole.

Thanks a ton for reading and following these reviews! I’ll definitely be back for Better Call Saul’s third season, and I’ll be starting Game of Thrones reviews next week, posting every Monday following the show. Hope to see you all then!

What did you think of the finale? Do you think this season is better than the first? Let me know in the comments!

Michael St. Charles

is just a Michigan State University grad who loves a good story. If he’s not off teaching the young ones how to solve quadratic functions or to write an expository essay, he’s watching old-school HBO shows, indie horror movies, or he’s playing Resident Evil 4.

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  • George Liapes

    I though this was a fantastic finale to an excellent sophomore season.

    I loved Jimmy’s decision to call help for Chuck despite it giving away his cover as it shows he hasn’t gone bad all the way and is still a good person, just like you said.

    Also, the long shot with Chuck in the ER was definitely one of the most freakiest things I’ve seen on TV.

    Involving Chuck, I’m definitely against him and agree that what he did was reprehensible… But I did feel pity for him in the flashback wit their mother as well as the flashback back in “Rebecca”. It can’t be easy to always be more outwardly appealing and responsible but everyone still looks at your wayward brother with more affection.

    One quibble from an otherwise outstanding episode was the limited focus on Kim. The focus was well spent on Jimmy and Chuck’s relationship and Mike but as I mentioned in my review of “Nailed”, I was waiting for Kim’s guilty reaction to Chuck’s injury. In hindsight, it’s not her fault as much as it is Jimmy’s that he got hurt but Id have liked to see her realize how working Jimmy can have these sort of consequences.

    Mike’s scenes were pretty good and intense even though I knew both him and Hector would make it out (considering how Hector gets crippled in the future I was thinking he would still get shot but survive). I liked how Mine ultimately took a step back from pursuing his revenge even though we all know he’ll get pulled back in. His refusal to shoot Nacho shows that he is not yet far gone as he thinks he is.

    Overall a great season that improved on the show on almost every level and established itself as more than a simple recreation of Breaking Bad. Can’t wait to see how the show deals with the new development of Chuck having solid proof on Jimmy. Bring on Season 3

    Also: According to an interview from Gilligan and Co., the man who left the branch on Mike’s car was Gus Fring. Apparently they left a clue in the episode titles: put all the first letters together to spell FRINGS BACK. Check it out for more details.

    Also also: I’ll still Comment on fear the walking dead but alas, I may not do Game of Thrones, given that I don’t have HBO (though I’m up to date on the show via reading the spoilers on the Internet) so I won’t be able to discuss episodes beyond basic recaps.

    So glad to have watched this show alongside you man!

    • Michael St. Charles

      Hey, thanks for commenting on these articles! It’s been awesome to hear thoughts on the show. I did notice the limited focus on Kim, and while it didn’t bother me too much since the primary focus was the relationship between Jimmy and Chuck, so much of the season was devoted to her that I wish she would have done more in the finale.

      But yeah…that long take was unreal. That was as good a shot as anything I’ve seen from Breaking Bad, hands down. This season has built up so much empathy for Chuck that I’m rooting for him as much as I’m rooting for Jimmy. It’s going to truly be heartbreaking when both Chuck and Kim inevitably end up as collateral damage.

      Thanks again for commenting on these articles. Come back for Season 3!