In the ‘Better Call Saul’ recap, Jimmy finds out about Chuck’s recording and Mike continues to hunt for the man who has been following him…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
At this point in the story for ‘Better Call Saul’ it’s safe to assume that Chuck McGill is the most despicable family member since we were first introduced to Joffrey Baratheon on ‘Game of Thrones’.
Now Chuck isn’t quite the masochist that Joffrey was, but the way he’s continued to kick his brother to the curb and keep him down throughout the past three seasons has been utterly disappointing. Of course, Jimmy can’t be absolved of all of his crimes, especially after the trick he pulled on Chuck last season, but even that came from a good place while trying to win back the Mesa Verde account that really belonged to his girl Kim.
The latest episode was just further evidence of how far Chuck will go to ensure his brother never succeeds at doing anything other than being the best legal eagle in prison.
After recording Jimmy’s heartfelt confession a season ago — another plan orchestrated by Chuck after faking his own mental illness — he finally unveiled his latest plan to get his brother incarcerated. It’s almost like Chuck is trying to make up for the time he stood up for Jimmy all those years ago in Chicago to keep him out of jail and he’s spent every moment since that time trying to put him back in.
While Chuck was working tirelessly to set up Jimmy, Mike Ehrmantraut was doing some hunting as he continued to search for the person who has been following him ever since his hit on Hector Salamanca went awry.
And this week also saw the highly anticipated return of Gustavo “Gus” Fring, who greeted us all with that friendly Los Pollos Hermanos smile we all came to know and love during his time on “Breaking Bad”. Not to mention two more familiar faces from the original show also popped up this week as well.
With that said, let’s recap the latest episode of ‘Better Call Saul’ titled ‘Witness’….
Welcome to Cracker Barrel
As Jimmy and Kim’s law offices continue to grow, it’s finally time to add an assistant to the office and that’s when we meet Francesca for the first time. You remember Francesca — the woefully underappreciated assistant who sat behind bulletproof glass for several seasons on ‘Breaking Bad” while working for Saul Goodman?
Well it appears she got her start while working for the law offices of Jimmy McGill after several years spent behind the desk at the DMV — or the MVD as the case may be in New Mexico. While Kim is all about a thorough interview, Jimmy would prefer to get through the formalities and just hire her already because his latest commercial is set to air in 11 minutes and that means the calls are going to start pouring into the office at any moment.
Despite Kim’s reservations and desire to interview multiple applicants, Jimmy has a good feeling about Francesca so he hires her on the spot and asks her to start immediately.
Of course, Jimmy has to teach Francesca the folksy way to deal with his particularly elderly clients — including a tease about the world famous Cracker Barrel restaurant that seems to put everybody in a good mood over the phone.
Everything is going well until Francesca gets a call from a particularly insistent client with the last name Ehrmantraut and he doesn’t want to talk about the weather outside much less the delicious comfort food at American’s favorite country store.
“This one really doesn’t want to talk about Cracker Barrel”
This is one call Jimmy wants to take so he goes into his office where he speaks to Mike, who needs his assistance regarding a particularly important stakeout he’s engaged in currently.
Welcome to Los Pollos Hermanos
Mike has continued to follow the culprits behind the tracker in his gas cap, which eventually leads him to a money man picking up cash all over town at various drops. If this seems familiar, it’s the same job Mike eventually has when he’s working for Gus Fring during ‘Breaking Bad’ as he takes Jesse Pinkman all over New Mexico picking up cash in random drops spots for his boss’s drug business.
Mike continues to follow until his stakeout ends at a local fast food restaurant called Los Pollos Hermanos.
That’s when Mike gives Jimmy a call to ask for his help during the next stage of his stakeout. He asks Jimmy to go buy a meal inside the restaurant and then sit there until the man driving a particular SUV and carrying a green satchel walks in as well. His job is to shadow that man to find out what he does with that satchel.
So Jimmy follows through until the man finally arrives with the green satchel in tow.
He buys his meal, sits down and hurries through his breakfast, gets up and leaves without ever interacting with the satchel whatsoever. The man dumps his tray and walks out of the restaurant again.
The only thing Jimmy can surmise is that perhaps the man wrote some kind of note and then dumped it into the trash for his contact to find. Jimmy starts foraging through the garbage until he’s interrupted by a friendly voice offering some assistance.
When Jimmy crawls out of the garbage can he’s greeted by the smiling face of Gustavo Fring.
Jimmy tells him that he dropped his watch in the trash can — a move he perpetrated just after he was confronted by the restaurant manager — and Gus helps him retrieve it from the garbage. Jimmy brushes off his watch and leaves the restaurant to report to Mike what he’s just seen.
He tells Mike that the man walked into the restaurant, enjoyed his meal, dumped the trash and never interacted with anybody much less handed off the satchel. Mike is disappointed because he’s no closer to discovering who was following him this entire time.
The next day, Mike is back on the stakeout when we get our first glimpse at Victor — Gus’ former right hand man who met his demise during ‘Breaking Bad’ — and this time he’s the one being followed. The only problem is this time Mike follows the tracking beacon all the way out into the middle of nowhere when the signal stops.
Mike walks out of his car and finds the gas cap with a cell phone sitting on top of it. The phone rings and Mike answers but we don’t hear who is on the other end. It seems rather obvious that this will be the first time Mike interacts with Gus Fring.
Considering the working relationship Mike shared with Gus, it’s likely the chicken restaurant owner by day, drug dealer by night was impressed with his sleuthing skills not to mention his intense (shared) hatred for Hector Salamanca and this could be the beginning of a very fruitful and profitable partnership.
Back at the law offices, Kim receives a call from Ernie — the loyal HHM intern, who has been helping with Chuck since he severed his relationship with Jimmy — who wants to speak with her outside. Ernie is worried about the legalities of his conversation so he’s trying to be as private as possible when reaching out to Kim.
He proceeds to tell her about the recording he heard at Chuck’s house where he taped Jimmy’s confession about switching the Mesa Verde documents that ultimately cost HHM the account. Ernie was worried about Jimmy getting into trouble, but he also didn’t want to end up on Howard Hamlin or Chuck McGill’s bad side by divulging this information.
As predicted a week ago — Ernie “stumbling” upon Chuck’s recording of Jimmy was just another in a long line of set ups as he continued to plot against his brother and the plan was executed to perfection by the end of the episode.
Kim goes back inside and requests that Jimmy hand over some money as a retainer so by law she is now his attorney, which means they share confidentiality. Kim then tells Jimmy about this taped confession and how Chuck’s entire mental episode was just one elaborate scheme to get him to reveal how he orchestrated the Mesa Verde file switch.
Jimmy is brokenhearted that Chuck would do this to him, but at first he feigns like it doesn’t really bother him. While Jimmy continues to see clients, Kim does some digging on her own to ensure that her partner and boyfriend doesn’t end up in jail after accidentally confessing to felony charges.
Jimmy appreciates her due diligence, but this situation has to be resolved and the only way to do that is to confront Chuck.
Unfortunately what Jimmy doesn’t know is Chuck has been preparing for this for weeks.
Chuck hired a private investigator to follow Jimmy and another to stay at the house with him while he awaits his brother coming there to steal the tape. Chuck purposefully let Ernie hear the tape knowing full well he would report back to Jimmy what he found.
Just as Howard is trying to convince Chuck that the expenses are really starting to rack up for this plan he’s concocted, it all comes to fruition. Jimmy shows up at his brother’s house enraged about the taped confession before kicking in the front door before erupting on Chuck for what he’s done to tear their family apart.
The argument eventually leads to Jimmy going over to the desk where Chuck has hidden the recorder and the tape. Jimmy breaks into the desk, retrieves the tape and smashes it in front of his brother while lamenting about how he betrayed him all for the sake of trying to land him in jail. Little does Jimmy know or understand that the tape was largely useless in a court of law but this was all part of Chuck’s scheme to finally land his brother back in jail.
Once Jimmy has broken into the house, broken into the desk, destroyed the property and threatened to burn the whole house to the ground, Howard and the private investigator reveal themselves as witnesses to the entire ordeal. Not only did Jimmy commit breaking and entering but he also destroyed property and committed theft all while there are three people in the house to confirm exactly what he did.
Chuck has finally gotten what he’s always wanted — Jimmy behind bars.
‘Better Call Saul’ returns next Monday night with a brand new episode at 10pm ET on AMC