By George Lawley
Better Call Saul may be coming to an end, but the Breaking Bad creators seem keen on another spinoff series, so here are all the possibilities.
Warning! SPOILERS for Better Call Saul.
Better Call Saul season 6, part 2 will see the end of the Breaking Bad prequel, but the show's creators have an appetite for more Breaking Bad spinoffs - here's what they could be. Better Call Saul's popularity is a testament to audiences' fondness of the Breaking Bad universe. Even thoughmany of Better Call Saul's main characters are assured of their safety due to their involvement in the events of Breaking Bad, the prequel series demonstrates that it can still play with audiences' emotions and endear viewers to a varietyof new characters, such as Kim Wexler, Howard Hamlin, and Nacho Varga.
The idea for a spinoff show about Saul Goodman was supposedly dreamt up as soon as Breaking Bad producersVince Gilligan and Peter Gould began writing for Bob Odenkirk's shady lawyer. Throughout Better Call Saul's run, Gould and Gilligan have also indulged their desire for more spinoff content, and have employed a variety of animated and live-action shorts. In 2021, AMC announced the development of three short spinoffs: Slippin' Jimmy, Cooper's Bar, and Better Call Saul Employee Training Videos. These follow the success of the Emmy-winning short Employee Training: Legal Ethics With Kim Wexler, which accompanied Better Call Saul's fifth season.
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Despite this slew of short content in the Breaking Bad universe, any upcoming spinoff will likely be more similar to the hour-long dramas like Better Call Saul, or they could be movies like the Breaking Bad sequel El Camino. The possibility of such a new show seems more real than ever too, following recent comments from Dan McDermott, the president of AMC Studios, who said that"the door is always open" for more spinoffs in the Breaking Bad world, and that "if I could do anything to encourage Vince and Peter to continue in this universe, I would do it."If this pans out, who would be the focus of any future Better Call Saul and Breaking Bad spinoffs? Here are the main contenders.
Kim Wexler SpinoffShow
The possibility of a show revolving around Better Call Saul's Kim Wexler is something that seems to appeal to both actress Rhea Seehorn, Vince Gilligan, and Peter Gould. In an interview (via Deadline) Seehorn addresses a potential series, by saying that Gilligan and Gould believe that "there are stories, mine [Kim's] included, that are worthwhile to continue to tell." While Kim Wexler's ultimate fate in Better Call Saul is yet to be revealed, and a point of speculation considering her absence in Breaking Bad, Seehorn states that "there's an ellipse to who Kim is and who Kim was." Obviously, Seehorn cannot reveal what will happen to her character in Better Call Saul's final episodes, but it's interesting that she believes there's adequate story about Kim's past to conceive a new spinoff.
A spinoff based around Kim's life before Better Call Saul could cause complications. Kim's arc in the prequel show charts how she begins to break bad and how she lets go of her tight moral compass to pursue more selfish pursuits, like her scheme against Howard Hamlin. While a show about her past could certainly provide more insight into her character and the reasons for her arc in Better Call Saul, to show Kim acting on her darker impulses before the events of Better Call Saul could undermine her current character change. Of course, should Kim survive season 6, there will be ample space for a show that uncovers what her character is up to during the events of Breaking Bad, and it could potentially tie into the Gene timeline in Better Call Saul.
Gus Fring PrequelSeries
A Breaking Bad spinoff centered on the early career of Gus Fring appears to be the most likely option for another show set in Gilligan's universe. The rumors of such a show were intensified when actor Giancarlo Esposito revealed in an interview on the Late Show with James Cordon that Vince Gilligan told him "it's not over until it's over," which Esposito took as a hint that the audience may see the rise of Gus Fring on their screens in the future. A Gus Fring spinoff could have also been teased in Better Call Saul season 6, episode 7 when Gus speaks of the "guidance" he had as a child, which could reveal that Gus had a mentor that helped him into his life of crime.
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With Gus' death in Breaking Bad, a prequel series remains the only possibility for a Gus Fring spinoff. Nonetheless, due to Gus' tight-lipped nature, there's ample room for the writers to create a compelling story charting his rise into a drug kingpin. Breaking Bad briefly touched upon Gus' history in flashbacks where his partner is killed by Don Eladio, which acts as Gus' motivation for taking out the cartel in one fell swoop. Such a show would also likely feature many characters known to Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul audiences, such as Juan Bolsa and the Salamanca family. The only issue that arises is that if the show is set significantly in the past then Esposito may begin to look a bit older for the role, and de-aging CGImay have to be employed.
Hank Schrader SpinoffSeries
While Gus Fring features heavily in Better Call Saul, one beloved character who is a much smaller presence in the prequel series is Hank Schrader. Similar to the discourse around possible shows about Gus and Kim, Peter Gould has also stirred up speculation about a Hank spinoff when he said (via Metro),"I could see the Hank Schrader show, absolutely."Gould appeared to be talking generally, expressing that any of Breaking Bad's characters have the potential to helm their own show. However, Hank certainly has the charisma and humor to spearhead his own series. Such a show would almost certainly have to include many of the main cast from Breaking Bad, and audiences would also get to see a lot more of Bryan Cranston's Walter White. With the show needing to be a prequel due to Hank's demise in Breaking Bad's bestepisode "Ozymandias," this version of Walter White certainly wouldn't be like the murderous Heisenberg that dominated the original series. Conversely, this spinoff could choose to take the focus away from Hank's family dynamics in order to feel like its own beast, and could instead focus on his exploits and rise throughout his time in the DEA.
Mike Ehrmantraut PoliceShow
Although Mike Ehrmantraut is certainly on the wrong side of the law in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, a Mike spinoff could see chronicle his time as a police officer in Philadelphia. Parts of his past have been divulged, such as the tragic death of his son, but Better Call Saul season 1, episode 6, "Five-O" is the mostaudiences have seen ofMike's backstoryin Better Call Saul. In the episode, two Philadelphia police officers question Mike on the deaths of two fellow officers. It's revealed that Mike did indeed kill them, as their corrupt dealings led to the death of Mike's son, Matt. While this episode explains a lot of Mike's trauma and the mystery surrounding his son, a potential spinoff could delve deeper into Mike's relationship with Matt and Stacey. It could also go even further into the past and deal with Mike's wavering morality as he tiptoes onto both sides of the law. Similar to a possible Gus spinoff, with this show being set so far in the past it would either have to cast a younger Mike or it could use de-aging technology, something Better Call Saul does not use.
A Brand New SeriesIn Breaking Bad's Universe
A Better Call Saul spinoff could also be an opportunity for Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould to focus on completely new characters in the world of Breaking Bad. This is something they've experimented with in the beforementioned Cooper's Bar, and it could interest viewers of the original series and entice new audiences who would not have to watch Better Call Saul and Breaking Bad in order to enjoy a completely separate show. It could also exciteexisting audiences by sprinkling a new show with cameos from pre-existing characters, similar to how Walter White and Jesse Pinkman will have cameos in the final episodes of Better Call Saul. While it's hard to imagine any show created by Gould and Gilligan disappointing viewers, it may make Alberquerque and the world of Breaking Bad seem a bit self-referential. As such, if spinoff shows centering around Gus, Mike, Hank, or Kim gain any traction, it may be time for the creators to move onto an entirely new IP. Regardless of what they do next, it's sure to have significant pulling power after the success of Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul.
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