ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

TV Review: "Better Call Saul" Season 1, Episode 2: "Mijo"

Updated on February 10, 2015
Source
5 stars for "Better Call Saul" Episode 2 of S1

"Mijo" Finds The Series Charging Ahead Full Force By Building On The First EP And Concentrating On Razor-Sharp Character Development

Picking up just moments before Saul finds himself at gunpoint by the truly insane drug-kingpin-to-be Tuco, "Mijo" sees the repercussions of the Pilot episode in dynamic play. The red-headed twenty-something morons who agreed to Saul's hair-brained scheme become bound, gagged, and severely beaten, and, of course, in an absolute panic. Their feverish cries for help are completely in sync. They are twin brothers after all. In a delightful series of exchanges between Tuco and his abuelita (grandmother) who tries to cover up the brothers' blood stains by exclaiming that it's a "salsa stain," we see flashes of Tuco's nut-job criminal come into being even if he is much more restrained than he was when facing off against Walt in "Breaking Bad." We see a man who is sensitive and, dare I say, methodical and reasonable. Well, as reasonable as a drug lord can be. But the fun doesn't truly start until Saul enters the arena.

Saul gets very dramatic here, initially, with another embellished extended monologue saying that he is representing "law and order" and comes charging in only to find that his would-be heroics involve a gun pressed to his head by Tuco. Instead of Tuco merely shooting him on sight, like he might have in a typical episode of BB, he plops Saul down on an adjacent chair and allows him to explain the ordeal as he sees it. Despite Saul's best intentions, Tuco himself says he "smells lies" and, as the boys' try to pin the whole thing on Saul in order to save their skins, Saul takes a pragmatic approach that leaves all parties in a more favorable position than before. It is a wonderful scene and Saul's distinct wordplay that he's become noted for amps up the comedy-drama elements that we are all familiar with. Tuco isn't yet the truly hardened criminal that he becomes but in his early stages we see how menacing and rage-filled he is. For fans of BB, we all know it is these qualities that ultimately lead to his undoing.

Fast forward a bit and we have the highlight of the whole episode which takes place in the stifling heat of the New Mexico desert. An extreme closeup to Saul finds him tied up and trembling. His face wincing as he anticipates the worst to come. The boys' are still bound and gagged and they look more beaten than before. Tuco talks to his advisor in order to make a "justified" decision as to what to do with the three. Thankfully, his advisor is more sensible and level-headed and after much convincing which ends in the release of Saul, Tuco comes to a decision that isn't the best but also isn't the worst. As Saul ambles off he sees that Tuco is about to gut the boys' as Tuco comes up with a number of grizzly ends - "slicing their throats and pulling their tongues out of the slits," "cutting off their legs" and, so on. Saul, in all his backward lawyer-y glory talks Tuco down just breaking their legs - one of each. He makes a rather hilarious but totally appropriate comparison to Hammurabi's Code which dictates "an eye for an eye" or, in this case, the punishment must fit the crime. Saul insists, since they are skateboarders that not having the use of their legs for at least 6 months will have the boys' truly learn the error of their ways as well as never forgetting Tuco or this fateful day. Tuco agrees and has much fun enacting the leg breaking. This was a helluva scene as it was tightly scripted, well developed and just fun to see all the characters' do what they do best given the situation. Saul's gift of the gab for once is able to save lives and even though he is still unsure as to why he went to those ends, he nevertheless takes full responsibility for what went down.

"Mijo" is not only a brilliant episode but it really takes all that came before and spins it in an evocative fashion. We really begin to see Saul step into his own and even though he is still completely down on his luck - penniless, a ramshackle office at the back of a Chinese hair salon, and no concrete clients, he still holds his head high as he hopes that soon his fortunes will change. And, just as luck would have it, the end of the episode is extremely telling. Tuco's more down to Earth advisor pays Saul a surprise visit. He offers to cut him in on an extortion racket that he is engineering to get back the $1.5 million that was embezzled. Saul let it slip to Tuco earlier in an interrogation scene that involved Tuco using tweezers to break Saul's fingers that that was his motive for mistakenly running down his grandma. Tuco's right hand man pledges to cut him in to the tune of $100k. This amount would be the largest that Saul ever accepted for a job since it is, you know, illegal. Saul backs down and repeatedly makes the case that he is not a criminal and that, no matter how tempting, will never be. Of course, we all know he couldn't be more wrong. As Tuco's advisor walks out with Saul looking through the beads that conceal his office, the episode ends on a subtle cliffhanger and the tensions are boiling to the maximum degree.

Judging from the consistency of both back-to-back episodes, BB fans and converts alike are really in for a treat as "Better Call Saul" is, out of the gate, shaping up to be one of the most addicting and watchable shows of the year.



Saul Goodman and Raymond Cruz as lunatic meth kingpin-to-be Tuco
Saul Goodman and Raymond Cruz as lunatic meth kingpin-to-be Tuco | Source
A roughed up Saul Goodman
A roughed up Saul Goodman | Source
Tuco's right hand man
Tuco's right hand man | Source

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)