Be wary with your wanders, ABQ aficionados: Heavy Better Call Saul spoilers are ahead.
You know that moment when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Better Call Saul has the laws of motion in the palm of its hand, and nothing can slow its momentum now.
The show’s sixth and final season finds Jimmy McGill and company reigniting the same thrills we experienced a decade ago with Breaking Bad, proving creator Vince Gilligan is no one-hit-wonder. Every episode is a continuation of the last, leaving you on the edge of your seat for the next shocking development.
The only question is where the show will go next.
The early seasons of Better Call Saul were very much a slow burn in comparison to Breaking Bad. While Breaking Bad leaned into its identity as a drug cartel-based action thriller early on, Saul buckled up for the long haul as a show drenched in courtroom drama – albeit highly rewarding watches, with Jimmy and his brother Chuck rivaling one another until a tragic conclusion to that storyline.
But in getting to season six, Better Call Saul has merged its courtroom drama with its cartel action. After all, we knew this would be the case early on, with two distinct storylines to pace the way: 1) Jimmy and Kim in the law firm setting and 2) Mike and Gus in the cartel setting. As the two have overlapped, Saul has become tense and irresistible.
The final season of the show is at its halfway point, with a shocking ending to its latest episode: Lalo enters Jimmy and Kim’s apartment and senselessly killing Howard. For Lalo, it’s just quickly eliminating an obstacle. But for Jimmy and Kim (and the audience watching), it’s years of a fully-fleshed person you spent time getting to know, gone in the blink of an eye.
The season will resume for its second half in July, so until then, we’re left mourning Howard and wondering just what will happen next. We know that the end of Better Call Saul means the beginning of Breaking Bad. That’s the lone difference in what made Breaking Bad so unpredictable, since it had a whole world of options in front of it. Yet, Saul has found a way to surprise again and again.
There are a lot of theories out there regarding the end of Better Call Saul. Howard and Nacho aren’t in Breaking Bad, obviously. Saul, Gus, and Mike all survive, leaving us with an unknown fate for Lalo, Kim, and several others.
Here are some theories as to what will happen to these characters – as well as how the show will wrap up – in the final six episodes.
Theory #1: Kim leaves Jimmy – and Albuquerque – for good
Jimmy has been Slippin’ Jimmy for as long as he can remember. It’s always been a part of his identity to cut corners, to make ethical lapses in order to achieve success – whether it’s framing a business rival or planting evidence to win a court case.
Kim’s obsession with what I like to call “righteous justice” (righting the wrongs, even if through immoral means) brings out the worst in Jimmy. That, or she just finds thrill in the mischief – like a teenager pranking the neighbors.
With Jimmy and Kim’s marriage and continued goal of taking down Howard, the duo has picked up steam in seasons five and six. But Jimmy’s connections with the cartel – it’s clear he’s becoming the “cartel lawyer” as he fully turns into Saul – has taken out Howard, and who knows who it’ll take out next? This could be where Kim finally draws the line, before more blood is spilled.
Jimmy is in too deep as Saul, and Kim may have no choice but to leave for her own safety. She’ll finally realize that she’s bad for Jimmy, and that it could result in his demise or even hers. Perhaps this could mean moving to a new city or even entering witness protection – the Royals shirt she wears to bed regularly could be foreshadowing a Kansas City future.
Theory #2: Kim goes into hiding but reunites with Jimmy in Nebraska
There’s something that keeps Kim returning to Jimmy, and it stems from their con-filled antics – almost like a Jekyll and Hyde mentality where one side is constantly fighting to rise above the other. Just as Jimmy has turned into Saul, Kim has undergone a transformation of her own, as one half of a huckster power couple. (It’s a shame to see her ethical downfall since she’s an excellent public defender.)
While Kim may end up leaving Jimmy for the time being, it’s hard to imagine a future where the two don’t reunite at some point. We’ve seen a handful of flash-forwards to Jimmy working in a mall Cinnabon in Omaha, Nebraska, and there has to be more to his future than just a lonely food court gig in the midwest.
Does this mean a happy ending for both characters? That would certainly satisfy fans, but seems at odds with Gilligan’s penchant for shocking on-screen deaths, even for some of the most likable characters – see Mike, Hank, and Nacho. But as long as the couple is together, trouble will follow, so let’s not get too optimistic.
Theory #3: Lalo kills Kim but ends up with a lengthy prison sentence
Season six has already given us the deaths of two key characters in Howard and Nacho, and more could follow. Rhea Seehorn, who plays Kim, hasn’t helped calm our nerves, saying we should be concerned about her character’s fate (‘I’m more worried for Kim Wexler than for most of my friends and family,” the show posted on social media).
Who’s to say Kim isn’t the next key character to be ousted? She isn’t in Breaking Bad, nor is she even mentioned in the show. While it’s hard to imagine Jimmy ever being able to move on if the love of his life is killed, he’s already experienced a lot of tragedy, including Chuck and Howard. Lalo is only creeping closer (after all, he returns to Albuquerque to see “his lawyer,” and Kim is about as confrontational as it gets).
If Lalo indeed kills Kim, this would suggest a prison sentence – he can murder cartel members, but there’s no way he gets away with multiple civilian murders, especially of local lawyers. In season four of Breaking Bad, Gus mentions that Hector is the last Salamanca still alive following the cartel’s destruction. This means Lalo dies between now and then, whether in prison or while still a free man. But we know for a fact that his days are limited.
Theory #4: Mike kills Lalo, earning Gus’ trust as his right-hand man
With Lalo’s death coming in the near future, it’s unknown how he goes out. But Better Call Saul is setting up for an epic showdown, with Lalo surviving the raid at his compound in Mexico and traveling back to New Mexico. Gus, naturally, is terrified, even if he says “I don’t believe fear to be an effective motivator” in Breaking Bad. That tells you just how dangerous Lalo is – a psychopathic killer with a sly charisma.
As Lalo watches the underground meth lab, which he traveled all the way to Germany to learn about, it’s only a matter of time before there’s a confrontation. It would certainly make sense for Mike to be the man to take him out.
In Breaking Bad, Walt approaches Gus’ house in the middle of the night, only to get a call telling him to go home. Mike’s crew are surveillance experts (as we’ve seen so far this season), and it would only make sense for Mike to catch Lalo before he gets to Gus too.
This also makes sense if Mike becomes Gus’ right-hand man in Breaking Bad, as we’ve seen him grow closer with Gus across the past few seasons – from the German meth lab project to the surveillance of Gus’ house. Just as Jimmy has grown into the crooked lawyer we know and love in Breaking Bad, we’ve seen Mike grow from a grief-stricken father working a toll booth to a security guru protecting Gus’ business interests.
Theory #5: Walt and Jesse kill Lalo, leading us into Breaking Bad
We know Walter White and Jesse Pinkman show up at some point in the final six episodes of Better Call Saul – this much was confirmed before the season premiered. Some theories suggest Jimmy gets a car wash at the car wash Walt works at, or that Kim takes on Jesse’s friends Badger and Skinny Pete as pro-bono clients. These would be clever work-ins, but don’t give us much more than simple fan fare in what has been an epic season thus far.
I have another idea, in which the duo play a much bigger role and make season six even more epic: Walt and Jesse confront Lalo while working at the meth lab, which would be anytime before season four of Breaking Bad (when Lalo is presumed dead). This, however, could be much further in the future than Better Call Saul’s current timeline, making it a little less plausible. It is presumed the meth lab is already in operation, so we do know it’s only a matter of time before Walt and Jesse start working there.
A showdown between Walt and Lalo would be the most spectacular example of an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object, and that’s what Better Call Saul has been heading towards since we first met Jimmy McGill in season one.
One thing is for sure, and that’s that Saul will not go out with a whimper. There are plenty of fireworks left in store for us during these final six episodes, and I can’t wait for the surprises Gilligan and crew have in store for us.