Spinoff Better Call Saul Could Be Set Before, During And After Breaking Bad


Though Breaking Bad fans who have been desperately in need of a fix since that incredible series went off the air last year are going to have to wait until 2015 to get their first dose of AMC’s spinoff Better Call Saul, news about the upcoming series suggests it may be well worth the wait.

We’ve heard mixed things about when the spinoff is set, with some reports claiming it takes place in the 1980s and others saying it will jump ar0und, but recent comments by showrunner Peter Gould to The New York Daily News paint an even more exciting picture. Gould stated that:

“One of the great things about having a time line which is flexible is that perhaps some of it takes place before Breaking Bad, during Breaking Bad, and after Breaking Bad. That gives us the ability to bring back characters that were killed on Breaking Bad.

It seems pretty clear that Gould is referring to a possible return by Bryan Cranston’s chemistry-teacher-turned-meth-kingpin Walter White – and why not? After all, Jonathan Banks is returning to play fixer Mike Ehrmantraut despite having been shot and killed by Walter during Breaking Bad. And Aaron Paul, who played Walter’s partner Jesse Pinkman, has been vocal about his desire to appear in Better Call Saul.

Of course, Gould is under “enormous pressure” to produce a show that can hold a candle to Breaking Bad, so he’s doing his best to craft a strong series that isn’t entirely dependent on viewers being fans of its predecessor. He said:

“We want to make a show that stands on it own, is its own story and is a brand extension. We think we have a story that is worth making… We could never dream of the kind of success that Breaking Bad had and the love we got from the fans. But (with Saul) at a certain point you have to do the best job you can and tell the best story that entertains you, get a good response and hope people like it.”

AMC is already helping Gould out by having ordered an early second season. The showrunner explained:

“It’s tremendous for us because we get to plot out two seasons. And the way we work is similar to Breaking Bad as it is very serialized and each episode builds on the last. And that gives us a much bigger canvas to play with.”

Here’s hoping that Better Call Saul will make use of that canvas to produce something worth watching. Chances of the series’ success seem high – but as JoeyThe Brady Brides, Joanie Loves Chachi and the aborted How I Met Your Dad have proven, spinoffs are very tricky business.