Saul Goodman might bill a fair amount of time in the courtroom in the Breaking Bad prequel spin-off, hinted Breaking Bad writer and co-executive producer Peter Gould.
Which seems hugely obvious in retrospect, since the ethically challenged bus-stop legal eagle (Bob Odenkirk) is the star of the show. But it’s also a striking idea: We typically saw Saul in his strip-mall office during Breaking Bad. We didn’t really see him clocking a lot time in courtrooms (in fact … did we ever once see Saul in a courtroom? It’s like having a surgeon as a major recurring character in a show who’s never in a hospital). So the setting would be a ripe new regular environment for our experience of the character, one that gives the spin-off an opportunity to put some fresh twists on a well-worn TV procedural format.
Gould gave an interview to Yahoo TV touching on the Better Call Saul spin-off plan. When the interviewer noted that Saul is quite effective at his job for all his clownishness, Gould agreed:
“Yes, that’s part of the paradox of Saul Goodman and one of the things that made him fun, even right back in that first episode. He looks like a clown. Frankly, I’ve been hanging around in courtrooms lately, and it’s not as broad as I thought originally. He dresses in a ridiculous way, he’s got billboards, he’s got ridiculous ads, but he is a shrewd customer. If you listen, most of his advice to Walt over the years in the show was really good advice. If Walt had listened to Saul a little bit more, I think the show would have gone very differently and probably would not have been as exciting.” Asked if the time in courtrooms was for researching the spin-off, he confirmed: “Yeah, there’s a little bit of that. A little bit of research.”
The creative structure of the series is still being figured out. “Maybe it’s a prequel, maybe it’s a sequel, maybe it’s both… we’ll see!” Odenkirk told Access Hollywood a few days ago. While Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston at the same event said he would be open to making guest appearances. “I would definitely do any appearance on the show … If it made sense, sure absolutely. We’ll see.”
Previously, Gould told us about the benefits of Goodman: “He’s not a character I’ve seen before. So much of Breaking Bad is about playing out ideas of morality and how you live in the world, and this is a guy who has a philosophy which is internally consistent but is also kind of strange. In addition to the fact that he always amuses us and we’re always ready to see more, the guy is a problem solver. He solves problems in his own way. He’s just as innovative as Walt is, so that really gives us a lot of stories and a lot of places to go with him.”