March 2, 2024

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You Should Have Cared About ‘Better Call Saul’ Sooner | Arts And Entertainment

Better Call Saul deserved better… but your outrage is too late. It’s a show title that some viewers may not have thought about in some time as the Breaking Bad spinoff aired its final episode in August 2022, but intrigue resurfaced amid the 75th Emmy Awards as the show and its stars were once again unrecognized.

And admittedly, I find this enraging. Where was all this outrage over the past nine years? Nominated over 50 times at the Emmys since its 2015 debut, Better Call Saul never managed to snag a single statue and people only seem to care now that it’s no longer a possibility. This show deserved Emmys long before 2024.

It feels as though when Better Call Saul debuted and people realized it wasn’t exactly the same show as Breaking Bad, they gave up on it. When in reality, Saul is a perfectly intense drama that reached levels with stakes just as high as the ones Walter White (Bryan Cranston) once faced, as the spinoff series reached its fifth and sixth seasons at AMC.

Better Call Saul - Season 6 - Bob Odenkirk

(Credit: Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television)

The oversight feels especially egregious considering all of the Emmys attention that Bad got during its run because I’d say that Seasons 4, 5, and 6 of Saul are just as good as anything that was turned out during the flagship show’s run. Sure, Saul took a little longer to find its legs, but the series delivered shocking moments, terrifying villains, and satisfying conclusions in an entirely new way.

While it might be easy to write off Bad‘s alums as worthy of wins because of the show’s prior success at the Emmys, Bob Odenkirk, Giancarlo Esposito, and Jonathan Banks never won a single Emmy for their portrayals of Saul Goodman (a.k.a. Jimmy McGill), Gustavo Fring, and Mike Ehrmantraut. In fact, Odenkirk was never even nominated during Bad‘s run, only receiving nominations for the spinoff.

So no excuse or explanation satisfies the fact that they were completely ignored in their respective categories over the years at the Emmys during Saul‘s run. The show created by Peter Gould and Vince Gilligan also made way for some truly incredible original characters and performances, most notably from Kim Wexler portrayer Rhea Seehorn who only received nods for Saul‘s sixth season, which was split in two.

Better Call Saul Season 6 Rhea Seehorn

(Credit: Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television)

Additionally, Michael Mando, Patrick Fabian, and Tony Dalton all delivered terrifyingly good performances as reluctant cartel man Nacho, snobby lawyer Howard Hamlin, and scary big bad Lalo Salamanca that went entirely ignored among Emmy voters, receiving no nominations.

And while I don’t want to say that any of the previous winners in the same categories are less deserving of their Emmys, the Better Call Saul team should have had more hype around awards season.

Perhaps this is a longer, roundabout way of saying Rhea Seehorn deserved to win an Emmy or two before she was ever even nominated for the phenomenal sixth season, particularly for her blustery Season 5 exchange with Lalo. And Odenkirk deserved at least one win over the years, if not for his incredible performance, at least for his dedication to this role for more than a decade of his life.

I know there were champions of this show, myself among them, but it’s still disheartening to know that none of these riveting onscreen portrayals will ever take home Emmy gold. Instead, people will surely continue to discover the series on streaming and perhaps realize the error of their ways. Until then, I continue to believe people should have cared about Better Call Saul sooner than they did.

Better Call Saul, Streaming now, Netflix & AMC+

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