Warning: This post contains story details from Monday night’s season finale of Better Call Saul, titled “Lantern.”
Chuck McGill has been engaged in a cold war with his brother, Jimmy McGill, for decades, and recently it heated up into an outright war of the sibling. But the battle that Chuck lost in the season 3 closer of Better Call Saul was the biggest yet — and it was the one with himself.
Chuck (Michael McKean) made the dark decision to take his own life, as his illness spiraled out of control again. The gifted attorney, who seemed on the verge of a major breakthrough with his illness — an allergy to electricity which he truly believed was physical before he was confronted with the reality that it was actually mental — reverted to the Chuck of old: He shut off the power in the house and then searched desperately, disturbingly for the source of a remaining wisp of electricity that the meter on the side of the house was registering, chipping away at the very foundation of the house and of his soul. Soon enough, he was left in a near-catatonic state of defeat, wrapped in his old space blanket and numbly trying to kick a lantern sitting on some papers off of the desk, which immediately set the cluttered room on fire.
All of this came as a shock, especially after Jimmy (Bob Odenkirk) visited his brother’s house, where he was surprised to find Chuck immersed in the quotidian comforts of electricity (following his painful personal ouster from HMM at the hands of Patrick Fabian’s Howard). But things between the brothers became charged when Jimmy’s attempt at a peace offering was rebuffed. “You’ve never mattered all that much to me,” Chuck told a devastated Jimmy, while also instructing him to embrace his true nature, which was to hurt the people around him. Jimmy tried to make up for that with Sandpiper resident Irene, returning her to the good graces of her mall-walking friends by sacrificing his name and the elder law business that he has waiting for him at the other end of his one-year suspension.
Elsewhere, Kim (Rhea Seehorn) took a healthier road to recovery after a scary car accident and reaffirmed some sort of commitment to Jimmy (they’ll build a new wall); Gus (Giancarlo Esposito) essentially saved the life of Hector (Mark Margolis) for the second time; and Nacho (Michael Mando) has captured the interest of Gus, which should prove interesting and/or dangerous.
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Check back on EW.com later tonight for interviews with key players in the making of “Lantern” — as well as a full recap — but below in the comments, feel free to weigh in on what appears to be the chilling end to a polarizing character.