Better Call Saul — AMC’s Breaking Bad prequel centered on the transformation of Jimmy McGill into Saul Goodman — has been known to toy with time over its first three seasons. We’ve seen flashbacks to when Jimmy was younger man or even a child, as well as a peek beyond the Breaking Bad years, when he entered an underground form of witness protection and became Gene, a beaten-down manager at a Cinnabon in Omaha.
But now Better Call Saul, which began its story in the year 2002, will venture somewhere it never has before — and somewhere that surely will intrigue/delight fans: into the Breaking Bad era, which was set from 2008 to 2010.
“We have a subplot that very squarely gets into Breaking Bad territory and brings us into the world — or at least points us on a path toward the world of Walter White and the territory of Walter White,” co-creator Vince Gilligan tells EW. “I can’t wait for folks to see that.”
Gilligan & Co. are mum on details, indicating only that the scenes in question involve Saul (Bob Odenkirk); they’re not saying which, if any, other Breaking Bad characters you will see. This is certainly enticing news, though, as it opens up the possibility of seeing the set-up or repercussion of key scenes from Breaking Bad. It also opens up the possibility of seeing more familiar faces who might not have worked as organically in a cameo given the existing flashback or flash-forward scenarios.
Don’t hold your breath for a Walt (Bryan Cranston) sighting just yet, though. During an interview for Breaking Bad‘s 10th anniversary reunion in the pages of EW, Cranston and costar Aaron Paul said that they were open to reprising their characters in Better Call Saul, but it sounded like nothing had been filmed yet. While Cranston introduced the idea of a fun cameo or brush-by, Gilligan says he “desperately” wants to figure out a way to include them, and that he will push for something more significant. “[I]t wouldn’t feel as satisfying if it was just a cameo or an Alfred Hitchcock walkthrough,” he noted. “I think we’ve waited long enough. We damn well better have a good reason for them to show up.”
The news comes as the universes of the two shows seem to be on a collision course. “I picture two giant circles moving together, converging into an ever-largening Venn diagram, and that Venn diagram represents the overlap between Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul,” Gilligan says. “That area of overlap is getting larger and larger.”
Co-creator Peter Gould tells EW, “We’re still a few years out from Walter White, but you’ll see some things that will definitely ring a bell and also show some different aspects to things that we saw in Breaking Bad.”
The season 4 premiere of Better Call Saul airs Aug. 6. Some first-look photos, including a peek at Chuck’s funeral, await you here.
To see EW’s Breaking Bad 10th anniversary reunion photo and cast portraits, tread not-so-lightly over here.