‘Better Call Saul’ Season 2, Episode 2: ‘Cobbler’

There is a scene in this episode of “Better Call Saul” that perfectly represents just where Jimmy is in this new world of his. He is driving his brand new, flashy and expensive company car, and the cup that was given to him by Kim (which says “Worlds Second Best Lawyer”) just won’t fit in the cup holder. Jimmy is that cup and the car (and cup holder) is his new job: It simply will never fit.

Bob Odenkirk as Jimmy McGill and Rhea Seehorn as Kim Wexler - Better Call Saul _ Season 2, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/ AMC
Bob Odenkirk as Jimmy McGill and Rhea Seehorn as Kim Wexler – Better Call Saul _ Season 2, Episode 2 – Photo Credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/ AMC

The episode begins with Chuck playing piano in his house as Howard comes in with his groceries. After some chit chat, Howard breaks the news that Jimmy is now working at Davis & Main. And not in a janitorial sort of way. Jimmy is now an attorney at a big firm. And this deeply troubles Chuck, who had prevented his brother’s rise at his firm HH&M for years. He asks Howard if they know about Jimmy’s past, his education, ect. and Howard tells him he did not stand in Jimmy’s way. Not this time.

This motivates Chuck. With his Space Blanket lined suit (YES!), Chuck decides it is time to return to the firm — every once in a while, nothing set in stone. It seems Jimmy’s moving up motivates Chuck to step out of his situation and keep tabs on his brother.

Jimmy is living the good life: New car, he is with Kim, great new job and he tells Kim he is looking to buy a place between Santa Fe (where Davis & Main is located) and Albuquerque (where everything else is). It is a nice scene between these two.

Jonathan Banks as Mike Ehrmantraut - Better Call Saul _ Season 2, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/ AMC
Jonathan Banks as Mike Ehrmantraut – Better Call Saul _ Season 2, Episode 2 – Photo Credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/ AMC

We also have Pryce pulling up to the police station in his bright yellow Hummer, and as the man in the ticket booth, this really pisses off Mike. Mike tells him to pull around and to have a chat with this goofy bastard about just why he is visiting the police, given that he is a drug dealer and all. And yup, it is all about those baseball cards that were stolen from his apartment, along with his drugs.

Mike has to set him straight, because he knows the police suspect something about him and he also knows this spineless and clueless weirdo could bring the cops to his door. Something he obviously does not need in his life. So he tells Pryce he will find his baseball cards for him — for a price. Mike knows crooks, and knows exactly who robbed this guy.

And that guy is obviously Nacho. Mike shows up at Nacho’s father’s upholstery business to set it all straight. Nacho tries to be the tough guy, tries to intimidate Mike. Nacho doesn’t see Mike as a danger, until Mike reminds him that all he needs to do is let his boss, Tuco Salamanca, know about this little side business. In case we forget, Tuco is a psychopath from last season and from “Breaking Bad” who is prone to random, brutal violence with very little provocation.

From what we know of Tuco, it is probably in Nacho’s best interest not to piss this guy off.

So, Mike sets up a deal where Nacho gives Price back his baseball cards — and Pryce gives Nacho his flashy Hummer. But there is one more loose end to be fixed.

Jimmy is working on the Sandpiper case and during a meeting at HH&M with Davis & Main, Jimmy begins to explain that one of their advantages is that the old people whom they are representing save just about everything, including all paperwork with Sandpiper (and its shady “voluntary” claims on the paperwork that seem mandatory) . Unfortunately he  begins to fumble a bit when a woman comes in and everyone has to put their electronics into a plastic tub — because Chuck is in the building and wants to sit in on the meeting. After a brief shakeup for Jimmy, he continues with his idea of wading through the sea of papers (“Pack rats, God bless them…they have monthly statements going back to 1997,” Jimmy tells the group) to find more evidence of Sandpiper’s shady contracts.

Patrick Fabian as Howard Hamlin and Michael McKean as Chuck McGill - Better Call Saul _ Season 2, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/ AMC
Patrick Fabian as Howard Hamlin and Michael McKean as Chuck McGill – Better Call Saul _ Season 2, Episode 2 – Photo Credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/ AMC

Jimmy asks Chuck why he has come back, to which Chuck responds “to bear witness.” Jimmy then gets a call from Mike, asking for a bit of help for that final loose end.

The scene here is great: Jimmy sits quietly as Pryce is trying to tell the cops (who suspect he is a drug dealer after finding his hiding spot last episode) he doesn’t need their help finding his baseball cards. He is squirming, sweating and babbling — he is not very good with intimidation. Jimmy asks him to step outside while he speaks with the detectives.

Here is one of the clearest seeds of Jimmy’s transformation into Saul Goodman: He throws the detectives quite a tale of Pryce and his “art patron.” Jimmy pulls a great, convincing lie about Pryce being a “Squat Cobbler” who makes videos for his patron, which he keeps in the hidden spot they found in his house. This raises the interests of the cops, because of just how damn weird it is.

Videos? Squat Cobbler? Jimmy then proceeds, with a look of discomfort, to tell them that Pryce makes fetish videos of himself — fully clothed — where he “sits in a pie and wiggles around.” In fact, he tells the detectives, Pryce is a “Crybaby Squatter” in that he cries when he does it. Which, he adds, not all pie squatters cry. He even goes as far as telling them why on earth would he bother to make something like that up. Which, knowing how sleazy Saul Goodman is down the road, we know exactly why: Because they will believe it.

As Jimmy and Pryce are heading out of the police station, Jimmy tells Pryce he now has to make a video.

Which brings us to the end of the episode, where Jimmy and Kim are eating some pie and Jimmy tells her what he did, the Squat Cobbler tale and all. She finds it funny until he makes a comment about the pies they are eating being ones not used in the Squat Cobbler video he made of Pryce. He has just admitted to fabricating evidence and this really angers Kim.

She wants to know why he would risk everything for such a dumb stunt. Why he would jeopardize everything for a pro bono side job. As we see, Jimmy relishes in this type of thing, blending his knack for telling big lies in the con world with his status as a lawyer. Again, this is one of the clearest signs of what Jimmy’s life is to become when he is Saul Goodman.

THOUGHTS:

  • Pryce is really, really obsessed with those baseball cards.
  • Mike looked like he was about to explode with rage when he sees Pryce show up with the Hummer.
  • “Why are you here?” Jimmy asks Chuck. “My name is on the building,” Chuck replies.
  • “I’ll make sure the guys at the chop shop will be real gentle with her,” Nacho tells Pryce after Pryce tells him how to treat the Hummer.
  • Jimmy really wows the women at the salon his old office shared with his new Mercedes.
  • Cliff really likes playing that guitar.
  • “Where is my solid gold blimp?” Kim jokes at Jimmy after he tells here how great everything is going.
  • Other names for Squat Cobbler: Hoboken Squat Cobbler and the Boston Cream Splat. One of the funniest things this show has ever done.