"Hero" is the fourth episode of the first season of Better Call Saul and the fourth episode of the series altogether. Jimmy devises a bold plan to obtain new clients, but he must face the consequences when his relationships become strained.
In a flashback, Jimmy McGill (under the alias "Saul Goodman") and Stevie come across an unconscious man in an alleyway. Jimmy pokes the man with a stick and the man wakes up, flipping the two of them off and continuously taunting them by calling them "buttholes". Frustrated with the guy's rudeness, Stevie takes the money from his wallet and Jimmy steals his Rolex watch but Stevie offers a trade of the money from the man's wallet in exchange for the more valuable Rolex and eventually offers him an additional $580 to bring the total to $1,580. It is later revealed that it was all a scam set up by Jimmy and the man found in the alley was actually Jimmy's longtime friend, Marco (they had been extorting money from other crooks who had been trading cash for the Rolex watches).
In the present, the Kettlemans are pleading with Jimmy not to expose them, offering him a portion of the money as a bribe, which Jimmy initially refuses. Jimmy retorts with the option of them hiring him as their lawyer, which is refused in turn by the Kettlemans, who refer back to the cash bribe.
The next day Jimmy thanks Mike for his assistance in solving the predicament. Nacho is released from police custody, who then discreetly accuses Jimmy of warning the Kettlemans before they went into hiding and that Jimmy will face "consequences". Jimmy rebuts by implying that he warned the family for the children's sake, and that any trouble Nacho got into he brought upon himself.
Back at his residence at the salon, it is revealed that Jimmy took the Kettleman's bribe but still exposed them. Jimmy calculates his fees that can be paid off with the bribe and spends the remaining money on a makeover and billboard advertisement which shares obvious and deliberate similarities with the HHM Law Firm, presumably out of spite. Kim confronts Jimmy over the imitation, and Howard, who works for HHM, brings Jimmy to court over the discrepancy, in which he is ordered to have the advertisement removed.
After failing to convince any news outlets to cover his predicament as a human interest story, Jimmy organizes a video plea, calling for sympathy to his situation. During filming, however, the worker who is removing the advertisement slips and falls, held on only by his harness. Jimmy hurries to the man's rescue and pulls him to safety while the public watches and records. It is revealed that the accident was staged by Jimmy and the worker as a publicity stunt. Howard and Kim, watching the news, see through the ruse instantly. Due to his newfound popularity, Jimmy receives numerous new consultations.
Jimmy visits Chuck, but hides the newspaper that reported the "rescue" to keep Chuck from seeing it. Chuck congratulated Jimmy on his new success, but is oblivious to the stunt. Chuck notices that one of his daily newspapers is missing, which Jimmy dismisses. After Jimmy leaves, a suspicious Chuck painstakingly hurries to his neighbour's house and collects their copy of the newspaper, in which Chuck reads about the stunt.
- Bob Odenkirk as Saul Goodman
- Jonathan Banks as Mike Ehrmantraut
- Rhea Seehorn as Kim Wexler
- Patrick Fabian as Howard Hamlin
- Michael Mando as Nacho Varga
- Michael McKean as Chuck McGill
- Julie Ann Emery as Betsy Kettleman
- Jeremy Shamos as Craig Kettleman
- Mel Rodriguez as Marco Pasternak
- Eileen Fogarty as Mrs. Nguyen
- Kevin Weisman as Stevie
- Dawnn Lewis as Judge
- Josh Fadem as Joey Dixon
- Dorian Missick as Detective Dunst
- Paul Geoffrey as Tailor
- Eddie J. Fernandez as Robert Williams (as "Billboard Worker")
- Julian Bonfiglio as Sound Guy
- Rose Liotta as Chuck's Neighbor
- Staci Robbins as Lady Onlooker
- Bau Thi Duong as Salon Employee #1
- Le Hai Dang as Salon Employee #2
- This is the first episode of Better Call Saul where the "Saul Goodman" alias is used.
- Just like the tune Marco hums is Deep Purple's Smoke On the Water, Jimmy's howls are a reference to another Deep Purple song, Hush.
- At the tailor's store, Jimmy checks out an orange shirt. In Breaking Bad he will often wear bright-colored shirts like the aforementioned one.
- The worker that performs the billboard publicity stunt appeared briefly during the episode "Mijo" as one of Jimmy's clients.
- The name shown on the Alley Guy's license is Henry Gondorff. This is the same name as the main character of the 1973 caper film The Sting (Gondorff was a once-great con-man hiding from the FBI).
- When Jimmy takes Chuck's daily groceries out of his trunk, the New York Times headline reads "Israel Acts To Seize Arab Land After Blast; Bush Delays Talk". Research of this headline indicates this edition was published on June 19, 2002, indicating the exact time frame this episode took place.
References to other media
- Jimmy makes many references to other media during the series, in this episode, he makes references to:
- The drawer of burner cellphones in Saul Goodman's office is shown, with a quick flash of the Hello Kitty cellphone he gives Jesse Pinkman.
|Better Call Saul -- Season 1|
|#01 "Uno"||#05 "Alpine Shepherd Boy"||#09 "Pimento"|
|#02 "Mijo"||#06 "Five-O"||#10 "Marco"|
|#03 "Nacho"||#07 "Bingo"|
|#04 "Hero"||#08 "RICO"||Season 2 >>|