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This article is about the tenth episode of the first season of Better Call Saul. For the character, see Marco Pasternak.
"Marco" is the tenth and final episode of the first season of Better Call Saul and the tenth episode of the series altogether.

Summary

Teaser

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In a flashback to Cicero, Illinois, shortly after Chuck has helped secure his release from jail, Jimmy stops by a local bar to say farewell to Marco, his best friend and partner in crime. He tells Marco that he’s moving to Albuquerque to work in the mailroom at Chuck’s law firm. Marco bemoans Jimmy’s decision, arguing that the move is a waste of Slippin’ Jimmy’s talents – but Jimmy’s mind is made up, and he leaves.

Act I

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In the present, Jimmy pays Howard a visit to officially hand over the Sandpiper Crossing case to HHM. With a zen-like calm, he also gives Howard a list detailing the errands that he’d been performing daily for Chuck. Howard marvels at Jimmy’s dedication to his brother, and reminds Jimmy that he always had a soft spot for him. In the parking garage, Jimmy apologizes to Kim for lashing out at her when she advised him to take Howard’s deal. She gives him a hug, commending him on how maturely he’s handling the situation with Chuck.

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At the bingo hall, Jimmy calls numbers for a good-humored crowd. He’s trying to preside over the festivities as usual, but the pain of Chuck’s betrayal finally hits him. He soldiers on with stifled rage until his cheerful façade finally cracks. With the perplexed Bingo patrons’ rapt attention, he launches into a story about his attempt at a “Chicago Sunroof” - when his ex-wife’s lover stopped by a bar he used to hang out in his BMW, Jimmy decided to defecate through the sunroof of the man's car, not realizing that his children were in the backseat. This led to trumped-up charges of indecent exposure, which Chuck had to fly to Cicero to clear. “I’ve been paying for it ever since,” Jimmy says before abruptly ending the game and striding out the door.

Act II

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Jimmy travels to Cicero and arrives at his hometown bar in Cicero, where he finds Marco dozing. The two haven’t seen each other since Jimmy moved to Albuquerque, but Marco is thrilled to see him. Jimmy comments that he had been in town before for his mother's funeral two years earlier, but didn't have the time to check on his friend. Marco seems to be disappointed that Jimmy was in Cicero and did not visit him. After some more conversation, they fall back into old patterns and scam an obnoxious businessman at the bar by concocting an elaborate story to sell him a “rare” half dollar coin for a very high price. Laughing and celebrating their reunion, Jimmy and Marco buy a round for the house.

Act III

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The Return of Marco And Slippin Jimmy

Off this high, the pair spend the next several days gleefully pulling one scam after another. After a week-long binge, Jimmy wakes in Marco’s apartment to a disappointed waitress who was under the impression that she had gone home the night before with Kevin Costner. As he gets dressed, his cell phone falls out of his pocket, prompting Jimmy to check his voicemail and find he has numerous messages from current and potential clients inquiring about his elder law services. Jimmy finally tells Marco that he’s a lawyer and it’s time for him to go back to Albuquerque. Marco is amazed that Slippin’ Jimmy is a lawyer - it’s the ultimate way to scam folks out of their money. Jimmy explains that he’s not ripping anybody off: he’s building a legitimate practice with clients who depend on him. Marco is unable to talk Jimmy into staying in Chicago for the long-term, but he reveals that he still has the last Rolex watch from their infamous scam and convinces Jimmy to pull one last con with him.

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That night, they repeat the Rolex scam. Marco is waiting in the alley when he hears the signal - Jimmy and their victim howling in the middle of the night. As Jimmy and the victim approach, they find Marco unconscious, just like planned. Jimmy pokes him with a stick, but this time around, Marco does not respond. Jimmy realizes that Marco is really unconscious and tries to call for an ambulance as the victim runs off with Marco's money. Marco then wakes up, suffering from a heart attack. “This was the greatest week of my life,” a smiling Marco tells Jimmy before passing away. Jimmy is devastated.

Act IV

Outside Marco’s funeral, Jimmy possesses Marco's pinkie ring, which was given to him by his mother. Jimmy takes a call from Kim, who informs him that the ballooning size of the Sandpiper case has led HHM to team up with another firm, Davis & Main. She tells him the partners at Davis & Main know all about Jimmy, and are willing to offer him a partner-track position - contingent upon a meeting with him later that week. Knowing that she must have pulled some strings to make this happen, an appreciative Jimmy thanks Kim.

Back in Albuquerque, Chuck criticizes Ernesto on mistakes made during his most recent grocery run. Jimmy parks his car outside Chuck’s house, but doesn’t make a move to go inside. Chuck catches sight of Jimmy's Suzuki Esteem, but is unable to gather enough courage to open the front door and greet him. After exchanging hellos with Ernesto, a former friend of his from the mail room, Jimmy drives off – wounds still too raw to make amends with his brother.

At his toll booth, Mike idly contemplates a crossword puzzle while on the phone with Caldera. Mike agrees to take on another underworld job and jots down the latest clandestine address. Jimmy drives into the lot and passes by the booth without acknowledging Mike. Jimmy parks and climbs out of his car, stopping to check his hair one last time in his side mirror. He walks toward the courthouse, psyching himself up for his meeting with Davis & Main - but as he approaches the building, Jimmy pauses. He closes his eyes and fiddles with Marco’s pinkie ring. For a moment, he stands in the middle of the parking lot, deliberating.

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Back in his car, Jimmy drives back to Mike’s booth. Perturbed, he why they did not take Craig Kettleman's stolen $1.6 million for themselves instead of returning it. Mike reminds Jimmy that it was he who asserted that returning the cash was “the right thing” to do, but Jimmy shakes his head. He needs to know what Mike’s thought process was. Mike simply answers that he was hired to do a specific job, and he was going to complete that job. Jimmy considers, then replies with conviction: he knows what stopped him, and it will never stop him again. With that, Jimmy drives off. As he speeds away, he hums "Smoke on the Water," Marco's favorite song, revealing a small, triumphant smile on his face.

Official Photos

Trivia

  • In this episode, there are several references to Breaking Bad:
    • The scene where a woman finds out Jimmy/Saul isn't Kevin Costner. This is a reference to a dialogue Saul had in the episode "Abiquiú," where Saul brings up that he once convinced a woman he was Kevin Costner in an attempt to persuade Walter White that using a laser tag as money laundering makes sense because you can make any story work.
    • At the bingo hall, Jimmy/Saul says "B, as in Belize… Beautiful place, so I've heard." This is an reference to Saul's dialogue in the episode "Buried," suggesting that Walter could "send Hank Schrader to Belize," with this being a metaphor to kill Hank.
    • Jimmy/Saul also mentions Georgia O'Keefe at the bingo hall. Jesse Pinkman and Jane Margolis visit a Georgia O'Keefe-museum in Breaking Bad.
    • Marco's ring, which Jimmy/Saul obtains in this episode, is the ring Saul wears during Breaking Bad.

Production

Credits

Co-Starring

Uncredited

  • Jyl Murray as HHM Attorney

Featured Music

  • "Polk Salad AnnieTony Joe White" by Tony Joe White
  • "Mercy, Mercy, MercyThe Buckinghams" by The Buckinghams
  • "Coming Right Back" by Soul Patrol
  • "Yes I Am" by Marc Ferrari & Michael McGregor
  • "Stack of Blues" by Julie Sutton
  • "Caught In The Wrong Direction" by Stedapol C.C. Watt
  • "Banzai Pipeline" by Henry Mancini
  • "Piano Sonata No. 2 In B-Flat Minor, op 35" by Chopin
  • "Season of the Witch" by Donovan (performed by Stephen Stills & Al Kooper) as Jimmy pulls up to the bar in Cicero. 
  • "Smoke on the Water" by Deep Purple (hummed by Marco Pasternak before his fatal heart attack during the watch scam and during the closing moments when Jimmy McGill decides to stop letting the right thing get in his way.) 
  • "The Funeral March (third movement of Piano Sonata No. 2)" by Frédéric Chopin played on an organ during Marco's funeral.
  • "One Last Grift" by Dave Porter
  • "Jimmy's Choice" by Dave Porter

Memorable Quotes

Waitress: "Hey! You are not Kevin Costner!"
Jimmy: "I was last night."
―Jimmy Costner.

Jimmy: "Help me out here. Did I dream it, or did I have $1,600,000 on my desk in cash? When I close my eyes, I can still see it. It's burned into my retinas like I was staring into the sun. No one on God's green earth knew we had it. We could have split it 50/50. We could have gone home with $800,000 each, tax-free. [...]"
Mike: "You want to know why I didn't take that money? Is that what you're asking?"
Jimmy: "Yeah, that's what I'm asking."
Mike: "Me, personally—I was hired to do a job. I did it. That's as far as it goes."
Jimmy: "Yeah. Well, I know what stopped me. And you know what? It's never stopping me again."
―Jimmy and Mike.