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"Piñata" is the sixth episode of the fourth season of Better Call Saul, and the thirty-sixth episode of the series altogether.

Summary

Teaser

BCS 406 01

In a flashback to 1993, Jimmy is delivering mail at HHM and talks to his co-workers about a betting pool for the Oscars he has them involved in. He crosses paths with Kim, who is also doing mail rounds. Chuck enters the office to a big round of applause, having just won a big inheritance lawsuit using his knowledge of obscure case law. When Chuck approaches the pair, he answers Kim's questions on case law, but is annoyed by Jimmy. After Howard collects Chuck and Kim continues her rounds, Jimmy walks past HHM's law library. He turns around and steps inside, deciding to become a lawyer like Chuck and Kim.

Act I

BCS 406 02

In the present, at her apartment, Kim tries recording a brief for Mesa Verde, but is distracted by a bulging dossier of public defender cases. She turns in for bed, where Jimmy is already asleep. Kim frowns when she finds a legal pad where Jimmy has written proposed names for their revived law partnership and has drawn doodles of signage bearing the Wexler McGill logo. The next morning, Jimmy admits that he's decided not to see the therapist Kim suggested, as he feels he needs to move forward and not resort to "navel gazing." Kim reluctantly accepts Jimmy's decision.

BCS 406 03

Later, Kim visits the offices of Schweikart and Cokely, where she meets with Rick Schweikart. Schweikart thanks Kim for referring Billy Gatwood to him, and asks about how Jimmy has been coping since Chuck's funeral. Kim asks Schweikart if his firm has a banking division, and when he replies in the negative, asks, "Would you like one?"

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Meanwhile, Mike and Gus enter a warehouse where two double-wide mobile homes have been set up to be used by Ziegler's construction crew. Mike suggests that Gus set up recreational equipment that the men could use in their spare time, explaining that they need to keep the men from "climbing the walls" during the almost year-long "excavation" at Lavandería Brillante. Mike also tells Gus to set a surveillance camera perimeter on the inside and outside of the warehouse. Tyrus enters to inform Gus of a bad "infection." Gus makes an exit, leaving Mike to explain his list of necessities to Tyrus.

Act II

At CC Mobile, Jimmy continues drawing WM doodles while talking to a sign designer over the phone. He gets a call from Brett Dunst, a nephew of Mrs. Strauss, telling Jimmy that she recently died. Jimmy, more emotionally affected by the news of Mrs. Strauss's passing than of Chuck's, asks if her grandson received the "Alpine Shepherd Boy" Hummel figurine, learning that he did. Jimmy tells Brett that he isn't practicing law anymore, and refers him to Francis Scheff at HHM. Back at the apartment, Jimmy watches his Davis & Main commercial for the Sandpiper case in which Mrs. Strauss appeared. As he does so, Jimmy receives a phone call from Kim telling him she is someplace "very good."

BCS 406 05

Jimmy drives to the Forque Kitchen and Bar, where Kim waits for him at a table. She informs him that she has been hired as the head of S&C's new banking division, and that she has been taking overflow cases from the public defender's office. Jimmy tells Kim that he has been considering getting into criminal law too, once his law license is reinstated, and still wants to go back to practicing with Kim. However, Kim explains that her associates at S&C will handle her Mesa Verde caseload and give her time to perform the public defender work her heart is set on, meaning her plans won't comport with Jimmy's. Overwhelmed, Jimmy excuses himself from the table to take a breath, realizing that his dreams of reforming WM have been dashed. However, when he comes back, Jimmy encourages Kim to pursue her new career path.

Act III

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Mike drives to Stacey's home and knocks on her door. When she answers, he apologizes for the scene he made at the support group meeting, saying it was not the time or place to confront Henry about his fabulism. Stacey accepts the apology, but tells Mike that Anita is not happy and suggests that he call her; Mike thinks it would be better if he doesn't. Stacey assures Mike that she will never forget Matt, and agrees to let him pick Kaylee up from school the following day.

BCS 406 07

Jimmy visits Howard at HHM, collecting the $5,000 check inherited to him in Chuck's will. After Jimmy notes that a lot of the cubicles outside are empty, Howard admits that HHM has been forced to lay off staff due to "setbacks", partly because of difficulty paying out to Chuck's estate. When Jimmy asks what the plan is to get the firm back on its feet, Howard doesn't answer. Jimmy tries to motivate Howard, telling him to quit "wallowing" and fight to save HHM. When he calls Howard "a shitty lawyer but a great salesman," Howard retorts with, "Fuck you, Jimmy." Jimmy encourages Howard to use this rage to get the firm back on track.

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Later, at Day Spa and Nail, Jimmy takes in a new shipment of drop phones and moves them to his office in the back room. There, as Jimmy is making a phone call to set up a meeting, Mrs. Nguyen asks what he is doing. When she refuses to let him keep the phones in the back room, Jimmy bribes her with one of the phones in exchange for letting him keep them.

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That night, at the hospital, Gus is sitting in an armchair next to Hector's bed. While Hector remains asleep, Gus tells him that his fever has gotten worse due to a potentially fatal infection, and that he has chosen to wait for Hector to wake despite the belief of Gus's own doctor that he never will. Gus proceeds to tell Hector a story from his impoverished childhood, where he raised a lucuma tree and used its fruit to feed himself and earn a living. One day, Gus saw that a coati had ransacked the tree and eaten most of the fruit. After an unsuccessful attempt to capture the animal, which saw it hide under the shack where he and his siblings lived, Gus waited for hours into the night expecting it to come out. When it did, Gus captured the coati and drew out its suffering rather than kill it. Gus compares Hector to the coati, expecting him to eventually wake up.

Act IV

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Ziegler's team arrive at the warehouse and explore their new surroundings. Mike addresses the group, explaining the living situation in each house. One of Ziegler's men, Kai, cops an attitude at Mike throughout the meeting. Mike tells the group that their work begins the following night. As he leaves, Ziegler tries to assure him that they will focus once the job gets started. Mike walks to an industrial trailer outside, where Nick and another guard are watching the group through the security cameras. Mike tells them to keep an eye on Kai.

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That night, at the laundromat, Jimmy finds the three youths who previously mugged him. He offers to cut them in on his phone business if they agree to not hassle him. Instead, the youths demand everything he has, with one of them pulling out a switchblade. Jimmy runs away, and the youths chase him. However, it turns out that Jimmy has lured the youths into a trap, as they are confronted by two armed men wearing ski masks working for Jimmy. The trio are gagged and dragged into a piñata store, where they are hung upside down. As the two masked men bust piñatas with baseball bats, the terrified youths are confronted by Jimmy and agree to leave him alone and warn others against ripping him off. After swinging a bat at the leader of the gang, stopping short of hitting his face, the masked men -- one of whom is Huell -- leave the scene. Jimmy tells them they've had their one warning and leaves them hanging inside the piñata store.

Official Photos

Trivia

  • As Kim is justifying her career decisions to Jimmy, she says the exact same lines Walter White says in "Felina" when he is confessing to Skyler the true reasons for what he did (though the latter says this in the past tense); "I like(d) it, I'm (was) good at it."
  • Jimmy's tactics to intimidate the youths in the piñata shop are not so different to the tactics Tuco Salamanca used on Jimmy earlier on in "Mijo". This also marked one of Jimmy's points of transformation into Saul Goodman.
  • The flashback opening is Chuck McGill's first appearance in season 4, since his death in "Lantern".

Production

Credits

Featured Music

  • "Mambo de Machaguay" by Lucho Neves y su Orquesta (Jimmy at Day Spa and Nail)

Memorable Quotes

Jimmy: "You know, you're making the rest of us look bad."
Kim: "If you wouldn't stop at every cubicle to chat..."
Jimmy: "It's called being friendly. It's great for morale."
Kim: "It is great for wasting time."
Jimmy: "That too."
―Jimmy and Kim about mail work at HHM.

Richard Schweikart: "So, what can I do for you?"
Kim: "I have a question for you: How's your banking division?"
Richard Schweikart: "Well, we have some banking work, but I wouldn't say we have a division."
Kim: "Would you like one?"
―Kim offering his services to Schweikart & Cokely.

Mike: "Werner said that this was gonna take six months, which means eight, at least, probably 10, in total isolation. These guys are gonna be doing 10 hours heavy labor every day. Or night? Then coming home to this. We can't just keep them alive, we gonna keep them from climbing the walls."
Gus: "Make a list."
―Mike and Gus organizing the home of the Werner team for the duration of excavation work.

Kim: "I have news. Good news. It's great news, really. It could change things for Wexler-McGill. But I met with Rich Schweikart today."
Jimmy: "Really?"
Kim: "Yeah. Well, you know, they took on Gatwood, so I've been meaning to follow up. And... Anyway, we were talking and he offered me a job."
Jimmy: "Again? What, he can't take no for an answer?"
Kim: "They want me to run their banking division. Build it, really."
Jimmy: "You're not seriously considering it?"
Kim: "I'd be coming in as a partner."
―Kim announcing to Jimmy that she plans to join Schweikart & Cokely.

Jimmy: "PD overflow? When did you--? Why-- ?"
Kim: "I like it. I'm good at it. And I'm helping people, Jimmy. I know that sounds cheesy, you know, it's... Whatever, but it's the truth."
―Jimmy learning that Kim has been working as a PD at the courthouse for some time.

Jimmy: "I have been thinking about criminal law myself lately. You know, for when I get my license back."
Kim: "Really?"
Jimmy: "Yeah. You know, like you said, you know, you're helping people. I'm thinking an office in one of these refurbished bungalows, you know, downtown by the courts. Stick around where all the people who need help are. Boy, it have a nice ring to it now. Wexler-McGill, criminal law."
Kim: "That all sounds great. The thing is, if I go to Schweikart & Cokely, I have all those associates to help cover Mesa Verde. It'll keep paying the bills and free me up to do the work I really care about."
Jimmy: "So you'd kind of get to have your cake and eat it too."
Kim: "Kind of, yeah."
―Jimmy realizing that Kim has already made her decision and that his dream of restoring Wexler-McGill has just collapsed.

Jimmy: "What's the plan to get HHM back on its feet?"
Howard: "..."
Jimmy: "Are you kidding me? I just referred a client to you guys. You're welcome, by the way. You tell me this place is falling apart? Get your shit together, Howard."
Howard: "Excuse me?"
Jimmy: "Oh, please. You suffer one little setback and you're gonna let your entire legacy go?"
Howard: "One little setback?"
Jimmy: "Fine, your pain is very special. Woe is you. Just stop wallowing. Okay? This place is all you've got. That and your hair, which, let's face it, clock's ticking there too, so... You wanna save your busisness? You wanna save your dignity? You're gonna have to fight. Hey. You're a shitty lawyer, Howard. But you're a great salesman. So get out there and sell."
Howard: "Fuck you, Jimmy."
Jimmy: "There you go. Use that."
―Jimmy, motivating Howard to get back on track, as Saul Goddman would have done.

Mrs. Nguyen: "I don't want people coming in and out to buy your stupid phones."
Jimmy: "I'm gonna sell them out of the office, so don't worry."
Mrs. Nguyen: "You can't keep them here."
Jimmy: "I pay rent for this place. I can do whatever I want with it."
Mrs. Nguyen: "They're a fire hazard."
Jimmy: "Well, they're not gonna be here very long, okay? (long silence) That's-- That's on me. No, it's prepaid, 350 minutes."
Mrs. Nguyen: "Get-rich-quick schemes never work."
Jimmy: "Just watch me."
―Jimmy offering a bribe to Mrs. Nguyen to manage his prepaid phone traffic from Day Spa and Nail.

"The doctor tells me your fever has gotten worse. They say this infection may kill you. Even if it doesn't, my doctor tells me again and again that you may never wake. And yet, I wait. I grew up quite poor. We lived in the hills. In a place my brothers built from things they found. Metal sheeting, plywood. When it rained, it smelled like hay. We were always hungry. But there was a lucuma tree. Scrawny. Barely alive. My family had given up on it years before. Never bore fruit. When i was seven, I became fixated on it. I watered it, tended to it. It took a long time, but the buds grew into green fruit. I was so proud. I didn't tell anyone. I plucked one and hid behind our shack. I ate the whole thing, I'd never tasted something so sweet. It was like caramel. At first, we ate the fruit ourselves. And then I began taking it to the village to sell. One day, much of the fruit was gone from my tree. Pieces were scattered on the ground, half-eaten. I tought it was probably a coati. Have you ever see one? About the size of a large house cat. Opportunists. I built a snare, using branches and wire. It didn't take long for the animal to set it off. But the coati trashed so hard it broke out of the snare. Broke its leg as well. I tried to grab it, but it slipped away. It ran under the house. I knew it would show itself sooner or later. So I waited, for hours, into the night. When my brothers called for me, I did not answer. I didn't male a sound. I was so still. Finally, it came out. It knew I was there, but it was hungry. This time, I was ready. I caught it. It fought me, but I was stronger. The merciful thing would've been to kill it. I kept it. It lived for quite some time. I believe you will wake, Hector."
―Gus's plan regarding Hector.

Rocco: "Look, after this, you'll never have to see us again."
Jimmy: "And you will spread the word that I'm off-limits?"
Rocco: "Yes, yes, yes. We'll tell everyone. We'll say, "Don't-- Don't-- Don't mess with the cell-phone guy.""
―Jimmy intimidates Rocco and his band so they do not interfere with his prepaid phone traffic.