‘Better Call Saul’ Finale: Vince Gilligan ‘Not as Anxious’ as ‘Breaking Bad’ Finale

The Better Call Saul finale has fans anxiously awaiting the fate of Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk). They also hope it’s as good an ending as Breaking Bad had. Co-creators Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould have different feelings. Gilligan is taking it in stride, though his colleague is feeling it. 

'Better Call Saul' finale: Vince Gilligan and Bob Odenkirk sit on Saul's desk in the penultimate episode
L-R: Vince Gilligan and Bob Odenkirk | Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

Gilligan and Gould were on a Television Critics Association panel with Odenkirk and Rhea Seehorn on Aug. 10. They discussed their apprehensions or lack thereof going into the Better Call Saul series finale. The finale airs Aug. 15 at 9 p.m. on AMC.

Vince Gilligan ‘not as anxious nearly as I was with ‘Breaking Bad’’

Gilligan has complete faith in Gould’s Better Call Saul finale. He’s not worried about people’s reactions. Plus, there have been other bigger concerns since Gilligan last had to wrap up a show. 

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“I’m not as anxious nearly as I was with Breaking Bad,” Gilligan said. “I don’t know why, I’m getting older or something, but the pressure is just I’ve got other things to worry about with the world ending, stuff like that. But I can’t wait to see how people are gonna react to this. I’m so proud of it. Peter did a fantastic job. And Peter, what was it like, man? Were you freaking out? Were you stressed?”

Peter Gould is ‘always freaking out and stressed’ over ‘Better Call Saul’

Gould wrote and directed the Better Call Saul finale. For him, anxiety is just part of the job.

“I’m always freaking out and stressed,” Gould said. “It’s just another day, another day at work. Yeah, no, look, it was a privilege, you know? It’s a privilege to get to work with all these people. I work with the best cast and crew in television. I mean, it’s the ideal situation for any director. And you know, I did write the script myself, but I got to break it with Vince and with the best writers’ room anywhere. So, hopefully people like it the way we do. That’s all I can say.”

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Gilligan wrote and directed the penultimate episode, “Waterworks.” He sang Gould’s praises. 

“I can talk with unabashed delight about the finale, because I had very little to do with it,” Gilligan said. “Peter wrote and directed it and he is a modest gentleman, so he’s not gonna talk about how friggin’ great it is. It is awesome. I can’t wait for people to see it. It was such a delight. I was busy shooting 12 when Peter was writing and starting to direct 13. Man, I can’t wait for people to see it.”

Bob Odenkirk is ‘not stressed out’ over ‘Better Call Saul’ finale

The Better Call Saul finale probably pales in comparison to having a heart attack. By the time he completed the show, Odenkirk was calm. 

I’m not stressed out, and I haven’t been since I read it because you and the writers have found a way to deliver on the heart of the show. And I think the other reason I’m not stressed out is over the course of six years, I feel like the audience has been amazing, just amazing. And they are dialed in to what this show is about. Breaking Bad is such a huge monster show, and it is a cornerstone of, really, television. So I was always concerned about that show casting the wrong dimension onto our show as we found our feet, but I don’t think it’s happened. I think we’ve been allowed to find our own place to live and our own what matters to this show, the place this show lives in. I think this ending goes right to the heart of where this show found itself.

Bob Odenkirk, Television Critics Association panel, 8/10/22

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