‘Better Call Saul’: These Three ‘Breaking Bad’ Characters Return In Season 5

Better Call Saul tells the story of how Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) becomes the persona of Saul Goodman. Breaking Bad fans know that Saul Goodman helps Walter White launder his meth money and solve other criminal problems. Other Breaking Bad characters like Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) and Hector Salamanca (Mark Margolis) have already appeared.

Better Call Saul: Bob Odenkirk
Bob Odenkirk | Nicole Wilder/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould, who created both shows, promised three more Breaking Bad characters would appear in season 5 of Better Call Saul. Better Call Saul returns February 23 on AMC and if you don’t want to know who is coming back, this article obviously contains spoilers.

These two ‘Breaking Bad’ characters are a package deal on ‘Better Call Saul’

Gould revealed that episodes three and four of season 5 feature Breaking Bad’s DEA duo Hank Schraeder (Dean Norris) and Steven Gomez (Steven Michael Quezada).

“Working with Dean and Michael again was a highlight of the season,” Gould said. “Hopefully you will love those two episodes as much as we do.”

Breaking Bad: Dean Norris
Dean Norris | Ursula Coyote/AMC

Gould was happy for Breaking Bad fans to know Hank and Gomez appear in episodes three and four. Some television critics will receive advanced screeners of those episodes and Gould hopes the details of how they return won’t be spoiled.

“The one thing I would hope, and it’s just a hope is that if we can keep the exact circumstances surrounding the return of Hank Schrader and what happens with Hank and Gomez in those two episodes, if we can keep as much of that as a surprise for the fans, it’d be awesome,” Gould said. “We don’t take it lightly that this whole spoiler thing can get out of control, but it’s just something we would ask. I think you’re going to enjoy them.”

You’ll see this old friend again in the ‘Better Call Saul’ season premiere

Every season of Better Call Saul opens with black and white flashforwards to Jimmy’s life after the events of Breaking Bad, working at a Cinnabon under the name Gene. In the premiere of season 5, he makes a call to Ed (Robert Forster) who helped relocate Walter White. 

Forster died in October 2019 so this will be his last appearance. He also appeared in El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie before he passed. Gould and Gilligan didn’t have any future plans for Forster, but now they’re sad it’s not a possibilty.

Robert Forster and Bob Odenkirk
Robert Forster and Bob Odenkirk | Ursula Coyote/AMC

“Of course, Robert Forster, boy, I would have loved to have seen more with him,” Gould said.

Gilligan added, “I would’ve, too. He is sorely missed. I mean, he’s a wonderful actor, of course. We all knew that but I feel sorry for anyone who never got to meet him, because he was just an absolute gentleman. I personally would have loved to have seen more with him, and I would have loved to have worked with him again in some other show, some other movie, because he was the real deal.”

The ‘Breaking Bad’ violence makes a cameo in ‘Better Call Saul’ too

Better Call Saul is by nature perhaps less violent than Breaking Bad. Jimmy is dealing with the legal side of things, although Mike (Jonathan Banks) still has underworld encounters with the cartel. Gould and Gilligan said one season 5 episode may top Breaking Bad for violence.

“I would say it’s more kinetic,” Gould said. “There are scenes that I think are as, certainly, as violent as anything we did on Breaking Bad. We try never to have violence for the sake of it, but it’s all about where the story takes us. I think there’s a hell of a lot of action this season, actually.”

Gilligan suggested there is a big gunfight coming up.

“I would say the budget for blank cartridges went up probably by 10,000 in this particular season,” Gilligan said.

Here’s the episode to look for that. 

“Vince directed Episode 8 and I think your episode alone, yes,” Gould said.

Saul Goodman has fully emerged too

Better Call Saul has gradually explained how Jimmy came up with Saul Goodman. First it was a pun for a TV spot, a homophone for “it’s all good, man.” Now he’s practicing law as Saul.

Bob Odenkirk in Better Call Saul
Bob Odenkirk | Nicole Wilder/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

“Well, he’s making a choice you can see to commit to this persona in season 5,” Odenkirk said. “I think that as he plays out the season, he’s maybe asking the question. ‘How serious do I wanna be about this? How completely do I want it to take over my life?’ I guess the answer isn’t all in his hands, but he just heads down that road faster and faster and faster. The stakes go up, things get really out of control, and I think he responds by digging in deeper.”