Better Call Saul season 6, the final season of the series, begins on AMC (in the US) on April 18 and Netflix (everywhere else) on April 19. For fans, this is exciting but nerve-racking.
Most of Better Call Saul takes place before the events of Breaking Bad. Many of the characters continue into Breaking Bad, like Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk) and Mike Ehrmantraut (Jonathan Banks). But not all of them. A few major Better Call Saul characters don’t show up in Breaking Bad despite their close proximity to Saul and their role in the ongoing Salamanca/Fring feud.
But just because a character hasn’t shown up in Breaking Bad doesn’t necessarily mean something terrible will happen to them, right?
As the anxiety mounts in the run-up to Better Call Saul season 6, let’s look at each of our major Breaking Bad absentees and consider the likelihood they will die this season, versus the warm, fuzzy future we want to see — it’s the Better Call Saul dead pool.
Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn)
- Likelihood Kim Wexler dies in season 6: 50%
- The warm, fuzzy future we want to see: Kim and Jimmy are reunited in the post-Breaking Bad future and hit the road to run scams as the enigmatic Giselle and Viktor.
Heading into Better Call Saul season 6, we’re most concerned about the well-being of Kim Wexler. A hotshot lawyer and Jimmy’s actual wife, why isn’t she in Breaking Bad?
Lalo Salamanca is the most obvious threat. Jimmy and Kim weren’t responsible for the band of not-so-successful assassins attacking Lalo’s home at the end of season 5, but it’s not hard to imagine him showing up on their doorstep again, running on a full tank of rage and revenge — especially after Kim verbally kicked his butt last season. Though there are other ways Kim could meet her fate as she continuingly inches closer to the darker side of Jimmy's world.
Just because there’s no Kim in Breaking Bad doesn’t mean she’s dead. Maybe she and Jimmy simply break up and she gets the fully pro bono practice she dreamed of. Maybe she'll pop up to find Gene, Jimmy's new identity in the black-and-white flash forward scenes that have introed each Better Call Saul season, and the two will live happily ever after in the sweet, cinnamon-scented future of Nebraska.
Kim's death would hit hard, but it's tough to imagine a grim fate doesn't await her. Still, we'll keep hoping she's alive and kicking at the end of season 6.
Ignacio 'Nacho' Varga (Michael Mando)
- Likelihood Nacho Varga dies in season 6: 93%
- The warm, fuzzy future we want to see: Nacho and his dad manage to escape the Salamancas and set up shop together, far from the cartel’s influence.
The last time we saw Nacho, he was escaping Lalo’s house after letting in the band of assassins hired by Fring to kill him. He probably assumes a gang of trained killers will have no problem taking out Lalo, but, of course, Lalo put up one hell of a fight. So now Nacho must deal with yet another Salamanca-shaped thorn in his side.
There'll likely be a very tense chase ahead. Scenes in the Better Call Saul season 6 trailer show Nacho running, hiding, hiding some more and then hiding again.
The fact Nacho doesn’t show up in Breaking Bad suggests he might die at the end of this chase. He is mentioned in it, though. When Walt and Jesse kidnap Saul in season 2, Saul thinks he’s about to be killed and says: "It wasn’t me. It was Ignacio. He’s the one." This clip has been the source of huge speculation online and it’s easy to see why.
Maybe Nacho dies by Lalo’s hand, maybe from the Salamanca twins, who return and are hunting someone down. Maybe Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) gets rid of him to hide his tracks. But maybe Nacho just ends up in jail or, we hope, gets away, leaving his past behind him and reconciling with his dad.
Lalo Salamanca (Tony Dalton)
- Likelihood Lalo Salamanca dies in season 6: 75%
- The warm, fuzzy future we want to see: Lalo turns his back on criminality and opens a gym to help rehabilitate teenage drug addicts.
It’s less panic-inducing to imagine Lalo’s fate. It makes sense he’d die at some point. Then again, he’s such an immensely watchable, larger-than-life presence on screen, we hope he sticks around to the very end. (We’d happily binge a dark and gritty Lalo spin-off if anyone wants to get started on that).
As the Salamancas play a significant part in Breaking Bad, we’d assume that if Lalo were still alive, he’d show up, or we’d at least hear more about him.
Lalo is also mentioned in that Breaking Bad kidnap scene, with Saul greatly relieved when he finds out Walt and Jesse aren't with Lalo. Assuming the writers stay faithful to that scene, would Saul be worried about Lalo if he’d died? Well… maybe.
Lalo could be back in Mexico while the events of Breaking Bad unfold, leaving a chance he might show up in Jimmy’s future.
Howard Hamlin (Patrick Fabian)
- Likelihood Howard Hamlin dies in season 6: 70%
- The warm, fuzzy future we want to see: Howard is done with Jimmy’s drama and decides to finally realize his true passion – yoga – opening a wellness retreat in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Howard Hamlin isn’t in Breaking Bad. Is this because he simply doesn’t have anything to do with Jimmy anymore? Or does his history with Jimmy end with a bang, not a fizzle.
We know Jimmy and Kim jokingly but also kinda-very-seriously brainstormed how to wreck Howard’s career at the end of season 5. Maybe we don’t see him in Breaking Bad because their scheme works and he’s no longer a lawyer. He could also get caught up in the whole Lalo lunacy, weaving all the threads of Jimmy’s life together in a deadly way.
But, although Howard might die, should he? Howard has been Jimmy’s nemesis throughout but he never really does anything that bad (rewatch the series and tell us we’re wrong). Instead, he always followed Chuck’s (Michael McKean) orders. Is that enough though to lead to his demise?
Gene Takovic/Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk)
- Likelihood Jimmy McGill dies in season 6: 30%
- The warm, fuzzy future we want to see: He realizes how lucky he’s been and stops flirting with his past life as Saul Goodman and becomes the best boss of a Cinnabon you ever saw.
Jimmy McGill obviously makes it to Breaking Bad as Saul Goodman. But will he survive in the flash-forward future when he’s Gene Takovic?
Gene's vignettes have shown Jimmy's self-sabotaging attempts to preserve his past identity, including scratching his old initials into a wall, watching Better Call Saul television ads he’s kept on VHS. He straight up admits his identity to a menacing cab driver in the mall. Isn’t it just a matter of time before everything catches up with him? Maybe someone from his past, like Kim (yay) or Lalo (not-so-yay), will appear.
The tense and quietly ominous scenes at the beginning of each season have been intentionally drip-feeding us a sense of impending doom. Of course, it could be a fake out. Maybe he’s destined to live a boring little life as Gene, always looking over his shoulder and dreaming about his days as Saul. That might not sound like a bad fate compared to ending up in jail or Lalo hunting him down, but maybe living the rest of his life as Gene is worse than facing death as Saul.
Better Call Saul season 6 premieres on April 18 on AMC in the US, April 19 on Netflix in the UK.
Becca has been writing about consumer tech and popular science for over ten years. She’s covered all kinds of topics, including why robots have eyes and whether we’ll all experience the overview effect one day, but she’s particularly interested in VR/AR, wearables, digital health, space tech and chatting to experts and academics about the future. She's contributed to TechRadar, T3, Wired, New Scientist, The Guardian, Inverse and many more. Her first book, Screen Time, came out in January 2021 with Bonnier Books. She loves science-fiction, brutalist architecture and spending way too much time floating through space in virtual reality.
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