Which familiar Breaking Bad faces might grace Better Call Saul season 6? Set in the years before Walter White first clapped eyes on a methamphetamine lab, Better Call Saul explores the life and times of Jimmy McGill – Walt’s beleaguered criminal lawyer. Better Call Saul‘s debut season introduced Jimmy as a fresh-faced, mostly-honest attorney with a shady past as a small-time conman. Through the seasons, however, Jimmy has gradually drawn closer to his Breaking Bad persona, and the more those two worlds merged, the more connections to Breaking Bad began to develop.
Better Call Saul season 6 is confirmed as the final outing for Jimmy McGill, and will act as a direct lead-in to the events of Breaking Bad. Jimmy has established his Saul Goodman alter ego and dived headfirst into cartel business. Meanwhile, the relationship between Mike Ehrmantraut and Gus Fring is rapidly strengthening, and the drug lord’s plan to cripple his Salamanca rivals is nearing its endgame. By the end of Better Call Saul season 6, the board should be completely primed for Heisenberg’s arrival into the Albuquerque underworld.
A vast array of Breaking Bad characters have already made appearances in Better Call Saul, but even more could arrive when the heat intensifies in season 6. The following lineup will exclude Breaking Bad characters who already hold a main or recurring role in the spin-off (Jimmy, Gus, Huell, Lydia, etc), or confirmed returnees such as Hank and Gomez, instead focusing on Better Call Saul newcomers or characters who have only made brief cameos in Jimmy’s story until now, and aren’t necessarily guaranteed to return.
The big one. Bryan Cranston’s Walter White was the star of Breaking Bad, but can the iconic character be included in Better Call Saul‘s final season? Until now, Better Call Saul has had no reason to call upon a mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher. Walt is entirely disconnected from both the legal world and the drug trade – his ride along with Hank in Breaking Bad season 1 is Walt’s first exposure to a life of criminality. With Better Call Saul‘s past 5 seasons taking place long before Walt’s life-changing diagnosis, an opportunity to reintroduce Cranston hasn’t yet presented itself.
That could change with Better Call Saul season 6, which offers two possible routes of entry for Walter White. How far Better Call Saul‘s final season will take the narrative remains to be seen, but there could be some overlap with Breaking Bad, where the spin-off runs concurrently alongside the original series, showing events from a different perspective. In this scenario, Better Call Saul could end with the moment Saul Goodman first meets Walter White, ending Jimmy’s story on a pleasingly symmetrical note and ensuring no awkward Saul-less gap exists between Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul. Perhaps the more interesting option, however, is if Walt appears in Better Call Saul‘s Gene timeline. The placement of the black-and-white scenes remains ambiguous, but could potentially slot in before Breaking Bad‘s finale, while Walt was in exile. Did he and “Gene” meet one more time before “Felina?” Bryan Cranston did reprise his most famous role for the El Camino movie, which might be interpreted as a willingness to return to the Breaking Bad world when asked.
The other big one. Jesse Pinkman is a far more natural fit into the Better Call Saul story, and could’ve potentially been included in season 5, once Jimmy’s connection to the cartel began. When Aaron Paul’s character first appears in Breaking Bad, he’s already a bit-part player in the local meth operation, associating with Krazy-8 and, by extension, Tuco Salamanca. Jesse Pinkman’s drug career started during his high school years, and the Salamanca family enjoy a heavy presence in Better Call Saul, meaning Jesse could appear in Better Call Saul season 6 as a small-time dealer or loyal customer.
The obvious problem, of course, is Jesse’s age. Currently 41-years-old, Aaron Paul just about got away with playing Jesse Pinkman in the El Camino sequel, which was set in the immediate aftermath of Breaking Bad but released 6 years later. The idea of Paul playing a late-teens/early-twenties Jesse Pinkman in Better Call Saul season 6 could look faintly ridiculous. And unlike Walt, there’s no way for Jesse to appear in the Gene timeline, since he was held prisoner during the time skip, then escaped to Alaska after El Camino. One could also argue that Jesse’s return in El Camino sucks the impact out of any possible Better Call Saul cameo, and the same problem would also apply to Bryan Cranston.
Badger & Skinny Pete (& Combo)
If Jesse Pinkman can feature in Better Call Saul season 6, so can his pals. The most famous are Badger and Skinny Pete, played by Matt Jones and Charles Baker, respectively. The not-so dynamic duo appear sporadically throughout all seasons of Breaking Bad as part of Jesse’s loyal crew, helping deliver Walter White’s blue sky meth to the good folks of New Mexico. The duo returned in El Camino and played quietly brilliant roles, helping Jesse Pinkman evade the law in his time of need and even taking the rap for their close friend. Skinny Pete and Badger add a bittersweet note to Jesse’s otherwise glorious escape, as he leaves the two good friends behind forever. The other member of Jesse’s gang is Combo, played by Rodney Rush, who had the misfortune of being killed off in season 3. Since Jesse’s friends are all dyed-in-the-wool criminals, they could easily fit alongside Better Call Saul‘s current crop of gangsters, and being a little older than Jesse means the age gap wouldn’t be too distracting. Better Call Saul might even be tempted to bring back Wendy, or to use her original credited character name, “Meth Whore.”
As one of Saul’s go-to guys in Breaking Bad, it’s surprising that Kuby hasn’t already been spotted in Better Call Saul, especially with Huell already an established figure in the prequel. Played by comedian Bill Burr, Kuby debuted in Breaking Bad season 4, and despite only having a handful of episodes to his name, made a lasting impressive upon fans, who have been wondering whether the character could possibly return in Saul’s solo series. According to Burr himself, Kuby was actually lined up for a role in Better Call Saul season 5, but the actor was forced to step away due to personal circumstances. Kuby’s planned return proves that the character can slot neatly into the Better Call Saul timeline, and after missing out in season 5, amends could be made in the final season.
One of Walter White’s earliest Breaking Bad antagonists could return in Better Call Saul season 6 – the fiery Tuco Salamanca. The “final boss” of Breaking Bad season 1, Tuco is the de facto leader of the Salamanca family when the show begins (thanks to Hector’s debilitating condition) and represents a major step on Walter White’s road to becoming a drug kingpin. Ultimately killed by Hank in Breaking Bad season 2, Tuco has already appeared in Better Call Saul, troubling both Jimmy McGill and Mike Ehrmantraut in the spin-off’s first two seasons and landing himself in jail. However, Better Call Saul season 5 teased Tuco’s comeback when Lalo reassured his uncle that Tuco would be released from prison soon and take control of the family business. The fall of Lalo is one of the biggest questions Better Call Saul has yet to address, and it’s only natural that as one Salamanca head is defeated, another grows in its place. Better Call Saul season 6 could explore how Tuco consolidates his position prior to Breaking Bad.
The fate of Gus Fring’s meth-making super lab is another storyline Better Call Saul needs to resolve before the end. The hidden cooking space was a key location in Breaking Bad, and Better Call Saul season 4 showed the extreme lengths Gus and Mike went to in making the dream a reality – a tale that involves table tennis, 24hr surveillance and runaway Germans. Gus promised his co-conspirator that the lab would be completed once the threat of Lalo Salamanca passed, and the final stages should be carried out in Better Call Saul‘s final season. This potentially means another appearance for the tragic Gale Boetticher. Gus Fring’s cook before Walter White, Gale is another softly-spoken genius who seems out of place in the murky world of drug trafficking. Played by David Costabile, Gale made two cameos in Better Call Saul season 4, but has been absent ever since the super lab construction was put on ice. Assuming the ambitious project is resumed in Better Call Saul‘s final season, Gus may pay his singing cook another visit. For the same reasons, Gus could also introduce Dennis to Better Call Saul. The laundromat owner literally sat on the meth super lab in Breaking Bad, and was killed as part of Walt’s Michael Corleone-style prison massacre.
After making their Better Call Saul debut last season, Hank and Gomie are set to return for the final chapter. Picking up where they left off, Breaking Bad‘s DEA agents will continue investigating the cartel, hot on the tails of both Gus Fring and the Salamanca family, but routinely getting played by both. Gus was forced to take a heavy financial hit in Better Call Saul season 5, but Hank smelled a rat, and as we know from Breaking Bad, won’t allow his hunch to go unattended. As Hank’s case heats up in Better Call Saul‘s final season, viewers might expect to see more familiar faces in the bullpen. Michael Shamus Wiles played ASAC George Merkert from Breaking Bad season 2 onward, and despite being a minor character, held seniority over Hank at the DEA, refusing to believe that his personal friend, Gustavo Fring, could possibly sit at the head of an illegal operation. Merkert’s appearance in Better Call Saul season 6 could escalate the DEA’s cartel investigation, and Hank’s other colleagues might also cameo, such as his secretary, Janice.
You might not recognize Declan’s name, but you’ll surely remember his face. Walter White delivers a veritable feast of quotable lines in Breaking Bad, and “say my name” is arguably top of the list. Declan is the drug dealer on the end of Heisenberg’s stinging tongue, feebly mumbling “…you’re Heisenberg” in response. Declan’s role in Breaking Bad is minimal, only appearing in a handful of episodes before being killed by Jack and his white supremacist followers. A member of the Arizona drug scene and a rival of Gus Fring’s, Declan (otherwise known as “Wolverine,” for obvious reasons) will be known to many cartel characters in Better Call Saul, and season 6 might explain how Mike comes to consider Declan a “contact” in Breaking Bad. More importantly, the return of actor Louis Ferreira would be a callback of the highest order, honoring his part in one of Breaking Bad‘s most iconic scenes, and paying tribute to the franchise’s past (or future).