One of the worst parts about anticipating the upcoming return of Breaking Bad - besides the wait, obviously - is knowing that there are just eight episodes left in the series, after which the story of Walter White will be over, for better or worse. But Breaking Bad's conclusion may not be the complete end of the saga. Last spring, we learned that there was talk of a spinoff series in the works, which would focus on the competent but crooked attorney Saul Goodman. Now, there's no confirmation on whether or not that spinoff's happening just yet. But there is an update on the project, including confirmation that this potential spinoff is the only project Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan has on his plate right now.
The Wrap caught up with Gilligan recently and chatted with him about the potential spinoff, which still sounds like it's in the early stages of development. Gilligan is working with writer Peter Gould, to whom he credits for creating Bob Odenkirk's character Saul Goodman. At this point, from what Gilligan says, if the spinoff goes to series, Gould would run it, but that's contingent on the mentioned "if," "It's not a done deal yet." Gilligan said. "But it's definitely something we're full speed ahead on trying to get going."
Gilligan wouldn't give up many (or any) details on what they have in mind for the project, and given that there are eight episodes left of Breaking Bad to be tight-lipped about right now, it's not surprising that he might choose his words carefully with regards to the fate of Saul Goodman. "I have to be coy as to whether it even could be a sequel," Gilligan said. "Because you never know, when the dust settles at the end of our final eight episodes, where everybody's gonna be and who's gonna be left standing. I can't even say for sure that it could be a sequel. It may be, it may not."
It's certainly a possibility that Goodman could die before the end of Breaking Bad, as characters occasionally do in Breaking Bad. That would rule out a sequel, but a prequel would not only solve that issue, it would also allow the possibility of the return of other past characters, including Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito), which Gilligan talked about a bit, saying, "Any chance I get to work with Giancarlo again, I would jump at the opportunity." A prequel would also open up the opportunity to bring Mike (Jonathan Banks) back, which would be great too, though his name didn't come up in Gilligan's interview.
Another unconfirmed aspect of the spinoff is whether it would be a half-hour or an hour-long show. From what Gilligan says, it sounds like the tone would vary from one format to the other.
There's a way to do both versions of the show. There's a way to make it a half-hour show and make it a little more -- I don’t want to say sitcom-y, but a little more traditionally half-hour comedic. Or there's a way to do it where it fits more snuggly in with the "Breaking Bad" universe, in which it's an hour-long show. As you can imagine with Saul Goodman as a character, a show like that would have to have plenty of humor to it. But also because he works for some pretty scary clientele sometimes, there'd be a bit of drama in it as well. We're trying to nail that down. As of yet, we haven't completely figured that out ourselves.
It's true that Goodman's character walks the line between comedy and drama, and a series focused on him could certainly go one way or the other, or fall somewhere in between. There's definite potential for something great either way. And if the possible spinoff does drift more toward comedy, I'd hope Gilligan and Gould would be able to make additional use of Bill Burr, who has played the recurring role of Kuby, one of Saul's henchman. It'd be great if Burr were involved no matter what, but with his comedic background, he'd be particularly suited for a Saul Goodman comedy. And with that in mind, I can't resist a lame attempt at humor by suggesting "It's All Good, Man" as the show title, if the series does tend to lean toward comedy. Too obvious?
Read the Wrap's full interview with Gilligan here.
Breaking Bad returns Sunday, August 11 at 9/8c on AMC. Check out the new poster for the series' final eight episodes here.