The mid-season finale promised fireworks and I almost thought we wouldn’t see any….and then the last ten minutes happened. Wow.
PHANTOM OF THE SEWER
Lalo is back in Albuquerque. He’s living in the sewer, coming up at night to visit the local gas station to take a shower then back down he goes. He’s casing out the laundry where Gus has built his underground meth lab. He calls his uncle to let him know that he has the proof now to go to Don Eladio but while on hold he hears a funny noise. The phones are tapped. The Chicken Man! So he calls back and knowing Gus will hear him, he tells Hector that he couldn’t find the proof so he’s going back to Plan A. He’s going to kill Gus that night. Hector can ring that damn bell all he wants, it doesn’t matter. Mike goes to Gus and tells him. He’s pulled his people off all other low priority spots and directed them to Gus’ house. Gus is to go straight home as if nothing is different. The trap has been set for Lalo. They just need to wait for him to show up. Mike left Tyrus and his team at the laundry so Lalo could take them out. If that was his plan.
“Don’t rush the process”
Jimmy makes the mad scramble to re-assemble his film team to take new incriminating photos with their lookalike judge. Kim shows up and assists with creating the phony arm cast and sling and they shoot in the park. They develop the film, lace the photos with the drug the veterinarian gave them and Jimmy puts them in a manila envelope and hands them off to Howard’s P.I., who we now see, works for Jimmy.
The P.I. delivers the photos to Howard who immediately notices they are wet and the trap is set. Howard and Cliff enter the sandpiper mediation meeting and when Judge Casimiro walks in Howard takes the bait. He calls him out for being on the take. He tells his secretary to go back to his office and bring the photos on his desk. However, the photos in the manila envelope are different. They show Jimmy handing a frisbee to some guy with a mustache, clearly not the judge. Then they notice how dilated his eyes are, the drug working it’s magic. Howard looks like a stark raving lunatic. The mediation is called off. The settlement deal in ruins. Howard is rattled but he puts it all together. He’s smart. He figures out that there was some chemical on the photos that made his eyes dilate. He puts together that Jimmy managed to get his own man hired as P.I. He knows that the photos were switched by the planted P.I. he knows he’s been conned but it doesn’t matter. The deal is dead. They have to settle immediately or get nothing. The whole time Jimmy and Kim have been listening in on the conference call. Everything worked as planned. As the conference call came to an end Jimmy and Kim could be seen in the background, celebrating their victory by having passionate sex. Was the whole con just a long exercise in foreplay?
TWO WORLDS COLLIDE
“You’re perfect for each other. You have a piece missing” Howard
That evening, Jimmy and Kim are curled up on the couch, watching Born yesterday (1950) on TV and finishing up a bottle of bubbly when there is a knock at the door. It feels they were expecting it to be Howard so Jimmy goes to open the door. Kim notices the flame on the candle flicker as Howard walks in. He looks disheveled, probably drunk and he’s brought Jimmy a bottle of McCallan’s. He explains that whenever HHM won a big case, mostly thanks to Chuck, they would celebrate by drinking McCallan’s.
Howard gives a great soliloquy. He asks why they did it? What had he done to deserve them trying to ruin his good name? He comes to the conclusion that they did it for fun. And he’s right. he calls them sociopaths which I don’t think is true but they are sociopaths in the making. Just as things are getting heated between them Jimmy notices the flame on the candle flicker again, just as it did earlier when he opened the door for Howard. All of a sudden the look on Jimmy and Kim’s faces change. They look terrified. The unsuspecting Howard doesn’t notice that someone has walked in and approaching them. Jimmy looks as he he’s seen a ghost. It’s Lalo.
“Who are you?” Howard asks Lalo.
“I’m just here to talk to my lawyers.” Lalo says.
Kim tells Howard to leave. She begs him to leave but Lalo tells him to take his time as he pulls a gun out of his jacket and screws on a silencer.
“I think I’m in the middle of something” Howard nervously says.
Just as Howard is about to speak again, Lalo points the gun at Howard’s head and shoots. Howard’s blood splatters across the wall, he falls and hits his head on the table and lands on the floor. He’s dead. Jimmy and Kim are in shock. Lalo tries to shush them to calm down.
“OK. Let’s talk.”
Holy crap! I did not expect that to happen. Just seeing Lalo and Howard standing next to each other seemed surreal, like a live action figure was in the same movie as a cartoon figure. Lalo killing Howard, in essence, also ‘kills’ the legal careers of both Kim and Jimmy. They belong to the cartel now. Both of them. We know Jimmy will adapt to his new role but will Kim? Or does she disappear?
Why did Lalo go to Jimmy and Kim and not to the laundry? How can he use them to get to Fring?
Kim, more than anyone, is responsible for Howard’s death. Will this be her ‘scared straight’ moment?
Jimmy will do whatever it takes to protect Kim. Will that mean working with Mike and Gus to take out Lalo? Or making sure he goes to prison for the rest of his life?
The promo for Season 7 Part B. You hear Jimmy say, “So after all that….a happy ending?” Best case scenario, Jimmy is managing a Cinabon in Omaha and be reunited with Kim. I hope.