A press release from Netflix Monday (Dec. 16) announcing it has acquired streaming rights to the “Breaking Bad” spinoff “Better Call Saul” buried the lead.
Three paragraphs in and amid details about the streaming deal, it’s revealed that “Better Call Saul” will indeed take place before the events of “Breaking Bad.” It’s been widely reported that the show would be a prequel, but creators Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould have played coy about details, and star Bob Odenkirk said last month that he had talked with Gould and Gilligan about the show being a sequel as well.
Monday’s press release puts the speculation to rest. “‘Better Call Saul’ tells the story of mall-based super lawyer Saul Goodman [Odenkirk] in the years before he became Walter White’s attorney,” it reads. “From parking tickets to mass murder, from slip-and-fall to bond fraud, Saul handles it all.”
Setting the show prior to Walt’s cancer diagnosis opens up a number of possibilities for former “Breaking Bad” characters to show up in Saul’s world. Bryan Cranston (Walt) and Aaron Paul (Jesse) have already said they’d like to make guest appearances, and everyone from Mike (Jonathan Banks) to Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) to Badger and Skinny Pete (Matt Jones and Charles Baker) could theoretically return as well.
As for the Netflix deal, the streaming service will have rights to Season 1 of “Better Call Saul” after it finishes its run on AMC. Netflix users in Europe and Latin America will get the show “shortly after” it airs in the United States. The series is scheduled to premiere sometime in 2014.