Saul Goodman played by Bob Odenkirk

Saul Goodman played by Bob Odenkirk

Saul McGill, known by his professional alias Saul Goodman, is a former criminal lawyer and the former principal attorney of Saul Goodman & Associates, operating out of a cheap strip mall office and ran over-the-top late night TV ads advising potential clients they’d “Better Call Saul” when in trouble with the law, promising «I fight for YOU, Albuquerque!». His repertoire includes small-time drug busts, fraudulent insurance claims and fat people class actions.

Portrayed by Bob Odenkirk, Saul is a classic crooked lawyer getting Walter White and Jesse Pinkman out of several difficult situations over the course of their drug business operations. Dressed in flashy suits, Saul maintains extensive connections within the criminal underworld and serves as a go-between connecting drug distributors, evidence removers, impersonators and other criminals-for-hire. His office at the strip mall is garishly decorated with imitation pieces, such as wall-sized images of the U.S. Constitution, fake plaster columns invoking images of stately Washington DC federal buildings and an inflatable Statue of Liberty on the roof to attract customers.

In his office Saul has a diploma saying he is a graduate of the law school of University of American Samoa with an MA in political science. However, this may not be entirely factual, as the university doesn’t exist in the real world. Saul has had multiple wives in the past, one of which he caught having intercourse with his step-father. At a certain point, he developed a romantic relationship with his secretary, albeit short-lived. Saul claims he once successfully impersonated actor Kevin Costner and tells Walter «it worked because I believed it», pitching the Laser Tag arena as a money laundering scheme. Saul’s loan-out corporation is called Ice Station Zebra Associates, and he assures his clients that the company is «totally legit» and that he uses it for «tax purposes».

A city boy, he is of Irish descent. However, he pretends to be a Jewish lawyer «for the homeboys who want a member of the tribe». Saul’s made-up last name is a play on words to better attract clients: “it’s all good man” becomes “Saul Goodman”. His white Cadillac license plate reads “LWYR UP”, referring to the expression “lawyer up”, used to describe the act of delegating one’s representation in legal matters to an attorney.

Despite his sleazy, comical and flamboyant appearance and mannerisms — punctuated by his outrageous low-budget TV commercials — Saul is a highly competent lawyer who is able to solve problems, manipulating the legal system and finding loopholes in order to protect his clients, in exchange for a sizable chunk of their profits. He is reluctant to be associated with violence or murder, but even murder doesn’t faze him unless it somehow endangers his interests, and he is always happy to put one client’s interests above those of another, for the right price.


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