Here is some fantastic news related to the upcoming Breaking Bad prequel, Better Call Saul: in addition to Breaking Bad fan favorites Bob Odenkirk (title role) and Jonathan Banks (the supremely wonderful Mike Ehrmantraut), comedic genius Michael McKean has joined the cast lineup.
If McKean's name isn't immediately ringing a bell, you may remember him as Lenny from Laverne & Shirley -- or the lead singer in Spinal Tap (trivia: he improvised his role throughout that entire film). Or from one of his subsequent Christopher Guest movies like Best In Show or A Mighty Wind; or one of his MANY television, movie, and Broadway performances over the years.
While I was maybe a little leery about how a drama like Breaking Bad could possibly be spun off into a comedy, I'm officially on board now. Especially considering McKean's character description.
McKean is the third confirmed Better Call Saul cast member, and here's how Deadline describes his role:
McKean will play a new character, Dr. Thurber, a brilliant attorney who is now restricted by an unusual affliction.
Okay, I realize that could mean almost anything, but given the fact that it's Michael McKean, I'm guessing that "affliction" is going to be funny as hell. (Can I say that without sounding preemptively offensive? If it turns out that it's actually a very sad and debilitating illness, well, I apologize in advance for gleefully picturing how this will make the most of McKean's comedic chops.)
In addition to this already-awesome cast, I think we can probably expect to see some familiar Breaking Bad faces showing up for a few cameos. Aaron Paul has already announced having had "serious talks" with creator Vince Gilligan for possible guest appearances, and you know Gilligan wouldn't waste the opportunity to delight us with a brief appearance from, say, Giancarlo Esposito.
Spinoffs aren't always a slam-dunk, and something that involves such a big shift in tone seems particularly tricky. I can't help fretting that Better Call Saul will end up tainting Breaking Bad's impeccable legacy by failing to deliver, but the show's casting looks enormously promising so far. Here's hoping it turns into another home run for AMC this November!
What do you think of this addition to Better Call Saul?
Image via HBO