Better Call Saul returns for Season 2

After a successful first season, Breaking Bad spinoff Better Call Saul returns to AMC. Quebec actor Michael Mando speaks with CBC News about the new season.

Spinoff from Breaking Bad unearths Saul Goodman's backstory

Becoming Saul Goodman

6 years ago
Quebec actor Michael Mando, Better Call Saul's cartel drug lord Nacho Varga, on the transformation of downtrodden Jimmy McGill into the crooked Saul Goodman. 2:09

When AMC spinoff Better Call Saul was announced, it wasn't clear if it would fill the void left by its predecessor, the hit series Breaking Bad.

But after nine episodes and some big awards and nominations, the critically acclaimed show is back for a second season.

Better Call Saul is set six years earlier than Breaking Bad.

"We can go back in the past, we can go during Breaking Bad, and we also tell the story after Breaking Bad," says Quebec actor Michael Mando, who plays cartel drug lord Nacho Varga.

While Breaking Bad helped relaunch the career of Bryan Cranston and boost Aaron Paul's profile, the same could be said for the spinoff's star actor Bob Odenkirk, whose performance as Jimmy McGill garnered him a 2015 Critics Choice Award for best actor in a drama.

Canadian actor Michael Mando, right, appears as cartel drug lord Nacho Varga opposite Bob Odenkirk's struggling lawyer Jimmy McGill (kneeling) in Better Call Saul, the acclaimed spinoff from Breaking Bad. (AMC)

The show also received Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for its breakout first season, which is one of Netflix's newest offerings.

Fans of Breaking Bad know where Saul Goodman's story ends. But this is the story about where it begins, when Goodman was known as an unsuccessful criminal lawyer named Jimmy McGill, out to defend the little guy while his moral compass is at war. Somewhere down the line, things change.

A transformation story

"I can tell you that it is a transformation story. We are going to get to see Jimmy slowly become Saul Goodman," says Mando.

Mando, who also can be seen on sci-fi series Orphan Black, says he's grateful to be in the show's cast.

"To be able to tell stories that are socially relevant and entertaining — it's the reason why I'm in this business."

Mando drops a few hints for what fans can expect from Jimmy McGill in Season 2. "He won't become Saul Goodman quite yet. They are having a lot of fun with twists and turns."

Odenkirk and Mando return to Better Call Saul on AMC tonight at 10 p.m. ET.