In Wexler Watch, we assess the state of Kim Wexler following each of the remaining six episodes of Better Call Saul.
As we embark upon the final stretch of Better Call Saul episodes, the nation is consumed with a single question: What will happen to Kim Wexler? Because Breaking Bad exists, we (kinda sorta) know what will happen to the principal figures in its prequel. Jimmy/Saul (Bob Odenkirk) will obviously live to advise Walter White in his meth dealings. Mike (Jonathan Banks) and Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) also are destined to make it out of Better Call Saul alive. But the fact that Kim — arguably the most fascinating Better Call Saul character, in part because we have no previous frame of reference for her and also because she’s played by Rhea Seehorn — does not appear in Breaking Bad follows her around in Better Call Saul like a tiny cloud above her head.
Does Kim’s eventual disappearance from Jimmy’s life suggest she dies? Or does she merely leave town? We all have theories, but the uncertainty remains, and that’s why we are checking in with Kim Wexler following each of the six final episodes of Better Call Saul, starting with this week’s installment, “Point and Shoot.”
First and most importantly, is Kim Wexler alive after this episode?
Yes, she’s still with us! I wasn’t totally sure she would make it after she went to Gus Fring’s house, got all set to shoot and kill Gus at point-blank range, then got nabbed by Gus’s security. But she eventually got out of there and, as of this moment, continues to breathe fresh oxygen.
Is Kim still with Jimmy/Saul?
Remarkably, yes. I say remarkably because a lot of people would be pretty pissed if their spouses, upon being asked to commit murder, responded, “No, send my life partner to do it instead!” I am not an expert on relationships, but I feel like this is maybe the No. 1 thing marriage counselors tell their patients not to do.
As she explained to Mike and Gus, though, Kim believed Jimmy pushed her into the hitman assignment because he figured she’d be safer outside of the apartment and as far away as possible from Lalo. That’s also how Jimmy explains his actions when Kim returns from her brief visit to the Fring compound, looking harried, exhausted, and relieved to see Jimmy alive. At the moment, it doesn’t appear that she’s planning to leave her partner in pointless and potentially deadly con artistry.
Okay, but how is Kim Wexler doing?
Forgive me for using a technical psychological term but: not great! She seems to be doing quite badly, actually. Early in this episode, as Howard’s freshly dead body is splayed across her apartment floor, Kim seems to be in shock and (understandably) focused on not getting killed by Lalo herself. Once in custody at Gus’s, she is still panicky, mainly about Jimmy’s safety.
By the end of the episode, when Mike asks her and Jimmy to go about their days normally, as if they haven’t just witnessed a murder and nearly been killed, Kim agrees to the plan. But the lights behind her eyes have gone completely dark. This incident — with Howard, and Lalo, and now Gus — seems to have flipped a switch inside her. Kim’s not dead, thankfully. But it’s very possible that a significant part of her has died on the inside. From where I sit, that’s almost as alarming.
And how is Kim Wexler’s ponytail, the barometer of her emotional state?
As Seehorn said of Kim, “I feel more vulnerable when she takes her hair down.” And Kim is certainly vulnerable in this episode. Her no-nonsense ponytail is nonexistent in “Point and Shoot.” Instead she wears her hair long and unbrushed, due to her being unexpectedly forced out of her apartment so she can go and (almost) commit murder. That’s how you know Kim is really in a bad spot right now: Her hairs are all out of place.