Better Call Saul Doubles Down on Weird


When you want viral and don’t have anything to pique attention, going weird is not the worst idea. At least that seems to be the thought process behind the latest advert for “Breaking Bad” spinoff “Better Call Saul.”

The rumor mill has been churning overtime ever since it was announced (leaked) that there would be a Breaking Bad spin-off starring standout supporting character Saul Goodman, a wheeling and dealing amoral defense attorney. In a show chock full of interested and well crafted supporting characters, Saul is the perfect antihero to pull off his own show. First, he’s not dead. But since this is a prequel, that wouldn’t necessarily be a deal breaker.

What really makes Saul the best choice is both his depth and the mysterious aspect to the character. He doesn’t really have a conscience, per se, but he does care about his associates in his own way. That makes him both endearing as well as unpredictable. You never really know which direction Saul is going to go. Which brings us to the first full-length advertisement for the spin-off. Apparently, we can’t predict what the producers will do either, because, if we had to describe this commercial in a single word, only one comes to mind: WEIRD.

First, it’s a song. A weird thrill-billy country-western riff crooned in classic cowboy baritone by Junior Brown. Then you have the weird assortment of red, waving blow-up balloons, the ancient console TVs and the blinking GUILTY sign floating in the background. Also, the wide-eyed Stepford women pushing around the TV carts. Interspersed amidst this bizarre bazaar you see screen clips of Saul in action. Standing tall, busting into a courtroom, staring down a conference table … he’s large and in charge. Though not nearly as large as Junior’s ten gallon hat.

If nothing else, the video is memorable, particularly in that ‘can never get it out of your head, stuck there forever way.’ To call it brilliant PR would be a stretch. To call it effective? That’s easy. Nobody can watch that all the way through and either forget the catchphrase (which is the show title) or that the program begins in February. Want to understand the rest of it? Better tune in.

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States. Ronn is the author of "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results with Game-Changing Public Relations."

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