At the end of Better Call Saul Season 3, fans were left with a huge cliffhanger. Chuck was seen kicking at a pile of papers that had a lantern precariously sitting on top. He kept kicking and kicking until the lantern fell off and everything went up in flames. Viewers were left wondering if Chuck had survived the fire or if he had died. Now, even before Season 4 premieres, we know the answer. This post has spoilers for the very beginning of Season 4 Episode 1 of Better Call Saul. Only read on if you are OK with getting spoiled about Chuck’s fate. This also has a refresher for what happened to Chuck at the end of Season 3.
AMC and the Better Call Saul producers have not been shy about letting fans know Chuck’s fate. We thought it was going to be a big mystery, but Chuck’s fate was revealed in the synopsis for Season 4 Episode 1, which reads:
“In the Season 4 premiere, Jimmy struggles to cope with Chuck’s tragic death; Mike ponders his role at Madrigal; and Howard makes a startling confession.”
The Better Call Saul Comic-Con trailer also revealed scenes from Chuck’s funeral:
And of course, producers have been talking about how Chuck’s death will affect Jimmy.
But it does look like we might see something involving Chuck during the premiere tonight. AMC posted a Video Extra for the opening minutes of Better Call Saul on July 30. But if you click on the link, it says it’s not available yet for viewing (although it likely will be once the episode airs). However, you can see the first shot of the opening minutes:
This looks like Chuck, right? So are we going to see some of Chuck in the episode even though he doesn’t survive? It looks like that’s possible. In fact, Michael McKean told Vanity Fair that would be the case. “I am (a goner). I know they want to bring me in for some flashbacks this coming season, but that’s kind of beside the point.”
Here’s what happened to Chuck at the end of Season 3, in case you need a refresher.
Howard offered Chuck a $3 million check from his personal account — the first of three — to buy Chuck out of the law firm HHM. Howard then brought Chuck in front of the entire firm and announced that he’s leaving immediately. Jimmy found out and unable to shake the hold that Chuck had on him, he went to Chuck’s house to check on his brother. Chuck seemed fine. The lights were on and he was listening to music, seemingly unaffected by his electricity allergy. Chuck told Jimmy that all he does is hurt people, and he never really cared for Jimmy.
But Chuck didn’t really have it all together like he was pretending. Later, he ran downstairs late that night and turned off every switch in the fuse box. That wasn’t enough; he felt like there was still power in the house. He tore apart his house, even taking a crowbar to parts of it, and ultimately bashed the meter with a baseball bat to try to get to the power source he kept sensing.
Chuck was at the breaking point and completely regressed. He lost every person who had supported him. He was terrible to Howard and told Jimmy that he had never really cared about him. Then he completely regressed and became even worse than he was before. That’s when he sat in the house by himself late at night, kicking at a pile of papers with a lantern on top. He knocked the lantern over, setting everything ablaze.
It’s possible that by the end of the episode, Chuck was practically catatonic from his mental illness and all he could do was hit the table with his feet. It was unclear if he was purposefully trying to kill himself or if it was the only movement he could still do. Michael McKean said in Talking Saul that he wasn’t sure if it was purposeful and might depend on what type of pills Chuck was taking.
At the end of the finale, before Chuck’s death was publicly revealed, the episode ended with a message about the National Suicide Hotline, which gave a pretty substantial hint about Chuck’s fate.