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Howard's Storyline On Better Call Saul Was Almost Wildly Different

"Better Call Saul," the prequel spinoff series of the acclaimed drama "Breaking Bad," chronicles the transformation of Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk), a well-meaning lawyer, into the seedy criminal defense lawyer Saul Goodman. Other key players in Jimmy's world include mostly fellow lawyers, including his brother Chuck (Michael McKean) with whom he has a fraught relationship, and the ambitious and ethical Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn) who eventually becomes Jimmy's wife.

There's also Howard Hamlin (Patrick Fabian), one of the partners at Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill alongside Chuck. Jimmy completed his law degree while working in the mailroom at HHM, where, after he passed the bar exam, he was hoping to get a job working as a lawyer. However, Howard denies Jimmy the job — it isn't until later on that Jimmy discovers it was actually Chuck who made the decision not to hire him as Chuck didn't see Jimmy as a "real" lawyer. From there, Jimmy's relationship with Howard remains fraught, despite the fact that Howard was only acting through Chuck's wishes.

In the final season, Jimmy and Kim are planning a takedown of Howard's reputation in order to get the Sandpiper case settled — which will grant Jimmy a large sum of money. So far, their plan has included planting cocaine in Howard's country club locker and making it look like he kicks a sex worker out of his car. All in all, the future of Howard's reputation is not looking good. But, interestingly, there's a way in which Howard's outcome could have been very different.

Howard's life would have been different had he not met Saul

In a recent interview with Variety, Patrick Fabian discussed the most recent episode of "Better Call Saul" titled "Black and Blue." The episode sees Howard realizing that Jimmy must be the one behind the recent events after fellow lawyer Cliff Main (Ed Begley Jr.) confronts Howard about his supposed drug problem. Howard, attempting a "hail mary," invites Jimmy to box with him, hoping that fighting it out will lead to an end of Jimmy's antics.

Fabian was then asked what Howard's life would be like had he never met Saul. He responded, "After we found out that Howard didn't go out to hang up his own shingle, it's sort of a predictable life of country club, golf, very successful firm, high-end clients, wife, that sort of thing. I think his life is unperturbed if he doesn't run into Saul. But clearly he's been getting perturbed. The idea that Howard had a bowling ball on his Jaguar, hookers thrown at him at lunch, it's unconscionable for a man like that."

Of course, Howard did meet Saul and, thus, his life will continue to be bothered as Jimmy and Kim continue through with their scheme. Considering how unfazed both seemed to be after Howard confronted Jimmy, it's safe to say that they expected Howard to figure it out and their plan is already adjusted accordingly. We can't wait to see how Jimmy and Kim's plan plays out — even if Howard doesn't fully deserve what's coming.