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The Real Reason Better Call Saul Recast Jeff The Cab Driver For Season 6

One of the most interesting aspects of AMC's "Better Call Saul" is that it is both a prequel to "Breaking Bad" and a means of continuing the story after the events through a series of flashforwards. When we first meet Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk) in "Breaking Bad," he is already established as a seedy, shifty, and morally flexible lawyer of dubious talents. However, in "Better Call Saul," we essentially see the character's origin story as he undergoes trials and tribulations involving several other characters we later meet in "Breaking Bad," which set up the connections and underworld accomplices that end up being utilized by Walter White (Bryan Cranston).

"Better Call Saul" fully explores the fact that Saul Goodman is actually an alias, and that the character's real name is Jimmy McGill. But this is not his only alternate identity. Throughout the series, flashforwards have shown Jimmy/Saul using the moniker Gene Takavic and working as a manager of a Cinnabon in a Nebraska mall. During these flashforward sequences, Gene has had interactions with a cab driver named Jeff (originally played by Don Harvey), who recognizes "Gene" as being Saul Goodman. 

In the Season 6 episode "Nippy," Gene and Jeff decide to rob a store at the mall. However, eagle-eyed fans of "Better Call Saul" may have noticed that the actor who plays Jeff has changed. Here's why.

The role of Jeff had to be recast due to contractual obligations

Although Don Harvey played the role of Jeff in earlier episodes of "Better Call Saul," the character is played by Pat Healy in the Season 6 episode "Nippy." But why the change? There isn't an in-universe explanation, such as the character undergoing plastic surgery to avoid law enforcement. It seems instead that the reason for the recast is actually due to Harvey's outside contractual obligations.

As reported by Entertainment Weekly, itself working off information provided by Instagram fan account @all_about_saul, the reason for the cast shakeup so late in the "Better Call Saul" game is due to Harvey's appearance on the HBO show "We Own This City." Because of his obligations to the aforementioned show, Harvey was unable to return to the character of Jeff. It would appear that whatever role Jeff ends up playing in the final episodes of the series is an important one, as instead of dropping the character when Harvey was no longer available, the show opted to recast him, instead.

Although it may be a bit jarring to some fans of "Better Call Saul," it makes sense as to why Jeff has had to stick around — the character acts as a bridge between both past and future events, and it will be interesting to see what happens in the final episodes of the popular show.