SpoilerTV - TV Spoilers

Interview with Better Call Saul's writer Gennifer Hutchison

Gennifer Hutchison, writer and executive producer of the critically acclaimed AMC hit drama Better Call Saul. Opens up about one of the most iconic props from Breaking Bad, Hector Salamanca's bell. She talks about where the idea of having Lalo Salamanca "gift" Hector the bell and the reasoning behind. Gennifer Hutchison also brings her own interpretation to why Lalo took the bell and held on to it all these years to give to Hector.

What made you decide that Lalo was going to be the one to gift Hector the bell?

Hector's bell has always been an iconic prop from Breaking Bad. It's such a weird looking bell, too in the context of a communication device. It looks like a hotel bellhop bell, and we've always wondered about it in the writers' room -- why this bell? Who gave it to him? If it had been a nurse or doctor, it would have been a much simpler bell, for example.

When we were introducing Lalo and thinking about this visit with Hector, it came up that now may be a good time to tell the story of the bell. Hector has just had his stroke, Lalo is a new character we've never met before, and it gave us a great opportunity for a monologue to build the scene around.

The story behind the bell is incredible. Was Don Hector doing his drug business with Hotel Tulipan and the owner betrayed him? What did Lalo mean, " You were so polite to that guy, and he turns his back on you? Makes that big deal to show he's not scared."

We always like to keep details like that open for audience interpretation. It can be really cool to hear the theories folks come up with. I love the betrayal idea! In discussing it, our idea in the room was that when Hector stayed at this hotel, he always chafed at how educated the owner was and how much he talked about his old job and his books. I always felt that Hector is not college educated and
is threatened by book smart people. But... in his mind, the guy was rude to him, didn't show enough deference for who he was. It's such a small offense, and Hector took it way too far. We liked the idea of using this to show how petty and cruel Hector is, and how scary and also cruel Lalo is. The way he tells the story, delights in it, really helps show that this is a guy our characters should be worried about.

Why the bell? Why did Lalo choose to take the bell after the fire and not something else?

For me, the story reason is that for the owner, this bell was something he took pride in. When he rang it, bellhops snapped to attention. What power the owner had in this place was symbolized by the bell. Lalo took it to give that power to Hector.

Teaching the teacher. Can you explain it?

The owner was a former professor -- again very book smart. And again, I think Hector feels threatened by smart people and reads that as disrespect. So the idea is that teaching the teacher refers to Hector educating this smart man in the ways of Hector's world. That his book smarts are meaningless up against Hector and his power.

Get Email Alerts

About The SpoilerTV Daily Newsreel

Every day 100's of items are submitted to us and we don't always have the time to make separate posts for the news and/or there is so much that it would quickly push all other items off the homepage.

So a result we've come up with the idea of the Newsreel, which will feature smaller shows and news items as they happen.

There will be a new Newsreel each day, and as news is added we will update the post and and push it back to the top of the site so that you can see that new items have been added. A tweet of the item will also be sent to our @SpoilerTV account.

New Items will be listed at the top of the article.

This will allow us to provide more news on more shows in a much more timely fashion
About Movie News Roundup

Rather that creating lots of new posts as new info is released and fragmenting the commentary, we thought it would be a good idea for the upcoming major movies to create a single post for each major movies that will collate all the info as it's posted.

New items will be added to the top of the list as well as the post being re-posted back to the top of the homepage when a new item is added. We will additionally send out a fresh tweet alerting you of the new information.

This will allow you to bookmark this page so that you can return to it whenever you like. It will also help consolidate all the discussion on this movie in a central place and make it less likely that you'll miss some key information.