He puts the “criminal” in your defense; meet Jimmy McGill before he became Saul Goodman of "Breaking Bad."

Albuquerque is no stranger to successful television shows, with "Breaking Bad" putting the city on the map and employing many New Mexicans. "Better Call Saul" has proven to be just as notable, earning great acclaim and many accolades.

The prequel you waited for

Since 2012, we’d heard rumors about a "Breaking Bad" prequel. Around Albuquerque, film crews and stars had been spotted on location, and finally, in February 2015, the show came to fruition. Today it garners wide acclaim, earning an A+ rating from Newsday and being dubbed "one of TV's greatest dramas" by Indiewire.

"Better Call Saul" premiered on February 8th and 9th, 2015, in a two-night event on AMC. The show stars Bob Odenkirk and chronicles his "Breaking Bad" character’s adventures. His name has not yet changed to Saul Goodman; on "Better Call Saul," six years prior to teaming up with meth kingpin Walter White (Bryan Cranston), he goes by Jimmy McGill.

Viewers get a look into Jimmy’s beginnings and how he became Saul Goodman. In addition to Odenkirk, "Better Call Saul" reunites the "Breaking Bad" production team of Vince Gilligan (show creator), Peter Gould, Thomas Schnauz, Mark Johnson, Melissa Bernstein and Gennifer Hutchison. Returning characters include the beloved Mike Ehrmantraut, played by Jonathan Banks.

Better Call Saul in Albuquerque

Just as in "Breaking Bad," Albuquerque plays an integral role on "Better Call Saul" – almost serving as an additional character in the narrative. Vince Gilligan and his team do not shy away from including iconic Albuquerque landscapes, locations and businesses as filming locations, and they have embraced the city as the home of the series.

Learn more about "Better Call Saul."

New Mexico Film is on the Rise
Background on Bob Odenkirk

Bob Odenkirk got his start in comedy, working as an Emmy-winning writer for "Saturday Night Live" and "The Ben Stiller Show" and moving on to acting and live sketch comedy, including HBO’s "Mr. Show with Bob and David." In 2009, Odenkirk joined the cast of AMC’s "Breaking Bad" as Saul Goodman – meant to provide some comic relief amid the serious nature of the show. His performance proved to add a unique perspective to the story that was somewhat unexpected by the show’s creators.

“The more we worked with him, the more soul and depth we found. We loved that he was funny, but there was so much range there. He crushed it so completely that we started to daydream about what else we could do,” Gilligan said in an interview with the New York Times.

To the fans…

A note to fans from co-creators and executive producers Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould:

Welcome to the world of James M. McGill, Esq.

For viewers of 'Breaking Bad,' there’s much that will be familiar in this series: the bright Albuquerque skies, the dark humor, and — most of all — the passion and devotion to detail from cast and crew.

Having said that, 'Better Call Saul' is a brand new show. We’re telling a different story here — one with its own rhythm, its own look, its own tone. We’re excited to share it with you.

This show has been a crazy ride for us. The character of Jimmy McGill has taken us places we never expected. Jimmy’s not yet Saul Goodman: he’s his own man, and he’s messy and struggling and still finding himself. One day he’ll transform into Albuquerque’s favorite criminal lawyer, but right now he’s a more or less law-abiding underdog on the bottom rung of the legal system.

We’re loving every moment of Bob Odenkirk’s deeply human performance as unstoppable, inventive Jimmy races through an ethical slalom course, trying to make a name for himself.

We hope you enjoy it.

- Vince & Peter

In the photo, Mike Ehrmantraut waits in the Alvarado Transportation Center after arriving via train (NM Rail Runner Express).