Thursday, June 30, 2016

"Better Call Saul" Filming Locations - Season 3

This post is the fourth of five posts regarding "Better Call Saul" filming locations (last updated June 28, 2017).

This post focuses on Season 3 locations.

The Blog Sidebar contains links to Filming Location posts.  These include:
  • Eight "Breaking Bad" filming location posts;
  • Three additional posts regarding "Breaking Bad" related subjects;
  • Six "Better Call Saul" filming location posts;
  • One additional post regarding "Better Call Saul" related subjects;
  • Two links to OldeSaultie's Google maps of "Breaking Bad" and "Better Call Saul" filming location sites. These are the best filming location maps on the Web! The KML files available at these addresses are particularly useful for importing locations into GPS-equipped devices.

Let me know if you have any problems or questions. E-Mail address: valdezmarc56@gmail.com

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"A Guidebook To 'Breaking Bad' Filming Locations: Albuquerque as Physical Setting and Indispensable Character"

To avoid unnecessary friction, I have redacted the addresses of all single-family homes in the book. (These addresses are still available in these blog posts, however.)

The pictures in the print edition are black-and-white, in order to keep costs down. Pictures in the Kindle edition are in color.


The Fourth Edition (Publication date June 28, 2017; 382 pages) of the book can be ordered at these links:

Print, Kindle U.S., Kindle UK, Kindle DE, Kindle FR, etc.


Third Edition (Publication date January 26, 2016; 335 pages) can still be ordered at these links:

Print, Kindle U.S., Kindle UK, etc.


Here's an update to a video I first made in February regarding the uses of architecture and symbolism in "Breaking Bad" and "Better Call Saul."

Albuquerque's architecture itself is telling plot-supporting stories and influencing the filming-location-selection process. It is possible to “read” the background of scenes and catch subtle revelations, even years in advance of the plot. Puzzling location-selection decisions can finally be understood.

One such story is a cautionary tale about the excesses and corruptions of modern life, as refracted through the history of the City of Chicago, particularly its “Century of Progress.” In their different ways, both Walter White and Saul Goodman are perfect children of Chicago’s “Century of Progress.” As it happens, Albuquerque received many of its architectural features straight from Chicago, so the city can serve as an effective showcase of Chicago’s influence on America and the world.

Another story concerns window technology. The television shows recapitulate the recent history of how glass windows were modified to introduce more sunlight into the recesses of large buildings, and reciprocally, once electrical lighting technology improved, how large buildings became beacons and lanterns in the night. The City of Chicago had an out-sized role in this process. Private worlds were rendered less private, turning even inner life into a kind of theatrical performance, with all the attendant temptations and dangers. Among these widespread window innovations in Albuquerque, and useful as Chicago callbacks, are Glass Block Windows and Luxfer Prismatic Tile Windows. Even plate glass windows have their place.

The creative teams also use Albuquerque’s Pueblo Deco architecture, particularly archways and ceilings, as foreshadowing elements. Traditional church architecture, such as clerestory windows, are also used, as are other Christian symbols.

Understanding the crystalline labyrinth of Vince Gilligan’s Albuquerque deepens one’s appreciation for the real city: the Aged Sapphire of the Southwest!




----------------------------------

"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 10, 'Lantern'


I knew that such an important figure as Chuck McGill couldn't leave "Better Call Saul" without abstract Pueblo Deco arches foreshadowing his demise, but I also knew the creative team folks are subtle. For all the times these arches were used in "Breaking Bad," the apparent first use of Pueblo Deco arches in "Better Call Saul" comes when Howard announces Chuck’s retirement in the lobby of HHM. The light fixtures on the lobby wall form stylized Pueblo Deco arches ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 10, ‘Lantern’).


"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'

I loved the statuette of Edgar Degas' "Little Dancer of Fourteen Years" on Lydia's desk.

Degas' relationship with ballet seems twisted, his subjects look tortured, and his work still shocks. Wikipedia states:
Certain critics were shocked by the piece, and the dancer was compared to a monkey and an Aztec. One critic, Paul Mantz, called her the "flower of precocious depravity," with a face "marked by the hateful promise of every vice" and "bearing the signs of a profoundly heinous character."


Patches of light on the ceiling from outside lights shining through open doors are like representational skylights; Immediately afterwards, real skylights at Coronado Center!



"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 8, 'Slip'

Albuquerque architecture features few clerestory windows outside of churches, but in "Better Call Saul" episode 'Slip' we had a very-pretty example, with the Triangle Grocery in Cedar Crest, on the eastern flank of the Sandia Mountains (17 miles from Chuck's house). Another good example of clerestory windows comes from 'Crawl Space' in "Breaking Bad" - the Mexican field hospital. The context of both uses is healing (I like how Chuck rolls his eyes at the 'orange oranges.')


The Mexican field hospital, 'six miles from Texas,' is housed within the Schwartzmann Slaughterhouse, severely-damaged in an explosion in 1966, and abandoned in the 1980s.



Nacho executes his plan:




"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'

I was pleased they finally used two buildings that have been waiting for years and years for the BrBa/BCS creative team to arrive: 1.) The Furniture Store at Daskalos Center (all that glass block: 5343 Menaul Blvd. NE), and 2.) The insurance agency, hosted at Aperture Center, right across the street from "Q" Studios (they've filmed all around it for years).

The Aperture Center was designed by famous NM architect, Antoine Predock. In 1979, I took a beginning modern dance class at UNM from his lovely wife, Jennifer Predock-Linnell. She is still active today. For example, this performance. At 5:00, they show that the visuals for her dance piece were displayed outdoors (visible even from the Frontier Restaurant) at the UNM School of Architecture, also designed by Antoine Predock. Jennifer has connections there!:




Plus this piece at White Sands:




"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 5, 'Chicanery'

Superb episode (despite the lack of many new locations)!

I didn't like last week's episode, and feared the writers' minds had gone completely to mush in the southwestern sun, but I feel much better now. If Chuck had kept his cool, he would have remembered that current makes him uncomfortable, not capacitance, and a battery just by itself should be harmless to him. I love Chuck, no matter what. My hero!

Here's an excellent interview with Gordon Smith, writer of episode 'Chicanery'.


The Carpenter's Union Building hosted Kim's disclosure to Mesa Verde.


The walk across the street was from the Police Department to the old Albuquerque City Hall, at 400 Marquette Avenue NW. Kim's apartment was likely on set. Hearing Room 253 appears to have been in the Bernalillo County Courthouse Annex building. I loved the division of the ceiling tiles into four strips each. I'm still puzzled by the stairwells: don't know exactly where they are.


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"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito'

I was just annoyed with the episode. Wasted opportunities. Sigh. Maybe next week will be better.

I felt 'Sabrosito' jumped the shark. The last thing Hector should have done at Los Pollos is make a public exhibition, especially after the DEA raided his shop. Mexican drug lords like drama, but the situation was far too risky for even the most flamboyant drug lord. Gus' pep speech was absurdly hollow. The script writers pandered to the BrBa fans by having the conversation at Don Eladio's track Salud so closely. They could have done something new, something imaginative instead. But no....

And apart from the interview room, no new sites.

Basically a face plant of an episode.

Let me explain.

A truly Mexican drug lord response would have been for Hector to kidnap Gus, yell at him for a time, then release him.

I've been trying to follow what's been going on in Mexico lately in regard to the lives of Jesús Alfredo Guzmán Salazar and Iván Archivaldo Guzmán Salazar, sons of El Chapo Guzmán, heretofore head of the Sinaloa Cartel and the world's greatest drug lord, now living in a U.S. jail.

In August, 2016, in news that went around the world, Jesús was kidnapped from La Leche Restaurant in Puerto Vallarta, and held for a week. He was held by Jalisco New Generation Cartel, which is a considerable surprise, since Jalisco New Generation and Sinaloa Cartels are frequent allies. Apparently this kidnapping was a negotiating tactic. Either just business as usual, or Jalisco New Generation got angry for some reason - maybe not that different than Hector getting mad at his ally and rival Gus. So, Jalisco New Generation kidnapped Jesús, probably to yell at him for a time. Maybe a touch of torture. Just to let him know who's boss.

Life for Los Hermanos Guzmán has been tough the past year. They were ambushed by their father's ally Dámaso López in February, and barely survived, probably only because they were in the heavily-armed company of one of Mexico's most-powerful drug lords, Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada.

Dámaso López was arrested just the other day. So, the brothers Guzmán are doing better these days, not because they are necessarily terribly-bright, but because they have powerful allies.


For me, life is all about geography. The reason I'm interested in the lives of Los Hermanos Guzmán is that I took a cruise to Mexico in 2010. Among the pictures I took then was a picture of La Leche!

Kidnapping is the Mexican way, even if you don't want to hurt the victim, but just make them squirm.



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"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 3, 'Sunk Costs'


Just overwhelmed by the glass block!

We've seen glass block on one side of Jimmy, then on two sides (Chicago hospital lobby), and now on three sides. There will come a time when Jimmy is completely surrounded by glass block.


Looks like Tijeras Arroyo for the Mexican desert scenes, but with a staggering amount of prep work (those telephone lines don't exist in reality) and digital reworking after-the-fact (to get rid of the offroader abuse over the years). Amazing!


"Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness'

[Updated April 24, 2017]

I was delighted by watching the background in episode 'Witness'. This episode had at least four of the symbolic background elements I discussed in my Albuquerque talk last February, "Streamline Moderne and Jimmy McGill": 1.) Howard parking in front of the Charles Lembke House, the Streamline Moderne house at 312 Laguna Blvd. SW; 2.) The octagonal symmetry of the sunburst on the wind chime; 3.) The glass block on the house located across the street from Los Pollos Hermanos (north side) and garage (south side), roughly 1851 Lakeview Rd. SW and 4.) The "Word Search" puzzle - a Cartesian grid used as a prop in the context of a question, "Hey, you take care of that matter?"

Mike pursues his gas cap on a rainy night.

1.) Going up the hill into Rio Rancho (35.213959°, -106.662802°).
2.) Coming down the hill from Rio Rancho (essentially the same place as going uphill).
3.) Empty parking lots, near Intel in Rio Rancho: (35.221531°, -106.661532°)
4.) On the curve on Coors Bypass NW, across from Cottonwood Mall (35.194995°, -106.657669°)
5.) 55 mph. Tennyson & Paseo del Norte Blvd. NE.
6.) Overpass (15 ft. 0 in.). Tennyson & Paseo del Norte Blvd. NE.
7.) Rail yards.
8.) Where Coors Blvd. NW crosses Calabacillas Arroyo.

Regarding the Word Search, at first I thought the key word was "Columbia". In 2003, the Space Shuttle Columbia was brought down by a chunk of foam which struck the wing at the speed of sound. NASA had become inured to the risks of flying foam chunks. So I was thinking here it meant a small risk, that under the right circumstances could be fatal. What risk, we don't know yet.


Then I noticed, over on the right, "Rapollo". Here is discussion about a 'Wall of Light'.

Rapollo is a perfect name! Apollo is the label of space-age plausible deniability, the disguise they built into the Word Search.


Hell yeah (5:15-5:40):




Los Pollos Hermanos Promotional Ad



Los Pollos promo.



New Season 3 Filming Locations



Northeast Heights (E. of Wyoming, W. of Juan Tabo, S. of Osuna)


Mesa Verde offices, One Executive Center, 8500 Menaul Blvd. NE, at Menaul Blvd. & Lester Dr. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel'; "Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Southwest corner of the building, not the northeast side, as in "Breaking Bad".

This building was also the IRS Tax Offices ("Breaking Bad", Season 4, episode 9, 'Bug'), where Skyler demonstrated her command of Quicken.


Interior (image from the Internet).


What Is He Thinking Today?


Albuquerque Auto Outlet, 1400 Wyoming Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness').


Upper Northeast Heights (E. of Juan Tabo, S. of Osuna)

(no new locations offered with this update)


Northeast Heights (N. Of Osuna)

Albuquerque Fire Station Twenty, 7520 Corona Ave. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito'). Gus makes a presentation.

BCS used the opposite, southern side of the station, rather than this side here in the picture, the northern side used in "Breaking Bad".


Chair Yoga, North Domingo Baca Multigenerational Center, 7521 Carmel Ave. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern').


Chair Yoga, North Domingo Baca Multigenerational Center, 7521 Carmel Ave. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern').


Mike pursues his gas cap on a rainy night.

(5) and (6): Above and under the overpass (15 ft. 0 in.). Tennyson & Paseo del Norte Blvd. NE.



Lower Northeast Heights (W. of Wyoming), & Lomas Blvd. Corridor

ABQ in tune, Music Go Round, 7116 Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses').


ABQ in tune, Music Go Round, 7116 Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses').


Carpet warehouse, Raby Carpet & Tile Outlet, 2609 Rhode Island St. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Jimmy has extra air time.


Massage Parlor. The former Oriental Health Spa, Pennsylvania & Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Jimmy's media team improvises.


Massage Parlor parking lot, Behind Raby's Carpet & Tile Outlet, Pennsylvania & Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Jimmy's media team improvises.


Massage Parlor parking lot, Behind Raby's Carpet & Tile Outlet, Pennsylvania & Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Jimmy's media team improvises.


Antenna Yard. Near Pennsylvania & Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Jimmy's media team improvises.

From 2012 archives. I've gotten in the habit of taking photos of anything in ABQ that looks even remotely interesting. You never know.


Antenna Yard. Near Pennsylvania & Menaul Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Jimmy's media team improvises.


Duke City Recliners, The Furniture Store at Daskalos Center, 5343 Menaul Blvd. NE. All that glass block! ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Selling that extra air time.





Coronado Mall, 6600 Menaul Blvd NE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern'). Jimmy manipulates Irene, and her friends.


Coronado Mall, 6600 Menaul Blvd NE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern').


Coronado Mall, 6600 Menaul Blvd NE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern').


Daniel Wormald's House, said to be at 124 Bellingham Court, 87116. Located at 7729 Robin Ave. NE (Season 2, episode 1, 'Switch'; "Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Stolen baseball card collection, and a story that doesn't quite make sense.


Sandpiper Crossing, Sunset Pointe Apartments, 6500 Montgomery Blvd. NE (Season 1, episode 8, 'Rico'). Assisted living and out-of-state syringes.

("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern'). Jimmy manipulates Irene, and her friends.



Downtown

Police Dept., 400 Roma Ave. NW, as seen from Marquette Avenue.

The walk across the street was from the Police Department to the old Albuquerque City Hall, at 400 Marquette Avenue NW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 5, 'Chicanery').


KiMo Theatre ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Photo by Anna Dorfman.


Anna Dorfman, a new-ish Albuquerque resident and blogger, sends a note:

Hi Marc,

Thanks so much for your excellent coverage and analysis of the locations in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul! As a fan of both shows and a new resident of Albuquerque (via Brooklyn), it's been a great way to learn more about the city with a bit of (pop culture) guidances for help.

I'm attaching a few photos I took on December 6, 2016. I was walking around downtown in the evening after an appointment, and I noticed the KiMo was looking even more beautiful than ever, and that for once there were no cars in front to obstruct my view! Oblivious to the police cars, film crew trucks, and road barriers (I think being a New Yorker has made me blind to a lot of things, haha), I started taking some photos with my phone—only to be stopped by a very kind officer who informed me that Better Call Saul was about to start filming and that I needed to stop taking photos. I asked whether the movie on the marquee, Bunny Lake Is Missing, was actually playing, and he laughed and said no, that's just for the set.

...Again, thanks so much for all of the hard work you put into your blog!

Kind regards,
Anna


KiMo Theatre ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Photo by Anna Dorfman.


KiMo Theatre ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Photo by Anna Dorfman.


Burt's Tiki Lounge, 515 Central Ave. NW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). A favorite site reappears at its new location.


Skip Maisel's Indian Jewelry, 510 Central Ave. SW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Lots of neon!



Downtown West and Old Town



Huning Castle & ABQ Country Club


Chuck McGill's Home, 1607 San Cristobal Road SW.

Where Howard parks, 312 Laguna Blvd. SW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness'). Look at the beautiful Streamline Moderne house in the background! Howard's back yard path is still a little murky. Possibly through the yard behind 1605 Los Alamos Ave. SW.



Barelas

Rail Yards, this time on the south side, on the Roundhouse side ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel'). Also, Mike watches the mysterious man at the Rail Yards ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness').


Huning Highlands/ Martineztown Locations

Back yard camping with Chuck & Jimmy, Former ABQ Fire Station #2, northwestern corner of the yard at 301 High St. SE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 10, 'Lantern').

Chuck reads Harry Thurston Peck’s 1896 children’s book, “The Adventures of Mabel,” to young Jimmy.

(Photo by James Gelet.)






University Area & Near Presbyterian Hospital


UNM Science and Technology Park, 800 Bradbury Dr. SE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). "Maybe we should catch the bus."


Madrigal Electromotive's Houston Office, Scott & Kienzle's Law Offices, 1011 Las Lomas Rd. NE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'). Lydia welcomes Mike to Madrigal.

The office is first shown in "Breaking Bad" (Season 5, episode 4, 'Fifty-One'). Lydia, and her mismatched shoes!


Scott Kienzle Law Offices, 1011 Las Lomas Rd. NE (Season 5, episode 4, 'Fifty-One').


Encino Terrace, as seen from Scott Kienzle Law Offices.

A building of interest to the architectural community, the Encino Crescent, is in the foreground (but never shown in 'Madrigal' or 'Fall').



Nob Hill

(no new locations offered with this update)


South Valley (West of River), Southwest Albuquerque and Pajarito Mesa

Los Pollos Hermanos, Twisters, 4257 Isleta Blvd. SW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness'; episode 8, 'Slip').


Los Pollos Hermanos, Twisters, 4257 Isleta Blvd. SW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness').














The area on both sides of Lakeview Rd. SW, in the vicinity of 1851 Lakeview Rd. SW, where Mike parks to observe Los Pollos Hermanos, are notably important ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness').


The house on the north side, and the garage on the south side, both feature Streamline Moderne Glass Blocks (see "Streamline Moderne and Jimmy McGill").


Clínica Gratuita, South Valley Animal Clinic, 4021 Isleta Blvd. SW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 3, 'Sunk Costs'). The Mexican Doctor.


El Michoacano Restaurant, 2511 Isleta Blvd. SW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Season 3 reappearance! This location is near Alberto's Tire Pros. Near the intersection of Blake Rd. & Isleta Blvd. SW.


San Jose Neighborhood and South Valley (East of River)

Delta Power Co. LLC, 725 Electric Ave. SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness'). Mike watches a gas cap rendezvous in the darkness.

A "Breaking Bad" location! Mexican Meth Lab (Season 4, episode 10, 'Salud'). The old building has since been removed and replaced by this empty lot next to the electrical equipment.


Five J's Auto Parts, 5404 Broadway Blvd SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel').


Amusing Muscle Man poses at the lobby door of Five J's.











The Veterinarian is at Rio Bravo Veterinary Hospital, 240 Rio Bravo Blvd. SE (Season 1, episode 6, 'Five-O'). Protection rackets and rabies shots. Also (Season 1, episode 8, 'Rico') and (Season 2, episode 3, 'Amarillo'). Amusing lobby scene (Season 3, episode 5, 'Chicanery').

The Veterinarians and staff here were so welcoming and helpful!


Glass Block Windows in the lobby at Rio Bravo Veterinary Hospital.








The vet was Rio Bravo Veterinary Hospital ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 5, 'Chicanery').


Screencap, Rio Bravo Veterinary Hospital (Season 2, episode 3, 'Amarillo').

Possible basecamp for The Veterinarian: Admiral Beverage Company, 3980 Prince St. SE.


Gus' Chicken Farm, Cal-Maine Foods, 9615 Broadway Blvd. SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'). Gus' all-important distribution center (now closed).


Gus and Hector Salamanca meet, the building just west of the intersection of William St. & Southern Ave. SE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'). Looking east. Patches of light through open doors are like representational skylights. In the scene immediately afterwards, real skylights at Coronado Center!


Vargas' Family Home, 2010 Walter St. SE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'). Nacho's dad is honest and proud.



Southeast Heights

Juan Tabo Hills Bridge, Juan Tabo Blvd. SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 8, 'Slip').


Juan Tabo Hills Bridge, Juan Tabo Blvd. SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 8, 'Slip').


Juan Tabo Hills Bridge, Juan Tabo Blvd. SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 8, 'Slip').


Allen's Automotive, 12115 Central Ave. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 8, 'Slip').


El Griego Guiñador, Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé, 6500 Zuni Road SE (Season 2, episode 6, 'Bali Ha'i'; episode 7, 'Inflatable'; episode 8, 'Fifi'; episode 9, 'Nailed'; Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito'). Stunning mural of Paquimé, largest ruin at Casas Grandes, Chihuahua.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Paletería Michoacana de Paquimé.


Koenig's Metalmorphosis, 6505 Zuni Rd. SE (Season 2, episode 7, 'Inflatable'; episode 8, 'Fifi'; episode 9, 'Nailed'; Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito'). Mike observes El Griego Guiñador.

I'm very pleased "Better Call Saul" is using Koenig's Metal Yard, across from El Griego Guiñador. It's the most-interesting looking metal yard in all of Albuquerque.

Bingo Pavilion, Ballut Abyad Shrine, 6600 Zuni Rd. SE ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'). Jimmy manipulates the balls to alter the game, in order to manipulate Irene in the lobby.

First shown in Season 1 of "Better Call Saul" (Season 1, episode 7, 'Bingo'). Need a will? Call McGill! Later, Jimmy melts down (Season 1, episode 10, 'Marco'). Seen in the background (Season 2, episode 2, 'Cobbler').

Potentate Tom LaGuardia kindly showed me around the facility.


The ballroom.


The ballroom.



Near "Q" Studios

Mexican Road Junction, Ira Sprecker Road & Los Picaros Rd. SE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 3, 'Sunk Costs'). Vast amount of site preparation & digital reworking of the images!


Santa Rosa Insurance Group, Aperture Center, UNM's Mesa del Sol facility, University Blvd. & Stryker Rd. SE. ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Jimmy sabotages Chuck.

The Aperture Center was designed by famous NM architect, Antoine Predock. In 1979, I took a beginning modern dance class at UNM from his lovely wife, Jennifer Predock-Linnell. She is still active today.


The Aperture Center returns ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'). Mike waits for Lydia in the Madrigal Lobby here.

















Oil Patch ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall').

Site of corral in BrBa's 'Full Measure' (34.970349°, -106.622158°) Good use of CGI!

Here are two photo assemblages made by Superfan Adam Ramirez of the corral and vicinity:







Kim's auto accident on the curve on Bobby Foster Road ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'; episode 10, 'Lantern').

Near the camera view of the Elm Tree from Breaking Bad's episode 'Bit By a Dead Bee.' A tight cluster of filming locations there.

( 34.989141°, -106.645636°)


A bland-looking photo of the spot from December 28, 2011.



"Q" Studios

Chuck's House Interior,Studio (Season 1, episode 1, 'Uno'). ID'ed as "Q" Studios in a Facebook post.


I-25 Corridor, North

Springer Industrial Center, 1415 Broadway Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Albuquerque Parks Department.


Springer Industrial Center, 1415 Broadway Blvd. NE ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Albuquerque Parks Department.


Springer Industrial Center, 1415 Broadway Blvd. NE. Are the warehouse scenes here ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand')? Albuquerque Parks Department ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses')





Gus's Laundry ("Lavanderia Brillante": exterior disguise of the Superlab), Delta Uniform and Linen, 1613 Candelaria Rd. NE. The site is located across from the Ambassador Inn (with a "Signs" sign nearby).

Reappears! ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand').



North Valley

Stacy's self-help group, Grace United Methodist Church, 420 San Lorenzo Ave. NW ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 6, 'Off Brand'; "Better Call Saul"). Interesting window.

("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses') Making a sidewalk.


Gabaldon Run Access, Gabaldon Pl. NW, Paseo del Bosque bike trail, I-40 and the Rio Grande, east side of river ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Jimmy's community service.


Gabaldon Run Access, Gabaldon Pl. NW, Paseo del Bosque bike trail, I-40 and the Rio Grande, east side of river ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Jimmy's community service.


Gabaldon Run Access, Gabaldon Pl. NW, Paseo del Bosque bike trail, I-40 and the Rio Grande, east side of river ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses'). Jimmy's community service.


Leo's Bar, 1119 Candelaria Rd. NW.



Northwest Albuquerque

The Cinnabon at Cottonwood Shopping Center ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel').


Mike pursues his gas cap on a rainy night.

1.) Going up the hill into Rio Rancho (35.213959°, -106.662802°).
2.) Coming down the hill from Rio Rancho (essentially the same place as going uphill).
3.) Empty parking lots, near Intel in Rio Rancho: (35.221531°, -106.661532°)
4.) On the curve on Coors Bypass NW, across from Cottonwood Mall (35.194995°, -106.657669°)
5.) 55 mph. Tennyson & Paseo del Norte Blvd. NE.
6.) Overpass (15 ft. 0 in.). Tennyson & Paseo del Norte Blvd. NE.
7.) Rail yards.
8.) Where Coors Blvd. NW crosses Calabacillas Arroyo.


Rio Rancho

Mike pursues his gas cap on a rainy night.

3.) Empty parking lots, near Intel in Rio Rancho: (35.221531°, -106.661532°)


Corrales

(no new locations offered with this update)


West Mesa (except Pajarito Mesa)

Kim and Jimmy's new office, (formerly DiNicola Insurance Agency, now Realty One), 6311 Montaño Rd. NW. Mirror-imaged building with a copper ceiling ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel').


North Valley Fit, R. R. Ortiz Agency, 6312 Montaño Rd NW # D ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 3, 'Sunk Costs'). Convenient place for Kim to shower.


Mike flees down desert road, West of Double Eagle Airport (35.131313°, -106.871107°). Beautiful helicopter shot, and beautiful Mesa Prieta in distance ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel').

Mike stops to examine car, West of Double Eagle Airport (35.133206°, -106.869943°). No sign of radio transmitter ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel').


Junction of Shooting Range Access Rd. and Atrisco Vista Blvd. NW.

Remote paved road, Shooting Range Access Rd., about (35.125115°, -106.824840°). Mike hunts for his gas cap, and meets Gus ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 2, 'Witness', and episode 3, 'Sunk Costs').


Kim's fateful drive, Coors Blvd. NW ("Better Call Saul," Season 3, episode 9, 'Fall'). Kim starts her drive southbound on Coors Blvd. NW, just south of I-40. She continues her drive southbound on Coors Blvd. NW, just north of I-40. Then, whoa, she's on Bobby Foster Rd. SE.



Sandia And Manzano Mountains

Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, 12165 NM Highway 14, Cedar Crest, NM, 87008 ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 8, 'Slip').


Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, Cedar Crest, NM.


Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, Cedar Crest, NM.


Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, Cedar Crest, NM.


Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, Cedar Crest, NM.


Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, Cedar Crest, NM.


Triangle Grocery and Meat Market, Cedar Crest, NM.


Refrigerators, neon, and clerestory windows at the Triangle Market in Cedar Crest. Photo by Ron Leonard.


Beautiful windows at the Triangle Market in Cedar Crest. Photo by Ron Leonard.


Mural at the Triangle Market in Cedar Crest. Photo by Ron Leonard.



To'hajiilee

(no new locations offered in this update)


Zia Pueblo, San Ysidro, and Cabezon

"Don't" ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 1, 'Mabel'). Mike parks near (35.506735°, -106.815202°)


Santa Ana Pueblo & Algodones

Power Plant, Public Service Co. of NM, 1500 Pan American Central Highway, Algodones, NM 87001 ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 7, 'Expenses').






Bernalillo and Placitas


Hacienda de Placitas ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito').


The swimming pool at La Hacienda de Placitas ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito').


The swimming pool at La Hacienda de Placitas ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito').


The swimming pool at La Hacienda de Placitas ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito').


The juniper/piñon studded hillside behind La Hacienda de Placitas ("Better Call Saul", Season 3, episode 4, 'Sabrosito').



Santa Fe & Lamy

(no new locations offered with this update)


Near Los Lunas and Belen

(no new locations offered with this update)


More Distant Locations

(no new locations offered with this update)


----------------------------------

"The Man With Icy Eyes"

Here is an unusual piece of Italian film noir, "The Man With Icy Eyes," filmed in Albuquerque in 1971, and starring Victor Buono and the beautiful Barbara Bouchet. The film shows many BrBa and BCS filming sites back in the days when neon signs still dominated Central Ave. For example, at the start of the film, the first victim dies at the house directly behind Jesse's (and briefly seen in BrBa). The framed shooter flees in a panic, and tries to run behind Chuck's House. Then there is the Courthouse too.

It's amusing how the needs of Hollywood don't change. They all look for a settled, wealthy, professional or upper-class neighborhood. In Albuquerque, that means they gravitate to the same suite of 20 or 30 homes, decade in and decade out.

I'm amused by the Italian-accented Spanish accents. I was intrigued when a witness suddenly gets a stroke and sits mute in a wheelchair (1:03:30). I wonder if this film influenced the development of Hector Salamanca's character?

There are many personal touchstones: sitting in a sidewalk cafe on a frigid day (a stone's throw from where my mom started working in 1972), a glimpse of Lerners Shops (where I worked in 1974), and a wrestling poster featuring my childhood idol, Ricky Romero. Plus, the bad guys share my name.

The offices of a long-defunct newspaper, the Albuquerque News, were used for the Albuquerque Sentinel. When I was in high school, the father of a friend was a reporter there. We sometimes got advance info about the movements of politicians from him. No one seems to remember that newspaper anymore, even though it wasn't that long ago. Google was useless. The building is now gone. I had to query a website of Albuquerque antiquarians ("Albuquerque Memories") to find even one soul who remembered where that place formerly was.



17 comments:

  1. I've seen them filming at the Twisters restaurant that was used for Los Pollos Hermanos in Breaking Bad.

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  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  3. Thanks for all your hard work on your pages.
    Happy to see this info on BrBa and BCS.

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  4. Anonymous4:48 AM

    Don't think that's the correct location for the Gus meetup on Season 3 episode 3. If you go to the shooting range access road on google maps street view, there is no view of the South Sandia Peak which is clearly visible in the scene. I've been attempting to figure out this location and haven't found it yet.

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    1. The Google Earth (perhaps the same as the Google Streetmap) image isn't very good. The sun's glare prevents the Sandias from being seen. The Sandias should be clearly visible, though.

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  5. Thank you for your hard work on the BB/BCS sites. I've done 3 tours in the last year while passing through ABQ on my way to visit family in Texas. I have a hobby of visiting & photographing filming locations (I live in SoCal and I worked in broadcasting for 30+ years). Thanks to your website, I was able to compile a list of some 200+ possible places to visit each time I go back that way. To date, I've been to 125 sites, including 3 visits to Tohajiillee. In October 2016, I stopped at 2 sites where filming was taking place - Mike's house (got a nice shot of Mike's car parked in front) and The Isleta Blvd Twisters, where I was turned away because the crew was tearing down. They gave me two $2 off coupons. Thanks again! - Stan Hollon

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    Replies
    1. Many thanks, Stan. Pleased to make your acquaintance! Isn't BrBa/BCS awesome? And I'm glad you got so close to the fire, so to speak, on your visits. May you have more episodes of such luck!

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  6. Thanks for all of your hard work. When Mike was on the chase of the gascap, where are those arched tunnels? Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. That would be where Tennyson crosses under Paseo del Norte, just west of Tramway Blvd. I was surprised - I didn't even know this crossing was there.

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    2. Thank you! I went on Google to find that exact location but did not see much. LOL. Thank you. You do a tremendous job and I thank you. Roni

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  7. Satellite Dishes/Comm Tower near Pennsylvania/Menaul is the Comcast Albuquerque headend.

    One of the opening show title clips in season 3 showing a vehicle driving along a street with the license plate LWYRUP is indian school eastbound between Juan Tabo and chelwood park with the car coming to a stop at Chelwood Park.

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  8. A friend's family lives about a block away from the Comcast antennas.

    :-)

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  9. I plan to visit some of these sites as I am Albuquerque next Wednesday, June 14. I wonder if any shooting is going on? You have done a great job here.

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    Replies
    1. No shooting for BCS (maybe other shows, though). Everyone remains on pins and needles, worrying that AMC might not renew for Season 4.

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  10. Anonymous7:04 AM

    I hope they will renew. Halt and Catch Fire had terrible ratings but they continued with 2 seasons because they believe in the show and it had a loyal but small following. BB has been very good for AMC so fingers crossed they will continue for us die hard fans. We need our Jimmy and Mike!!!! I wish they had 12 or 13 epsisoded per season though. And now we wait with bated breath, fingers crossed. Come on AMC! Roni

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous7:23 AM

      Episodes, not episisoded. Too early, not enough coffee. lol.

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