Better Call Saul: What Is Wrong With Chuck?

Chuck McGill in Better Call Saul, shown wearing foil at his desk.
Credit: Sony Pictures Television

The much anticipated sixth and final season of Better Call Saul will arrive on Monday 18th April. Various delays – due primarily to Covid-19 and Bob Odenkirk’s on-set collapse – meant an extended two year wait for this last outing. But we’re sure it’ll be worth it. Over its five season run, Better Call Saul has received consistent critical acclaim. Many now consider it superior to its predecessor series Breaking Bad. And it certainly stands on its own two feet as a fantastic television show. With the recent news of Walt (Bryan Cranston) and Jesse’s (Aaron Paul) return in the final season of BCS, some viewers may be watching the show for the first time. Of course, if you’re starting from the very beginning there will be a lot to catch up on. And you might be wondering what the deal is between Jimmy and his older brother Chuck. Chuck suffers from an unusual illness, and relies on Jimmy to look after him. So, what is wrong with Chuck in Better Call Saul?

What is wrong with Chuck in Better Call Saul?

Charles “Chuck” McGill (Michael McKean) is the older brother of Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk). Jimmy later becomes known as Saul Goodman. Chuck and Jimmy’s relationship is complex and forms the basis of the series’ early narrative. Jimmy is hoping to follow in Chuck’s footsteps as a successful lawyer, and initially believes that Chuck supports him in this ambition. When the series begins, Jimmy is caring for Chuck. Chuck has taken an extended period of absence from his law firm HHM (Hamlin, Hamlin & McGill) due to a peculiar medical condition. He suffers from severe physical reactions in the presence of electricity and electrical devices, going as far as to wear tin foil and cover his home in it. But what exactly is Chuck’s strange medical affliction?

Jimmy McGill in Better Call Saul. Jimmy cares for his brother Chuck.
Jimmy McGill, Chuck’s younger brother.

This is what’s wrong with Chuck in Better Call Saul. Chuck McGill supposedly suffers from electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS). EHS sufferers claim to be sensitive to electromagnetic fields, which explains Chuck’s adverse reaction in the presence of electronics. However, it is not considered to be a legitimate medical condition and has no scientific basis. Chuck’s experience living with the condition is explored during the show’s first three seasons.

The true nature of Chuck’s condition is initially unclear. As the series progresses, the condition takes a significant toll on Chuck and severely impacts his life and relationship with Jimmy.

Are you excited for the final season of Better Call Saul? Let us know in the comment section below and don’t forget to check out our other Film & TV articles…


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