"Better Call Saul" (10 p.m., Sunday, AMC, TV-14) returns for a fifth season. According to the producers, the difficulty assembling cast members, busy with many other projects, was the reason for the long delay between the end of season four in 2018 and this premiere. In that interim, "Saul" cast member Robert Forster died. He's seen in a clip in tonight's episode, which is dedicated to his memory.
This is hardly the first time a long-standing series lost a familiar face. Best known for playing Moe Green in "The Godfather," actor Alex Rocco portrayed Matt LeBlanc's outrageous father in the Showtime series "Episodes." When he died between that show's fourth and fifth seasons, his loss was written into the comedy.
"Episodes," which ran between 2011 and 2017, can be streamed in its entirety on Netflix. The first four seasons of "Better Call Saul" can be streamed there as well.
With five seasons, "Saul" has run as long as "Breaking Bad," the series that introduced Bob Odenkirk's character. Both series have earned consistently high praise and a devoted audience following, despite the fact they have followed characters who are both seriously sketchy and decidedly minor. Not to spoil things, but in tonight's episode, Saul decides to attract new clients by soliciting the menagerie of petty felons who had been buying his "burner" phones.
Among the chief joys of watching "Bad" and "Saul" has been the cinematography. Frequently set in unglamourous suburbs, strip malls, office parks and warehouses, most scenes are audaciously framed and shot, often from odd camera angles. The jarring visuals reminded this viewer of both challenging cinema and the narrative freedom of cartoons. Saul often appears shot from the inside of a fast food delivery bag or from the point of view of a microwave oven, something I'd first seen (or noticed) on "The Simpsons."
-- Scheduled on "60 Minutes" (7 p.m., CBS): the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH-17; profiles of Sen. Bernie Sanders and jazz musician Matthew Whitaker.
-- Ryan Seacrest hosts "American Idol" (8 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).
-- Breaking plaid on "Outlander" (8 p.m., Starz, TV-MA).
-- Elizabeth seeks writing inspiration as "When Calls the Heart" (8 p.m., Hallmark, TV-G) enters its seventh season.
-- Zoey can't reveal how she knows why the boss seems so miserable on "Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
-- The gang has to get out of a jam once again on "The Walking Dead" (9 p.m., AMC, TV-MA).
-- A cave harbors something horrible "The Outsider" (9 p.m., HBO, TV-MA).
-- Saul cuts a deal on "Homeland" (9 p.m., Showtime, TV-MA).
-- An unwelcome blast from the past on "Good Girls" (10 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
-- Lucy goes missing on "The Rookie" (10 p.m., ABC, TV-14).
-- "Unsung" (10 p.m., TV One, TV-14) profiles Dru Hill.
"America's Got Talent" (7 p.m., NBC, r, TV-PG) ... A gesture seems too self-referential on "God Friended Me" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG) ... A cryptocurrency craze on "The Simpsons" (8 p.m., Fox, TV-PG) ... A new villain emerges on "Batwoman" (8 p.m., CW, TV-14) ... Shunned by friends on "Duncanville" (8:30 p.m., Fox, TV-14).
Anna returns with a warning on "NCIS: Los Angeles" (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14) ... A search for mythical monsters on "Bob's Burgers" (9 p.m., Fox, TV-14) ... Mischievous Mxyzptlk (Thomas Lennon) returns on "Supergirl" (9 p.m., CW, TV-PG) ... Lois grounds Peter on "Family Guy" (9:30 p.m., Fox, TV-14) ... A killer has an ambitious itinerary on "NCIS: New Orleans" (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14).