I’ve been looking forward to this day for months, if not years. What’s so special about this day? Well, it’s the day after the Breaking Bad finale aired, aka the Day that We Can Begin Shutting the Fuck Up about Breaking Bad. Oh, I’m sure that the next week or two will be full of breathless dialogues about whatever wacky misadventures Walter White got up to in his final hour, but this, baby, is the beginning of the end.
As someone who has spent a quarter century peddling quality television, it’s perhaps ironic that I not only have never watched a single episode of Breaking Bad–anointed by all as the Bestest Show Ever–but that I refuse to do so, not even for the purposes of dumping on it.
Because I do not want to spend a single minute with a narrative that in any way glorifies, justifies or another other kind of -fies a murderous meth cooker. I don’t care if he’s the villain of the piece, he’s still the central figure. He’s the one who knocks, whatever the fuck that means.
It’s not that I mind watching bad people being bad. A good villain can be fascinating and even fun. And the heavens know that I have seen more than my share of vampires and Sith Lords. The difference is that vampires and Sith Lords, besides not being real, don’t sicken me the way that meth dealers do.
I was originally going to post some before-and-after meth photos here to help illustrate the point, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it. Those images disturb me in a way that a thousand fictional monsters never could, and I don’t want them on my blog.
Instead, I will post a photo of one of the adorable, ironic plush dolls sold by Mezco Toys. It’s part of an array of Breaking Bad merchandise large enough to fill a blood-spattered RV. (Use the coupon code “breakingbadfinale” for 10% off your purchase from the official online store!)
There are lots of ways to hurt people, but the ones that horrify me the most are those that linger, that turn real people into shambling wrecks for the rest of their shortened, miserable lives. All for the sake of cheap thrills and a few bucks.
Meanwhile, miles and miles away, some rich and handsome people turn off the Klieg lights, send away the craft services van, and go home to admire their golden statues.
So, goodbye, Breaking Bad. It’s been great not knowing you.