Life After Breaking Bad (and what to do now?)

“I can drink away all of my problems… except for my drinking problem…”

…so let’s start with Breaking Bad.

It’s over.

Finished. Done. Finito. There are never going to be any new episodes. Ever again.

Let that sink in, while we give a moment of silence.

SAD SAUL

All right.

So… what now?

The greatest show of all time has now finally been laid to rest and we’re all just sitting here wondering… what the hell are we supposed to do now? (For you impatient fucks, scroll down a bit and skip all my wallowing to get the answers. Everyone else, keep on keepin’ on). Might as well just get it over with and off ourselves. I mean, even Aaron Paul (Jesse Pinkman) says his career is over after the series ends. That’s enough for us to end it all, right?.. Right?

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Okay, maybe not. You’re right. It’s probably not all that bleak, but I mean, come on! This is depressing as hell.

Without Breaking Bad, what… what is life? What exactly are we supposed to do with our Sunday nights?… and our Mondays at the water cooler?.. and our Tuesdays listening to recap podcasts with potential spoilers?.. and our Wednesdays… and our Thursdays, and our Fridays, and our Saturdays… waiting… until that menacingly distinct music emanates from the TV, just after an equally masterful cold open puts us on the edge of our seats?

Okay, after listening to that, it just hit me.

It’s. All. Over. Now.

But frankly, it had to end. All bad things must come to an end. It was a vicious cycle. Like any other unhealthy habit or repressing addiction; only worse. Much worse. Because whether you realized it yet or not, this was seriously the hands-down, greatest piece of entertainment that has ever graced our televisions. And we were strung out on it, trying to get as much of it as we could; always looking for the next fix.

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Yeah, yeah, yeah, sorry Wire and Sopranos fans, your shows were good, but this was on a level of its own. I don’t want to get into a debate, because I’ve had a bit to drink already, and when that happens, my words have been known to pierce through like daggers, so let’s just take it as fact and move on.

You know that saying they tell you after you’ve gone through a breakup or lost someone you truly cared about? The whole “It’s better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all” bullshit? Well, while I’m not the first person to buy into that crap (and it’s not really my place to say), I still can’t help but agree in this situation. I loved that damn show. With all my heart. We all did. And while I’m having extreme feelings of dejection since my precious show has been taken from me, I’m glad I was able to have experience that feeling of love for it. I’m glad it existed.

I’m glad I got to fall in love with someone who was once but an innocent high school chemistry teacher, selfless at first, and concerned with the well-being of his family, who turned into one of the most ruthless monsters of all time.

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I’m glad I got to witness his rise and fall before my eyes. Even after the most gruesome of circumstances, Vince Gilligan was still able to craft it so I still like him and rooted for him. Or maybe, I’m just a psychopath that wanted him to win. There’s always that too.

I’m glad I got to fall in love with a slimy, sketchy, and selfish, poor-excuse-for-an-attorney played by the wonderful Bob Odenkirk.

I’m glad I got to fall in love with ASAC Hank Schrader and despite hating him for going after Walt, I got to see how he added another element to the story, by teaching us that writers such as Vince and his guys are simply incredible for having a good-guy character that so many people can hate even though he’s actually doing something good for society.

I’m glad I got to fall in love with – and this is where I’m sure I’ll alienate a few of you out there – Skyler. Despite her extreme bitchiness at the beginning of the series and full-circle abandonment of Walt by the end, she was still as much a part of the characters I loved as any of the others. She may have had her drawbacks, crazy antics, fits and tantrums, but she was still a pivotal person in it all. Who could blame her? She was married to transformed Scarface. She also had the responsibility of having to not only look out for number one, but Walt Jr. and Baby Holly.

I fell in love with practically every other character too. I did not, however, like Marie. Let’s be real. No one did. But that’s why this show was so amazing. Week in and week out, we could watch such a dynamic group of characters that all fit their puzzle piece into the entire mess.

Holy shit.

Looking back, we’ve invested so much time and energy into observing, dissecting, enjoying, and unearthing all that took place in that short time spent mostly inside ABQ. How could you not feel some sort of remorse for the fact that we will never see (most) of these characters ever again living life in the craziest way possible. There’s a giant soft spot in our hearts for all these characters in the show. After all, they endured a lot. And because of that, I can sincerely deem them my family. A pretty fucked up family at that, but a family. And one I’m going to miss for eons to come.

All right, enough reminiscing. I better get to what I’ve really been meaning to say. And that is, yeah, it’s a shame Breaking Bad is over, but have no fear, I’ve got a few ideas up my sleeve to help you cope with you inevitable withdrawals. Check out the list below.

But before I get to that, hang on just a sec, I need to fill another glass before I get into this. It’s going to be emotional for me as I’m sure it was for you. Two cubes. Two finger pour… er, better make that a three finger pour of Pappy. Yeah, it that kind of a situation. Definitely worth the good stuff.

All right. Deep breath. Sip. Exhale.

Ahh… now, I’m ready.

The following are the top things to do to cope with life after Breaking Bad.

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1.) Cry

There’s only one thing that’s on your mind in the eve of having just watched the finale and that’s utter and sheer sadness. So why not, try to cope by having a good cry. After all, it’s natural to show emotion through shedding tears. At least that’s what my shrink tells me..

Seriously, just cry. And cry like you’ve never cried before. Cry yourself to sleep at night and wake up crying in the morning. Wail until you can wail no more. Cry until you’ve shrieked for so long, you need a lifeboat to get around your apartment.

And finally, bawl your eyes out until you either drown in your tears or die of dehydration, whichever comes first.

Okay, sorry, too bleak again.

But for real, it’s okay to shed a few tears. Tears of sadness that it’s over; tears of joy that you got to witness such an amazing story told by amazing writers, actors, set dressers, cinematographers, editors, and more; and also tears of existential confusion. What is the meaning of life if all bad (read: good) things must come to an end? [See my post in the coming weeks that tackles part of this subject]

After you’ve had a good cry and let out all those tears, then sit up straight, stand right up, and get your shit together.

Because although this ain’t just some spilled milk we are talking about, we still need to start putting one foot forward after the other and take steps to get on with our life. I’m not saying this will be easy, but it’s necessary. Go out and do something fun. Just like with a traditional breakup, you need to take your mind off of what’s causing you pain. You need a rebound girl show.

Scratch that. No show will make you feel the same way, take the same special place in your heart, or give you road dome at three in the morning on your way home.

So, yeah… just go back to crying and throw on some sad, break-up music that totally speaks to you. This ought to do the trick:


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2.) Finally catch up on that other supposedly good AMC show about a bunch of angry men.

In keeping with the break-up analogy for just a bit longer, I think I can help you put yourself out there and back in the scene… of watching more shows that is. Remember, critically acclaimed AMC television shows are like girls who are like fish… the ocean’s full of them.

So why not check out what Matt Weiner and his team have had up their sleeve over at Mad Men? If anything, you’ll learn how to be a bad ass alcoholic boss who dresses better than all the GQ models in the world.

If, Mad Men‘s not quite your fancy, why don’t you try Walking Dead or Hell on Wheels. Both solid shows in their own rights and still in somewhat infancy stages and/or have limited amounts of already-aired episodes that can be easily binged with a night of Peppermint Schnapps, mint chocolate chip ice cream, and Netflix.

I guess if you are really desperate for new content, you could try AMC’s new Low Winter… 

I’m just kidding. But seriously… watch something else. It’ll make you look like a real man. Just like no woman you meet out somewhere wants to hear you wallow about your ex, no one wants to hear you dwell in your sorrows about the end of Breaking Bad. Instead, make yourself presentable and get caught up in some other relevant shows (obviously none will be as good, but still) and then you can at least put up the façade that you are still a smart, confident, and relevant man (or woman) yourself while at the water cooler. Someone who is mature enough to move on and get past old flames.

You can do it! I believe in you!

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3.) Wait around until Better Call Saul premieres (and hope it doesn’t suck)

For this one, it takes a bit of self-strength. The first step in accomplishing this is to practice patience.

Some ways to practice that behavior is to bide your time with other activities that are related, yet not completely going to cause you to relapse and run for your old needles hidden in the attic or calling your buddies who are always down to get high (Breaking Bad anology, come on).

I’ve got a few suggestions.

Bob Odenkirk wasn’t always the Saul you’d want to call. He actually has had quite an extensive professional history. Why not check out some of his old material. He’s really funny and very talented.

You can also follow all your favorite actors and writers affiliated with Breaking Bad and/or Better Call Saul. Here’s a couple starter tweets for ya:

While constantly hitting refresh and waiting for their next tweets, why not try my next suggestion…

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4.) Make Meth…

You and I both know we weren’t watching all these episodes purely for our own enjoyment.

Nah. We were studying. Studying to be the bigger and better, next Heisenberg. You’d be lying if the thought that “it might be fun” never crossed your mind.

Well, now it’s time to take the plunge. What better time than now? Use all that knowledge from the comprehensive cook montages in the show, brush up on some old high school chemistry, and say good bye to any remaining dignity, respect for the law, or chance for a long life-expectancy because, god damn it, we’re making meth!

If any of you are too lazy to check for yourself or too scared the NSA will be watching your google searches, I’ve done all the work for you. Right here is all you need to know to make a batch of that good blue stuff…  Just make sure you give me a ten percent cut for whatever you make and don’t tell anyone you know Chuck Greenman.

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5.) Do it all over again…

Netflix exists for a reason. So why not use it too its fullest. Like I’ve said a bunch of times before. This is the greatest show of all time. It’s going to be a lonnnng time before any new show comes close to even attempting to dethrone the kings. So why not, lay back and enjoy it all over again?

Bonus: Get into some sort of state of amnesia with short-term memory loss (preferably severe and permanent so you can repeat this step over and over) or take some mind-altering substance that makes you forget you ever saw this show before and thus get to witness it again with a quasi-virgin perspective.

SAD MARIE

Now, I really hope at least one of these ideas could help calm your worries about life after Breaking Bad, but in keeping with the blog’s theme, I must end by telling you there is a light at the end of the tunnel…

…and that light is in the form of liquid love. Also know as alcohol.

So, as in my life, I can solve all my problems… except for my alcohol problem. And with that… I think I’ll go drink away some of my sorrows just like Betsy Brandt aka Marie.

Until next time. Salut, bitch!

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