7.14.2010

Breaking Bad Spin-offs

Ever since its premiere 2 years ago, I have been obsessed with Breaking Bad despite the fact I had never seen it. Based on what I had heard, it sounded right up my alley:
1. It was on AMC, the network that gave us Mad Men
2. It was about meth (awesome!)
3. It had Hal from Malcolm in the Middle (love!)
4. It tries to out-HBO HBO every episode (awesomer!)
5. It was set in New Mexico (I love the desert and Mexicans)
Anyways, due to the unfortunate circumstances surrounding my not having cable, paired with my computer being so old that I cannot download TV shows, along with a DVD rental store that doesn't enforce late-fines, I was stuck without. The closest I came to Breaking Bad was when Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul appeared on Joel McHale's The Soup. Well, thanks to a friend with several external hard drives, I have been able to watch every episode of Breaking Bad in succession, and let me tell you - it is everything I thought it would be. Every episode is amazing, the acting is terrific, the set design is gorgeous. Walt and Jesse are amazing, that goes without saying. In the pilot episode, I thought I might hate Hank, but it's exactly the opposite; Hank is completely enjoyable. I love Jesse's drug dealer friends (especially Badger) and felt sad when Combo was shot. Hell, I don't care that he essentially recycled his Mr. Show with Bob and David character back from the grave, because Bob Odenkirk's Saul Goodman is awesome. My only issue is this:

The 2nd and 3rd-tier characters are ANNOYING AT BEST.

Seriously. Every scene Skyler is in makes my stomach turn. She is THE. WORST. I remember watching the scene of her smoking while pregnant (remember how pitifully bad-ass she was trying to be?!?!?!) and that woman gives her such a disapproving look? I seriously wished that that woman was planning to leap through the window and beat her ass. And Marie - OH LORD, DON'T GET ME STARTED ON MARIE!!! My only guess as to why she is still on the show is that she is a) sleeping with every member on set and/or b) her father owns AMC. Anyways, I thought it would be fun to imagine what kind of crappy spin-offs might come from Breaking Bad:

Skyler would obviously be on some kind of stupid Lifetime shit about a single mom trying to raise both a baby and a disabled son (to which she would constantly remind everyone within ear-shot). Also, it would have a heavy Christian influence; she strikes me as that kind. Maybe it's because she's so judgmental and pious. Skyler's weekly battles would flip-flop between judging people's life choices and feeling sorry for herself, all while working in an art gallery that sells nothing but work by Thomas Kinkade. Oh, and I almost forgot - she'd sing stomach-turning renditions of Marilyn Monroe's Happy Birthday every chance she got (BARF).

I like to imagine that Marie, after being busted for shoplifting for the 40th time, would finally have what's coming to her: that's right, 10 hours community service and probation! Marie wouldn't serve any time in prison since her husband is one of the Feds, so she gets off easy. Part of her sentencing involves moving her from her cushy private doctor's office job to a (GASP) publicly-funded Hospital! Hilarity ensues in the form of Danitria, her parole officer (played by Sherri Shepherd) who's catchphrase "I ain't babysittin' no crazy white woman!" becomes a national catch-phrase. Danitria checks in ALL THE DAMN TIME (which makes no sense in real life, but plenty of sense in TV life) much to the chagrin of Head RN Chet (played with obvious desperation for acting work by Topher Grace). Also, just like in Breaking Bad, Marie wears purple all the time (what is she, a fucking Power Ranger?)

Walt Jr. is a bit of a love-hate problem for me. On the one hand, he's a great portrayal of Cerebral Palsy and a teenager. On the other, he really doesn't add anything to the show (except for that one time he bitched out Skyler for buying regular Raisin Bran instead of Raisin Bran Crunch. "It's not hard Mom, it says Crunch on the box"). But Walt Jr. isn't much more than just that character that pops into a scene to be like "Hi! Remember me? I'm one of the reasons why my parent's relationship is so strained!" Anyways, I like to imagine Walt Jr. in some kind of crappy Disney Channel/ABC Family show like Wizards of Waverly Place or iCarly or The Suite Life of Zach and Cody (I'm not proud that I was able to list that). After his parent's marriage breaks up, Walt. Jr. is sent to live with an Aunt we have never seen or heard of until now in Los Angeles. She's a teacher at an inner-city hip-hop school and she thinks Walt Jr. might do well with a change of scenery, but is scared that he might not fit in and that the other students might make fun of him. Little does she know that it's Walt Jr. who will ramp their world! See what I did there? It's called a pun. And yes, I know that we never see Walt Jr. in a wheelchair, but that's besides the point. Maybe he can be in a wheelchair in the show? Anyways, the show ends up being a heavy-handed attempt at lessons of tolerance, which fails once kids stop and think "what the fuck is a hip-hop school?"

I mentioned these spin-offs to a friend of mine, who also thought of some. Dare I say that some are better than mine (not Walt-chair Accessible, that shit is gold).

- "Marie'd Under the Law" : Marie's moved on after years of shoplifting, and has become the world's greatest thief. After moving to Washington D.C., Marie must keep her life as a super-criminal secret as she steals from those her husband has sworn to protect. [Thursday at 8pm on ABC]
- "8" : Krazy-8 is given a second chance after he repented his sins shortly before his murder by an unforgiving drug dealer. Now a ghost who can only be seen by children being pressured to try drugs, Krazy-8 is on a quest for redemption. Each child he turns away from meth and towards Jesus brings him one step closer to heaven. [Every single morning at 5:30am for the next 20 years on Christian Broadcast Network.]
- "Ted" : Leaving the rat-race behind, everyone's favorite womanizer and corporate mastermind Ted Beneke leaves New Mexico for the sunny shores of Vancouver. Are the women of Canada ready for Ted? [Ted is now played by veteran comedy actor Ted McGinley. On Global on a timeslot that will change each week until it's cancelled. Funded by the National Film Board]
- " 'Criminal' Lawyer" : After going underground in witness protection, Saul Goodman starts up a new practice in LA. Defending the worst sleaze California has to offer each week, Saul exploits the weaknesses of the American legal system to get the job done. [Sunday at 7pm on FOX. After winning numerous Emmys, will be pre-empted by football repeatedly until people forget the show ever existed.]

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

You are a comedic genius my friend.

Splanon said...

The sad thing is that some fans of the show genuinely want the Saul spin-off to happen.