Vince Gilligan has decided to break his silence over why he ended “Breaking Bad” after only five seasons. Even though the series was drawing solid ratings and lead character Walter White reached epic pop culture anti-hero status, the show — and White — saw the end come at the fifth season. Why would Gilligan and AMC agree to end the show when the series could have easily lasted another three years or so? Essentially, Gilligan felt dragging the series out long after it should have ended would lead to nothing more than poorly-received seasons. Gilligan explained he saw audiences depart “The X-Files” when the series became stale. Working on “The X-Files” wasn’t exactly enjoyable when the program’s popular peaked and dived.
AMC’s “The Walking Dead” seems to be suffering from the effects of both audience and creative burnout. The past two seasons received poor reviews and ratings continue to drop. The program draws enough of an audience to continue for the foreseeable future, but the entertainment level and critical acclaim aren’t there anymore. Gilligan didn’t want to see this happen to “Breaking Bad.”
Ending “Breaking Bad” at five seasons allowed the series to leave a positive impression in people’s minds. Marketing and financial benefits derived from doing so. Future special edition DVD and Blu-ray releases celebrating the series via the inclusion of special features sell better when fans maintain positive impressions. Even though “Breaking Bad” is over, the money generated from the series may continue to roll in.
Of course, the world of “Breaking Bad” does continue in the spin-off prequel “Better Call Saul.” After three seasons, “Better Call Saul” doesn’t even remotely seem as to be reaching a dramatic or narrative peak. Many “Breaking Bad” characters made their return in the prequel. Will we see Walter White at some point?