Breaking Bad 

Why Breaking Bad Never Showed Christmas

The events of Breaking Bad took place over the course of multiple years, but the AMC series never featured any kind of holidays, including Christmas.

The events of Breaking Bad took place over the course of multiple years, but the AMC series never featured any kind of holidays, including Christmas. Vince Gilligan’s neo-western crime drama debuted in January 2008, lasting five seasons before coming to an end in September 2013. While the acclaimed series never aired around the holiday seasons in November and December, it certainly isn’t uncommon for TV dramas to get in on the Christmas spirit. The plot, however, may have convinced Gilligan to bypass the superfluous celebrations.

Despite airing over five years, Breaking Bad spanned a total of two years. The pilot episode was set in mid to late September when high school teacher Walter White (Bryan Cranston) learned about his grim cancer diagnosis. By the end of the debut season, it was late October, and Walt was committed to building his meth distribution with partner Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul). As Walt and Jesse grew their drug empire over the next few seasons, the legend of Heisenberg expanded. Though the duo was extremely profitable, their well-beings were always in danger, as was their true identities.

Seeing as the events of Breaking Bad took place over two full years, the show had the opportunity to feature holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and even New Year’s. Instead, Gilligan elected to avoid any type of seasonal celebrations. This may have been a curious choice in the eyes of viewers, considering the show had a habit of regularly bringing the White family together for events such as baby showers and picnics. Aside from brief mentions of holidays like Christmas, including a picture of Walt in a Santa suit, Albuquerque, New Mexico was never shown spreading holiday cheer. Whether or not the timing seemed right, it was most likely a calculated decision based on the darkened plot.

Walt’s Birthday Was The Only Time Marker In Breaking Bad


When Breaking Bad began, it was Walt’s 50th birthday, and interestingly enough, the series came to an end when he turned 52. Walt’s birthday served as the only legitimate time markers on the AMC series. By avoiding cheery holidays or annual celebratory events, time seemed to pass slower. Without those types of themed episodes, Gilligan made sure that viewers were totally engrossed in Heisenberg’s arc without cliché distractions.

It was also possible that Breaking Bad chose not to feature holidays like Christmas since it would have derailed the show’s pacing. Building up to certain events in the series was made possible by Gilligan’s expertise in laying the foundation when it came to continuity. Without the time of year serving as a key aspect in the series, some holidays would have seemed to pop out of nowhere. That said, some Breaking Bad fans would have enjoyed seeing Walt and his family attempt to have a normal Christmas while the patriarch was secretly doubling as a drug lord. Any kind of Walter White Christmas special will still have to be left up to viewers’ imaginations.

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