Though one is a crime drama and the other is an NBC sitcom, there are actually a lot of similarities between Breaking Bad and The Office. Both feature characters doing something they don’t want to do for their own reasons — one is selling meth and the other is selling paper. Not only that, but both shows have colorful and unusual characters… and most of them are criminals.
A Dunder Mifflin CEO could run a meth empire and the most senior employee is probably already a drug lord. Characters of The Office are almost better suited to the Breaking Bad universe than they are to their own show. It’s easy to imagine than Michael yelling, “Better Call Scott!” in a goofy TV commercial.
Mike Ehrmentraut – Stanley Hudson
It doesn’t immediately seem like Stanley is the perfect character to play Mike. There are many times when fans have been Stanley at work, as the salesman punches in at 9 am and clocks out at 5 pm on the dot, whereas the hitman has such a strong work ethic.
However, just like Mike, the only reason Stanley is putting himself through the miserable routine of selling paper is to provide for his family. And when he’s at work, he doesn’t tolerate any messing around from the other colleagues, just like how Mike will shut down Jesse, Walt, and Saul whenever they’re acting out of order. Stanley is also fairly quiet, but when he does speak, he doesn’t mince his words.
Marie Schrader – Angela Martin
Just like Marie, Angela is a worrier, whether it’s about her cats or being with Dwight. If Angela’s other half was going through the rigmarole of working for the DEA, dealing with the cartel, and tracking down druglords day after day, she would worry just like Marie.
Marie acts strong-minded and as if nothing can get to her, but there are times when she has clearly let her guard down. And with Marie having a bizarre obsession with the color purple, Angela has a fair few purple cardigans herself. Above all else, the two are total type-As, and Angela’s love of leading the Party Planning Committee is the perfect example of why she works as Marie.
Gus Fring – Robert California
Nobody could play drug lord Gustavo Fring better than the self-proclaimed lizard king. Robert California was the best CEO, and that’s partly because he ran a tight ship by using fear tactics. California wasn’t too far away from slitting a more-than-adequate employee’s throat simply to prove his power, just like Fring did in “Boxcutter.” It’d be great to see that scene remade with California in the role.
Ultimately, the Office character is calculated, chooses his words carefully, and hunts for characters’ weaknesses to manipulate them. That makes him the perfect candidate to play Fring. It’s also easy to imagine Gustavo making random lists of Walt, Jesse, Mike, and others in his spare time the same way California does.
Gale Boetticher – Andy Bernard
In the first few seasons, Andy had anger issues and was prone to bouts of rage every now and then, which couldn’t be more opposite to Gale. However, after going through anger management, Andy became a much softer character, being almost scared to challenge others, but his people-pleasing attitude still remained.
It’s hard to believe that Gale was ever involved in a multi-million dollar crystal meth operation, as he was so afraid of confrontation. And just like Andy, Gale would do anything to make Fring and Walt happy, though that may have been out of fear. It’s easy to see Andy blindly following Walt’s orders just so the meth scientist will like him.
Lydia Rodarte-Quayle – Jan Levinson
Lydia is a smart businesswoman, but she’s also very blunt, and because of that she is hated by most of the people she works with, even when she makes the right decisions. However, she also went on a downward spiral towards her final moments, making erratic decisions and terrible mistakes that could have been easily avoided.
In that respect, her story arc has loads of parallels with Jan’s in The Office. Jan is similarly despised despite being rather smart in the first couple of seasons, but she went off the rails, coincidentally, when she started dating Michael. Of all the character replacements, Jan replacing Lydia would be almost as if nothing has changed.
Saul Goodman – Michael Scott
Saul Goodman might be a capable lawyer, but from time to time, he makes things about himself. There are more examples of this in the spin-off Better Call Saul, but there have been many times in Breaking Bad when Saul craves the spotlight, as seen with his over-the-top commercials and billboards.
That’s extremely familiar of Michael, and just like Saul, one of Michael’s best traits is that he’s a glass-half-full kind of guy. But more than anything, Saul is a completely made-up character of Jimmy McGill’s, and nobody loves made-up characters more than Michael Scott. In fact, if Michael was to invent a lawyer character, the result would probably be a lot like Saul Goodman.
Hank Schrader – Dwight Schrute
Dwight can often be a hypocrite; he has so much respect for the law, but at the same time, commits many crimes himself. However, Dwight is ultimately a law-abiding citizen, and he takes much pride in laying down the law.
The character is so dedicated to uncovering mysteries, whether it’s following the red wire to the top of a telephone pole or interrogating staff over who smoked a joint. Dwight will stop at nothing to find out the truth, just as Hank is so dedicated to his job in the DEA. And given that Angela would play Marie, there’d be so much more at stake with Dwight in the role of Hank.
Skyler White – Pam Beesly
Neither Skyler nor Pam are the most entertaining characters of their respective shows, and few fans would call them their favorite, but they’re two of the most important roles. They both get a bad rep amongst fans for being “party poopers” and respectively keeping Walt and Jim from doing what they want to do, but they are actually the most sensible characters and only have the best intentions.
Pam could play Skyler because they both share that same concerning attitude and look. But above anything else, there’s no other character in The Office who could be described as sensible.
Jesse Pinkman – Ryan Howard
Though it was originally Jesse’s choice to get into the meth slinging business, it ended up being a life choice from which he couldn’t escape, no matter how much he tried. The same could be said for Ryan’s relationship with Dunder Mifflin.
Every time he left, Ryan was pulled back again even though he was just a temp to begin with. And out of all of the characters, Ryan is not only the youngest, but he’s also the most naive despite showing a lot of potential. It’s easy to see Ryan going down the same path as Jesse if he was put in that particular situation.
Walter White – Creed Bratton
Creed already has a connection to the Breaking Bad world, as Jesse enters the Scranton branch to sell crystal meth to the most senior Dunder Mifflin employee in an Emmy awards sketch. However, in reality, he wouldn’t be so much of a drug user but rather a drug lord.
Creed might make a great roommate because of the stories he can tell, but he’s also a very dangerous man and someone whom most people should stay clear of. Given how Creed has such a sordid history, as he was a cult leader, had multiple identities, and even murdered someone, becoming a crystal meth cook is the logical next step.