What to Watch Now that Breaking Bad is Ending

What to Watch Now that Breaking Bad is Ending

By: Jen Richards

With Breaking Bad coming to a close, and Game of Thrones still months away, many of us are seeking new shows to immerse ourselves in. Even if you are not a BrBa fan, fall is a perfect time of year to check out new (or new to you) series.

I won’t argue that any of these recommendations could ever replace BrBa, and to be honest, few of them even come close to the quality of BrBa. However, if you are anything like me you have an eclectic pallet and require different sorts of shows to suit your myriad of moods, interests, and entertainment needs.  What follows is a mix of series: low and highbrow, old and new, some already highly exposed and some not so known options. Many of you will no doubt already be devoted (or decidedly not devoted) to many of these series, but hopefully you’ll gain at least one or two to check out.

If you like edge of your seat intensity then I can’t recommend Homeland highly enough. Claire Danes shines in Showtime’s nail biting, homeland security drama. Warning: extremely difficult to watch just one episode at a time, the cliffhanger endings will get you every time.

Another drama worth viewing is House of Cards, the Netflix Original series (which is actually a remake of a British series). It is heavy on the politics, with great performances from Robin Wright and Kevin Spacey.

Netflix is having a stellar year of original programming successes. Orange Is The New Black centers on an NPR listening, liberal, white girl who goes to jail for smuggling drug money once. Based on a true story, the series offers a look into women’s prison and the lives of the women’s and tribes there within.

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Meg already endorsed Hemlock Grove, another Netflix Original and I whole-heartedly second that recommendation. Weird, trashy werewolf/ vampire type shows just do something for me.

Ghost Ghirls is a fantastic web series that is rumored to be in development to become a regular series on SyFy. Get in on the fun early and check out season one on Yahoo Screen. Spoofing all manner of ghost hunter shows, Medium, X-files, etc, this series has a great balance of humor, nerdiness, and charm.

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If you dig reality television then consider Face Off. I only recently checked out SyFy’s special effects make-up contest series and am sold. The art and skill level of the contestants is astounding, a total feast for nerdy eyes!!

Face Off is now followed by Heroes of Cosplay. Having had no involvement in Cosplay I found it an interesting peek into that world. Though, I’d love to hear what people immersed in that community think of the show.

My top reality show recommendation, for several years running is Ru Paul’s Drag Race! If you have never seen this show and have any fondness for camp, drag, and spoofing of ANTM, then this could be your new favorite show. Last seasons winner is quirky, theater nerd Jinx Monsoon of Seattle!

If you are in the mood for something retro this fall and have never seen Twin Peaks, Battlestar Galactica, or The X-Files, then make haste my friends. These are three of the best series of all time, in my not-so humble opinion.

Twin Peaks was filmed in our backyard and has inspired so much in pop culture since it aired. The Twin Peaks Festival takes place annually in North Bend and is also worth a visit. It is one of the most dark, twisted, moody, NW things you will ever consume!

BSG has been viewed by most nerdy chicas I know, though occasionally we put off a show or just haven’t had it on our radar. I boarded the BSG train a couple years after it ended its run and immediately fell in love. I am confident you will too if you are at all into science fiction, space, and amazing television.

The X-Files is another masterpiece that is fun to revisit or watch for the first time. The episode inspired by Heathers remains my favorite, though there are countless episodes that are wowing.

If you want to laugh out loud then I have a couple of suggestions for you:

Community is a quirky comedy that has come close to cancellation more than once, but has been saved; largely due to its cult-ish die hard fans. I have nearly peed my pants watching this well written, smart show. The DnD episode is mandatory viewing, as is the Zombie Halloween episode scored exclusively with ABBA tracks.

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Speaking of DnD, Katie Isleton of FX’s The League recently called fantasy football DnD for jocks. It is so true. This irreverent fantasy football obsessed series is not the typical sort of thing I would watch, but I am so glad I stumbled upon it. If you or anyone you know nerds out over football or more so fantasy Leagues than give it a go. It reminds me of Best in Show and how wonderful it is when a movie or show mocks and pay tribute to something in equal measure and harmoniously.

If you like Nancy Drewing a good mystery than you should try Jane Campion’s nail biting mini series Top of the Lake. Set and filmed in New Zealand for the BBC this gripping tale will have you staying up too late to finish the seven hour long episodes.

Another phenomenal BBC production to consider is The Fall, starring Gillian Anderson (Go Scully!) and set in Belfast. I stayed up till 3am to finish the 5 episodes. The ending left me distraught, until I learned there would be a second season. BBC- I’m waiting with baited breath.

Also from across the pond and very worth watching is Sherlock. There have been two seasons thus far, both with three ninety minute installments. This is without a doubt one of the best takes on the classic story. Watch now and be caught up for season three, due sometime this fall.

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The period piece Downtown Abbey has received much press and acclaim, and for good reason. If you like soapy drama, all things posh-Brit style and historical series than by all means watch it. I cried more than once over the first few seasons, be warned- it will pull at your heartstrings.

If you watch even two or three of the shows highlighted above it will keep you busy for hours this fall. I’d love to hear what you think of any of these series. And please send me your recommendations. I can’t be up to date on all shows, though I am apparently trying to be. Next time I’ll be giving our eyes a break and exploring the exciting world of podcasts. Until then, happy watching.

 About the Author: Jen nerds out about many things, particularly: travel, pop culture, and wine. Jen grew up in Seattle in a family of all boys. Her early obsessions included The Labyrinth, The Go-go’s, NW masterpiece Twin Peaks, and all things French. In her teen years music became her primary focus- especially the Riot grrrl scene, alternative, and Brit pop. College was filled with the likes of zine writing, feminist activism, The X-files, Tori Amos, and the novels of Tom Robbins. World travel started as a hobby and evolved into a way of life after university. After more than eight years at sea working for a major cruise line, two years in the Peace Corps in Senegal, and numerous backpacking trips, Jen has travelled to all 7 continents and over 125 countries. Jen has a BS in Psychology and a BA in Women’s Studies from the University of Utah.
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