Breaking Bad Anti-Hero Walter White Named Time’s Most Influential Fictional Character of 2013

Breaking Bad may be gone from television after five riveting seasons, but the show and its conflicted protagonist, Walter White, are still making waves in popular culture.

After dominating nominations at the Writers Guild Awards and Screen Actors Guild Awards, the AMC program got another notch when Time magazine named anti-hero Walter White as the Most Influential Fictional Character of 2013.

Breaking Bad followed Walter White as he transformed from a beaten-down high school chemistry teacher facing a terminal cancer diagnosis to a meth drug kingpin, ruling over a multimillion dollar empire and ruthlessly cutting down rivals.

In its list of characters (which also included Family Guy’s Brian Griffin and Anchorman’s Ron Burgundy), Time noted:

“The chemistry teacher turned meth kingpin (played by Bryan Cranston) was TV’s most talked-about antihero, luring 10.3 million viewers to Breaking Bad‘s series finale—up 442% from season four—and sparking thousands of Internet debates about the nuances of morality. And White’s (spoiler alert!) death did real-world good: a funeral event staged by fans raised $17,000 for the Albuquerque homeless.”

The critically acclaimed series, which ended in September with a finale that drew a record-smashing 10.3 million viewers, is still attracting praise even after the show’s conclusion. Breaking Bad earned a nomination for Best Television Drama Series at the 2014 Writers Guild Awards, and this week earned a host of nominations for the 2014 SAG Awards.

Fans of Breaking Bad will also have a chance to follow the series after the death of Walter White in the finale. The show has already signed on for a spin-off, Better Call Saul, that follows Walter’s sleazy lawyer, Saul Goodman.

Aaron Paul, who played Walter’s drug-dealing sidekick Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad, has also signed on to add his voice to the Netflix animated series Bojack Horseman, A Tale of Fear, Loathing and Animals.

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