Vince Gilligan Admits Unprecedented Breaking Bad Piracy Helped “Brand Awareness”

In news that certainly isn’t condoning the unprecedented levels of Breaking Bad online piracy, and thus shouldn’t particularly justify Australia’s Heisenberg-blue worthy level of addiction to snagging episodes before the internet becomes spoilergeddon, Breaking Bad showrunner Vince Gilligan has admitted that there’s two sides to the illegal downloading dilemma.

Speaking with the BBC, the destroyer of feelings, anxiety-coaxing mastermind Vince Gilligan opened up about how online piracy had swamped his beloved TV masterpiece. “I see that there are two sides to this coin. If I’m being honest I see that the illegal downloading led to a lot of people watching the series, becoming aware of the series who otherwise would not have been… I see that in some ways illegal downloading has helped us, certainly in terms of brand awareness, so that’s a good side,” Vince Gilligan said.

He certainly has a point. When TV shows (or high profile films around awards season) become gobbled up by the vacuum of the torrentshop, it generally sends media in to a concerned, bitter frenzy. Sure, the entertainment industry would be abundantly more well off if illegal downloading hadn’t become a mainstream staple, but bemoaning the (inevitable) supposedly abysmal state of the entertainment industry, all because impatient folk, or those without pay tv subscriptions, illegally download media—while forgetting the benefits of a broader audience—presents a cringe-worthy, one-dimensional debate. 

And when greater accessibility to a show allows word of mouth gushing to spread like wildfire, and are able to engage more fans who then essentially do the show’s marketing for them, the exposure that follows certainly couldn’t be seen as a bad thing. And without a doubt, the crux of the illegal downloading problem lies in distribution – at present, it’s just not working. Subscription streaming is where it’s at, because as Lady McSkyler duly expresses in an out of context quote, when it becomes normal to download your favourite shows, gradually adding to your downloaded repertoire just becomes second nature. 
Via BBC.