'Breaking Bad's Anna Gunn Writes Op-Ed To Skyler Haters


Skyler and Walter White

'Breaking Bad.' It's arguably one of the greatest series in the history of television. Its actors and crew have received multiple Emmy awards for their work, and the currently airing final season is the highest rated one yet. However, there is one character who has received anything but acclaim from millions of the show's viewers. Well, two if you count Marie, but she's really not in that much of each episode.

Anna Gunn's Skyler White has been the target of internet scorn for the majority of the series run, neck and neck with 'The Walking Dead's Lori on the hierarchy of despised AMC TV characters. Much of that can I think be attributed to her constant opposition of Walt, but one could argue that Skyler's sometimes cruel treatment of her husband is quite justified by his various criminal activities. Whatever the reasoning, Gunn is quite aware of her character's large hatedom, and has taken to the New York Times to express her disbelief and displeasure.

Gunn admits that she can understand a certain level of audience sympathy with the protagonist, but she doesn't at all get the insane levels of vitriol directed toward Skyler. In her own words:

"But I was unprepared for the vitriolic response she inspired. Thousands of people have “liked” the Facebook page “I Hate Skyler White.” Tens of thousands have “liked” a similar Facebook page with a name that cannot be printed here. When people started telling me about the “hate boards” for Skyler on the Web site for AMC, the network that broadcasts the show, I knew it was probably best not to look, but I wanted to understand what was happening."

She continues later in the piece: "As an actress, I realize that viewers are entitled to have whatever feelings they want about the characters they watch. But as a human being, I’m concerned that so many people react to Skyler with such venom. Could it be that they can’t stand a woman who won’t suffer silently or “stand by her man”? That they despise her because she won’t back down or give up? Or because she is, in fact, Walter’s equal?"

The thing Gunn (understandably) finds most worrying about the whole situation is the hate not just for Skyler but for Anna herself: "At some point on the message boards, the character of Skyler seemed to drop out of the conversation, and people transferred their negative feelings directly to me. The already harsh online comments became outright personal attacks. One such post read: “Could somebody tell me where I can find Anna Gunn so I can kill her?” Besides being frightened (and taking steps to ensure my safety), I was also astonished: how had disliking a character spiraled into homicidal rage at the actress playing her?"

What do you folks think? Is Anna Gunn right to be upset about her treatment by the show's fans? Or does Skyler White deserve all the hate she gets?

- Anna Gunn
- Breaking Bad
- amc

Written by: msd85
Aug 24th, 2013, 7:10 pm

Images courtesy of AMC


Message Posted On Aug 26th, 2013, 2:24 am
"A threat is a threat is a threat!" No it's not. Otherwise everyone on the planet would be in jail. I've said to many people, that "I'll kill you" or "Drop dead". Those are expressions and you are allowed to express yourself. The internet is huge, so you will always heart morons sounding off. It is a foolish person that takes it seriously. Like in arresting a man for saying he was going to blow up an airport because his plane was late. Or the US border staff keeping out 2 teenagers because they were going to "tear up Hollywood and dig up a grave". Anna Gunn is an amazing actress because she is believable, give her an award.

Message Posted On Aug 26th, 2013, 1:12 am
If you hate the character, that generally means the actor is doing a good job at acting. If you just didn't care about her, then she would be doing a poor job at her acting. So. Hate Skyler => Like Anna

Message Posted On Aug 25th, 2013, 1:21 pm
I remember a "fan" of the UK show RED DWARF making a comment on some blog about the actress Chloe Annett. He said she destroyed the show and that she deserved to die... Anna Gunn should call the police yesterday. A threat is a threat is a threat!

Message Posted On Aug 25th, 2013, 2:46 am
The same thing happened to Falonetti from rich man, poor man decades ago in '76. People just get too involved in the story and believe it's real. It will pass, she should be flattered for such a great moving performance.

Message Posted On Aug 24th, 2013, 11:16 pm
ppl using brains before (hell, even after) typing is a very rare occurence these days. It's off the rails to make such comments in the first place but it's, imho, just as off the rails to take them seriously and be "afraid" and "make preparations to protect" oneself. That screams desperate for attention to me. Wonder why this comes up now when she's out of a job :) Internet death threats ... seriously. If ppl need to resort to that to get attention they might just as well leak some supersecret private porn tapes/pics.

Level 2 (36%)
Since: 20/Feb/08
Message Posted On Aug 24th, 2013, 8:01 pm

Hating the character is one thing, but hating the actress is totally off the rails. Anyone this lost needs some serious help.

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