How Would Each Version of Bryan Cranston Handle Godzilla?
If there’s one thing we know about the upcoming Godzilla reboot, it’s that it gives Bryan Cranston the opportunity to yell a lot. This is great news for anybody still looking to fill that Heisenberg-shaped hole in their hearts. But the One Who Knocks is merely one of the multitalented actor’s many faces—how would the others deal with a reptilian menace?
Dr. Tim Whatley from Seinfeld
Godzilla may be a city-destroying beast bent on teaching mankind a lesson on hubris (and shoddy municipal construction codes), but he’s no match for the dentist’s best friend: nitrous oxide. This Cranston uses the power of laughing gas to his advantage, seeding his office with enough tanks to knock out a 30-story monster. When Godzilla goes in for a bite, Jaws-style, the tanks explode, conking him out long enough for Dr. Whatley to pull all of his teeth (assuming Kramer’s friend Bob Sacamano comes through with the giant drill.) Crisis averted, Whatley heads to whatever’s left of Monk’s Café for a celebratory patty melt with Jerry and George.
Patrick Crump from The X-Files
This is not a Cranston who stands and fights. No, Patrick Crump would try to save his own hide. How? By hijacking a car and driving west at full speed until his inner ear explodes—either from the military’s low-frequency radio wave experiments, or from Godzilla’s piercing screech.
Lyndon Baines Johnson from All the Way
Lyndon Baines Cranston isn’t the one who got us into this mess, but he’ll sacrifice his legacy to get us out. A noted proponent of the Domino Theory, LBC knows what will befall the nations if one Godzilla is allowed to roam the streets of Tokyo unchecked. Soon, turtles in Beijing and crocodiles in Singapore will start to get ideas from their reptilian brethren, and the entire region will come under the influence of commun—um, Godzilla. This Cranston can be trusted to make the tough decisions, which include an escalation of troops in Tokyo and a military conflict with Godzilla that will likely drag on for the better part of two decades.
Hal from Malcolm in the Middle
Although a towering, radioactive monster would have Hal shaking in his tighty whities, he’d try to put on a brave face in front of his sons. Rather than run screaming into the night, Hal would battle Godzilla using the one talent at his disposal: roller-dancing. But if history is any predictor, he’ll end up helplessly standing by as the monster wreaks havoc on his and Dewey’s Lego Utopia.
Shannon from Drive
A hustler by trade, Shannon is no stranger to sticky situations. He’d have his work cut out for him with Godzilla, but who’s to say the monster god is above cutting a deal? It would play out like this: Shannon offers Godzilla a handsome sum to just lay low for a while—a couple thousand years at most. If the beast agrees, the world is saved. If there’s any trouble, well…let’s just say that if you can’t survive gangster Albert Brooks, you probably don’t stand a chance against the most terrifying creature the world has ever seen.
Walter White from Breaking Bad
On Breaking Bad, teacher-turned-drug-kingpin Walter White faced increasingly dangerous adversaries. But even Gus Fring is nothing compared to the King of the Monsters. Seeing as a box cutter wouldn’t be able to penetrate Godzilla’s hide, Walt would most likely turn to chemistry (AKA poison). We’re thinking an entire hothouse’s worth of lily of the valley, or a dinosaur-size batch of meth. Better find another superlab…
The Narrator from This 1980s Preparation H Commercial
“When you choose a Godzilla-killer, remember: oxygen action is special…with Preparation H.”
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Illustration: Jen Jackson.