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Breaking Bad Almost Killed Off Steven Gomez Early On In The Series

During the chaos of the WGA writer's strike back in 2007, a few miracles slipped through the cracks. One of them was AMC's heralded crime drama, "Breaking Bad." Premiering with a truncated first season, the unique premise of Vince Gilligan's series, along with its perfect balance of comedy and drama, helped to set it apart from the masses, even as one gritty show after another was popping up in the wake of "The Sopranos."

Of course, just like "The Sopranos," the brilliant characterization also helped hook fans in even as "Breaking Bad" got increasingly dark over the years. Even secondary characters like Steven Gomez (Stephen Michael Quezada) were given layers of complexity and depth over the course of the series, adding nuance to the entire ensemble.

However, as Dean Norris told Vulture, Gomez was initially going to die much earlier on in the series. However, that same writers' strike helped to pull Quezada's character back from the abyss, as the team behind "Breaking Bad" changed their approach. "But then the writers' strike happened, and they rethought everything," Norris said.

Steve Gomez was saved by the writers' strike

Honestly, it's no surprise that Steve Gomez was on the chopping block so early on in the series. After all, "Breaking Bad" fans will no doubt recall that even Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) was once meant to die much earlier on in the series. Instead, Paul's character was one of the few to survive the events of the popular show.

While Gomez wasn't so lucky, he did live all the way until Season 5, which was, naturally, a relief to Dean Norris. "Gomez was supposed to die but for the writers' strike," Norris recalled. "I think the strike hit on episode seven, and he was supposed to die in eight. And I knew he was going to die, but he didn't."

Being that Norris is friends with Stephen Michael Quezada outside of the show, he also remembered feeling conflicted about knowing Gomez's fate at the time. "We had rented a house in Corrales, a great little village outside of Albuquerque, and I was playing golf with Steve all the time," Norris remembered.

"I couldn't figure out what to do: Should I tell him?" the actor wondered. "It's not my place to tell him. But maybe I should tell him in case he's expecting things?" Luckily for Norris, that weight was taken off of his shoulders, and Steve Gomez lived to fight another day, almost making it to the very end of "Breaking Bad."