Albuquerque Cashes In on Breaking Bad With Fake Meth

Town not letting the show's subject matter stop it from making a buck
By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 11, 2013 3:54 PM CDT
Albuquerque Cashes in on Breaking Bad with Candy Meth
Debbie Ball, 60, owner of The Candy Lady store in Albuquerque, N.M., displays her new line of "meth candy" made from sugar rock candy.   (AP Photo/Russell Contreras, File)

Sex and the City and Seinfeld tours are big business in New York, so it's no surprise that residents of Albuquerque, New Mexico, are also trying to cash in on the success of their own locally filmed hit TV show. Only that show is Breaking Bad, a show about meth dealers. But that hasn't stopped local entrepreneurs, NPR reports. A trolley tour company regularly sells out its Breaking Bad Tour of the city's back alleys and set locations. A spa product store sells "Bathing Bad" bath salts, made in a red cement mixer ("We said, what would meth smell like in spa world?" says the store owner). And a local candy store sells little baggies of blue rock candy made to look like the show's star product.

The owner of the candy store—who also made the prop meth used on the actual show—has come under fire in the local media. But she believes her candy, and the show, don't glorify meth. "Obviously it doesn't," she says. "To me it teaches you which way not to go. You go down that dark road and you can't come back." Albuquerque's mayor agrees that the show's success has been a positive for the city—regardless of its subject matter. "People I talk to that I meet outside of Albuquerque; it's a panache thing almost, versus a negative thing," he says. (Read more methamphetamine stories.)

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