Magic and Meth

Inominandium has an excellent post on lessons that magicians (or businessmen) can learn from the hit TV show Breaking Bad.

I don’t watch Breaking Bad, although I’m familiar with its premise and have been encouraged to watch it on many occasions. I may start.

BUILD A BRAND, A REPUTATION, AND A NARRATIVE: To be clear you already have a brand, a reputation, and a narrative. If you don’t take control of it, other people will. Walt does not just rely on his quality product to do this. He differentiates himself in the marketplace by having blue crystal. He creates the persona of Heisenburg complete with black hat and sunglasses. He doesn’t just do amazing things like make the best Meth, blow up Tuc’s office with exploding crystal, or killing Gus – he makes sure that they feed into the myth about him. It’s not just about business. Think about how magicians like Crowley, Gardner, Marie Laveau, Anton LaVey, Ki Jokobodo, Dr Buzzard, Peter Carroll, and Nana Kwaku Bonsam manage their message and their myth.

When he makes for a rival manufacturer to distribute his product for him they ask who he is and he says: “You already know who I am… Say My Name!” And when these big time criminals utter the name “Heisenburg” in a mixture of fear and awe, he is justified in replying “Damn Right!”

This is such an excellent post I have nothing more to add to it. Read the whole thing.


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