A recent New Yorker profile of "Breaking Bad" star Bryan Cranston reminds Walter White fans that 30 years ago, the meth kingpin "scrabbled after guest-star roles on crappy TV shows while making his living in commercials."
It's hard to imagine now, but in the 1980s Cranston played "a bland smoothie with bread-load hair who just happened to love Shield Deodorant Soap, Arrow Shirts, Coffee-mate, and Excedrin, a middle-of-the-bell-curve guy who, despite his initial skepticism, was really sold on the product."
"I had that everyman look--nonthreatening, non-distracting, no facial hair. I fit in," he told profiler Tad Friend.
Here are more of "the everyman's" old commercials:
And of course, Cranston in his 1982 debut role as Sam, a bisexual man who cheats on his wife with another man in cheesy CHN/Lifetime show "Crisis Counselor":