Legendary actor, comedian and writer Bob Odenkirk has revealed that he learned the hard way that a decision to mix his politics with his health could have been deadly for him.
In fact, he said he replaced his physician of two decades after he found out the man was a conservative. His new doctor gave him some advice that he believes contributed to his 2021 heart attack.
The “Breaking Bad” actor, 60, lived through the event and recently discussed it on comedian Tig Notaro’s podcast “Don’t Ask Tig.”
“My doctor was a conservative. He got crankier and crankier the older he got,” Odenkirk said while discussing a heart attack he had while filing the final season of the hit AMC show “Better Call Saul.”
Odenkirk recalled how a decade ago, he visited his cardiologist and that he came away from the visit feeling the need to find a new healthcare provider.
“When I was 50, I went in, he was a heart doctor, Cedar-Sinai, and he had signs up all around his office at this point [that said] ‘We do not accept Obamacare,’ and I hated this side of him that I only learned over time.”
What did the entertainment industry insider do? He found another doctor whose advice he admitted might not have been the best for him.
“I’d been with [my doctor] for 20 years, and he said, ‘You need to start taking [cholesterol medication] right now,’ and I said, ‘Well, I don’t know. I don’t have heart disease in my family.’”
The doctor insisted but was replaced by a new one. What happened when Odenkirk’s new doctor told him to stay away from cholesterol medication?
“I had a heart attack,” Odenkirk said.
WARNING: The following video contains vulgar language that some viewers may find offensive.
“And I think the first doctor was right. The cranky conservative jack*** was right because he was a g****** good doctor. His political point of view doesn’t have anything to do with his ability to judge your health and your health choices and needs.”
The star said people need to remember that each person’s craft should never be judged by the differences in opinion someone might have with them.
You have to hand it to Odenkirk for publicly admitting in a very divided country that politics do not belong in some parts of life — especially when it comes to health.
Odenkirk ultimately concluded that medical care is too important to be tainted by differing opinions on policy.
He concluded, “When it comes to doctors, go off the reputation this person has.”
The admission is the kind people need to hear more of. Odenkirk might be a liberal, but the man can act and write, which is why his career took off the way it did after he turned 40.
That career dates back decades, of course.
Some of us who enjoyed him on HBO’s “The Larry Sanders Show” in the 1990s were also aware that many of the laughs generated from “Saturday Night Live” a decade prior were written by the Illinois native.
But Odenkirk didn’t hit his stride until he was cast as the likable scumbag lawyer Saul Goodman (James McGill) in “Breaking Bad” in 2009.
He followed up on the role in “Better Call Saul,” which aired its final episode last year.
In spite of his politics — which obviously aren’t conservative — Odenkirk is talented, a joy to watch, and obviously a man capable of some profound humility.
It sounds like moving forward, he will sideline whatever gripe he has with the right and seek the best medical care he can find.
Those of us who consume media in all of its forms should hope that Odenkirk is around playing complicated roles for decades to come.
He’s just too much fun to watch.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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