Mental Check In

Ed Helms-Produced Dark Comedy to Highlight Substance Abuse Disorder

For those who don’t remember Rob Ford, here’s a refresher: He was the 64th Mayor of Toronto from 2010-2014. In 2013, he was humiliated when a video of him smoking crack surfaced.

The story gained international attention for being so nuts. It’s not every day that you hear about a mayor getting caught smoking crack. The story fascinated people everywhere. How does someone in a respected office let this happen?

But if you know anything about addiction, you know that it can overcome anyone. It doesn’t care if you hold public office and need to have a pristine reputation.

Ed Helms (Andy from “The Office”) is going to make a dark comedy series about it, according to Variety. Jim Gaffigan will play Ford.

The limited series will air on AMC. It will chronicle Ford’s rise and fall as a political figure – and hopefully, it will highlight Ford’s substance abuse disorder with respect and honesty.

Helms and Gaffigan will tackle addiction, substance abuse order in new show / Twitter / @JimGaffigan

Rob Ford’s History of Addiction

Unsurprisingly, Ford had long suffered from addiction and substance abuse disorder. As a politician, the crack video wasn’t the first one to surface of him taking part in illicit activity. Ford had a rambunctious time at sports games, restaurants and even City Hall…and there are videos of it all.

His symptoms were in line with substance abuse disorder. In 1999, cops arrested him for driving under the influence of alcohol. The DUI hampered his political efforts early on.

Tragically, Ford died of cancer in 2016 at the age of 46. But this show promises to tell the troubled Canadian politician’s legacy.

Will Gaffigan Portray Addiction Correctly?

Gaffigan expertly performed his way through both the tragedy of “Chappaquiddick” – the story of Senator Ted Kennedy’s infamously fatal car incident – and the whackiness of “Bob’s Burgers.” I think he’s well-suited for the role of an addict who had both heart and a sense of humor. Hopefully Gaffigan will not play into the “junkie” stereotype.

The series is in pre-production, but we’ll keep you posted on when it airs.

In the meantime, check out these other shows that deal with addiction in a thoughtful way:

  • Mom
  • Shameless
  • This is Us
  • Flaked
  • Euphoria

What shows do you think portray addiction well?

Catie Housman

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