- Ella Noonan
Bojack Horseman - The chronically depressed horse we all relate to
Grief, mental health, and addiction; hard-hitting topics that when dramatised for the purposes of TV can either shed light on important issues or plummet to the ground like a cringey lead balloon.
It's common knowledge that these topics have to be approached sensitively and by no means appear to glamorise real life problems.
With all this in mind, if I were to suggest we cover real matters through the means of an animated narcissistic horse, it's safe to assume that you'd accept I'd lost my sweet mind. Well that's if you were unfortunate enough not to have witnessed the masterpiece that is Bojack Horseman.
From the get go it was clear that our equine protagonist was hardly a character of compassion and goodwill. Yet as he journeyed through each episode, encountering a string of meaningless flings and a constant state of un-fulfilment numbed by an array of vices; I was greeted by the harrowing relaisation that there's parts of Bojack resonating in all of us.
There's something about the colourful anthropomorphism of random animals that softens the blow of these harsh hitting realities. When we watch TV we tend to want an element of escapism from what's happening in the world. Whether it's the chaotic state of American politics, couple's undergoing fertility problems, losing loved ones to addiction and mental illness, or simply a longing for happiness - there's no way you could cram all this into a series using real people as it would simply be too depressing.
However, despite the blow being softened by humorous character name's such as "A Ryan Seacrest type", make no mistake in thinking you won't finish each of the five seasons feeling progressively more empty inside. It starts off as a slightly cynical alternate universe, yet as each season surpasses, it becomes more reflective of reality and pushes the boundaries of what can and can't be televised. Although emotionally it's a lot to handle, there really is something refreshing about a TV show that touches on all the taboo subjects we tiptoe around too carefully. It's airing all the dirty laundry we refuse to let out in the open yet so dearly need to.