I’m not the first 60 Seconds Magazine writer to explore the Netflix original show, Bojack Horseman. Over the years Nanette Lui (Bojack Horseman) and Linette Kalados (The Reality of Bojack Horseman’s Character) have written about the complexity and mental illness awareness that has come from the show’s main character, Bojack. While I agree with both writers when they talk about the show providing them with comfort (as it has also offered comfort to me while I sorted through my own struggles with mental illness) I don’t think I can still find comfort in the series.
For those unfamiliar with Bojack Horseman, the show portrays a washed-up horse-man actor drowning in self-loathing, substance abuse, and mental illness. Throughout the series, we see Bojack Horseman struggle through difficult and mostly self-inflicted situations with the help of his loyal friends. Because of the show’s darker nature, a lot of the content references to sex, drugs, and alcohol, making it inappropriate and triggering for some audiences.
When I first came across the show, it made me feel less alone as I navigated my personal life. Now I find that, more than anything, it triggers my emotions in a negative way. Like my fellow writers, I believe that the show depicts mental illness more accurately than I have seen in other forms of media, which is something I can greatly appreciate about the series. However, I think I found too much comfort in the show’s darkness as in times of great despair I would turn to the series, which eventually led me to sink lower. I found myself relating a little too much to the character, who wasn’t meant to be glorified by his illnesses.
All that being said, Bojack Horseman does offer light and laughter at times, and while I can no longer enjoy the show the way I used to I can appreciate what I took away from it in the beginning. If you have yet to watch Bojack Horseman, I recommend giving it a try. It could give you the same comfort it has given many, myself included.