Depression can often be an all-consuming feeling that makes you feel totally alone in the world. Even so nearly everyone has experienced depression at one time or another in their lives, and sometimes the best way to understand depression is to watch how others deal with it. In our current age of television, there's no shortage of shows that star characters with depression written in utterly compelling, human ways that can go from heartbreaking to empathetic to hilariously satisfying all in one episode.
Shows about depression can be therapeutic for those suffering from that seemingly endless black cloud, but they can also be cathartic for everyone else. Sometimes there's nothing better than a good, dark binge of other people feeling like crap and the best shows about depression understand that sense of schadenfreude, though they often do so while humanizing and explaining the disease. Much like the illness itself, these TV shows about depression (and the lives of those who suffer from it) can whisk you from hopeless lows to a small ray of light, all before crashing the whole thing down on you before one episode is through. From prestige dramas to network sitcoms to big-budget genre epics, the shows on this list all manage to say something unique about depression and show the variety of ways that mental illness can affect us. Whether these shows are full on cry-fests or manage to wrap up the central themes in a happy ending, they understand the complexity of depression in all its forms and are able to turn that complexity into endlessly riveting television.
Genres (Tv): Medical drama
Character James Wilson suffers from clinical depression, and believes Dr. House does as well.
Genres (Tv): Adult animation, Sci-fi, Comedy, Adventure
Rick is in a constant state of existential crisis, and his depression is documented throughout the series.
Genres (Tv): Drama, Techno thriller, Psychological thriller
Elliot Alderson suffers from depression, among other mental illnesses.
Genres (Tv): Comedy, Animation
The titular character's struggle with depression, among other possible mental illnesses, is a main plotpoint throughout the series.
Genres (Tv): Comedy-drama
Other mental illnesses are covered as well, but Alyssa spends the second season battling depression.
Genres (Tv): Comedy, Drama
Fiona, among other members of the Gallagher family, struggles with depression throughout the series.
Genres (Tv): Comedy-drama, Romantic comedy, Black comedy
Season two reveals Gretchen's struggle with clinical depression.
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Genres (Tv): Teen drama, Mystery
The first season is predominantly about Hannah Baker's depression. However, later seasons show other characters also struggling with depression, such as Justin Foley in season two.
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