watchworthy presents

The Greatest TV Shows About Depression 

Molly Gander
Updated August 8, 2019 1.5k votes 512 voters 15.9k views 31 items

List Rules Vote up the shows that center their storyline around depression.

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.

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1
House is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Hugh Laurie, Omar Epps, Robert Sean Leonard

Premiered: 2004

Number of Seasons: 8

Number of Episodes: 177

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

House (Fox, 2004) is an American television medical drama created by David Shore. The show's main character is Dr. Gregory House, a pain medication-dependent, unconventional, misanthropic ...more

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2
BoJack Horseman is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Will Arnett, Amy Sedaris, Alison Brie

Premiered: 2014

Network: Netflix

BoJack Horseman (Netflix, 2014) is an American animated sitcom created by Raphael Bob-Waksberg. BoJack Horseman (Will Arnett) was the star of the hit television show "Horsin' Around" ...more

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3
Rick and Morty is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Justin Roiland, Chris Parnell, Spencer Grammer

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 3

Network: Adult Swim, Cartoon Network

Rick and Morty (Adult Swim, 2013) is an American adult animated science-fiction sitcom created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon. Cynical mad scientist Rick Sanchez and his fretful, easily ...more

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4
Mr. Robot is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Rami Malek, Carly Chaikin, Portia Doubleday

Premiered: 2015

Mr. Robot (USA Network, 2015) is an American drama–thriller television series created by Sam Esmail. Elliot (Rami Malek), a cybersecurity engineer and hacker who suffers from social anxiety ...more

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5
The End of the F***ing W... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Alex Lawther, Jessica Barden, Gemma Whelan

Premiered: 2018

The End of the F***ing World (Netflix, 2018) is an eight-part British absurdist dark comedy-drama television series, based on the comic series by Charles S. Forsman. 17-year-old James (Alex ...more

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6
Shameless is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Emmy Rossum, William H. Macy, Ethan Cutkosky

Premiered: 2011

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 36

Network: Showtime

Shameless is an American television comedy-drama which airs on Showtime. This remake of the award-winning British series is set in Chicago's Canaryville neighborhood on the South Side, although ...more

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7
13 Reasons Why is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Dylan Minnette, Katherine Langford, Kate Walsh

Premiered: 2017

Network: Netflix

13 Reasons Why (Netflix, 2017) is an American television series based on the 2007 novel Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher and adapted by Brian Yorkey. Told through a series of flashbacks, the ...more

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8
You're the Worst is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Chris Geere, Aya Cash, Desmin Borges

Premiered: 2014

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 10

Network: FX

You're the Worst (FXX, 2014) is an American comedy-drama television series created by Stephen Falk. Jimmy (Chris Geere), a self-involved writer, and Gretchen (Aya Cash), a self-destructive Los ...more

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9
Degrassi: The Next Gener... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Miriam McDonald, Cassie Steele, Shane Kippel

Premiered: 2001

Number of Seasons: 12

Number of Episodes: 149

Network: CTV

Degrassi: The Next Generation (CTV, 2001 ) is a Canadian teen drama television series created by Yan Moore and Linda Schuyler, and the fourth series in the Degrassi franchise. The lives of the ...more

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10
This Is Us is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Milo Ventimiglia, Mandy Moore, Sterling K. Brown

Premiered: 2016

Network: NBC

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11
Please Like Me is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Josh Thomas, Thomas Ward, John

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 6

Network: ABC2, Pivot

Please Like Me is an Australian television comedy drama series starring Josh Thomas. The series premiered on 28 February 2013 on ABC2 in Australia. The show explores realistic issues with ...more
12
Russian Doll is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Natasha Lyonne, Greta Lee, Yul Vazquez

Premiered: 2019

Network: Netflix

Russian Doll (Netflix, 2019) is an American comedy web television series created by Natasha Lyonne, Amy Poehler, and Leslye Headland. A young woman (Natasha Lyonne) in New York tries to escape ...more

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13
Maniac is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Jonah Hill, Emma Stone, Sonoya Mizuno
Maniac (Netflix, 2018) is an American dark comedy television series created by Patrick Somerville and directed by Cary Fukunaga. Based on a 2014 Norwegian series, the show revolves around the ...more

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14
A Million Little Things ... is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Jamie Fredrickson added David Giuntoli, Ron Livingston, Romany Malco

Premiered: 2018

Network: ABC

A Million Little Things (ABC, 2018) is an American family drama television series created by D. J. Nash. A group of friends intertwined in each other's lives all realize they need to start ...more

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15
Jessica Jones is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Krysten Ritter, Mike Colter, Rachael Taylor

Premiered: 2015

Number of Seasons: 3

Network: Netflix

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16
One Day at a Time is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Justina Machado, Todd Grinnell, Isabella Gomez

Premiered: 2017

Network: Netflix

One Day at a Time (Netflix) is a 2017 sitcom loosely based on the 1975 Norman Lear series of the same name. Penelope Alvarez (Justina Machado) is a newly-single Army Nursing Corps veteran ...more

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17
Love is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Gillian Jacobs, Paul Rust, Claudia O'Doherty
Love (Netflix, 2016) is an American romantic comedy web television series created by Judd Apatow, Paul Rust, and Lesley Arfin. The series is a "down-to-earth look at dating," exploring ...more

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18
Scrubs is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Zach Braff, Donald Faison, Sarah Chalke

Premiered: 2001

Number of Seasons: 9

Number of Episodes: 181

Network: American Broadcasting Company, NBC

Scrubs is an American medical comedy television series created by Bill Lawrence that aired from October 2, 2001 to March 17, 2010 on NBC and later ABC. The series follows the lives of employees ...more

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19
Legion is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Dan Stevens, Rachel Keller, Aubrey Plaza
Legion (FX, 2017) is an American cable television series created by Noah Hawley, based on the Marvel Comics character. Diagnosed with schizophrenia at a young age, David Haller (Dan Stevens) ...more

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20
Six Feet Under is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall, Frances Conroy

Premiered: 2001

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 63

Network: HBO

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21
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Rachel Bloom, Vincent Rodriguez III, Santino Fontana
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (The CW, 2015) is an American romantic musical comedy-drama television series created by Rachel Bloom and Aline Brosh McKenna. After bumping into her first love, a New York ...more

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22
Flowers is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Olivia Colman, Julian Barratt, Daniel Rigby

Premiered: 2016

Network: Channel 4

Flowers (Channel 4, 2016) is a British black comedy-drama television sitcom. The series follows the Flowers family, headed by depressed father and children's author Maurice (Julian Barratt) and ...more
23
Bodyguard is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Richard Madden, Keeley Hawes, Gina McKee
Bodyguard (Netflix, 2018) is a British television political thriller drama series created by Jed Mercurio. Police Sergeant David Budd (Richard Madden), a heroic British Army war-veteran ...more

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24
The Leftovers is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman, Christopher Eccleston
The Leftovers is an American television drama series created by Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta airing on HBO. It is based on Perrotta's novel of the same name. The pilot was written by Lindelof ...more

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25
Glee is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest TV Shows About Depression
Lea Michele, Jane Lynch, Matthew Morrison

Premiered: 2009

Number of Seasons: 4

Number of Episodes: 88

Network: Fox

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