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TV Gets Into the Loony

(Posted July 29, 2005 by Leah Yoakum)

 July 25, 2005  Hollywood is into crazy. Mental illness, madness, obsessive behavior, multiple personalities, schizophrenia you name it, it's been depicted by nearly every big star, including Robert DeNiro, Sally Field, Leonardo DiCaprio, Anthony Hopkins and Barbra Streisand.


Every once in awhile, they get it right. But more often they get it terribly wrong. And the problem with that, experts say, is that it creates misconceptions and stigma for those afflicted.


Now that the small screen has gotten into madness, viewers can look forward to weekly visits of characters with some form of mental illness. Along with Tony Soprano's visits to the psychiatrist to delve into his demons, newer shows like TNT's "The Closer" and USA's "Monk" portray compulsive behavior with differing degrees of success.


Tony Shalhoub's character Adrian Monk in "Monk" has obsessive compulsive disorder.


Both characters' obsessive behavior in some ways fuels their success. Monk's attention to detail helps him solve cases. Johnson's food obsession in some ways fills a void, something people with food obsessions and eating disorders often say.


OCD groups have taken on "Monk" as a kind of poster boy.


Perkins, who has OCD, said the writers of the Emmy Award-winning show do a good job at giving Monk true OCD-style symptoms.



Source: ABC
 


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