Thursday, January 11, 2007

Another Reason Scrubs is a Good Show

Tonight's episode of NBC sitcom Scrubs featured a surprisingly straightforward depiction of postpartum depression, as well as breastfeeding and lactation consultants. The character Carla has recently had a baby; her husband notices that she seems depressed, while she struggles with her feelings and insists that she'll be fine. A friend of the couple who is also a mother eventually convinces Carla that she needs to seek help. Carla and her husband are also shown meeting with lactation consultants, with Carla appearing as though attempting to breastfeed. While the breastfeeding scene was played for laughs (it is a comedy, after all), the postpartum depression issue was portrayed as a serious concern, and neither of these two topics is a common sight on network television. Additionally, the Carla character is a long-time nurse, and her husband is a surgeon; depicting medical professionals dealing with these problems in a serious manner normalizes the issues in a way rarely seen in television or film.

Last fall, CBS ran public service announcements on postpartum depression during the crime drama Cold Case.

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MeSH Tags: Breast Feeding; Depression, Postpartum; lactation consultants [keyword]; Television


Blogger keith said...

I missed tonights show! Do you know where I can get a video link of the show?

9:38 PM  
Blogger Myra said...

I haven't watched Scrubs, but will try to support it as it seems they are doing a responsible job of putting out accurate info (from your description). I'm concerned about the way women's issues are presented and misrepresented in the popular media. Specifically, I've recently boycotted Grey's Anatomy after two episodes in a row spew out mistruths and harmful information about natural childbirth and breastfeeding. It's very disappointing to me that the shows don't feel more of a social responsibility.

Anyway, thanks for the update on scrubs and women's issues in the media.

8:49 AM  
Blogger RH Reality Check said...

That's very interesting - I'm glad Scrubs did a better job with postpartum depression and breastfeeding than they did with pregnancy options. Specifically, the way they addressed abortion was very negative. Though the idea of a talking statue of Jesus is funny, I think they did a real disservice to women by using this issue for laughs. I included a link to this Scrubs clip in my post on the L Word:


2:25 PM  

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