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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this documentary series takes an unflinching look at an addict's life in all its rawness and desperation. It can be painful to watch others make terrible choices, but it's ultimately enlightening to see them get on the right path (if they're lucky). Footage of some of the addicts' problem behaviors (like drug use and excessive drinking) is included.
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- Kids say
What's the story?
INTERVENTION is a graphic documentary series that follows the horrific journey from addiction to -- hopefully -- redemption. Past participants include one blond, still-handsome, once-successful mortgage broker who sleeps on a random rooftop, his prized condo lost to cocaine use; an FBI driving instructor falls from the top of his game after drinking too much and gets a near-fatal diagnosis; and a divorcee faces the prospect of losing everyone she loves.
Is it any good?
In many ways, the show's premise works. It's straightforward, no-holds-barred, and uncensored, which is really the only way to address the topic. The subjects are shown drinking and drugging, and the results of their actions are also made clear; ambivalence would only water down the series' impact. If anything could scare somebody away from using and abusing drugs and alcohol, surely watching the people who depend on them fall deeper and deeper into their own personal hell should do the trick.
Because there's so little sentimentality (thus reducing the risk of turning the show to an after-school special), it's hard not to feel like a rubbernecker staring at an accident that's best left behind closed doors. Nevertheless, this show is truly a learning experience (as well as full of cautionary messages for teens).
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what addiction means, how it starts, and the havoc it can wreak on a person's life. How can you tell if someone's an addict? What's an intervention? Can an addict pull back from the brink without an intervention? What role does an addict's family play in recovery?