Did you miss Dryuary, the annual self-imposed month of abstaining from alcohol? Yeah, me too — hard. Entering the New Year sober is an admirable, if misguided, practice. February, aka Sobruary (still workshopping a “sober” title), is a far better month to eschew booze. For one, it’s shorter; secondly, it’s not as long. Don’t try and tell me that liquor affects cognition, you no-drinkin’ squares.
In that spirit, here are five series that deal with the concept of sobriety to stream in February while sucking down shaky tumblers of club soda.
Flaked (Seasons 1-2 on Netflix)
In underappreciated 2016-17 Netflix series Flaked, allegedly recovering alcoholic and Venice Beach knockabout Chip (Will Arnett) chugs wine from a “kombucha” jug, lies to his AA compatriots, and sleeps with clueless women half his age — but redemption is only a Pavement song away.
Mom (Seasons 1-6 on Hulu)
As much as TV critics hated Flaked, they love CBS sitcom Mom — probably because of the non-sociopathic characters. Despite its hacky laugh-tracked setting, Mom (which stars Anna Faris and Allison Janney as formerly estranged, newly sober daughter and mother) tackles dark material, addiction and beyond, consistently hilariously. It’s also dirty AF.
Loudermilk (Seasons 1-2 on DirecTV Now)
Sam Loudermilk (Ron Livingston) is a former alcoholic and, even worse, former rock critic, who’s prone to rants against modern culture and rumpled flannel shirts. He also runs a recovery group and lives with two sketchy ex-addicts (Will Sasso and Anja Savcic). Sounds like a downer, but Loudermilk is sneakily funny and smart, with dashes of heart and of High Fidelity music nerdiness.
Recovery Road (Season 1 on Freeform)
At this point you may be thinking “What’s with all the olds? Aren’t there any rehab shows about teens?” Here’s one: 2016’s Recovery Road, about vodka-swigging high schooler Maddie (Jessica Sula) being forced to do 90 days in a sober living facility. Sula is captivating, and Recovery Road‘s writing mostly transcends the usual teen-soap angst. Yep, it was insta-cancelled.
Intervention (Seasons 1-10 on Hulu; Seasons 1-19 on A&E)
Sure, it’s exploitative as hell — how else could Intervention last nearly 20 seasons? Families confronting loved ones about their booze and drug problems is a natural fit for reality TV, but Intervention also covers addictions to food, gambling, plastic surgery, sex, video games and even exercise. A&E has an evil knack for producing, ahem, addictive reality shows; Intervention is the best/worst of them all. ♦
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