How 'Lady Dynamite' hilariously nails comedy about serious mental illness.

Have you heard of comedian Maria Bamford?

Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images.


If not, I highly recommend you keep scrolling.

Bamford is the star of the new Netflix series "Lady Dynamite."

Photo courtesy of Netflix, used with permission.

The show follows a 40-something actress struggling to get her career, friendships, and romantic life in order.

In some ways, it's a story that's been told time and time again.

Photo courtesy of Netflix, used with permission.

But there's a catch...

Bamford, who plays herself in the autobiographical show, has bipolar disorder.

And she's been suicidal.

And she's spent time in a psychiatric ward.


And yet, "Lady Dynamite" — which doesn't shy away from any of those hard truths from Bamford's real life past — is hilarious.

The show jumps between Bamford's present-day struggle to find stable ground, the time she spent living with her parents in Duluth, Minnesota, during her rock bottom days and the cringeworthy events (before Minnesota) that led to her downward spiral.

"I wanted to tell a story of a psychiatric breakdown, but also not bring it down so much," Bamford explained to Rolling Stone. "I wanted to show how depressing those wards are in a very funny way."


Critics are raving. A-list comics have flocked to guest star (Sarah Silverman? Patton Oswalt? Yes, please).

Perhaps the best part, though, is how the show is resonating with its fans — many of whom may be struggling with their own forms of mental illness.

Some viewers say they see themselves in the lead character.


Many applauded the courage it takes to open up about personal struggles.


Some say they appreciate how rare it is to see a funny show that tackles such dark topics with care.


And others have found comfort in "Lady Dynamite" when nothing else seems to do the trick.


All of this praise hasn't been lost on Bamford, of course; she's thrilled her own experiences have helped others in the same boat.

"I went through a nightmare," Bamford explained to People. "But it means a lot to me that other people with mental illness tell me the show has helped them and made them laugh."

Photo courtesy of Netflix, used with permission.

"Getting that reaction makes me feel like I'm being useful in life," she noted. "And that's good."

Staying on top of your mental health can be tough. And topics like depression and bipolar disorder aren't always a laughing matter.

But there is some truth in laughter sometimes being the best medicine, and no one proves that better than "Lady Dynamite" herself.

This article originally appeared on 01.09.18


Why should a superintendent get a raise while teachers in the same district struggling to make ends meet see their paychecks flatline — year after year after year?

Teacher Deyshia Hargrave begged the question. Minutes later, she was handcuffed and placed in the backseat of a cop car.

The scene was captured below by YouTube user Chris Rosa, who attended a board meeting for Vermilion Parish Schools in Louisiana.

You can watch Hargrave begin speaking about 33 seconds in. The situation starts becoming contentious around 6:35 minutes. Hargrave is arrested at 8:35, and then walked outside in handcuffs and placed in the back of police vehicle. (Story continues below.)



"We work very hard with very little to maintain the salaries that we have," Hargrave, who teaches middle school language arts, said during a public comment portion of the meeting, stating that she's seen classroom sizes balloon during her time at the school with no increased compensation. "We're meeting those goals, while someone in that position of leadership [the superintendent] is getting raise? It's a sad, sad day to be a teacher in Vermilion Parish."

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