Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Game Changer: How TV's Madcap Musical Comedy Delivered a Sobering Examination of Suicide & Mental Health

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Rachel Bloom, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Season 3

The CW

Since its premiere in 2015, Loopy Ex-Girlfriend has by no means shied away from a willingness to go there. In any case, when your central conceit hinges on a personality fighting psychological sickness who upends her complete life to maneuver throughout the nation after an opportunity run-in with a person she dated method again at summer time camp, it might be dishonest to not.

And whereas the present has persistently managed to discover a stability between Rebecca Bunch’s genuine pathos—we have seen her in remedy, discovered about her previous psychotic break and hospitalization—and the madcap songs that make the musical comedy such a delight (“Math of Love Triangles,” anybody?), few have been ready for the choice the character made within the ultimate moments of final week’s episode when, having lastly hit her all-time low and feeling as if she had nowhere left to show, Rebecca made an try on her life.

It was a sobering second, admirably performed straight and brought critically. It was additionally a daring transfer. In any case, you possibly can in all probability rely the variety of TV exhibits with principal characters who’ve tried suicide on one hand. However as star Rachel Bloom and showrunner Aline Brosh McKenna inform it, there was by no means any hesitation on their half.

“From the primary assembly I had with Aline, we had little interest in sugarcoating Rebecca’s journey. If you are going to absolutely discover and upend the trope of a ‘Loopy Ex-Girlfriend,’ getting inside her head and beneath the phrase ‘loopy’ is important,” Bloom informed E! Information by way of e mail. “This is an fascinating tidbit: the unique ending of Deadly Attraction (the definition of a ‘Loopy Ex-Girlfriend’ movie) featured Glenn Shut‘s character killing herself. Nevertheless, they modified it as a result of individuals needed to see ‘the bitch be destroyed.’ As Aline says, it turned the movie right into a monster film.”

“Within the pilot, we referenced her earlier makes an attempt and her points with medicine and we all the time knew that we owed extra to that story,” McKenna added. “Shifting to West Covina briefly buoyed Rebecca out of the low level she was in when she lived in New York, however it was a short lived balm and doomed to falter ultimately.”

Whereas the pair revealed that the particulars of this storyline did not start to crystallize till season two, with the specifics solely being hammered out when the author’s room for season three convened, they admitted that following Rebecca all the best way right down to this kind of low was all the time within the playing cards. 

“This can be a story a few lady studying who she is and discovering out what makes her really pleased. Virtually all of her actions have been based mostly on exterior pressures and the kind of individual she ‘thinks’ she must be,” Bloom defined. “In so some ways, her exterior life is totally divorced from her inner life. Her patterns of denial and delusion have been all the time constructing to this second at which she’s at such a painful crossroads she needs to choose out.”

After getting the go-forward from an “overwhelmingly supportive” CW, Bloom and McKenna reached out to a number of specialists to ensure they acquired issues proper. “Earlier than the season started, we reached out to varied docs to debate each this suicide try in addition to Rebecca’s ‘official’ analysis. Aline and I had talked at size concerning the method during which she tries to take her personal life earlier than the author’s room started,” Bloom revealed. “In her thoughts, Rebecca has misplaced all her associates, her final lifeline (her mom) has given up hope for her, and, to prime it off, she’s on a aircraft, which is all the time a depressing place that heightens individuals’s feelings. We did not need to glamourize the capsule taking in any respect (downing a fistful whereas singing a music)—she does it very silently and methodically. Every capsule is a person choice.

Jack Dolgen, the episode author for 305, was very considerate and delicate with the entire storyline and, as he shared on Twitter, has his personal private experiences with suicidal ideas and ideations that he delivered to this episode in such an actual method.”

Instantly following the episode’s airing on the east coast, Bloom and McKenna made themselves out there on Twitter to reply any questions followers might have had concerning the episode or, at occasions, simply assist facilitate dialog concerning the viewers’s personal experiences with the essential material. “Rachel and I knew that folks is perhaps powerfully affected by the episode; we have been once we have been making it. So we each tweeted that it was going to be an emotional episode and have been available for Twitter questions after,” McKenna stated. “After it aired, we have been so impressed with how followers have reached out to one another, related and offered help to at least one different. We’ve been blown away by delicate, clever, empathic responses individuals have needed to the episode and to one another’s tales”

The social media dialog is more likely to proceed after this week’s episode, which confirmed the quick aftermath of Rebecca’s suicide try and the toll it took on these closest to her, whereas additionally lastly giving our hero the analysis she’d been eager for all her life. Beneath the care of a brand new physician, Dr. Shin (visitor star Jay Hayden), Rebecca discovered she has Borderline Character Dysfunction, a frightening analysis with no actual fast repair. 

“We did lots of analysis on Rebecca’s analysis. Learn a whole lot of books and talked to a number of docs and different psychological well being professionals,” McKenna, who wrote this week’s episode alongside Bloom and writers’ assistant Ilana Peña, stated. “No analysis is straightforward or an ‘reply,’ however we actually felt that Borderline Character Dysfunction suited the behaviors we had seen from Rebecca. Rachel and I’ve been speaking about BPD and how one can deal with the analysis because the finish of season two.”

As Rebecca discovered within the episode, she’ll should be put in some critical work to handle her BPD in a significant approach, which suggests we’ll see her embark on group remedy and different greatest practices are the collection strikes ahead. However simply because she’s been recognized, do not anticipate for the title of the collection to be nullified. “The analysis isn’t a simple reply or an answer. It is actually only a new approach for her to begin to perceive her conduct and for her to see that there are various, many individuals who’ve the identical points she has,” McKenna defined “Borderline is probably the most prevalent psychological well being dysfunction and it is among the many most misunderstood. Figuring out what you could have just isn’t a magic wand, it is a software for making an attempt to make higher decisions sooner or later.”

Whereas Rebecca’s pals surrounded her with love and help on this week’s episode, we watched as Paula (Donna Lynne Champlin), Heather (Vella Lovell), Valencia (Gabrielle Ruiz), Nathaniel (Scott Michael Foster) and Darryl (Pete Gardner) every dealt with the considered almost dropping her in their very own distinctive means. Given the sobering, sensible means the present is dealing with the plot line, it is no shock that the reverberations will proceed to be felt within the coming episodes. 

“It is undoubtedly not one thing that folks round her simply recover from,” McKenna revealed. “Every character has a totally totally different response over time and people reactions say rather a lot about these particular individuals and their very own points. One of many challenges of getting a psychological well being difficulty is the way it modifications your relationships and Rebecca has to recalibrate many occasions with the individuals she is aware of and loves.”

And figuring out our woman Rebecca, she’ll recalibrate with a track and dance each time.

Loopy Ex-Girlfriend returns on Friday, Dec. eight at eight p.m. on the CW.

Should you or somebody you recognize wants assist, please name the Nationwide Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

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