It is no secret that my current favorite TV show is Bojack Horseman. I talk about it ALL THE TIME. And for good reason. For a show about a man who is also a horse, it tackles extremely human topics, like worth, loneliness, addiction, fear, depression, relationships, and connection in a way that feels totally relatable. More so when you remember that it is a show about MAN who is also a HORSE. And also, it’s really funny, far beyond the idea that it’s a bunch of anthropomorphic animals interacting with humans like they are all the same. Which is absurd! But also brilliant? (JK about the question mark. It’s a fact. It’s done really well.)
Admittedly, it took me a while to get into it the first season. I sort of kept it on as background noise because I enjoyed it but I didn’t LOVE it. And then somewhere around episode five, when Diane and Bojack go to Boston for a funeral, I realized I was watching intently. This absurdist cartoon was dealing with complicated family dynamics in a way that seemed more heartfelt and honest than many live-action sitcoms. And it only got better as the season went on and I think by the time the nostalgic Christmas episode came along the show really hit its stride with combining humor with sometimes very dark reality.
I’ve been waiting not-so-patiently for season two since they announced the date. I was out of town the day it premiered but knew that after taking a red eye back from the west coast I’d absolutely spend my first day back sitting on the couch and watching the entire season. Which I did. While eating Chipotle. Don’t judge me.
The second season was even better than the first and this time the women took larger roles. I cheered on Princess Carolyn at the end but there was one episode centered on Diane that was particularly powerful and important. On a book tour for the paperback release of a book she wrote about Bojack, she answers a question about a lovable television host by addressing reports that he harassed multiple women. She is attacked by the media, receives death threats, and finally is asked by both Bojack and her husband why she has to be the one talking about this if none of the women are willing to come forward without remaining anonymous. This is particularly poignant as just today NY Magazine printed an article with all of the women who came forward in the Bill Cosby accusations. Diane’s struggle with finding her worth and feeling like she is doing good in the world continues for the rest of season, even though that story line sort of falls away after that episode. But it definitely colors her character and her arc this season is one that I think many, many people will identify with.
I won’t say more because I don’t want to spoil things. I think that everybody should absolutely watch this show and I can’t believe more people aren’t talking about it like ALL THE TIME. But this was just one example where comedy (read the ticker at the bottom while Diane is on the news) meets something very real and deals with it in a responsible way.
So thank you, Bojack Horseman, the show and the character, for making something so crazy feel so very true. I love you. I can’t wait for season three.