There was a time when I said, and even believed, that no piece of art could make me feel anything I didn't already want to feel. I think that time, if it ever existed, is over. My wife and I made the mistake of watching a little of "Dope Sick Love" on HBO last night, and my God I'm glad I don't live in New York. Wifey says having addicts shooting up and smoking crack in your building stairwell or elevator is part of the deal unless you have a doorman. I'm also glad I never smoked crack or tried heroin, since they seem to lead to prostitution and not-so-slow death.
Christ HBO is intense these days, with Carnivale, Deadwood, Six Feet Under, the Sopranos and soon Rome continually exposing the depths of human despair and degradation. Not to mention Nip/Tuck on FX, which is so emotionally scarring I can't watch the two episodes they've been airing on Sunday nights one after the other or I have nightmares. I'm not sure where the reruns are over now, but if the last episode I watched (which ended with "The Carver" temporarily paralyzing Christian Troy and slashing his face) wasn't a season finale I don't want to watch the real one. I can't take that much psychic torment.
After a Sunday night like that, I need American Idol just to detox.