SAD: Suicide, Alcohol & Drugs in the Entertainment Industry
Maple Creek Media (2011)
Reviewed by Carol Hoyer, PhD, for Reader Views (8/11)
The author has written a very comprehensive and detailed book about suicide and substance abuse in the entertainment field. While we know that this particular culture isn’t the only one having problems, they are the most publicized.
His first six chapters cover suicide, addictions and drugs. He also gives a historical view of drugs and their power over individuals along with current statistics. He then discusses problems in the entertainment world- parties, fast crowds and substance abuse. Sometimes sudden fame overpowers individuals and to escape reality they begin to use. In Chapter Five he discusses a few famous entertainers who are now “resting in peace.” Janis Joplin who began with a low self image until she gained fame, yet never stopped her “fast lane journey.” John Belushi partied nonstop; he died when he was thirty-three. We have all seen on the news how actors go in and out of rehab like it was a shopping mall and we can expect more to meet their maker due to making unwise choices.
In Chapter Six the author provides numerous pages to those who have lost their life to these activities. His point in providing a full chapter on these individuals is to show how many lives have been lost to SAD. I believe I got more impact from him sharing a few stories than to take the time to scan through several pages of names, dates and how they died. However, I do see what Mitchell was attempting to do. He is not using scare tactics; he is providing facts and valid information.
The latter part of the book is composed of sections that cover topics from abuse to bullying to religion. The author provides concise information on each of these topics as well as how to handle it. I see this as more of a self-help section for individuals to learn new ways to cope with events that happen in their lives.
This book captures the essence of drug misuse in the entertainment industry that readers can learn from. “SAD” is full of details that shows us how people in the entertainment industry are no different than anyone else. Awareness is the key and Mitchell is providing us ways to become conscious of what really is going on and be able to address the issues.