Don’t Get Hooked! The Top 6 TV Shows About Drugs

There are many TV shows about drugs that offer an insight into the truth behind drug addiction. Here are the top 6 shows that feature drug addiction.

There’s no denying that we live in the Golden Age of television. In fact, there is currently so much great content, it’s a challenge to find the time to see everything worth watching.

Believe it or not, shows about drugs have become increasingly popular. This is likely because shows depicting characters with substance abuse problems are able to offer meaningful and shocking storylines that successfully hook viewers with the natural drama inherent to addiction.

Let’s take a look at a few of the best shows currently available that show just how brutal life of addiction can really be.

Don’t Get Hooked! The Top 6 TV Shows About Drugs

There are many TV shows about drugs that offer insight into the truth behind addiction. Here are the top 6 shows about this disease that you won’t want to miss.

Shameless Season 7 T

  1. Shameless

Shameless is a dramatic comedy on Showtime about the Gallagher family in Chicago. Frank Gallagher is the patriarch of the family, and to simply call him an alcoholic is an insult to most alcoholics. In short, his life and the lives of his children have been completely destroyed by his lifelong substance abuse.

Frank has essentially abandoned his family and is unable to hold down a job, leaving his oldest daughter Fiona to raise her siblings.

The show offers a lot of comedy, and there is plenty of love among the family, yet this is ultimately a tragic tale.


  1. Mom

Mom is a popular sitcom on CBS staring Anna Faris and Allison Janney as mother and daughter. Both of these characters are recovering drug and alcohol addicts, living together, as Christy, the daughter, struggles to raise her children and better her life while attending AA meetings.

Recovery is one of the primary themes of the show, and it really does a great job of depicting the struggle realistically.

Christy and Bonnie struggle both with their addictions and with each other. They both experience the shame that addicts feel during recovery and the constant tension between loved ones as they struggle to maintain their sobriety.

Orange Is the New Black

  1. Orange is the New Black

Orange is the New Black is a Netflix original series. It depicts the life of inmates at an all-female minimum-security prison, offering insights into how these individuals found themselves spending years of their lives behind bars.

The show realistically demonstrates the unfortunate impact that drugs and alcohol have taken on the lives of these women. In fact, the two lead characters, Piper and Alex, were convicted for drug-related crimes.

The show is a successful blend of comedy and drama, much of it revolving around characters who are drug addicts. There are scenes of overdoses, drug deals, and a wide variety of scenes depicting drug and alcohol use.

The series depicts exactly how much addiction continues to remain a significant problem for the inmates, even when locked away behind bars.

The show is funny yet shocking at times.

Patrick Melrose

  1. Patrick Melrose

Patrick Melrose is another series on Showtime that offers dramatic insight into the world of opioid addiction. The series takes its name from the lead character, Patrick Melrose, a British man who was sexually abused as a child at the hands of his father.

Deeply traumatized by these early experiences, Patrick sought to medicate his pain through the use of drugs and alcohol. The series does an amazing job of demonstrating the ramifications of his heroin addiction.

The show can be hard to watch at times, as it portrays the grim reality of being a junkie unable to stay sober. The opening scene of the first episode shows Patrick receiving a phone call from a family friend delivering the news that his father has died in New York City.

We realize that Patrick is shooting up at the moment of the phone call, and is elated by the news. He sees his father’s passing as an opportunity to escape his demons and get clean, but it’s not that simple. We watch as his failed attempts at sobriety continue to accumulate.

Even though there is relief in knowing that his father his gone and thus can longer physically harm him, the ghost of his memory remains a nearly constant presence in Patrick’s life.


  1. Breaking Bad

Breaking Bad is a series that dives deep into the world of meth. When Walter White, a mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher living in New Mexico, is diagnosed with terminal cancer, his impending death leaves him desperate to find a way to provide for his wife and son after he’s gone.

When Walter encounters a former student who sells meth, he is inspired to use his advanced knowledge of chemistry for the production and distribution of the drug.

The series takes us into a bleak world of tweakers, drug cartels, hitmen, and addiction. It’s a fascinating ride watching Walter White transform from a loving family man into a cold-blooded monster.

Few shows in the history of television have offered the kind of unrelenting look at the world of the drug trade as Breaking Bad did during its ground-breaking run.


  1. Flaked 

Flaked is another Netflix original series, but its tone is much milder than any of the other shows on this list.

The story revolves around a recovering alcoholic named Chip who killed someone while driving drunk. Chip is played by Will Arnett, who does a great job betraying this individual who is haunted by the tragic circumstances caused by his addiction.

Flaked is set in the hippie and bohemian culture of Venice, California, thus it is not as dark and edgy, yet remains grounded in the reality of the life of a recovering addict.

Entertaining Yet Informative

Each year viewers are treated to more and more shows about drug addiction. Sometimes this type of subject matter can be difficult to watch, yet portraying the world of addiction on television is an important way to communicate the destructive power of substance abuse.

Shows about drugs and alcohol can be both entertaining and informative, offering the public a glimpse into a world that hopefully very few will ever have to experience first-hand.

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