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The Hilarious World of Depression is made possible by a grant from HealthPartners and its Make It OK campaign, which works to reduce the stigma of mental health. Find out more at www.makeitok.org.
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A show about clinical depression...with laughs? Well, yeah. Depression is an incredibly common and isolating disease experienced by millions, yet often stigmatized by society. The Hilarious World of Depression is a series of frank, moving, and, yes, funny conversations with top comedians who have dealt with this disease, hosted by veteran humorist and public radio host John Moe. Join guests such as Maria Bamford, Paul F. Tompkins, Andy Richter, and Jen Kirkman to learn how they’ve dealt with depression and managed to laugh along the way. If you have not met the disease personally, it’s almost certain that someone you know has, whether it’s a friend, family member, colleague, or neighbor. Depression is a vicious cycle of solitude and stigma that leaves people miserable and sometimes dead. Frankly, we’re not going to put up with that anymore. The Hilarious World of Depression is not medical treatment and should not be seen as a substitute for therapy or medication. But it is a chance to gain some insight, have a few laughs, and realize that people with depression are not alone and that together, we can all feel a bit better.

EPISODES


Naomi Ekperigin Brings In Her Baggage, Unpacks It

December 10, 2018 · Duration: 48:58 · Play

“There’s a lot to unpack, John,” says comedian, actor, and writer Naomi Ekperigin during the course of this interview and indeed there is. The New York native, now uneasily dwelling in Los Angeles, has dealt with anxiety, depression, a very complicated relationship with her father, as well as problems with alcohol and cutting. Comedy has […]


Aparna Nancherla Is Having a Harder Time Doing Something She’s Great At

November 26, 2018 · Duration: 43:54 · Play

It’s pretty easy to be a fan of Aparna Nancherla. Not only does she create incredibly funny, smart, relatable comedy, she does so in a variety of formats. You can catch her standup on Netflix or Spotify and you can see her acting work on shows like “Bojack Horseman” and “Corporate” as well as movies. […]


Adventures in Therapy

November 12, 2018 · Duration: 37:54 · Play

True stories of beautiful epiphanies and majestic, horrible disasters. Talk therapy is one of the most popular ways to address depression and it’s one of the most effective. Still, at its root, talk therapy is a relationship between two humans — strangers, mostly — trying to figure out something complicated together, and that is inherently […]


Guy Branum Goes to Minnesota, Gets Good Internet, Finds Self

November 5, 2018 · Duration: 43:42 · Play

Comedian and writer Guy Branum was expected to be a construction worker his whole life. Maybe a football player. He was large, strong, and grew up in a town more known for agriculture than metropolitan sophistication. After scoring good grades and pining for places usually seen in the movies or magazines, he moved on to […]


The Hilarious NIGHT of Depression

October 29, 2018 · Duration: 1:18:26 · Play

Our show took to the stage recently for a live event packed with laughter, insight, and music. We were joined by Paul F. Tompkins, Aimee Mann, Ted Leo, and Ana Marie Cox, who all shared their experience with mental illnesses as well as what it’s like to be out and about in the world with […]


Words: Am We Uses Them Good At Mental Health?

October 22, 2018 · Duration: 45:21 · Play

Finding and using the right words for something as complex as mental illnesses can be exasperating. And it can take a lot of effort to avoid the wrong words. In this episode, using words, we explore terms like “crazy” or “addiction” or “depression” and how they are so often abused, co-opted, and twisted. Guests include […]


Scott Thompson Keeps Getting Back Up Again

October 15, 2018 · Duration: 53:21 · Play

He’s a writer, a stand-up comedian, and an actor, but Scott Thompson will likely always be best known as one of five members of The Kids in the Hall, one of the best sketch comedy groups ever. Scott has made a lot of people laugh, but his life has been filled with events that aren’t […]


Chris Gethard Does Not Avoid the Collision

October 8, 2018 · Duration: 52:57 · Play

Comedian and actor Chris Gethard has a lifetime of experience with depression. Chris has turned moments of his life dealing with the illness into an off-Broadway show and an HBO special, which is more than one might expect from a fight-prone, often manic, kid from West Orange, New Jersey. We cover a lot of ground […]


Figuring Out Regular Adolescent Behavior vs. Alarming Disorder with Jen Kirkman

October 1, 2018 · Duration: 53:23 · Play

Young people can be morose, angry, withdrawn. It’s often chalked up to being a “phase,” a natural initiation ritual to adulthood. What if it’s not? What if it’s a mental disorder in need of help? We hear from the always-entertaining comedian and writer Jen Kirkman about her efforts to understand her head. We also talk […]


Neko Case Leaves Bad Places, Goes to Better Places

September 24, 2018 · Duration: 51:59 · Play

Long before Neko Case was known as one of the top singer-songwriters working today, she was a punk teenager running around the streets of Tacoma, having ditched a neglectful and dangerous house. Fortunately for her and her eventual fans, she got her life on track, developed a strong interest in music and threw herself in […]


Your Amazing Therapeutic Jukebox

September 17, 2018 · Duration: 52:28 · Play

We asked you, our listeners, for the songs that help you most when depression is really acting up, and the stories behind those picks. On this episode hear stories about and music from Leonard Cohen, Bjork, Neil Young, Radiohead and so much more. We even get some peaks behind the songs from Craig Finn of […]


Mortified’s Dave Nadelberg Presents Your Shame Live On Stage

September 10, 2018 · Duration: 40:36 · Play

You can think of Dave Nadelberg’s vast Mortified project as The Hilarious World of Embarrassment, Awkwardness, and Redemption. Through stage presentations, film, TV, and books, Dave invites people to share their most mortifying writing. It’s very funny, sure, but it’s more than that. Dave says the process of dragging your younger self out of that […]


Open Mike Eagle Goes Outside And Meets People

September 4, 2018 · Duration: 50:20 · Play

A lot of rappers are heavily influenced by the rough and real streets where they grew up. Mike Eagle grew up on those streets too but he was always inside, reading books and watching TV. He loved comedy, cartoons, and especially the wide range of music available on cable, everything from N.W.A to Spin Doctors. […]


Andrew Zimmern Wrecks His Life, Rebuilds His Life, and Eats Weird Food

August 13, 2018 · Duration: 42:56 · Play

Celebrity chef and Travel Channel host Andrew Zimmern has made a reputation as a culinary expert with an adventurous streak, traveling the world and sampling tree grubs, shark meat, tarantulas, and horse rectums among many other cuisines. But before his current fame, he was on the street, stealing handbags to fuel his alcoholism, which existed […]


Special Episode: Mental Health First Aid and Lady Gaga’s Mom

June 26, 2018 · Duration: 27:10 · Play

CPR training has been widely available for many years now and offered in a variety of convenient ways. But what if the problem isn’t physical but mental? A new wave of first aid training is rapidly sweeping the world and people are learning what to do and what not to do in a crisis. A […]


How to Get Help

June 8, 2018 · Duration: 25:45 · Play

Here’s a repeat of an episode originally aired last year. We’re offering this repeat because some things need repeating, such as how to get help for your mental health when you really need it. It’s a conversation with Dr. Ken Duckworth, Medical Director for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and it’s practical advice. A […]


Highlights From A Hilarious Night of Depression

March 5, 2018 · Duration: 40:50 · Play

The show busts out of studios and quiet intimate spaces for an on-stage performance at the Dakota Jazz Club in Minneapolis. Comedian Mike Brown joins us for plenty of comedy and conversation. We even bust out a few games where you can play along and see if you can tell a Pokemon from an antidepressant […]


Ted Leo Stops Beating Up File Cabinets, Songs, Self

January 29, 2018 · Duration: 47:00 · Play

It’s hard to settle on a musical description for Ted Leo. We ended up going with “if The Beach Boys were ’80s skateboarders” to summarize his melodic intense post-punk sound. Similarly hard to nail down is whether Ted’s longtime issues with depression and anger stem from his brain’s built-in wiring or from abuse he suffered […]


Reggie Osse Puts It Together

January 15, 2018 · Duration: 51:05 · Play

In one of the last interviews he gave, Reggie Osse, aka Combat Jack, talks about the connection between the status of the African-American man in contemporary society, the changing role of masculinity in hip-hop culture, and mental health. Osse was an important figure in hip-hop as a lawyer, editor, podcast host, and thinker. This interview […]