Submitted by KiKi Vanderhousen
It wasn’t a coincidence that A&E aired the Intervention In-Depth® episode “Heroin Hits Home” narrated by Donnie Wahlberg hours prior to Meet the Joneses. “Heroin Hits Home” is about some kids in a Boston suburb who start off taking OxyContin and eventually graduate to Heroin because it’s a similar high but it’s cheaper.
It’s a very well done episode. You can’t help feeling sympathetic for the parents of these kids who go through this addiction. You also get some background on OxyContin and why it’s known as “Hillybilly Heroin.”
I remember when I first heard of OxyContin – the new wonder pain drug. Time released, non-addictive, blah, blah, blah. As usual it was introduced with the usual hype. It took no time at all for addicts and dealers to discover how to exploit it as a recreational high. Unsuspecting family doctors were dispensing it to everyone who complained about even mediocre pain.
And that’s where the danger was because kids could find it right in the medicine cabinets of their family homes.
In Meet the Joneses, Mr. Jones tells William that’s how his wife started taking OxyContin – she sustained an injury and never stopped taking her pain pills, even after she healed. Unfortunately, that’s how a large percentage of unsuspecting OxyContin addicts end up “hooked.”
Narcotic pain killers don’t take away the pain, they disconnect your brain from the pain. That’s why they’re so effective and unfortunately, addictive. They give you this euphoric feeling that everything is wonderful.
People who would never consider themselves addicts are suddenly finding themselves addicted to painkillers – that’s exactly what happened to Brett Favre after a football injury.
When it comes to OxyContin, when you chew them, this feeling is 10 times more intense. Crush and snort them, and you’re really flying. Mix them in saline and shoot them, you’re Superman. Stop taking OxyContin and you’ll start feeling like your flesh is melting and your bones are on fire.
In Meet the Joneses, Mrs. Jones and her group of stay-at-home mommies were just popping them with their OJ and coffee. But the actress who portrayed Mrs. Jones did a great job of portraying how bitchy you can get when you had to be without them.
The really authentic part of this episode was that the Joneses and their play group were certainly of the right economic level to afford the amount of OxyContin they would be taking every day to “fly right.”
The really lame part of this episode was when Akani and Arnie played the married couple with an adopted kid at the park to gain intel. What happened to the writing team that day? Did the cleaning crew win a bet and get to put in a scene they wrote? I had to play that over a few times on my TiVo to see if that was for real.
After that hiccup (or should I say heart burn), things got a little better and the story line got back on track.
Also interjected into this episode is this thing with Melissa deciding that William should spend some quality time with the kids, so she’s leaving the house for a couple of hours a couple of nights a week. Well no sooner is she out the first night, William gets a call and he leaves Ben in charge and the whole things falls apart – very, very predictable.
And, at the close of Episode 3, William is still trying to get Ben to go to a baseball game with him. For those of you who may be calling for Ben to cut his dad a little slack, don’t. Because the writing and the acting is so true in the life of a recovering addict, it’s scary.
And that’s what keeps bringing me back. Yes, there are some writing slips and falls – right now I feel Akani is just a useless piece of fluff. But they might develop her character down the line.
LuLu is just full of surprises and I’m anxious to see how her character develops because she could end up shocking all of us.
And the introduction of Sharon Little’s song(s) (coming up in Episode 4) is really something you’ll enjoy. Download the entire album from iTunes™. You won’t be sorry.