HBO is premiering In Treatment tonight, but for my money, pop culture best explored psychiatry in Comedy Central’s Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist. Early reviews aren’t promising — here’s a slice of Slate’s take:

Adapted from an Israeli drama titled BeTipul, In Treatment (HBO, weeknights at 9:30 p.m. ET) follows Paul Weston, a psychotherapist played by Gabriel Byrne with the kind of conviction that can only come from an actor faced with ambitious hogwash. The show’s controlling gimmick dictates that it will air nightly for the next nine weeks, with Paul keeping regular appointments with the same patients each night of the week, except for Fridays, when he goes to see Dianne Wiest’s Dr. Toll, the Kupferberg to his Melfi. His nonadventures straddle the realms of the scarcely credible and the incredibly boring.

Another recent show exploiting the fragile mental state of fellow man is Celebrity Rehab. Must we, really, ogle people going through withdrawal? Is it really so fascinating to listen to their stories of broken homes, broken lives, and feed into their vainglorious attempts for one more shot at fame, succeeding only in pandering to the lowest common denominator?

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