A couple weeks ago, I mentioned William Shatner's Raw Nerve. It's his new talk show.
I've caught several episodes so far. His interviews with Valerie Bertinelli, Tim Allen, Kelsey Grammer, Jenna Jamison, and Jimmy Kimmel all have one thing in common. Eventually, they all come around to a discussion about substance abuse.
There are a couple things that could be going on. One is that there is a tremendous amount of substance in celebrity circle. Another is that there is a tremendous amount of un-discussed substance abuse in the general populace. Another possibility is that Shatner is hand picking people with substance abuse in their past.
All three of those possibilities are likely true.
Several people have commented that the show gets a little creepy. I can see that. Shatner dives into the issue with an odd intensity.
I think there's a reason behind that. I don't think Shatner is just trying to get a good interview. I think the entire show is about Shatner dealing with his third wife's death.
In 1999, Nerine Shatner died in the swimming pool at the couple's estate. In his book, "Up Til Now," Shatner talks extensively about Nerine's alcoholism, her trips to rehab, the challenges he faced in dealing with her alcoholism, the helplessness he felt, and the deep grief he felt. He recorded a song about Nerine's death on his album, "Has Been."
Though Shatner has remarried, he still seems to a lot of trouble dealing with Nerine's alcoholism and death.
As I watch Raw Nerve, and the way he asks guests about their challenges with drugs or alcohol, it strikes me that he is really asking them, "Can you please help me understand Nerine?"
As the show continues, I will be interested to see if this trend continues, or if Shatner moves on to other Raw Nerves with his guest.