Earlier this month, the popular news site VICE published an important expose of the popular Dopey Podcast. Chronicling its recent rise to the top of the iTunes chart, writer Emily J. Sullivan covered Dopey’s long, tumultuous and tragic popularity spike.
Sadly, part of the reason that Dopey got on so many people’s radars was because of the untimely overdose death of one of its hosts. Known publicly as “Chris,” the real life addiction survivor spoke openly on the air about his continuous struggles with drugs and alcohol. Up until this summer, he had been clean and sober for two years. But, to the shock of many listeners, he was found dead this past July of an opioid overdose.
Many fans and bloggers saw this as a very real (and very common) addiction situation. Relapses can happen in an instant and often times they have dire consequences. In the case of Chris, all that is known is that he had suffered an injury in the weeks leading up to his death. It is assumed that he began taking painkillers shortly thereafter and potentially OD’d over a long weekend.
Chris’ co-host, who goes by the name “Dave,” spoke openly and honestly on the Dopey mic after hearing the news. He, like the audience members, was stunned to hear his friend was gone (as was Chris’ own girlfriend).
Dave has vowed to continue to the podcast and use it as a forum to honor Chris’ memory. He also made an effort to shift the tone of the show, focusing more on the recovery journey and the struggles people overcoming addiction constantly face. Dopey will now work as a outlet of sorts, welcoming listeners to call in, share their stories and receive peer support.
“While initially, the focus was to be solely on drug stories, it’s apparent now more than ever that Dopey’s main focus will be addicts living in recovery,” Dave told VICE. “Chris’ legacy will live on through these episodes, and the lives he touched all around the world.”
As mentioned above, this tonal shift did not go unnoticed. Following Chris’ death, downloads for Dopey have more than doubled and notable guests have begun calling in (such as Dr. Drew Pinsky and former Howard Stern Show comedian, Artie Lange).
We definitely encourage our friends and followers to give The Dopey Podcast a listen. Click here for a list of all 100+ episodes.