DJ AM’s Gone Too Far has low ratings; paper asks if show contributed to his death

In a story about the effects DJ AM’s reality series may have had on his relapse and death, The New York Times reports that the show’s ratings for its first episode “were tepid, averaging 499,000 viewers during the hour … On the same Monday night a year earlier, an episode of ‘The Hills’ averaged 2.4 million viewers.”

As to the connection between the show and Adam Goldstein’s death, the paper has very little evidence except a doctor at a rehab center who didn’t know DJ AM and just watched the first episode, which apparently qualifies him to make a completely noncommittal statement: “Doing this show could certainly have been a relapse trigger for Mr. Goldstein.”

A friend of his, Justin Hoffman, told the paper, “I think the plane crash killed him. It just took a year for it to do it.” And an intervention expert who worked with him, BJ Hickman, said, “Adam did everything we ask any addict to do. He still went to meetings almost every single day. He spoke with his sponsor every single day. He had people around him at all times when he was exposed to drugs and alcohol.”

MTV exec Tony DiSanto said, “It crosses all of our minds, a terrible tragedy.”

Dancing With Demons [New York Times]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.