Abstract(#br)Background(#br)Movies and television (TV) programs are an important source of public information about ECT.(#br)Objective(#br)To narratively review the portrayal of ECT in international movies and TV programs from 1948 until present.(#br)Methods(#br)Several Internet movie databases and a database of phrases appearing in movies and TV programs were searched, supplemented with a Medline-search . No language restrictions were applied.(#br)Results(#br)ECT was portrayed in 52 movies (57 scenes), 21 TV programs (23 scenes), and 2 animated sitcoms (2 scenes). In movies, the main indication for ECT is behavioral control or torture (17/57, 29.8%), whereas in TV programs, the most frequent indication is erasing memories (7/25, 28%). In most scenes (47/82; 57.3%) ECT is given without... consent, and without anesthesia (59/82; 72%). Unmodified ECT is depicted more frequently in American scenes (48/64, 75%), as opposed to scenes from other countries (11/18; 64.7%). Bilateral electrode placement is used in almost all (89%, 73/82) scenes. The vast majority of movies (46/57, 80.7%) and TV programs (18/25, 72%) show a negative and inaccurate image of the treatment.(#br)Conclusion(s)(#br)In the majority of scenes, ECT is used as a metaphor for repression, mind and behavior control, and is shown as a memory-erasing, painful and damaging treatment, adding to the stigma already associated with ECT. Only a few exceptions paint a truthful picture of this indispensable treatment in modern psychiatry.