Is The Shrink Next Door a true story? Real life podcast the new Apple TV+ drama starring Paul Rudd is based on

The eight-part Apple TV+ series follows the unorthodox relationship Dr Herschkopf builds up with his long-time patient, Marty

With comedic giants Will Ferrell and Paul Rudd at the helm, it’s no wonder The Shrink Next Door is one of the most highly anticipated new AppleTV+ shows.

Rudd plays charismatic doctor Ike Herschkopf, who gradually takes over the life of his patient, Marty Markowitz (Ferrell) in a dark “cuckoo-in-the-nest” comedy.

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It’s a “crazy” story that seems dreamt up for TV. But is The Shrink Next Door actually based on real events?

Here is everything you need to know about it.

What is The Shrink Next Door about?

The eight-part Apple TV+ comedy series is rather dark, and follows the unorthodox relationship Dr Herschkopf – a psychiatrist to the stars – builds up with his long-time patient, Marty.

After first seeking help at a vulnerable time, to cope with the loss of his parents, Marty finds the charming Ike inserts himself into his life, over several years.

The power dynamic between medic and patient veers into deeply uncomfortable territory; not only does the doctor move into his patient’s Hamptons home, but he even manipulates his way into being named president of the family business.

Unsurprisingly, those close to Marty start to question what is really happening with Ike and the care he’s giving – leading to plenty of family drama.

Can Marty muster the courage to show his unwelcome house guest the door?

Is The Shrink Next Door based on a true story?

It’s hard to believe, but The Shrink Next Door is inspired by true events - which only makes it all the more gripping - and is based on the podcast of the same name by American network, Wondery.

It’s a female voice behind the scripts – writer Georgia Pritchett - who has risen to fame thanks to working on a multitude of shows (the most notable recently is HBO comedy-drama Succession).

The 53-year-old Brit explains that she always enjoys “the challenge of looking at people who other people might think are irredeemable in some way and finding the humanity, and finding the truth of them”.

“When I listened to the podcast, and I talked to people about it, everyone was saying, ‘This is a crazy story, Marty’s an idiot, Ike’s evil’, and I just thought, ‘No, that’s not right’,” she says of her approach to The Shrink Next Door.

“It’s an unusual story, but I felt it was something we could all relate to, particularly after the last 18 months.

“I felt like it was a story about a human relationship, and that Marty was feeling isolated and confused and scared, which we’ve all felt in the last 18 months, and that this relationship started off well.

“And we’ve all had relationships that have started well and then, for whatever reason, have gone wrong.”

When can I watch it?

The first three episodes of The Shrink Next Door debuted on Apple TV+ on Friday 12 November.

New episodes follow weekly every Friday.

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