Based on shocking real-life events, The Shrink Next Door is a dark comedy starring Paul Rudd, Will Ferrell and Katherine Hahn, and explores what happens when a doctor-patient relationship turns exploitative.
Excellent news for all you podcast addicts – the story that became a viral pod sensation is coming to small screens very soon, starring comedy stalwarts Paul Rudd and Will Ferrell.
The Shrink Next Door will take a close look at the true-life events surrounding a psychiatrist and his patient, and the lengths that the former went to to control someone in his care. It looks to be an interesting watch, and not just because of the popularity of the podcast that inspired it.
The Apple TV limited series is set to look closely at the relationship between mental health professional and patient, and how certain dynamics can lead to abuse and manipulation.
The seven-episode podcast series of the same name was released to high acclaim in May 2019, and was quickly snapped up as a TV concept last year. The Big Sick’s Michael Showalter will direct and Succession writer Georgia Pritchett has written the script, so we’re expecting big things.
Here’s everything we know so far, including the wild new trailer.
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What is The Shrink Next Door really about?
The darkly comic show will dramatise the story told by the podcast series, one of a psychiatrist – Dr Isaac “Ike” Herschkopfl – manipulating his patient Marty Markowitz and endeavouring to take over his life, isolating him from everyone else he holds dear.
By the time Markowitz had been seeing the doctor for a few years, Herschkopfl was the only person he had left in his life, as he’d advised his patient to distance himself from all others.“Looking back on it all, it seemed like I was in a cult,” Markowitz has said in an interview. “What does every good cult leader do? The first thing they do is separate you from your family.”
“It’s their job to reconstruct yourself into a whole human being, not demean you,” Phyllis, Markowitz’s sister, added. At Dr Herschkopfl’s advice, Markowitz didn’t see his sister for 27 years.
Based on true events that occurred throughout the doctor and patient’s relationship, it will reveal how Dr Herschkopfl inserted himself into Markowitz’s life in other insidious ways – like moving into his patient’s Hamptons home and persuading him to name him as president of a family business. Wild.
The show’s official synopsis reads: “The series explores how a seemingly normal doctor-patient dynamic morphs into an exploitative relationship filled with manipulation, power grabs, and dysfunction at its finest.”
Who stars in The Shrink Next Door?
Rudd will take on the role of overbearing psychiatrist Dr Isaac “Ike” Herschkopfl and Ferrell will play Marty, one of Ike’s patients (both are also set to executive produce). WandaVision’s Katherine Hahn will appear as Phyllis Markowitz, and Casey Wilson (who you may recognise from Gone Girl, Bride Wars and TV sensation Happy Endings) will play Bonnie, Ike’s wife.
Is there a trailer for The Shrink Next Door?
What happens when the man tasked to help improve your life decides to take it over?
The newly released trailer for The Shrink Next Door explores that, and sees Rudd slip effortlessly into the role of eerily charismatic Dr Herschkopfl.
“Why are you here?” he asks his patient, Ferrell’s Marty, in the clip’s opening shot. “I don’t know, Phyllis told me to come,” comes the reply.
Marty is awkward and gawky, the doctor collected and with an air of charm that comes along his easy smile. It’s infatuation at first sight for both parties.
From that point on, Marty is catapulted from a reluctant attendee encouraged by his sister to a full-on convert obsessed with bettering himself – and following Herschkopfl’s every instruction. And the overbearing doctor continues to worm his way into every aspect of Marty’s life, the two become inseparable.
“He’s my psychiatrist, business partner and best friend,” Marty shares with a potential love interest (that is, of course, soon quashed by Herschkopfl). “How does that even work?” she asks. How indeed.
Because their unprofessional relationship seems to only get stronger and stronger as Herschkopfl infiltrates every aspect of Marty’s life.
“He has no boundaries and I don’t trust him,” Hahn’s Phyllis rightfully declares in the clip, but the doctor’s claws are already in deep. “I can’t cut her out of my life, she’s the only family I got,” Marty can be seen telling Herschkopfl, but will he stand firm against the man he owes his life to?
We loved it in our ears, so we’re intrigued to see how this dangerous dynamic unfolds on our screens.
When will The Shrink Next Door be available to stream?
The first three episodes of the eight-episode series will premiere on 12 November, followed by one new episode weekly, every Friday through to December.
Images: Getty/ Apple TV/William Mebane
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