How Does The 'Dr. Death' TV Show Compare To The Stomach-Turning Podcast?

- Dr. Death -
How Does The 'Dr. Death' TV Show Compare To The Stomach-Turning Podcast?

Like so many women of a certain age, I obsess over a lot of true crime entertainment. Call it morbid curiosity or personal research (let’s be honest, most of the victims of these things are women of a certain age), but if there’s a docuseries, book or podcast about terrible men (let’s be honest, these perpetrators usually are terrible men) committing terrible acts, I’ve probably consumed it.

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark kept me up at night for weeks and Dirty John made me really think twice about the act of dating in general, but nothing turned my stomach quite as much as the riveting and wholly gnarly 2018 podcast Dr. Death. Hosted by Laura Beil, the addictive 10-episode season chronicled the gruesome medical malpractice (and that’s putting it mildly) of neurosurgeon Dr. Christopher Duntsch, aka Dr. Death. And now, it's on TV.

Peacock has turned the real-life saga into a mini-series drama starring Christian Slater, Alec Baldwin, and Joshua Jackson (as the notorious Dunstch/Death). But does it capture the unimaginable horror?

As much as it pains me to say it: not so much. While the eight-episode Peacock series does heighten the anxiety and ick factor with some truly horrible sound effects (hammering bones and suctioning blood never sounded so awful) and Jackson does a good job as the sociopathic doctor, it never quite pulls you in the same way the podcast did.

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