The Peacock Dr. Death TV series, which details the horrifyingly true story of deranged Dallas neurosurgeon Dr. Christopher Duntsch, premieres July 15 on the NBC-owned streaming service.
More than 30 of Dr. Duntsch’s patients are permanently maimed or dead. He is currently in a Texas prison, serving a life sentence. I can say firsthand, having represented more than a dozen former patients of Dr. Christopher Duntsch, the story of Dr. Death is that of greed, hubris, and a faulty system.
The True Story of Dr. Death
The true extent of the twisted mind of Dr. Duntsch may never be known, but his trail of carnage–which left many dead as victims piled up–speaks for itself. Patients who did not die on the operating table suffered severe injuries that included surgical hardware placed in the wrong position and/or location. Other patients nearly bled to death on the operating table.
Dr. Death‘s pattern of patient harm in the operating room was so disturbing that physicians in the medical community set out to stop him. The series stars Alec Baldwin, Christian Slater, and Joshua Jackson, who plays Duntsch.
What makes this story even more frightening is that Dr. Duntsch could have been stopped sooner if not for the medical community’s initial failure to intervene.
Sadly, the system designed to protect patients instead protected Duntsch, even as patient after patient wound up permanently maimed or dead. As a result, the show is sure to not only cover Duntsch’s firsthand responsibility for his crimes but also the failures of the system that allowed him to continue practicing medicine long after it was apparent he was unfit to do the job.
Dr. Death TV Series Synopsis
The Peacock original limited series drama is based on the true story of Dr. Christopher Duntsch, who was once a rising star in the Dallas medical community but who managed to turn routine spinal surgeries into crime scenes.
Between 2010 (when he started his practice) and 2013, Dr. Duntsch (aka Dr. Death) performed many operations that resulted in severe injury or death.
Efforts began by a few brave souls in the legal and medical community to try and stop Duntsch. Two fellow physicians, neurosurgeon Robert Henderson (Alec Baldwin) and vascular surgeon Randall Kirby (Christian Slater), and Dallas Assistant District Attorney Michelle Shughart (AnnaSophia Robb), set out to stop him from hurting others.
I and others went to Court, to the media, to the medical board, and ultimately to the District Attorney to try and stop him. But, unfortunately, we were working against some with other interests, such as several for-profit hospitals and a Texas Medical Board that chose to ignore the problem for far too long.
The show was inspired by Season 1 of the Wondery Podcast Dr. Death.
Dr. Death TV Series Cast & Crew
Joshua Jackson plays the title character, Dr. Christopher Duntsch (aka Dr. Death), who wreaked havoc in almost every operating room he ever entered.
He’s joined by a supporting cast that includes Alec Baldwin, Christian Slater, AnnaSophia Robb, Grace Gummer, Carrie Preston, and Dominic Burgess.
The drama series was created and written by Patrick Macmanus, with episodes directed by Maggie Kiley.
It is produced by Wondery, Escape Artists, Littleton Road Productions (2021), and Universal Cable Productions.
Dr. Death TV Series Release Date
All eight episodes of Peacock’s original limited series Dr. Death have a release date of July 15.
Dr. Death TV Series Trailer
Official Dr. Death Trailer #1
Official Dr. Death Trailer #2
I’m looking forward to watching this portrayal of a story I know all too well.
Not for the entertainment factor, although I’m sure with a cast that consists of Joshua Jackson, Alec Baldwin, and Christian Slater, it is sure to be a quality viewing experience, but because the story deserves to be told.
Again and again, as widely and as loudly as possible.
The medical community is filled with brilliant and moral doctors who save lives, and I cannot stress that enough.
However, there are some doctors who are dangerous, and the public deserves to know the dangers. Only then can real reform take place.
To learn more about Dr. Christopher Duntsch’s crimes, visit our Dr. Death resource page.