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Fiction: Fatal encounters between therapist and patient
February 5, 2013 3:18 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for any stories that include a fatal encounter between a therapist and his/her patient.

It can be any form of fiction: books, movies, episodes from television series, short stories, etc.

It can be any form of death: suicide, homicide, accident, etc.

It can be either the therapist or patient (or both) who dies.

Example #1: Basic Instinct
Example #2: Sixth Sense
Example #3 (a stretch): Antichrist (they were married but "he" was a therapist)

Thanks in advance for any answers.
posted by 99percentfake to Media & Arts (33 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
Dressed to Kill comes to mind.
posted by arha at 3:21 PM on February 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


The movie Color of Night, a suspense thriller with Bruce Willis as a psychoanalyst.
posted by theatro at 3:31 PM on February 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


A short story in this book fits your criteria.
posted by Ideal Impulse at 3:32 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you scroll to the "Effects" section of the wikipedia article on Candace Newmaker you can see some TV episodes based on her killing.
posted by kavasa at 3:34 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


The TV show Huff.

Freddie on the television show Skins, although it wasn't his therapist who kills him, it's his girlfriend's therapist.
posted by thebrokenmuse at 3:34 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


There's a scene in Office Space where the therapist keels over mid-hypnosis.
posted by Ms. Toad at 3:35 PM on February 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


David Foster Wallace's "The Depressed Person" is a doozie.

Available in PDF format here.
posted by nacho fries at 3:43 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Heavily implied in the Stephen King story, "The Boogeyman", which can be found in Night Shift.
posted by Coatlicue at 3:46 PM on February 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


"The Coat Hanger" episode (episode 9) of American Horror Story: Asylum.
posted by southern_sky at 3:48 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Garnethill is a crime novel by Glasgow author Denise Mina that involves murder, therapists, and patients, in a way that I can't reveal without giving away the ending. It opens with one therapist being murdered, and in the course of the investigation, bad doings are revealed involving another therapist. The person doing the investigating is a former mental patient.

Mina had done a lot of Ph.D. research involving women, mental health, and the criminal justice system, and thought she could get a lot more attention for her findings in the form of a novel. I've read two in this series so far, and they're pretty engaging.
posted by matildaben at 3:56 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Still of the Night with Roy Scheider (therapist) and Meryl Streep (patient).
posted by kirkaracha at 4:00 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hannibal Lecter
posted by French Fry at 4:01 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


In the "Halloween" series of movies, Donald Pleasance played a psychiatrist who treated Michael Myers (the killer).
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 4:05 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Every Jonathon Kellerman book with his therapist character Alex Delaware.
posted by fshgrl at 4:13 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Speaking In Tongues" by Jeffrey Deaver.
posted by jenfullmoon at 4:20 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


In The Fourth Deadly Sin by Lawrence Sanders, a psychiatrist is murdered by a patient.
posted by tatiana131 at 4:21 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Spoilers for In Treatment and the Sopranos:

The first season of HBO's In Treatment features a fighter pilot patient who dies during training. The ambiguity of whether his crash was an accident or suicide drives the last part of the first season, as well as a good deal of the second season when the therapist is sued for malpractice.

Also, the third season of the Sopranos features a patient who visits Tony's therapist and later (fourth season perhaps) commits suicide.
posted by helloimjohnnycash at 4:22 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


At least two episodes of Law and Order: Switch, season 5, ep 22 and Divorce, season 8, ep 16.
posted by erloteiel at 4:52 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Season 3 of Criminal Minds has an episode called "Scared to death" where a psychiatrist discovers his patients deepest fears and then uses that to kill them.
posted by Apoch at 5:18 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Spoilers for a Dream Theater Album:

Scenes from a Memory includes this, although it is not obvious on the first listen-through...
posted by Jorus at 5:34 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Identity, but even mentioning this is a ginormous spoiler.
posted by mochapickle at 6:13 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Spoilers for the show Dexter:

Season 1, episode 8 ("Shrink Wrap") culminates in Dexter killing a therapist (who he's seen a few times during the episode) at the end of a session.
posted by Kybard at 6:14 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sebastian Fitzek's Therapy.
posted by Addlepated at 6:24 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Speaking of Bruce Willis, Sixth Sense fits the bill.
posted by orange swan at 6:28 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


I recommend The Appointments of Dennis Jennings, the Oscar-winning short film starring and co-written by Steven Wright. It's on YouTube and it's magnificent.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:30 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


***pretty big spoiler***

Wire in the Blood: Unnatural Vices (season 6; episode 1) has this plot. I think it's streaming on Netflix and Hulu.
posted by fireandthud at 6:35 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Well, this is pretty much the entire premise of the Hannibal Lecter trilogy: Red Dragon, Silence Of The Lambs, and Hannibal. It's mainly backstory though, but Dr. Lecter killed the shit out a bunch of his patients. Hope that's not a spoiler.
posted by turgid dahlia 2 at 8:04 PM on February 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


American Horror Story season 2 episode 9
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 11:02 PM on February 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


The 1942 Cat People.
posted by brujita at 11:05 PM on February 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Clive Barker's Nightbreed.
posted by MinusCelsius at 2:15 AM on February 6, 2013 [1 favorite]


In a Country of Mothers by A. M. Holmes
posted by 8k at 4:08 AM on February 6, 2013 [1 favorite]


Mind Demons by Mike Jastrzebski might fit.
posted by OrangeDisk at 6:32 AM on February 6, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sorry for the belated roundup, but thanks for all of these answers. Great suggestions!

American Horror Story - season 2 episode 9
American Horror Story: Asylum - The Coat Hanger (episode 9)
Cat People (1942 film)
Color of Night - Bruce Willis as a psychoanalyst.
Criminal Minds - episode called "Scared to death"
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation – one episode had a teenage boy dying while being "reborn" to his mother (Candace Newmaker)
Dexter - Season 1, episode 8 ("Shrink Wrap")
Dream Theater - Scenes from a Memory
Dressed to Kill
Garnethill - Denise Mina
Halloween films - Donald Pleasance treats Michael Myers
Hannibal Lecter trilogy: Red Dragon, Silence Of The Lambs, and Hannibal
Hit Man - Lawrence Block (one short story in this book)
Huff (TV show)
Identity (movie)
In a Country of Mothers by A. M. Holmes
In Treatment – much of first season; second season therapist is sued
Jonathon Kellerman - Alex Delaware series – which one did his house get blown up?
Law & Order - 'Born Again' episode (Candace Newmaker)
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - episode 'Cage' (Candace Newmaker)
Law and Order - Divorce, season 8, ep 16.
Law and Order - Switch, season 5, ep 22
Mind Demons by Mike Jastrzebski
Nightbreed by Clive Barker
Office Space - the therapist keels over mid-hypnosis (Youtube)
Skins (TV show) – Freddie is killed by girlfriend's therapist
Sopranos – third season (a patient visits Tony’s therapist), continuing into fourth season
Speaking In Tongues by Jeffrey Deaver
Still of the Night - Roy Scheider (therapist) and Meryl Streep (patient)
The Appointments of Dennis Jennings (short film – Youtube)
The Boogeyman – Stephen King (from Night Shift)
The Depressed Person - David Foster Wallace (short story from Harper’s)
The Fourth Deadly Sin by Lawrence Sanders
Therapy - Sebastian Fitzek
Wire in the Blood: Unnatural Vices (season 6; episode 1)
posted by 99percentfake at 3:06 AM on February 9, 2013


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