A Friend of the Family Review: Is a Disturbingly Accurate True Crime Drama?

In the first episode of Friend of the Family, a montage of footage demonstrates how close the two families grew over the course of a few years.

It also examines Berchtold’s initial kidnapping of Jan Broberg. However, as the series progresses, viewers receive more context and become aware of B’s manipulation and seduction of the entire family.

It has four biological children in the true crime drama. Nonetheless, he spends a growing amount of time with solely Jan.

Her father, Bob Broberg (Colin Hanks), is irritated by B’s frequent dates with Jan. However, it appears that Bob’s expressions before to the initial abduction were motivated by jealousy and not fear.


Robert Berchtold expressed his gratitude to the Broberg family at a church ceremony two years prior to Jan Broberg’s abduction. B sent fruit baskets to the Brobergs and showered them with compliments. Before he proposed to Jan, he courted every member of the Broberg family.

A Friend of the Family Review
A Friend of the Family Review

Jake Lacy’s acting is so multifaceted that every aspect of Berchtold’s character is evident. B thought he could quickly get Jan out of the country before the Brobergs realized what was happening by the time he took her.

After Mary Ann’s abduction, Berchtold continued to pursue her. However, the manner in which Lacy addresses Paquin as B and Mary Ann is hypnotic. When she attempts to avoid him, he fixes an intense gaze on her.

When Bob Broberg confronts Berchtold for bringing Jan flowers, B insults and demeans the man. Lacy’s acting dominates the screen in every scene, as he smoothly transitions from family guy, secret lover, protective father figure, and the evil lurking beneath B’s façade.

In the time between the two abductions of Jan Broberg by Robert Berchtold, her father, Bob, fought vehemently to keep his family away from him. In the years following the review of A Friend of the Family, B preyed even more viciously on women. Through an affair, he estranged Mary Ann from her husband.

Then, he continued to remind Jan of her obligations to “the mission” in private. Even at work, Berchtold tormented Bob Broberg, and the entire family endured his continuous phone calls. Apparently, families were unable to alter their telephone numbers in the 1970s.

After Abducted in Plain Sight blamed Mary Ann and Bob for what happened to their daughter, the true crime drama refocuses the guilt for Jan’s two kidnappings on Robert Berchtold in an amazing and justified manner.


Because he was smitten with the eldest daughter of the family, he skillfully divided them. The resulting true crime drama is unsettling and binge-worthy. The Showbiz Cheat Sheet rates A Friend of the Family 4.5 stars for their evaluation.

Four episodes of A Friend of the Family will premiere on Peacock on Thursday, October 6th. The final five episodes will be released weekly on Thursdays till November 10.

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