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Is Devil in Ohio based on a true story? Netflix thriller inspiration explored

September 3, 2022

Netflix has become the home of gripping thrillers in recent years with new entries in the genre always being added to the streaming service’s library.

The latest addition to Netflix’s thriller collection is Devil in Ohio, a series that tells the story of a young woman who escapes from a Satanic cult and is cared for by a psychiatrist.

Devil in Ohio shares many aspects with real-world cults, which has viewers wondering whether or not the spooky series is based on a true story.


Devil in Ohio | Official trailer | netflix

BridTV11181Devil in Ohio | Official trailer | Netflix

Devil in Ohio release date and plot preview

Devil in Ohio crawled onto Netflix on Friday, September 2, 2022.

Starring Emily Deschanel and Madeleine Arthur, the series tells the story of psychiatrist Dr. Suzanne Mathis who encounters a young woman named Mae who arrived at the hospital with a gnarly injury to her back.

After failing to find a foster home for Mae, Suzanne agrees to look after the girl herself, but all is not as it seems with Mae and it quickly becomes clear that she was once part of a satanic cult.

Suzanne’s decision to welcome Mae into her home not only threatens to upend her family’s lives, but also puts them in potentially grave danger.

Madeleine Arthur as Mae Dodd, Emily Deschanel as Suzanne Mathis sit together on a bench in Devil in OhioDevil in Ohio © Netflix | Ricardo Hubbs

Is Devil in Ohio based on a true story?

Yes, Devil in Ohio is inspired by a true story – although the events of the series were created as a work of fiction.

The eight-episode series is based on the novel of the same name by Daria Polatin, who also serves as showrunner on the series.

Speaking to the Columbus Dispatch, Polatin explained how she got the inspiration to write the novel in the first place.

When my producer Rachel Miller heard this true story, which took place in Ohio, she told it to me,” the writer said. “I knew I had to say it. I decided to start with a book.

Polatin then explained, “The bones of the story are true and happened, and I wanted to take that as a starting point.

“It’s inspired by real events, but it’s not a documentary. It’s just a different type of storytelling.

“For that, I thought the best outlet would be to creatively free it up and fictionalize the details and let it take on a life of its own.”

However, due to the sensitive nature of the subject, Polatin did not go into detail about the events or people involved in the original true story.

Madeleine Arthur as Mae Dodd wearing a flower headdress in Devil in OhioDevil in Ohio © Netflix

The production went to great detail to create the fictional cult

In order to help give Devil in Ohio as much authenticity as possible, the creative team behind the show went to great lengths to create the fictional cult, the Morningstar.

According to Netflix Tudum, the show’s writers’ room spent months building the lore of the cult, even writing its own bible – the Book of Covenants – and creating several hymns that were turned into reality by series composer Will. Bates.

Showrunner Daria Polatin even explained some of the cult’s deeper history, saying, “They were from Ireland, they were farmers, they lived in West Virginia, their crops failed, [forcing them to move to Ohio].”

Madeleine Arthur as Mae Dodd, Emily Deschanel as Suzanne Mathis sit together in hospital in Devil in OhioDevil in Ohio © Netflix | Ricardo Hubbs

Devil in Ohio is available to stream now on Netflix after premiering on September 2, 2022.

Is the Devil in Ohio post based on a true story? The inspiration for the Netflix thriller explored first appeared on Juicee News.

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