Is the Netflix’s “The Watcher” Based on a True Story?

Is the Netflix's The Watcher Based on a True Story

Is the Netflix’s The Watcher Based on a True Story? – The Watcher,” a new Ryan Murphy’s Netflix series, centres on a wealthy family who are the targets of an unknown stalker who goes by the moniker “the Watcher.” The married pair Nora and Dean Brannock will be followed as they move into their ideal home in the idyllic suburb of Westfield in the upcoming television series. But after using almost all of their cash to finalise the deal, they quickly realised that the neighbourhood was “less than attractive.”

The Watcher, a film written by Ryan Murphy and Ian Brennan, is based on a Reeves Wiedeman piece. It was published under the same title in New York Magazine’s The Cut section, which sparked a lot of audience conjecture about the Broaddus family’s related claims.

In the film adaptation, Nora Brannock is portrayed by Naomi Watts, Dean Brannock by Bobby Cannavale, Elli Brannock by Isabel Gravitt, Carter Brannock by Luke David Blum, Pearl Winslow by Mia Farrow, Theodora Birch by Noma Dumezweni, Mitch by Richard Kind, Jasper Winslow by Terry Kinney, Margo Martindale by Margo, Dakota by Henry Hunter Hall, and Karen Calhoun by Jennifer.

However, viewers have indicated a want to know more about the narrative. Is the story entirely scripted, or is it based on a true story? If you’re wondering whether Netflix’s “The Watcher” is based on a true story, you can get all the information you need right here.

Recommended: When Did the Brannock family Start to Fear in The Watcher?

the watcher netflix true story

Is ‘The Watcher’ on Netflix Based on a True Story?

YES, The Watcher on Netflix is, in fact, based on a true story. When Derek and Maria Broaddus spent $1.3 million for the 1905 Dutch colonial to raise their three children there, the plot of “The Watcher,” which attracted international notice, began. They expected it to become their dream home, but when renovations were being done before they were scheduled to move in, they received an unexpected letter addressed to “The New Owner.”

As part of Netflix’s unsettling plot changes, the Broadduses’ first and last names have been changed. In the television show, they only have two children, who appear to be older than the Broadduses when they first moved into the home. We’ll have to wait till the programme airs to find out whether it answers or keeps unanswered the question of who the Watcher is. The series is based on a true story, just like Dahmer. Would you like to know Derek and Maria Broaddus’s whole story?

What happened to Derek and Maria Broaddus

What Happened to Derek and Maria Broaddus?

The Watcher is a fictional account of the adventures of married couple Derek and Maria Broaddus, who bought a six-bedroom house at 657 Boulevard in Westfield, New Jersey, in 2014. They were willing to do some home upgrades and perhaps put up with some annoying neighbours. Instead, they came across a nightmare that appeared to be a creation of a horror movie. Three days after the couple had purchased the property, the first letter from The Watcher, a mysterious figure who claimed to “be in charge of observing,” showed up. The letter and the ones that followed only grew eerier. The Watcher alluded to the three Broaddus children when she said something was hidden behind the walls of 657 Boulevard and that the house craved “fresh blood.”

An unnamed source also cautioned the Broadduses not to enrage 657 Boulevard with their home renovation projects, saying, “You don’t want to make 657 Boulevard mad.” This initial letter ended with the following information about the family that may be used to identify them: “There are countless numbers of cars that pass by 657 Boulevard every day. Maybe I’m a part of one. Take a peek at all the windows that are visible from 657 Boulevard. Perhaps I’m a part of one. Any of the several windows at 657 Boulevard offers a great view of the daily procession of pedestrians. I could be one.

The Watcher sent the Broaddus family a total of three letters. When the family looked into these bizarre occurrences, they found that this person had also sent letters to the house’s previous owners, John and Andrea Woods, as well as to another family living close by. Both The Woodes and this unnamed neighbour threw their letters out carelessly as well. But the more they looked, the more bizarre details the Broadduses found. 

For example, the neighbours behind 657 Boulevard kept two lawn chairs uncomfortably close to their property line. Even unusual was that 657 Boulevard was facing those chairs. They started to believe that one of their neighbours, Michael Langford, who had a schizophrenia diagnosis, was their prime suspect. A man who lived close by and played “some pretty dark computer games,” according to his partner, also began to raise questions in their minds.

657 Boulevard house

When the Broadduses went to the police, they were told not to talk to their neighbours about the contents of the letters since they believed one of them had most likely sent them. After an investigation, Michael Langford, in particular, was accused because of the family’s property’s position and the public’s impression of his family as peculiar. The Broadduses hired a private detective to investigate the area after he was cleared. They received three letters in all, the second of which contained details that, according to them, could only have been seen by someone who had been inside the house or very close by it and which named and referred to their children by name.

As they continued their search for the Watcher, the Broadduses discovered that the Woods, who had lived in the house for 23 years earlier, had received a letter shortly before they departed but had no issues. Later, the Broadduses attempted to bring legal action against the Woods for neglecting to disclose that they had received a letter. Still, the case was ultimately thrown out because the Broadduses never really moved into the home and instead opted to rent it out. 

However, the Watcher’s reputation had spread beyond the immediate area at that time. Several theories were put forth; some Westfield citizens said the Broadduses had sent the letters to themselves to make up the money lost after experiencing buyer’s remorse, while others claimed the Watcher had to live within the house. They eventually sold the house in 2019, which was bought for $400,000 less than the Broadduses paid for it. The Watcher was never found and is still unidentified today, despite the Broadusses investigations recruiting numerous police and former FBI officers.

You can watch every episode of “The Watcher” on Netflix.

Recommended: Is “The Disappearance of Cari Farver” Based on a True Story?