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A Friend Of The Family: 5 Things You Should Know Before Watching Robert Berchtold’s Miniseries

The miniseries ‘A Friend of the Family’ tells the story of Jan Broberg’s kidnapping. It explores how her family was manipulated by a close family friend.

A Friend of the Family‘ is another thrilling true crime drama television miniseries. As you gear up to watch it, there are five things to understand that will enhance your viewing experience.

5. The Series is Based On a True Story

At the heart of this series lies a disturbing yet true story. ‘A Friend of the Family’ unfolds the real-life events of the Broberg family, who fell prey to the manipulations of Robert Berchtold. It all began in 1972 when the Brobergs met Berchtold through their church, without knowing that they set off a series of events that would forever alter their lives. What appeared as a close family bond concealed a more sinister reality, including the kidnapping of 12-year-old Jan Broberg.

4. It Was Inspired By ‘Stolen Innocence’ and ‘Abducted In Plain Sight’

Creator Nick Antosca drew inspiration from ‘Stolen Innocence: The Jan Broberg Story‘ and the Netflix documentary ‘Abducted in Plain Sight.‘ These sources laid the groundwork for the series by providing a detailed account of the events. Antosca, along with Jan and her mother, Mary Ann Broberg, who served as producers, aimed to offer a more nuanced portrayal of the family’s story.

3. Robert Berchtold’s Brother Wasn’t Hesitant to Help the FBI

Robert Berchtold’s brother played an instrumental role in assisting the FBI. Despite the show’s depiction, transcripts reveal that he readily cooperated with law enforcement. His testimony exposed the family’s knowledge of Berchtold’s predatory behavior.

2. Bob Broberg Didn’t Have a Gun When He Picked Up Jan

The series has various interpretations of the events, including the actions of Bob Broberg during his daughter’s kidnapping. Contrary to the series, there is no substantial evidence suggesting Bob contemplated using a gun against Berchtold. This is important in understanding the true nature of the events and the psychological impact they had on the Broberg family.

1. It isn’t Known Whether Jan Voluntarily Got on a Plane to Meet Berchtold

An area of uncertainty in the series is whether Jan Broberg willingly boarded a plane to meet Berchtold during her second kidnapping, as the series depicted. However, this isn’t certain. Mary Ann claims she drove Jan to the airport in the documentary, but Karen Broberg, who was with Mary Ann in the car, argues what the series showed us was the truth.

Where Can I Watch ‘A Friend of the Family?

You can watch the series on Prime Video, Apple TV+, Peacock, Sky, and 7Plus.

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