Created by Michelle and Robert King, CBS’ supernatural crime drama series ‘Evil,’ revolves around a skeptic and a believer as they team up to determine whether specific criminal cases have a supernatural element to them or not. The story of ‘Evil’ follows a forensic psychologist, Kristen, as she partners up with a priest-in-training, David, and a contractor, Ben, to investigate seemingly supernatural incidents on behalf of the Catholic Church. Using their expertise, the trio has to determine whether or not they are legitimate cases or if there is a more logical and scientific explanation to them.
Season 1 of the series ‘Evil’ received favorable reviews by critics and audiences. It was appreciated for its fast-paced storytelling that keeps the viewers hooked, in a nail-biting fervor. Although most of the episodes end in vague resolutions, the viewers keep coming back for more information and clarity. And rightfully so, as the mystery of it all makes it such a great watch. ‘Evil’ lets the viewers assume what they will in most cases. It’s entirely up to the audience to either choose science or believe in the work of the demons. But is ‘Evil’ based on a true story? Do the cases in the show have a basis in reality? Let’s find out!
Is Evil Based On a True Story?
No, ‘Evil’ is not based on a true story. According to the creators – husband and wife duo Michelle and Robert King, they have a team of seven writers working on the script of ‘Evil’ who chart the course the story will take and come up with fresh ideas for the cases. Having said that, when one watches the show, some events do stand out and ring a bell because some cases seem inspired by real news stories. Although the showrunners or writers have not confirmed this yet, our research pulled up some real-life incidents that appear close to the cases Kristen and David tackle in the first season of ‘Evil.’
Firstly, the whole premise of the show is inspired by the real-life jobs of church-sanctioned paranormal investigators, who are tasked with investigating incidents and making sure that there is legitimate supernatural involvement before the church can take action. Just like Ed and Lorraine Warren were investigators for the church in real life. So we know that there are actual people who pursue paranormal investigation as their full-time job, whether we choose to believe in it or not.
Secondly, there are themes of racism and corrupt political system in the show that draw inspiration from real life. ‘Evil’ insightfully poses the question – are people who practice and perpetuate racial discrimination or indulge in corruption (and other nasty stuff) influenced by some supernatural force of evil? Coming to specific cases that the trio deal with in Season 1 of ‘Evil,’ let’s try to draw parallels between real cases and those discussed in the show.
There is a case in an episode where a woman of color is declared dead by a hospital, only to wake up an hour later and a few minutes into her autopsy. We found a similar case from 2018, where a South African woman, who was declared dead in a car crash, woke up in the morgue fridge. You can read the full news report by the BBC here. In another episode, Kristen and David deal with a case where teen students are dying by suicide after repeatedly listening to a particular melody.
Well, that sounds eerily similar to the allegations made against the Blue Whale Game in 2016, when several teenagers allegedly attempted to take their own lives because of one of the challenges in the game. Also, there have been countless reports of paranormal possession and exorcisms around the world since forever. So while the show ‘Evil’ is not strictly based on a true story, it certainly seems like some storylines are loosely inspired by actual events or reports.