Baby Reindeer’s ‘true’ story is getting more complicated by the day – and ‘Martha’ is now having her say

Richard Gadd’s stalker drama continues to dominate the Netflix charts, and the armchair detectives are out in full force. But with news that the ‘real Martha’ is poised to give her side of the story on Piers Morgan’s talk show, Adam White asks, should there have been a better duty of care?

Thursday 09 May 2024 12:01 BST
Baby Reindeer has been Netflix’s No 1 show for weeks – but how reliable a narrator is Richard Gadd?
Baby Reindeer has been Netflix’s No 1 show for weeks – but how reliable a narrator is Richard Gadd? (Ed Miller/Netflix)

Perhaps Richard Gadd was naive? Maybe he didn’t realise Baby Reindeer, his limited series for Netflix inspired by his own stalking, would cause such a stir. That he could smudge the facts of his traumas just enough to protect the people involved. Perhaps he thought better of us. The success of Gadd’s series has been startling; strong reviews and word-of-mouth praise have made it an international hit, and it remains at number one on the streamer’s UK chart more than four weeks after its release. The last three of those weeks, though, have seen the show careen into its inevitable second act. The armchair detectives have arrived.

The seven-episode series concluded with a nine-month prison sentence and a restraining order for Gadd’s stalker, his aspiring stand-up Donny looking on as Martha (Jessica Gunning), the woman who’d terrorised him and his loved ones for four years, was led away in handcuffs, her face wan with guilt. Whether this actually happened has been kept deliberately vague.

Gadd has always declined to speak of the real Martha’s present-day whereabouts, and how her harassment campaign came to an end. While doing press for Baby Reindeer – as well as his earlier one-man show at the Edinburgh Fringe about his experiences – he has only ever said that the stalking ended.

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