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

The new TV show The Chair is available to stream on Netflix. The series is unique in how it portrays the academic life of professors in a university. Viewers may recognize some stars on the show. For example, one of the biggest names on the cast list is Holland Taylor. 

Fans do not only focus on the stars of the show, but the premise has drawn many of them in. Some people consider the Netflix original to be an accurate portrayal. As a result, they wonder if it is an adaptation of a true story. 

‘The Chair’ focuses on Dr. Ji-Yoon Kim

The Chair is a comedy-drama that came out in August on Netflix. The series currently has one season out so far, with six episodes for viewers to binge. Some cast members include Sandra Oh, Jay Duplass, and Bob Balaban. 

The show takes place in Pembroke University, and the main character is Dr. Ji-Yoon Kim. In the first episode, Ji-Yoon becomes the new head of the English department. She is the first woman to land the position, and she tries to secure the tenure of a colleague. 

From the start, Ji-Yoon notices that the department is struggling. She also faces the task of firing three professors that have high salaries but low enrollment rates. In Ji-Yoon’s personal life, she has to raise her daughter as a single mother. 

One of Ji-Yoon’s friends and colleagues is Professor Bill Dobson. While he is popular among students, his life became a mess after the death of his wife. Eventually, he faces termination from his teaching job.  

The show ends with Bill planning to get his job back, and other faculty members vote Ji-Yoon out of her position. 

Does ‘The Chair’ have a real story behind it?

David Morse, Sandra Oh, Cliff Chamberlain, and Ian Lithgow sit at a table in 'The Chair' Season 1 Episode 6
(L-R) David Morse, Sandra Oh, Cliff Chamberlain, and Ian Lithgow in ‘The Chair’ Season 1 | Eliza Morse/Netlfix

The university in The Chair is fictional, but the series tackles issues that plague many universities. Viewers can get a real insight into the inner workings of academia. Some fans have wondered if the show drew inspiration from a real story. 

According to Distractify, the Netflix original does not base the premise on a real-life event or university. Instead, the financial, social, and business issues of many colleges influenced the creation of the series. Even a liberal university deals with sexism, ageism, and conflicts between different teaching methods. 

The students want to make a change, and young professors wish to connect with their pupils. However, older faculty members prefer to teach the same decades-old material. Of course, The Chair also brings in the reality of cancel culture. 

One storyline highlights the use of celebrity guest speakers to get more students to participate in campus events. Some real-world college professors might be able to relate to the struggle of proving why one deserves tenure. 

The status of another season of ‘The Chair’

The Chair has been out for a short while, but fans are curious if there is going to be another season. The show left the possibility for more episodes since Bill promised to fight to return as a professor. There would be an opportunity for Ji-Yoon’s story to continue as well. 

As of right now, Netflix has not confirmed if there will be a second season. After all, the series’ debut was recent. It can take a couple of months for the company to determine if a show continues or not.  

The platform has a reputation for canceling shows. Still, the future of The Chair looks promising for fans. The show does not have the label of a miniseries, and the reviews have been positive overall. People should stay tuned for any announcement of a possible season 2.

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