Shrinking (2023) review: Exceedingly relatable and superbly written

Shrinking is a comedy series primarily revolving around Jimmy Laird, a therapist who is dealing with the loss of his wife and decides to use an eccentric approach with his patients. The series is streaming on Apple TV+.


Jimmy Laird is a therapist who is not dealing with the loss of his wife, even an entire year after her death. His teenage daughter Alice is forced to deal with things on her own but has some help from their neighbor, Liz.

Jimmy works with Paul and Gaby. Paul is a grumpy old therapist and Jimmy’s mentor while Gaby is also a therapist and close friends with Jimmy and his family.

When Jimmy decides to take a very direct approach with his patients in therapy, it has some very adverse effects and he has to try and course correct as he builds himself back to be the reliable person he needs to be for his daughter and the people around him.


Jason Segel has this “everyman” quality about him that comes out beautifully in this series and makes him easy to root for. His character is vulnerable and not afraid to admit his faults and Segel knows exactly how that character is supposed to be portrayed.

Harrison Ford essentially plays himself and is remarkably entertaining. He’s got the “grumpy rough exterior covering a soft interior” concept down to a T. The subtleties in his performance truly round things off, especially when he showcases the effects of Parkinson’s.

Jessica Williams is charming in her role as Gaby and adds extra joy and amusement to the series with her peppy portrayal. Her unique perspective as a character balances out the personalities of Jimmy and Paul.

Luke Tennie, Michael Urie, Lukita Maxwell, Christa Miller, and Ted McGinley are easily one of the most exceptional supporting casts, and they contribute so many memorable moments throughout the series.


The biggest draw of Shrinking is how authentically they have portrayed human emotions and all of their vulnerabilities. There is a character for everyone to relate to no matter what they’re going through ensuring inclusivity.

There is a perfect balance between the light-hearted exchanges and the more serious moments of introspection and growth that the characters have to go through and the tone is consistent throughout.

The script must be highlighted for how profound and simultaneously simple it is. The various directors also deserve credit for getting the actors to embody the perfect mindset to deliver these brilliant dialogues.

The pacing of the narrative is casual and comfortable to follow and adopts the perfect dramatic graph from start to finish. You see Jimmy at his lowest from the very first scene and join him along for his slow rise to decently normal.


The biggest question that the series brings up is the obvious professional integrity of a therapist. Jimmy’s approach to his patients is absolutely unprofessional and by the end, Sean is still staying in his outhouse and paying rent which is a highly problematic situation.

Add to that, his journey with his patients is explored initially but falls to the wayside midway through as the focus shifts towards Jimmy and his inner circle. While Sean is a regular feature and Grace gets some exposure, the others only get one or two moments to establish a story.


Shrinking is a delightful series that brings together a fantastic cast and is supported by excellent writing and direction. The accessibility of the series is one of its best features, even if it occasionally tends to push the boundaries of what is acceptable in a real-world setting.

Harrison Ford is a show stealer in this truly hilarious series that has a little bit for everyone to enjoy.

Shrinking (2023) review: Exceedingly relatable and superbly written 1

Director: James Ponsoldt, Ry Russo-Young, Randall Keenan Winston, Zach Braff

Date Created: 2023-01-27 10:00

Editor's Rating:

Also Read: Shrinking season 1 finale recap, review, and ending explained

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