Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has had a lot to contend with since its premiere, mainly its inability to hold a candle to Tina Fey’s grand opus, 30 Rock. However, its spurring on of the depressed “Baron of Botox’s” suicidal tendencies is not aiding its cause.
In episode four of the first season, “Kimmy Goes to a Doctor!”, the doctor in question is Jacqueline’s (Jane Krakowski) plastic surgeon, Dr. Sidney Grant (Martin Short), a name that’s not that far a cry from Fredric Brandt, clearly. Short’s cartoonish, funhouse portrayal of Brandt, who, admittedly, looked very similar, was probably not helpful to Brandt’s melancholic state. He hung himself on April 5th in his Coconut Grove, Florida home.
At the forefront of dermatological advances, Brandt was a favorite among celebrities, including Madonna, a testament to his work. Willing to test out products and treatments on himself before others, Brandt’s experimental side showcased his passion and commitment to the work.
With a practice based in Miami, Brandt built a skin care and plastic surgery empire. But it wasn’t enough to curb his sense of self-doubt and self-consciousness. His publicist, Jackie Tractenberg, stated, “[The Kimmy Schmidt episode] definitely bothered him. It was a very mean portrayal.” And so it would seem Fey, who co-wrote the episode with Jack Burditt, may have preyed on the wrong person to make fun of this time.