Everyone who goes to Huff (Hank Azaria)—including his own family—knows him as a person and professional who is dedicated to helping others find clarity, peace of mind and, at some stage of their lives, an inner sense of balance and self-worth. But even psychiatrists like Dr. Huffstodt have their limits.
Huff’s life is shaken to its core when one of his patients, a 15-year-old boy, commits suicide during a therapy session. Huff, who provides care and comfort for the functionally insane and neurotic, finds the boundaries of sanity to be elusive in his personal life as well. He’s a warm and well-intended man questioning his values and struggling with the process of confronting one’s fears.
His nurturing nature is tested at nearly every turn as he endures and deals with conflicting personalities and small insanities within his own family.
Contributing to Huff’s inner anxieties is a home life that is far from normal. Huff’s mother Izzy (Blythe Danner) is embroiled in running verbal battles with his wife Beth (Paget Brewster) over who is more important in his life. It is bad enough that Izzy is a domineering, manipulative and disruptive influence in the Huffstodt family’s life, she also lives in an adjoining “guesthouse” above the garage of their home.
The highly unusual and awkward home life is putting a severe strain on Huff’s marriage to Beth. Nevertheless, Beth still gives Huff her unquestioned love and empathy to help him avoid a mental meltdown—as she tries to decipher and dismantle the strange grip his mother has over him. Huff’s only child, a teenage son named Byrd (Anton Yelchin), is a loving son who is caught in role reversal, growing more concerned with his dad’s own well-being.