Thursday, September 18, 2008

TV EYE: Lowering the Bar

Hey kids, let’s put on a courtroom drama. Let’s start with an idealist, we-the-people, thoroughly impassioned public defender with a boys band haircut (Mark-Paul Gosselaar). We have to have the foxy, long-legged, blonde lawyer (Melissa Sagemiller) from the DA’s office who shoots sparks at the boy lawdog before and after they tussle in the courtroom. Don’t forget the wiggy, capricious judge (Jane Kaczmarek) who somehow manages to grab most of the young buck’s cases. Add a few more stereotypes, toss in every courtroom cliché imaginable, and make sure to gather most of the characters (between bed-hopping and courtroom wrangling) in a familiar bar by the end of an episode. Cool. We’ll call it Raising the Bar (TNT, Mondays, 10:00 PM), and wonder if maybe if its creator, the venerated TV Kingpin Steven Bocho pulled it outta some tattered notebook he kept back in high school.(The next TV courtroom drama I'd like to see would feature Robert Downey Jr (crossing and channeling Al Pacino and Tom Cruise) in a episodic version of the worst courtroom movie evaaah, 1979's ... And Justice or All. Mark me, that would be a keeper...)

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