Wednesday, September 15, 2010


After watching something like 23 fall TV pilots in the span of a week and a half, I have come to the conclusion that I would like never to see another lawyer or cop on TV again. Exhibit A as to why is Outlaw, the moronic new NBC legal drama in which a Supreme Court justice (played by Jimmy Smits) with a penchant for casino gambling (!) resigns from his position (!!) and forms some sort of super-team of lawyers, then takes on as a client the defendant in the last Supreme Court case he ruled on before resigning (!!!). Also, he's a charismatic hottie whose star associate is in love with him, and who hires a sexy, unscrupulous private investigator to do his snooping even while he's on the Supreme Court.

Obviously we don't expect realism even from the most high-minded courtroom dramas, but the premise of Outlaw, not to mention every single one of its characters, is so laughable that it's impossible even to focus on the boring, boilerplate case that makes up the first episode's ostensible plot (guy wrongly accused of murder, blah blah blah). There's a pathetic attempt at political intrigue because Smits' character is the only person ever to have resigned from the Court and he no longer plays by the rules, is a maverick (or outlaw, perhaps), etc., and the evil elected officials can't tolerate that. But the shady guys following him around are just as contrived as everything else on the show, and even the welcome presence of Carly Pope as the dirty, sexy P.I. who clearly belongs on a totally different show can't save this trainwreck. Lawyers, begone!

Premieres tonight at 10 p.m. on NBC.

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