So there have been two shows people have been asking me to watch and therefore review…Falling Skies and Suits. Of the two shows, Suits is much more up my alley than Falling Skies. But I did mention in my last podcast that I may try Falling Skies to see what I think in the off-season (like maybe December/January when all the network shows are on hiatus for the holiday break) if after the first season wraps up and people still think it’s worth watching. Remember that fun little show called The Killing that everyone loved in the beginning only to have their hearts cut out of them with a dull spoon by Veena Sud and crew? Well if Falling Skies turns into The Killing, let me know and I won’t waste my time.
As usual, I’m a little late to the game on this but at least I’m not five seasons behind. I’m only three episodes behind…which I should be all caught up on after tonight. That is if iTunes will download the episodes faster than saying “12 hours remaining.” For real? Now I know this isn’t iTunes. It’s the bomb shelter type house I stay in at the Jersey Shore that was built with cinder block. Seriously people, if you stay at the Jersey Shore and a hurricane hits, my house is where you want to be! This sucker is going nowhere!! But the walls are so thick, connecting to the router a few rooms away really slows things down. So hopefully it won’t take until 1am to be able to watch Episode Two, but it might. So you know what that means? PODCAST DISCUSSION TOPICS!!! Because guess what finally premieres this week? THE CLOSER AND RIZZOLI AND ISLES!!! You have to listen to the podcast to get the inside joke so I will not explain it. You are just going to have to listen to the podcast!! Geez Heather get off track much? When did a review of the pilot of Suits turn into a discussion about podcasts and hurricanes? Too much Sam Adams too early in the day…that’s how! Anyhoo, back to Suits!
What did I think of Suits? I LOVED IT!!!! Probably my favorite new summer show. Suits tells a very interesting story that is not your typical law firm drama featuring the hiring of new associates. Suits focuses on two main characters: Harvey Specter (played by Gabriel Macht) and Mike Ross (played by Patrick J. Adams.) Can you say bromance in the making? Harvey is the firm’s (and NYC’s) best closer. At first I thought, “oh great. This is going to be another law show with the cocky lead character who thinks his charm and smarminess will win over every case and every person he meets.” For the most part, I was wrong. Specter is cocky and charming but he’s very likable and he’s very good at what he does. You can tell he takes his job seriously, even if everyone else doesn’t think so. He has a great sense of humor and a sharp wit. In one scene, he walks through the halls cracking jokes at his colleagues expense (kind of) but it isn’t mean-spirited or nasty. It comes across as slightly self-deprecating and possibly over-the-heads of some of the people he is teasing. I get the impression that everyone knows how Specter is, therefore doesn’t mind the sarcasm. I give a lot of props to Gabriel Macht with how he is playing Specter so far. These types of characters skate on very very very thin ice from being grating and hated to being endearing and beloved. So far, he is leaning towards endearing. Especially in scenes with Mike. I think Harvey sees himself in Mike and I get the impression from the little we know right now, that Harvey didn’t have an easy road to get to where he is now. Neither has Mike. So Harvey is going to give him a chance. It’s sort of a pay it forward moment if you will. I think we’re are going to see Harvey really looking out for Mike and molding him. Don’t get me wrong, he isn’t doing this for solely altruistic means…he has to protect his ass (which is on the line) as well. If Mike fails, so does Harvey. Harvey could lose his job. So he is going to do whatever it takes to make sure that doesn’t happen. But while Harvey claims to not care about anyone but himself, he immediately shows that isn’t true in the way he handles Mike.
Mike Ross is a brilliant con man/cheater/drug dealer/care giver/ who happens to be a genius and through a string of bad luck, ended up on the wrong side of how his life should have went. He is your typical good guy who made some bad choices and had some bad luck that we want to root for. Mike has an uncanny ability to be able to read and learn things every quickly and be able to really remember and retain anything he learns and he loves the law. For pete’s sake, he took the bar on a dare…and passed! We see him taking LSAT tests for other people and when he happens on to run into (literally) an interview session with Harvey to escape the police (which he was set up by his buddy Trevor’s drug dealer friends, and sort of Trevor himself, to take the fall for a deal they knew the cops would be there) he is able to impress Harvey by reciting law references and rulings without looking at a law-book or at a computer at all. We also know that Mike is an orphan and has been raised by his grandmother who is in a nursing facility. In order for her to stay there, he needs $25,000 (which is why he got messed up with Trevor and his crew in the first place.) Since that plan is now down the tubes and he aced his interview with Harvey, inadvertently, Harvey decides to bring Mike on board at his firm as his new associate. One thing I already like about Mike, is that he isn’t one those obnoxious “I-Know-It-All” kind of guys. He’s a regular guy with an enormous gift of intelligence. But he also is smart enough to know when he is in over his head and that just because he is book smart, doesn’t mean he is smart in practice…that’s why he needs Specter and Rachel. There are plenty of times in the pilot we see Mike looking like a deer in headlights because he doesn’t know what he’s doing. I’m very pleased to see the writers go down that road because while I still have some issues with the premise (more on that later) it would be HUGELY insulting to every lawyer in the world to have this guy with no college degree, no law degree, hasn’t passed the bar, no experience, come in and dominate and be a great lawyer. I don’t care how smart he is. The smartest person in the world still needs real world experience to excel at their career. So I must say, excellent casting so far on the two leads.
The rest of the cast was also strong. You have the managing partner Jessica Pearson (played by one of my favorites Gina Torres), the sharp as a tack and beautiful paralegal Rachel Zane (played by Meghan Markle), the stick in the mud rival looking to bring down Harvey, who is also in charge of the new associates, Louis Litt (played by the wonderful Rick Hoffman) and Harvey’s very funny and witty assistant Donna (played by the always solid Sarah Rafferty.) I’m sorry but I will never be able to see Gina Torres as anyone other than the deliciously evil Anna Espinosa from Alias. And that is not a knock on her as an actress because she is fantastic and I always love her in every role she is in. But to me, she will always be Sydney’s bitter nemesis, Anna. There seems to be some history with Harvey and Jessica and I don’t think it’s romantic. It seems she may have taken a chance on him at one point and ended up paying for him to attend law school at Harvard. She appears quite responsible for his quick advancement up the ladder and she has a big sister/jailhouse warden type of effect on Harvey. I already like that while she allows him to get away with some of his crazy antics, she will not tolerate others. She’s tough but fair and has a soft spot for Harvey….probably because she sees so much potential in him and possibly for some other reasons we are not privy to yet. Rachel has apparently been hit on one too many times for her liking because she really bites Mike’s head off when they first meet and his first reaction to her is how beautiful she is. They each learn, very quickly, that the other is very sharp. Rachel’s walls do start to come down a bit when Mike asks for her help in researching for his first case (she’s the best researcher in the building) and we see Rachel start to open up to him. We learn she is incredibly bright but she has trouble taking tests. Boy can I empathize with that! Maybe not the incredibly brilliant part, but definitely the test taking part! She talks about how she’d love to be a lawyer if someone could just take the damn tests for her, as Mike grins and ducks his head. Would be a sweet gesture Mike but in the long run, that won’t score you many points with Miss Rachel! I’m not sure if this is going to be a potential love interest (especially since it seems like Trevor’s girlfriend, Jenny, also has the hots for him and he possibly for her) or if this relationship is going more of the Auggie/Annie way. Either way, I like the friendship bond that is forming. Louis is going to be a BIG problem for Harvey and Mike. Not only was Louis passed over for the senior partner promotion that went to Harvey, but he also has a nephew that graduated from Harvard Law the same year as Mike “graduated” and the nephew never heard of Mike and doesn’t know him at all. Oops. Now I wouldn’t think everyone at Harvard Law knows one another, but I can’t imagine there are 10,000 law students walking around making it easy to blend in (according to Harvard’s website it’s about 1,900 per year.) On average, that’s just over 633 students per year (1st, 2nd, 3rd year.) Chances are, you know at least 50-60% of those people and probably have heard of 80-90% of the people in your year. So this should be interesting which leads me to my bitch fest section of the blog.
There are really only two gripes I have with the show. Number One: Trevor. I really don’t need to see him again. Can we please ignore him and pretend like he never happened? Number Two: Mike’s employment. This is a tough one for me because while I love the premise because it is so different, how is this going to last? At some point, Mike will need to pass the bar exam to practice law and at some point, his scholastic background is going to be questioned…it already has a little! For any of you who are lawyers out there, please help me out with this. You have to pass the bar to practice law correct? I know when you graduate, there is some time between your hire date at your firm or county prosecutor’s office and when you take the bar and hear the results that are considered acceptable. But until you pass, I think all you can really do is research. I don’t think you can be in a deposition actively participating (maybe just observing) or in a courtroom either trying a case or pleading out with opposing counsel. If it was found out that a “lawyer” who didn’t pass the bar was arguing cases or negotiating plea deals, couldn’t that be grounds for a mistrial or overturn plea deals? Then again, people in this country have a right to represent themselves and not everyone has a law degree or has passed the bar so maybe not. Maybe it’s fine. But it could open up Harvey’s firm to a MONSTER lawsuit, I would think, if clients that Mike represented lost their cases and they found out that not only did he not pass the bar, but he never went to law school and this firm is passing him off as an attorney! So at some point, Mike’s got to pass the bar (again.) But here’s another question, does he need to show proof of graduating law school in order to take the bar exam? I don’t know. Or can anyone off the street take a bar exam? I would think not but who knows! I know I am really getting too caught up in this but I had to get on the show runners about something!
Overall, Suits is a 9.9 out of 10 and I recommend you get caught up and check it out. And good news. Only 10 hours remaining until I can watch episode two! Ugh!!