Tuesday, November 26, 2019

REVIEW: 'All Rise' - Mark Retries One of Lola's Former Cases in 'How to Succeed in Law Without Really Re-Trying'

CBS' All Rise - Episode 1.09 "How to Succeed in Law Without Really Re-Trying"

When one of Lola's former murder cases is overturned on appeal, Mark helms the retrial and struggles to keep the bomber in jail, while Lola fears she may have prosecuted an innocent man.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of CBS' All Rise.

"How to Succeed in Law Without Really Re-Trying" was written by Gregory Nelson and directed by Cheryl Dunye

Lola accepts that she doesn't have a perfect track record. She didn't win every case she presented. Some outcomes may not be what she expected. However, she did her best to represent the people she served. She got justice for those who deserved it. She applied the law as best she could. She knows that it's routine for cases to be overturned on appeal. That too is a part of the judicial system. Families may have to endure years of trauma and struggle knowing that the courts move slowly with a fleeting hope always given to those who stand accused of horrible crimes. In the end, it may all be worth it. This hour certainly presents things in a condensed way. One of Lola's former cases has been overturned. Mark is handling the retrial and Lola finds herself coaching him from the sidelines. She articulates every detail about the original case. One piece of evidence being thrown out doesn't mean that the man she imprisoned is actually innocent. Sure, there are plenty of people in the industrial prison complex who are innocent of the crimes they are alleged to have committed. Lola understands that so well and has fought for fairness to preside over her courtroom. And yet, she is accused of always manipulating the world into accepting her point-of-view over the details of the case. For a judge, that may be a winning personality because it brings a sense of respect and authority to each case. Lola has opinions and isn't afraid to speak up when she knows her word can change someone's life. She needs the lawyers to present her with strong cases with solid evidence to back up everything they did along the way. That may be an arduous practice that doesn't always ensure that justice prevails. However, it's the way the system works so that Lola can feel good about protecting the rights of everyone in her jurisdiction. She pays a lot of attention to that fact. Sometimes she does over think things. She is right to challenge the system as it currently works from time to time. She should also trust the system as well because it can be beautiful when it all works in tandem. Those moments may be fleeting but she always pursues them. And yet, she is plagued with doubt here because she no longer trusts her instincts. Now, the show has never presented the audience with a reason to be concerned about her convictions. As such, it always seemed a little inevitable that she got the right man for the bombing. It was just a case of proving it when all hope seems lost. Lola conducted the trial a certain way two years ago. Mark has to find his own path in the present day. They can both respect how they go about their business. But they clash as well. They have different ideas about how to ensure a conviction once more. Lola puts too much pressure on Mark while he strives for a sense of independence. It allows them to interact more than they usually do. The audience gets to see Lola as the prosecutor everyone in the courthouse talks about. She earned her spot on the bench. It's just perfectly healthy for reasonable doubt to come in momentarily. Judges should question their actions knowing just how severe the consequences can be. It's a lot of power and responsibility. Of course, the show wants to keep things light and amusing elsewhere to ensure that things don't get too dramatic with the main story. That is a little wonky. Emily's story is built around her client fragrantly lying and trying to come up with a defense when he is obviously guilty. She needs Luke's help to figure out how to get the best deal for him. She is smart and capable. She may not have needed that advice. It just keeps them both active as characters. Meanwhile, the trial being conducted in Lola's courtroom is mostly just background noise because the retrial is all that Lola can focus on. Sure, it may be intimidating for someone to say that Lola won't last long on the bench. The audience may disagree based on the evidence presented through nine episodes. And yet, it could be an intriguing ongoing concern because she does strive to do things in a different way from the norm. People may not be inclined to appreciate that very much especially when they are accustomed to the benefits of a corrupt system.