Boston Legal

Season 4 Episode 17

The Court Supreme

Aired Monday 10:00 PM Apr 22, 2008 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
131 votes

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Episode Summary

The Court Supreme
Alan and Denny finally get to argue in the Supreme Court, at the request of a colleague, on the appeal of a convicted rapist who has been sentenced to death. Meanwhile, someone at the firm is revealed to be dating a call girl.

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  • A wasted opportunity.

    Even with a man's life in the balance Allen can't resist preaching his leftist agenda. It literally ruins the episode for me. We have a terrific plot line involving a sympathetic prisoner who is mentally challenged and convicted of raping a little girl. He is then sentenced to death. Allen is charged with appealing the use of the death penalty. He goes through practice runs and is warned that the Supreme Court will not tolerate a lawyer getting off topic or being disrespectful. With all this, and the man's life literally hanging in the balance Allen launches into what feels like a 20 minute diatribe about everything that's wrong with the conservative members of the Supreme Court. I felt like I was watching a documentary from Michael Moore. He never once mentions any problems with any of the left leaning Justices, and ignores the warnings that in his limited time he should stick to the case and try and save this kid's life. Instead he just keeps going and going attacking every righ-leaning member of the court. The outcome isn't given in this episode, but there are only two real possibilities: a) that the court voted to uphold the original ruling, in which case I'm upset by the fact that Allen use his time in front of the Supreme Court to promote his own agenda (at the expense of another man's life) or b) that despite Allen making no Constitutional argument and insulting the majority of the members of the court he wins, in which case the show will have become so devoid of reality that it will be hard to redeem it. I just wish that the writers would try writing an interesting script more often, than just writing a long, politically motivated speech which saves Allen's weak legal skills.moreless
  • Ripped from the Headlines!!

    This episode is about a real case, Louisiana .vs. Patrick Kennedy, which the U. S. Supreme Court heard just last week.

    First, let me say up front. I had to stop and start this episode many times to get through it, because of the emotions Allan's speech brought out in me. It embarrassed me, made me angry, chuckle, and gave me a sense of pride at points.

    Yet, in the end, I'm hoping people of influence around the U. S. Supreme Court watched the episode and will kindly bring it up with those nine individuals.

    I'm proud of the actors, writers, producers, and network for dealing with an important topic of justice while it can still make a difference. A difference, yes, for Patrick Kennedy but MORE IMPORTANTLY for each and every one of us.

    As Allan said in his quite embarrassing way, our third branch of government really needs to remember its place. It is there to be above politics.

    It exists to be a check and a balance for the people. The government gets its power from the people not the other way around. The President and Congress need watching over as they will do what is good for the short term. The U. S. Supreme Court is there to be a long term impartial check and balance FOR THE PEOPLE! This is what is important to all of us.

    I'm proud of this episode. I suspect when asked to name the episode(s) that brings them the most pride/is the most important/etc the writers, actors, and producers will list this one in the top five, if not the number one episode.

    - - - - - - - - - There was another plot concerning Jerry and at the beginning it looked wonderful. Jerry loses his cherry, which I loved. Yet, to mix these two plots together short changes Jerry and doesn't help the important and historical effort discussed above.

    The writers had to quickly process it and there was much to consider. One of which is why doesn't Jerry forgive her? If he really loves her, why hold her job against her? Maybe she would be willing to give it up for him, maybe not. Now we won't know (or so it seems).moreless
  • Incredible Episode.

    An absolutely brilliant performance by James Spader. In front of the Supreme Court, his portrayal of Alan Shore was absolutely supurb, and will most likely earn him an Emmy nomination this year. Just a fantastic example of thie great show. Denny Crane (Shatner) plays a great supporting role in adding humour to the situation, but this does not diminish the fantastic acting from Spader. If you have not seen this episode, watch it now! And now i must fill up the extra space with random words. Popsicle bike boobs air glasses story plane egypt kangaroo muffin handshake cheese double what?moreless
  • Another incredible episode.

    When this series started I was unsure whether or not this whole concept would work. I was proved wrong time and time again.

    Like all episodes this one had a little for everyone. Jerry losing his virginity and then finding out the woman he loves is a high class call girl.

    Then to the main story of Spader going to the US Supreme Court to argue against the death sentence. While what the client was convicted of is horrible, the fact that he is the only one on death row for it was worse.

    The client was believable as of diminished capacity and played the fact he believes he was innocent.

    The speech he gave in front of the court was very well done, and it also shows that while the court is supposed to be above political influence it is not. It gets stacked with justices to get political agendas through.moreless
  • There are very few programmes on television that leave you feeling passion, hope and punching the air because they are there fighting your own beliefs!

    This episode was absolutely magical. Alan Shore is a brilliant orator - of course it is brilliant writing and super-brilliant acting by James Spader - Shore expresses himself so eloquently, so passionately, putting forward beliefs that you only wish you had the courage to say. I mean how many of us would love to stand up in front the Supreme Court ... the SUPREME COURT ... and tell them face to face what a bunch of self-absorbed, self-promoting, bunch of hyprocrits they are! And he did it so beautifully! They are there supposedly to protect the people, the rights of the people and here you have a young man, who not only might be innocent, but who is mentally challenged ... and they are not willing to listen to all the facts? This beggars belief! But I am assuming that the writers know that this is how the system works; I mean Shore mentioned some specific recent occurrences that have come before the Court, which presumably have significance to the American public. I don't know which was worse, the fact that the Court manipulates procedures to their own gains, or that you have to be coached into knowing how to manipulate the Court!

    The reason I love this series so much is that it shows that it takes just one voice to voice the opinion of the masses, when those masses are being ignored. At the end of this programme, Denny and Alan agree they have so much more to do ... and I really hope that is true ... because the series goes from strength to strength ... and it seems that there are very few programmes willing to stick their necks out and take on the present political and legal injustices that occur day to day. And we need that ... we need that voice of conscience ... we need Alan Shore to stand up and speak out ... to fight for justice ... I tell you what ... we need Alan Shore IN the Supreme Court!!! Bring it on!moreless
Nestor Serrano

Nestor Serrano

D.A.G. Ronald Lazarus

Guest Star

Rachelle LeFevre

Rachelle LeFevre

Dana Strickland

Guest Star

Bob Gunton

Bob Gunton

Attorney William Connolly

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (2)


    • The case depicted here is a reference to the Kennedy v. Louisiana which was taken to court on April 16th 2008, based on the unconstitutional grounds that executing a man for the rape of a child to be cruel and unusual punishment. Alan made a reference to Coker v. Georgia, which was also attempted to be brought up in the actual case. On June 25th Kennedy was spared of the death penalty in a 5-4 majority, tiebreaker being Justice Kennedy referenced early in the episode.

    • When Denny says he doesn't want to be 18-1, he is referring to the New England Patriots who were almost perfect but blew their final game in 2007. Denny has never lost a case in court to date.