I just watched the first season and after all the hype and the reviews, I was expecting a lot more. The non-linear story line made each episode just annoying and predictable. The dialogues were not electrifying and the acting was at best decent. The show is no "Practice" and it is no "Boston Legal."
Just because the show revolves around a civil case does not mean its a legal show. Just because Patty Hewes is a gungho lawyer, who kills a dog, breaks promises, manipulates people and tries to kill her associate, does not make her an anti-heroine. There was no true 'ooohh - ahhhh' shock moment in the entire first season. There was no moment were you felt proud about any of the characters, every twist or turn in the season seemed artificial or seemed to have been perpetrated for the purpose of shocking the viewer without providing any real insight.
I am not certain if the producers and writers simply wanted to tap into an available niche or if the intended target demographic of the show is young educated women who have previously stayed away from the legal genre, but I can only assume that the success of the show is due to this reason. The writing and character development is week and no mythos is created about Ellen Parsons. Simply mentioning that she has great ambition and 'their is something about her,' etc... does not equate to building a character who the audience would want to watch, relate to, or care about.
The story line of the entire civil suite is at best flimsy. Without dwelling into the complexity of the legal world, the season ends with a 2 billion dollar settlement with two or three links of questionable evidence. The video tape could easily have been coerced, any half-brain lawyer could easily have argued that the recording was made under duress, a gun could have been pointed at the guy and someone could have forced him to say the things he did. The accused would never get a chance to cross examine the testimony and thousand of holes could have been created in that recording. For a show to assume the mantle of a legal drama in 'high-stakes' litigation and then make such obvious and quite frankly retarded mistakes is inexcusable and then for Patty Hewes, to go ahead and turn that tape to the DA after signing the non-disclosure agreement and risking the settlement of 5000 people that throughout the season has been the only thing that she cared about is even more, for a lack of a better word: retarded.
Weak writing, weak character development, overly presumptuous twists that made no sense, bad litigation, random and unnecessary plot deviation. All of these could be elaborated individually, but at the end, those who get the review will not need to be convinced. Those who call it the best show on TV really need to look into other shows of the same genre of a higher caliber.