Fairly Legal

Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Friday 9:00 PM Jan 20, 2011 on USA

Episode Recap

Kate Reed wakes up to the sound of her phone ringing to find her soon to be ex-husband, Justin Patrick, next to her. She rushes around the boat and, after shoving him on his way, she makes her way up top. As she's leaving, she meets Andrew who's pulled his boat into the slip beside hers. It's Kate's first day back being a mediator at Reed & Reed and already she's late. She has gone from being a lawyer to a mediator for the firm founded by her father Teddy Reed. The firm is under fire and loosing clients so she's needed back at work – especially her skills at resolving conflicts. As she stops at the boat slip's locker to change shoes, she encounters Marty Fliegel who asks if she's the new owner and suggests she change the boat's name. She explains that "Welcome A Broad" was the name her father chose and she's inherited the boat. Besides she adds, it's bad luck to change the name of a boat. When her phone rings, again a picture of the wicked witch from "The Wizard of Oz" shows – seems her step-mother is trying to get a hold of her.

She makes a stop at a small café where a man runs in and tells the owner to empty the cash drawer. When the owner pulls out a bat, the robber pulls out a gun. Kate springs to action and negotiates a "deal". The robber leaves with a case of beer and some beef jerky. Even though the owner is only out his cost of $17.50 for the goods and still has his cash, he still charges Kate $5.75 for her coffee and cookie.

Her first encounter at work is her loyal assistant Leonardo who she calls Leo. He tells her that Judge Nicastro has requested her presence at 2:00 p.m. even though Kate insists the Judge hates her. Kate then starts ranting about her step-mother Lauren, also the managing partner for Reed & Reed, who hasn't done anything with Teddy's ashes yet, just as Lauren walks up behind her. Lauren explains about how the firm has been loosing clients and Lauren intends to do whatever to keep the firm afloat. She enlists Kate to settle a dispute between Charles and Douglas Pease, Reed & Reed's biggest client, about the future of their company. Kate must convince them to sign the papers the firm drew up so they can get paid. Charlie lets Doug explain about his latest highway disaster. Doug says that another car sideswiped him and the boys in the car pointed a gun at him which caused him to veer his BMW into a concrete divider. Charlie is concerned that the DUI Doug received at the scene will threaten the buyout agreement. Kate decides she needs to get to the bottom of the DUI in order to settle the dispute.

Kate heads over to Justin's office. He's the Assistant District Attorney and should be able to shed some light on the DUI. He has decided to give the two boys who pointed the gun at Douglas stiff sentences and that Douglas's DUI can just disappear. As she leaves the office, she slips the accident file off Justin's desk to read what happened herself.

Kate reaches Judge Niscastro's courtroom late, as usual. The Judge reminds her she's late and tells her that Brian Michaels is suing an actor, a singer and a cupcake maker. He says that because they botched Michaels' marriage proposal and lost his grandmother's wedding ring, he's suing for ten million dollars. The Judge explains he doesn't want the case in court so Kate is to resolve it through mediation. He gives her 2 days and when she says that isn't enough time, he gives her to the following afternoon, warning her that if she's late, she'll be in contempt of court. Kate calls Leo and asks why Nicastro doesn't like her.

After reading the file from Justin's office, she rushes to find Justin and learning he's at lunch, she heads to his normal haunt, an outdoor vending cart. She says one of the kids has a scholarship to Yale and he was only driving the car but Justin says they're both guilty. The kid who pointed the gun will be offered a plea of 10 years and the driver, a plea of 5 years. He also reminds her that she shouldn't have read the file.

Kate meets with D'sean at the jail and explains to him what the D.A. plans to offer him. He's gets so upset about Nathan's position that the guards have to drag him away. When she meets with Nathan, he explains that after the other car ran into his (not the other way around as Doug told it) he was surprised by blond woman driving the car. Kate realizes one of the stories isn't true as this is the first time anyone has mentioned a woman in the other car.

Kate meets with her brother Spencer, also a lawyer, who tells her the kids are screwed because Doug wouldn't want his wife to know about another woman so no way he'd come clean. Spencer explains that his wife is in Seattle for awhile and that he quit the firm to spend time with his family, unlike his father ever did.

Kate meets with Charlie and Doug to ask them to drop the case against Nathan. Kate confronts Doug about the other woman in the car. He says he met her in a bar and after the accident, she ran off. Charlie insists they prosecute both boys. Kate leaves making a call to the Wizard but hangs up before it goes through. When Kate gets back to the firm she asks Leo if he can use his police contacts to find out everything about Doug's accident.

Lauren in the meantime is meeting for drinks with Tim Connelly to convince him to stay with Reed & Reed. Tim explains his firm wasn't really going to leave, his dad was just trying to get a better rate. When Lauren says that she will go the extra mile to keep him, he slides his room key to her. But Lauren walks away with Tim saying that he wants his extra mile.

Back at the firm Kate starts the mediation. Brian says he wanted to propose to Jessica, his fiancée on a cable car but the actor was lousy, the singer was horrible and cupcakes were supposed to have their faces on them but didn't look anything like them. Since she gave him her grandfather's prized watch, he decided to give her his grandmother's ring but that after he handed Jessica the ring, she lost it, and she could have hung on to it. He's says he'd never have lost her grandfather's watch. This is the beginning of a heated conversation between Jessica and Brian. Kate tells the others they can go as the real problem doesn't involve them but to be in court tomorrow. Kate tells Brian and Jessica that the problem is the attachment to the watch and the ring. She asks Brian for the watch and puts it in a handkerchief. She smashes the watch and then asks Jessica if she feels better that they've both lost something precious. After looking at their faces, she explains it was sleight of hand – she switched the watches - but they both agree that it was just a watch and ring. Kate gives Brian back his watch. Brian will drop the charges.

Kate tells Leo to go home but he says he's still waiting for word on Doug's accident. Kate asks him if the "Buff the Vampire Slayer" vinyl watch was expensive and he says it was one of only three autographed by Buffy and worth a fortune. Seems Kate used this watch to smash for the demonstration.

Kate leaves the firm and heads over to Doug's house to try to convince him to drop the charges against Nathan because Nathan is going to accept the pleas deal of 5 years. She begs him to call Justin and dismiss the charges but he says he can't as he'd lose everything. As Kate walks home shed calls The Wizard again and you hear the voicemail message for Teddy Reed. She hangs up the phone.

The next morning her neighbor, Phyllis Fliegel, gives her a couriered envelope. She runs off ecstatic. She is 4 minutes late to Judge Nicastro's court but announces that Brian is dropping the charges and all future charges for anything else that goes wrong with their wedding. Jessica says why not get married right then and now to avoid any problems. So the Judge marries them and has Kate hauled off by the bailiffs for contempt of court for being 4 minutes late to court.

Later on Kate, with an ankle monitoring bracelet walks in to Doug's office where Charlie and Lauren are meeting. Charlie has decided not to sign the papers for the buyout. Kate walks up to Doug and shows him a DMV photo of the night of the DUI accident. She tells him to do the right thing so Doug tells Charlie he's dropping the charges against Nathan. But Charlie still won't sign the papers. Kate once again puts on her mediator hat and suggests that Charlie isn't ready to retire and doesn't want to quite the business so why doesn't Charlie stay on as Chairman and teach Doug about his business instincts. When all agrees it's a good plan, Lauren says she'll need to revise the paperwork, at which Kate pulls out the new papers and gets the signatures on the spot.

Out in the hallway, Lauren, who's been blindsided, wants to know how Kate got Doug to change his mind. Kate shows her the DMV photo which shows Doug driving the car dressed as a woman in a blond wig.

Kate tells Lauren, in a nice way, she'll always hate her because she always thought her father was happy with her mother, until she saw her father around Lauren.

Kate goes back to the office and asks Leo how much the photo cost him. He says he used up a rare Dungeons & Dragons card for the information. As Kate leaves, Lauren stops her and says that her father's ashes are missing. She walks down the stairs looking shocked but pleased. Kate runs to the jail in time to see Nathan walk out to meet his mother and sisters.

It's dark out and late but Justin stop by the boat to ask Kate about Doug. He asks to come in but she explains she has company. Justin asks if she has a new Tinman – her cell phone photo for him. Kate tells him that her father used to say that Justin was good for her, but maybe a little too good. After Justin leaves, Kate talks to her father's urn of ashes about how they were so alike but different – about how he believed in the letter of the law but she believes the law is man made so it's not always completely right.