Arliss Michaels is not a sports agent, he is a sports super agent. To his athletes, and to the world around them, he is God. He is like Jerry Maguire, but without a conscience. Written by
Steve Richer <firstname.lastname@example.org>
25 Sports Agents Dead In The Road?...a good start!
I borrowed the lawyer's joke to make a point about Arliss, the agent.
Devoid of real consistent ethics Arli$$ Michaels is the epitome of the
complex character who treads equally on the honorable side and the
ethically challenged. Mix in a bit of conscience with a dash of
capitalistic greed and that describes Arli$$ and the AMM Management
As for the players they are (were) first rate. Robert Wuhl is
phenomenal as the namesake character Arliss Michaels. Combining
terrific story lines with a real sense of what and how an agent thinks
this comedian turned actor hits a bullseye. The show was, after all,
his idea and creation. Jim Turner is ideal as the former jock, first
round draft pick and first Arli$$ client, playboy burnout Kirby
Carlisle. Michael Boatman is superb as Stanley Babson, the erstwhile
V.P. of Finance who often attempts to induce some morality and class
into the organization. Occasionally Stanley is faced with the
perplexing situation of doing what is right or what is best for the
client?, AMM?, or Stanley? Finally there is Sandra Oh as Rita Wu,
Arli$$' long suffering secretary. Forever loyal Rita is underpaid,
under-appreciated, and under-minded by Arli$$ and almost always Kirby.
Rita has her dilemma's of conscience as well but she is insightful yet
gullible and always longing to meet Mr. Right so she can quit her job
which she really loves. Sound confusing? It is because the show
displayed all the nuances of good character development and story
Mix this all in with great guest stars from sports and entertainment
and you get a rapid, fast paced 1/2 hour show never wanting for a good
laugh or a tear. Arliss has been gone since 2002 and is now a regular
late night entry onto ESPN Classic's repertoire. The only problem is
this show, like many made for cable, does not have points at which
commercial breaks are accounted for and language is censored thereby
lessening the fun for those of us fans. Yet, for the newcomer, a whole
new generation can enjoy the comic timing and plot lines. Some of the
athletes are now dated in time but it is easy to follow. A highly
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