The series shows the workings of the judicial system, beginning with the arraignment and continuing through the lawyers process of building a case, investigating leads and preparing witnesses and defendants for trial.
The show follows a crime, usually adapted from current headlines, from two separate vantage points. The first half of the show concentrates on the investigation of the crime by the police, the second half follows the prosecution of the crime in court.
Jesse L. Martin,
ADA Alexandra Cabot from "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" returns as the bureau chief for the group of young ADAs. According to Dick Wolf, "'Conviction' will be a 'charactercedural,' we ... See full summary »
Former Homicide Shift Commander Al Giardello is now the leading candidate for Mayor of Baltimore. As he walks toward the platform to do a political speech, he is shot. Former and current ... See full summary »
Having suffered through the first half of the first season of L&O: LA, and now watching the re-imagined second half of the same season, I'm pleasantly surprised they actually pulled it off. That is, it's becoming more like the original L&O and not some sunny disposition on life in LaLa land and rampant medical marijuana.
They are also scouting out and actually using more locations as they did in N.Y. so you don't feel confined to the same old places or inside a studio's back lot. In the last episode, I counted about 15 non-studio locations which really upped the ante as far as quality of story and realism of plot.
I also noticed they brought in some veteran screenwriters from the recently canceled L&O and are starting to "rip from the headlines" more. Not to mention adding the beautiful Alana De La Garza to the ADA's office (they never did explain her transplantation to L.A. but that's par for the course with this franchise). We just need the extraordinary writer Rene Balcer to pen a few scripts and we're halfway home.
As for Alana, they desperately need to give her more lines. She's not just a pretty face but a very good actress. She was always one to get up in someone's face or talk back to some pushy witness or suspect (or cop!).
A guest visit from Linus Roache or Lupo or Anderson or Epatha would be gimmicky but a lot of fun. Who cares? It's T.V. Does anyone really believe a murder trial starts and ends in less than a month? Real murder cases take years. But on T.V. you have to speed things up or you end up with a show like Murder One or viewers changing the channel. Too bad they can't find an L&O franchise for Lupo.
The East Pasadena episode is a perfect example of "headline ripping" that actually happened to one Calif. principality, then utilizing another incident that actually happened in Florida where a man went to a city council meeting waving a gun and finally shot himself, and then tying it all together with a murder mystery.
I'm especially glad to see Mr. Ulrich gone (shot! killed! never to return!) and Molina taking his place. Whilst Ulrich is an O.K. actor, half the time his eyes were bloodshot and he looked very tired and fatigued. I don't think the pace of T.V. sits well with his move schedule metabolism.
Molina is a veteran actor and it shows. He is literally the anchor for the show now. Let's hope he doesn't depart prematurely. And they need a prominent out gay character other than a shrink like on SVU.
And Corey Stoll looks so much better without the 'stache it's amazing. He'll be one of People magazine's hottest men of the year in no time (barring the show's cancellation). Having played second fiddle in so many shows, it's about time he was recognized for his talent.
Rachel Ticotin, who still looks great since Total Recall, makes a tough but charming Lieutenant. Still haven't figured out the role of the DA played ephemerally by Peter Coyote. He's simply not memorable and not sure what his function is other than to bark at his subordinates.
With all the above being said, I'm very excited about the rest of the season and hope it continues to deliver above-excellent scripts and performances to make up for the horrible first half of the year. Worst Episodes Ever I doubt L&O: LA will have the staying power of the original L&O, and NBC (now owned by Kabletown), is infamous for putting garbage on T.V. or doubling-up on what they consider a good thing (read: the Today show went from 2 hours to 4 to 5 to ?). Maybe Katie Couric can do the sixth and seventh hours! I'd like to see more episodes about the intricacies of Calif. law and business practices as they've done in a few episodes and on the original L&O. I always thought New York was a nanny state but Calif. makes N.Y. look like their babysitter's dead (don't tell Mom or Bloomberg!). I can now understand why so many businesses are fleeing CA for points East, and why people are moving to other states where the cost of living isn't so crippling.
So if you gave up on the show, give it another shot. I don't believe you'll be disappointed and like me will look forward to next week's episode. Who knows, maybe they'll shoot a couple of episodes during California's rainy season for a change of outdoor atmosphere. Flooding, rampage, riots, and of course, a floater.
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