Boston Legal: New Kids on the Block
(S03E02) Oh please, if there were new guys they'd have shown up in the season premiere. -- Denny Crane
God bless William Shatner! In his role as Denny Crane he is a man of few words, and the words he does say would make Michael Scott of The Office cringe in embarrassment. However, what he lacks in verbiage he makes up in expressions. Denny can carry a whole conversation with one of his stares. And, he does alot of staring this episode, which could probably be considered the actual start of Boston Legal's third season.
So, since I can't stare at you through the computer screen, let's push on with this week's review.
I have to say that this week's opening scene was one of the funniest I've seen. It featured Denny's introduction to two of the newest members of Crane, Poole and Schmidt's Boston office and it was full of sexual innuendo and frequent breaks of the fourth wall. The quote at the beginning of this post is from that opening scene. Let's face it, even though many people think William Shatner is a hack actor, he certainly has the comedic chops.
Now, about those new members. The first is Jeffrey Coho, played by Craig Bierko (Cinderella Man). Coho is a transfer from the New York office and a favorite of partner Shirley Schmidt. He is also the new Alan Shore. If you remember from his time on The Practice and the early days on Legal, Alan was the smart, fast-talking attorney who wouldn't take crap from anyone. Lately he's mellowed a bit, became somewhat more mature. Coho seems to be the younger version of Alan, but not really any direct threat. He's actually more of a threat to attorney Brad Chase . . . well, at least in Brad's opinion. Whatever the opinion of the other attorneys, Coho is fun to watch in his first high-profile case; the murder of a prominent judges' wife.
The second person to be introduced, and someone already familiar with the law, is Claire Simms, played by Constance Zimmer? You've heard that name before? Of course you have, because she played another attorney named Brianna in the short-lived ABC drama In Justice. This time around she plays an associate attorney who isn't very friendly. Truth be told, I really learned to hate her character very quickly in the first few minutes she was on the screen. But, once she got paired up with Alan on a sexual discrimination case involving a transvestite (I don't write them, I just review them), she softened up a bit. By the end of the episode I had some grudging respect for her. Particularly because she wore a New York Yankees cap in the middle of downtown Boston.
Some other things to point out in this week's episode. I really like how the new attorneys were paired up with two of the originals. It gave us a nice perspective of how they would work with the veterans and setup future dynamics. I also liked Katey Sagal in the role of Barbara Little, mother to the murder suspect that Jeffrey Coho is defending. This was a very serious Sagal, not at all what I'm used to. Then there's Denny and his expressions. Some of the funniest moments were seeing his reactions to events going on around him. Oh, and a midget files a complaint against him after a bad date. Once again, I review them, I don't write them.
After the more subdued season premiere last week, this episode took off like a rocket right from the start. I am looking forward to more of these episodes in the weeks to come. Next week, Tom Selleck is back as Shirley Schmidt's ex-husband.