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October 7, 2015

Shark: Fashion Police

by Michael Canfield, posted Nov 3rd 2006 7:19AM
Shark(S01E06) The best part of this episode was seeing Stark operate in Shark-mode in advising his daughter how to deal with her school even after she's admitted her guilt. This is good meaty territory for Woods to explore his character. Stark still thinks the best way he can demonstrate fatherhood skills is to fall back on his professional skills. He has got a disconnect in terms of when it's okay to lie, that doesn't go unnoticed by Julie. Stark likes to believe the line is wherever he wants it to be. As he later tells Martin: "If it were a crime to be rich and hypocritical, they would have locked me up years ago."

Against his better judgment, Stark is persuaded to take a case that he knows to be a loser. I'm getting used to hearing him declare something like that every week, then pulling out the win in the end anyway. This case, like last week's, really ends in a partial victory. It's a particularly heinous crime, against people trapped in an tragic and impossible situation.Stark manages to get a plea before the jury returns a verdict that might have gone against him. That's more realistic than the witness-stand confessions plaguing the first few weeks of this show.

At least Boston Legal allows the beautiful and funny Julie Bowen a full range of facial expression. Here on Shark, the resident striking blonde attorney, Jeri Ryan, is compelled to perform her two half-page scenes with the same frozen scowl painted on her face from week to week. I believe this is what is meant by a thankless role.

There are some other highlights: James Woods is still cutting loose with the sarcastic comments. And Alexis Cruz, as Martin Allende, has some break-from-the-pack moments. He perfectly plays the scene in which he's shaking and terrified while presenting new charges in court for the first time, after Stark's insistence. Also, The Drew Carey Show's Diedrich Bader does a good dramatic turn as the sleazy sweatshop owner, basically by just sitting there looking so complacent and pleased with himself and his goatee.

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All the comments above are right on target. However it seems to me that TPTB are showcasing James Woods in an effort to get him an Emmy. He truly is a great actor, but the show in it's current form will lose viewers very quickly should they not allow the other characters to evolve.

November 05 2006 at 9:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This show is so goofy in so many ways that I've developed an affection for it. Stark is always up against impossible odds... the evidence he thinks he has always disappears just before the second commercial... but always manages to pull something out of it. His junior attorneys are all pretty and pretty boring; all earnest and concern instead of vicious head choppers.

But James Woods is flat fun to watch. So, I'd either make the pretty kids more interesting or have them all vanish.

The daughter needs to really contend with her father on a more substantial basis -- if she thinks he's an amoral jackass, she should call him on it. And offer some interesting alternatives to his always faux-cynical views. Some wit would be nice coming from her mouth too. Right now all she does is the slack-jawed "I can't believe you just said that" thing too much.

As to Jeri Ryan, shouldn't she being doing something... oh... interesting? She's been elected the D.A. of Los Angeles at some ridiculously young age and looks like a supermodel. Shouldn't some character on the show note those facts? How did she rise to such a lofty level so rapidly? Pure luck? Cunning? Daring? Family connections? Sleeping with the mayor to suck up to the political machine? Was she a good trial attorney? Let's see her argue something... at least once.

So Shark is garbage... it's a fun, obvious garbage.

November 03 2006 at 3:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

i completely agree she is a great actress and i love it when she and shark argue i just wish they could do it somewhere besides the one buliding

November 03 2006 at 2:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think "thankless role" understates it!

While Jeri Ryan does have the powerful presence necessary to make Shark believable

I do tire of the [writer's] lack of imagination.
Shouldn't we be seeing her character in a more 3 dimenisional version?

Jeri has much more to offer her audience, her roles to date have not let her expose.
I'd have liked it much better if D.E.Kelly had used her in Ally Mc Beal instead of Boston Public.

I wish for Jeri she gets the role of her dreams.
Carry on Jeri, your day will come!

November 03 2006 at 11:33 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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