When I first watched the pilot for this show early in the summer, I thought it was annoying, but that it might be fine for Friday night. But on second glance over the weekend, I just can't condone watching more of this show. There's just so much grating and terrible about it that even the promise of more of Donna Murphy's insanely arched eyebrows can't keep me tuning in. This show is like the anti-Good Wife.
The Poorly Recycled Premise
It's like My Cousin Vinny and Legally Blonde got together and had an irritating and nasally baby and CBS decided to put it on the air. Martina Garetti (Janet Montgomery) is a D.A. from Trenton, which her coworker Natalie (the once tolerable Stephanie March) seems to deem as the equivalent of getting your medical degree in the Caribbean. So she can't be a good lawyer because she didn't practice in New York until recently? And then she only gets noticed as a first-year associate because she's able to solve cases based on skinny jeans and pliers?
The Appallingly Unrealistic Accent
The show would like us to believe that that Martina made it through law school without ever learning to modify her guttural and extreme inflection to help sound a little more convincing in front of a jury. Or at least be comprehensible to a jury, because with this exaggerated accent, she sounds more like she should be serving shots in Seaside or hanging out with the Big Ang over on Staten Island. This has to be somewhat due to the fact that Montgomery is from the UK and that this accent is what she has determined is Jersey. But it's similar to all the bad Boston accents that used to rule movies and TV. Also, House was set in Jersey and you didn't hear Hugh Laurie talking like this.
Her Wardrobe Choices
In the first few minutes of the show, Martina ends up spilling something on her shirt and wearing a bra under her blazer. Never did I think this was the most tasteful outfit she'd sport on the show. To work one day (though it might have been after hours, or on a weekend, but still not appropriate for a prestigious law firm according to Harvey Specter), she wears jeans that are painted on her, an off one shoulder skintight shirt and a bright red bra underneath it. The Good Wife's Alicia would not let that fly, and we doubt that she'd be sporting a multi-colored t-shirt that made her look like a 12-year-old trying out for the softball team, even if she was just chilling on the weekend. And don't even get us started on the fake rhinestone star keychain. Not saying she should get rid of it, but maybe just tuck it in her bag where people can't easily see it and mock it.
Her Oppressively Loud Family
Gregarious and supportive, though clearly confused about the intricacies of her job, they are an interesting bunch. Donna Murphy as her mom has the aforementioned amazing eyebrows, and a different, yet still obnoxious, accent. Then there's her loud father, her manicurist sister (whose skills with nails help Martina with her first case at her fancy law firm), her brother, who dresses like a skinny Kevin Smith, and at least 15 small children who are around at all times. No one has a personality that isn't overbearing and loud, so it is hard to rate them individually and way easier to just write them off as a whole.
The Jersey Abuse
We get that Jersey is the butt of jokes, and given the behavior we've seen on realty television, we kind of understand that. But how many jokes can Natalie make about the second-class nature of the state, or Martina's upbringing there? "You speak fluent townie," being just one example.
Will All Her Clients Have to Be Female?
Her ability to crack cases, as we've seen so far, seems to rest on the fact that she's aware of women and how they think and dress. And when she's not out finding evidence about crimes of passion, she's relegated to doing the hair of college students who don't know how to use a brush. So will she ever get a young male client? Or be able to solve something that doesn't require an intimate knowledge of how long a quality manicure lasts?
What did you think of the show? Sound off in the comments below.
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