Saturday, February 16, 2013

15 favorite Ally McBeal episodes (part 1)

By Sati. Saturday, February 16, 2013 ,
"Richard if you introduce that exhibit my stress is going to reach a breaking point"
Runner ups: 
5.11 - A Kick in the Head - though it's 5th season which was mostly terrible, it was still worth seeing for the scenes with John and Richard. And in this one they handle the case of a man who killed his wife after he kicked her...thinking she was a soccer ball. Richard who knows nothing about the law is the 1st chair on this one. At one point he actually stands up in court and says "my client's wife said she dated him just for kicks". That's just golden.
4. 22 - Home Again - Richard goes to LA to help his friend - Maxim wants to publish naked pictures of her and she didn't know what she was agreeing to while singing the contract. Richard has a great idea - wear a headset in the courtroom and have John tell him what to say. Obviously in the middle they get disconnected.
2.11 - In Dreams - in this episode Ally wants to help her old teacher who is crippled in real life but has a dream world in which she is happy. The woman asks Ally to help her get a court order to put her in a coma. Famke Janssen returns as Larry's ex girlfriend causing havoc in his relationship with Ally. Meanwhile John's girlfriend - Melanie (Anne Heche) is fired from the school she works in because she scares the children. She has Tourette syndrome and her ticks trigger John's ticks and screams which is hilarious. The opposite counsel is perpetually uncomfortable lawyer who represents school's headmaster. At one point of the episode John is actually telling a story to the kids which is one of the funniest scenes during his relationship with Melanie story arc In this episode Nelle, John and Richard defend law firm which prioritizes hiring male associates because women get pregnant which interferes with their ability to do the work. During the case Nelle reveals to Richard and John that she never wants to have kids and they are both shocked as they thought all women want to have children. Meanwhile Ling, after being asked by Ally, helps Elaine who lost her dance partner in a dance competition. The highlight of the episode is Richard cross examining feminist sociologist and telling her she in part looks like a man to Nelle, Richard and Judge Whipper's horror. The episode also has a beautiful ending in which we find out Nelle's parents divorced. She plays tough in front of John, telling him she had a great childhood, two rooms, two teddy bears - more than most kids. The last scene however is Nelle looking at the two teddy bears and crying. Ling and Richard defend Cindy (House MD's Lisa Edelstein) - a woman...who is really a man. She is beautiful and Ling and Richard thought she really was a woman but in reality she still has a penis. She doesn't want to be subjected to physical examination in her work place to prevent everyone from discovering her secret. Richard obviously walks in the court talking about Constitution to opposing counsel's delight (Your honor, from my experience the more you understand what Mr. Fish is saying the better my chances) but Ling is there and they end up winning the case. Mark, not aware of the fact Cindy is really a man, is attracted to her and Richard is horrified but Ling keeps reminding him he can't say anything. John and Nelle defend a woman (Marcia Cross) who was sued by her former employee - he quit the job claiming after they slept with each other the environment at work became hostile. John is attracted to her which results in few great moments when he stutters in the court - When a woman like that sexually propositions a man like me..uh.uh....him!". John also delivers one of his best closings in this episode where he talks about double standard when it comes to sexually forward men and women. After Nelle broke up with John when he was stuck in an elevator few episodes back, things are tense between them. John calls her rich, bitch elitist ice queen and says things like "it's a miracle I didn't lose my penis to frost bite". Ally tells him those remarks are illegal but John is so upset he just screams "Balls the law!". Nelle says she wants to be a partner to John's outrage and Richard's reluctance. Meanwhile Ally meets with her Internet date with whom she had cybersex - to her shock it turns out that the guy is not 30 years old but he is in fact sixteen and she gets arrested under the charges of statutory rape. Renee, John and Richard defend her in yet another hilarious trail. Holland Taylor guest stars as the judge assigned to the case, in yet another nod to The Practice. This is one of the finest episodes of the show and probably one of the major reasons why out of all the seasons it's the second season that emerged victorious at Emmys, winning best comedy series. There are two major arcs here - the first one deals with Eric, little boy dying of leukemia (Haley Joel Osment) who tells Ally he wants to sue God. Ling overhears it and encourages the boy to sue. Nelle reveals to everyone that Ling is actually lawyer herself (Ling later says that she doesn't practice because it causes wrinkles). Ally asks her to help the boy and they manage to persuade his church to pay for his treatment. Unfortunately it's too late and Eric dies. Ling plays strong in front of Ally but later she runs out of hospital and cries, proving once again she is human after all. The second arc is Richard and John defending a man who shot at his wife and his friend after he caught them in bed together. Richard is doing his usual thing saying all the wrong things (Surely you can understand how this jury would like to see Rodney and Sheila dead) and it's one of the funniest trials in the series. In this episode the most dreaded day in Ally's life happens - it's her 30th birthday. She is obviously having huge trouble adjusting to the idea and even gets collagen injection in her lips which gets her off the case as she looks terrible and she is only third chair - Mark and John are defending young woman who was accused of suffocating her 90-year old man husband with her breasts. We get to hear one of John's excellent closing arguments in this episode and also we get to see one of the loveliest moments in the show - when John overcomes his shyness and gets on stage to sing a song for his best friend - Ally. One of the funniest cases in the series are those involving Ling. Here a conservative group is protesting her mud wrestling club. They are being represented by Georgia's old friend - Ray (Justin Theraux). Georgia sets him up on a date with Ally and of course something goes wrong. Elaine creates a new toilet remote for John and as he walks in, presses the button, the sit goes up, Ally falls in it and...gets stuck in the toilet. Meanwhile Richard and John investigate and go check out the wrestling club. As for the case Ling is represented by Ally, Georgia and Nelle and as usual she says outrageous - but mostly accurate - things on the stand while being vicious and brutally honest (-Have you bothered to look into why these women work in this club? - It would be hypocritical for me to ask, it would suggest I care). Nelle has a problem with women being perceived as sex object so...she asks Richard to deliver the closing. And what a closing it is.

part 2 will be published on March 2nd.

RELATED POSTS: 

6 comments:

  1. I watched this show when it was first on the air and loved it. I've only gotten the first season on DVD so far and need to complete it sometime soon, I can never seem to find the second season, usually I only see the third around. It's got a lot of funny moments, I loved Greg Germann as Richard Fish and Vonda Shepard too. Nice choices, am looking forward to seeing the rest.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Greg Germann as Richard is one of my all time favorite characters. You should try to find season 2 it's really outstanding - Cage and Fish have some amazing moments in this one.

      Delete
  2. One of my favorite shows in the 90s. I actually started rewatching it too before your post, and I forgot how 1) hilarious and 2) brilliant it is. Great post, girl!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, glad that you are a fellow fan! This show is one of the funniest I've ever seen.

      Delete
  3. Oh wow, what a truly wonderful post. And I love the way you've done all the quotes. Also one of my favourite shows - it's always in my heart.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Much nicer to get comments like this one than "you should stop watching movies" from you.

      Delete