I missed the writing credit at the open so I didn’t know until now Damani Johnson is responsible for the coolest Say Anything reference a fourteen year-old could have made in 1992 before it became exceptionally dated and also the actors involved in the scene were six when Say Anything came out. So “All Rise” continues to target fifty-something Gen-Xers who think they’re thirty-something glamorous (but not too glamorous, but still glamorous) lawyers.
There’s some actual progress on the show, like Todd Williams’s character finally about to move to L.A. from D.C. permanently, something they’ve been discussing on the show since last season and something he seemingly had already done around Christmas. Simone Missick’s almost back at work. She’s back at work enough they don’t have any actual baby scenes, just her and Williams talking about the baby. There’s a fun—enough—subplot about Williams trying to get Wilson Bethel to babysit, which has potential for character development and all sorts of stuff.
But it’s not this episode. It’ll be someday. If CBS renews the show, which is on the bubble, its tenacity getting through Covid and a pregnant then new mom lead not getting an early pickup reward.
There’s also progress on J. Alex Brinson’s subplot about sheriff Louis Herthum being a bad guy only Brinson could never see it because he had to drink the Kool-Aid to survive. The episode’s about Brinson coming to terms with it, but he doesn’t talk to anyone about it—instead we find out Jessica Camacho has, in addition to doing even more work than the rest of the public defenders, gotten a new home self-care regime going because she sleeps three hours a night. Presumably there’s not going to be a speed subplot for her coming up but it wouldn’t be out of place.
Brinson goes to Camacho’s to hide out from the world and his responsibilities, leading to a standoff between Camacho and Audrey Corsa (where, shockingly, Corsa is the sympathetic one), while Camacho does a whole “kissing someone else” arc, which Bethel’s also going through and having his life fall apart for it.
Consistency hasn’t been the keyword this season and continues not to be, including Ruthie Ann Miles’s arc fighting with another court clerk (Tate Ellington) about missing mail. Miles hasn’t had jack to do in a half dozen episodes but is all of a sudden getting a filler subplot, which implies the show’s skipped a lot of what’s been going on with her.
The case this episode is a Russian mob thing. Good performance from star witness Sofia Vassilieva. No one else makes much of an impression, except maybe when judge Marg Helgenberger lets the defendant threaten to murder all the witnesses against him and Helgenberger swears unless he stops she’ll hold him in contempt.
I’ve always contended I’ll watch Missick and Bethel in anything but… maybe it’s time to let “All Rise” rest. Or at least to hire a writers with better ideas than Say Anything rips.