For The People Review
In For The People, Shonda Rhymes takes on the Southern District of New York Federal Court, which is often considered one of the key courthouses in the country.
Click through the slideshow for For The People review, the For The People premiere date of the first episode, to learn more about the cast and to learn For The People spoilers.
For The People Spoilers, Cast
Shonda Rhymes serves as executive producer for the show while Paul William Davies, who previously wrote for Scandal, serves as creator and showrunner, but it certainly feels like another hit from Rhymes.
The show itself follows a familiar formula for the perfect night time drama.
Mix a strong friendship between women, male characters you mostly want to roll your eyes at (WHY are they so weak?! Or WHY are they so self-serving?!), and add a healthy dose of episodic drama and potential romance and you have a Shondaland show.
The show follows a set of fresh new lawyers serving in the Southern District of New York Federal Court — and it frequently drives the importance of this court home through dialogue. We’re reminded that Aaron Burr served there at least twice.
Uniquely, and possibly a first for a courtroom set drama, we see the story unfold from both the public defender side as well as the prosecution.
Making up the public defenders are Britt Robertson as Sandra, her best friend Allison (Jasmin Savoy Brown), and a naive and caring man named Jay (Wesam Keesh). These are our tender hearts, and the people we will probably find the most empathy from.
However, their peers from the prosecutor’s office may just secretly have hearts of gold as well. There is the so-smug-you-want-to-scream Leonard (Regé-Jean Page), Kate (Susannah Flood) who is by the books, strict and delivers my favorite line of the show (a character approaches her and says, “I heard you were a procedural guru, can I ask you a question?” To which she responds, “If you have to, but I don’t want to be the help desk for every man in this office too lazy to look something up for himself. Were you too lazy to look this up for yourself?”), and Seth (Ben Rappaport), the white guy who was, indeed, too lazy to look something up for himself.
Rounding out the cast is the chief of the Criminal Division in the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Roger Gunn (Ben Shenkman), a mentor in the public defender’s office Jill Carlan (Hope Davis), clerk of court Tina Krissman (Anna Deavere Smith), and Judge Nicholas Byrne (Vondie Curtis-Hall).
But this certainly doesn’t feel like a typical law drama. Maybe that’s owed to the fact that the main cast appears so young in the tooth — it feels as if we’re watching a scene from a college-aged show. Adding to that is the main friendship, which is sure to remind people of Grey’s Anatomy’s core dynamic.
On top of that, the cases that are set to appear in the show are incredibly relevant. To avoid giving anything away, the stories could be “ripped from the headlines,” but less sensationalized a la Law and Order.
In essence, there’s a lot of gray area within the show. There isn’t a defined bad guy. And that makes enjoyable TV.
For The People Premiere
For The People premieres Tuesday, March 13 at 10 PM EST on ABC.