It seems almost pointless to write a review of this series at this stage. I mean, if you’ve not yet climbed onboard the Boston Legal bandwagon, well, it’s a little late now: the 12 episodes contained within this set are its fond farewell. There’s always a chance, however, that one of the uninitiated will read these words and feel compelled to check out a little slice of something they’ve been missing out on. I will, of course, tell you that Season Five is not the place to start. No, go back to the beginning and bask in it in a way that I did not. The initiated, on the other hand, will buy this set regardless of anything I have to say, yet they might be amused by my musings. Allow me to share.
Back when I first started writing for Bullz-Eye, one of the very first reviews I tackled was Boston Legal: Season Three. I had not really watched the show prior to that, though I tried on more than one occasion. In fact, when it first started, I thought, “Wow! A series with both Spader and Shatner? This is for me.” Then I tuned in, and hated it. It seemed like the show mostly amounted to Spader wearing various stupid hats and silly costumes, which to my mind, was far beneath the actor I’d long considered one of the finest in the business. I didn’t want to see him degrading himself, so I quickly ceased bothering to give the show any more chances. Time moved on, and Boston Legal was shoddily treated by ABC through rescheduling, and it became a total non-issue. Then my mother, of all people, became a huge fan. She was constantly urging me to watch Boston Legal and insisted I would love it. I dared not explain to her my reasoning for failing to tune in, as surely she wouldn’t understand how I felt about James Spader whoring himself on a weekly basis.
Fast forward to my new editor Will Harris asking if I’d care to review Season Three. Since I was new to the Bullz-Eye fold, I felt I should play company man and agree. Besides, my mom had been urging me to check it out, and this was as good an opportunity as any. Thank you, Mom. Thank you, Will. Without the two of you, I likely never would’ve given this show – which I’ve come to treasure dearly – a real chance. In case you’re wondering, yes, I did go back and check out the two seasons I missed, and as far as Spader goes? Well, Alan Shore is easily the greatest role of his career, and it’s almost a shame that he isn’t forced at gunpoint – perhaps by Denny Crane – to play the character for the rest of his life. Almost.
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