A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this unimpressive series has graphic images of sex, rape victims, murder victims, drinking, and drugs. Victims have a broad age range, including teens. The young, attractive stars are promiscuous in and out of the office and also drink regulary after work.
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What's the story?
Law & Order creator Dick Wolf churns out another crime drama with CONVICTION, in which Manhattan assistant district attorneys Nick (Jordan Bridges), Brian (Eric Balfour), Jessica (Milena Govich), Christina (Julianne Nicholson), and Billy (J. August Richards), deputy district attorney Jim Steele (Anson Mount), and bureau chief Alexandra Cabot (Stephanie March, reprising her role from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit) head to court for some emotionally challenging cases. The core cast members, many of whom have the slightly familiar faces of actors you know you've seen somewhere before, portray young newbie lawyers -- all the better to lure a new generation of crime-drama fans. (Balfour, for example, who plays a sexy, partying chick magnet, appeared in a popular teen favorite: the remake of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.)
Is it any good?
Like Law & Order, Conviction deals with violent crimes against people of all ages and has featured cases based on rape, murder, and drug smuggling, so graphic details and visuals are commonplace. Almost more disturbing, however, is the main characters' behavior: They're frequently hung-over, they have casual sex with co-workers and others, and they're young.
Plus, the show is disjointed, recalling too many other law dramas. It aims for the lightheartedness and warmth of Ally McBeal, but pits those characteristics against the grit and devastation of Law & Order: SVU. Add in an overdose of The Practice's sexual hijinks and characters as nasty as the inmates on Prison Break, and the storylines end up shattered. Trying to reassemble these pieces at the end of an episode is impossible; after-work drinks at the local bar with the gang from work hardly makes for a cohesive Conviction.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the intensity and nature of the cases. What impression do teens get from the young lawyers? Are they professional? Parents who watch might want to remind teens that while the plotlines may be "realistic," they're still not very common, which may help them deal with any lingering fear or worry.