Netflix recommended The Lincoln Lawyer to me for days, and I couldn’t understand how I wound up in the algorithm for a 10+-year-old Matthew McConaughey film. It took a friend who isn’t much of a binge-watcher to tell me it was a new series. AHA!
Initially developed for CBS before moving to Netflix, The Lincoln Lawyer is based on Michael Connelly‘s second novel featuring the Los Angeles criminal lawyer Mickey Haller struggling to re-establish his career following an accident and addiction. The season revolves around the murder trial of a tech billionaire (Christopher Gorham) accused of killing his wife and her lover.
The Lincoln Lawyer may not break any new ground in network procedurals. Still, it does provide a satisfying dose of suspenseful legal drama with a top-notch cast that includes Manuel Garcia-Rulfo as the charismatic protagonist and Neve Campbell as his equally talented and ambitious attorney ex-wife who is working her own high-profile case involving human trafficking.
Created by David E. Kelly, the Lincoln Lawyer is similar to another of his streaming legal dramas, Goliath. It has a near-identical setup, the same stock characters, and features typical legal drama tropes. But, as pure entertainment, it works. One only has to look at Kelly’s body of work and the Law and Order franchise as a testament to the staying power of these types of shows.
Legal Procedural Breaks No New Ground in the Genre, but Manages to Be Entertaining
The Lincoln Lawyer follows a familiar yet entertaining foray into legal procedurals. The twist-ending sets it apart – though not too far apart.