Just got to watch last night's episode. Hmmm... Can't believe they stuck Monica Potter in a collection of gawkers/extras hanging around a laptop leering at photos, giving her two seconds of onscreen time and then having the nerve to credit her as "Special Appearance by Monica Potter"!
On a technical note, I noticed a sudden and very dramatic change in HD picture quality at the tail end of the courtroom scene, when Rupert Everett propositions Tara. Suddenly, it went all grainy like it was shot at a completely different time by a totally different lower resolution camera (almost SD!) and inserted into the final edit. Maybe they changed their mind and rewrote/reshot many months later to fit their needs, as is very likely. Whatever the explanation, the whole rest of the show seemed to have that same slightly grainy background, having nothing to do with 720p vs. 1080i clarity. It was definitely intentional, and I didn't care for it. I prefer crystal clear, like BL has always been... right up to the last five minutes of this show.
On a subjective note, this show may be the first of my "record this series" entries that I delete. I was VERY disappointed.
All members of the new cast (especially Julie Bowen, and her underling/hot-for-her Garrett) are annoying and unattractive. And the writing seems to have been turned over to a totally new crew, which has ratcheted down the quality and turned up the winks/nods/supposedly-amusing-banter . Very insulting. And not very amusing, nor entertaining.
I also don't care for the fact that 80% of the show is in the courtroom. Very dull. These people are not real lawyers and the writing supporting their performances has degraded. And no judge would be so insipid to allow Alan Shore to insult him like a child. This is just plain juvenile writing. I don't want to follow these characters in the courtroom... I am much more entertained by their out-of-court interactions. That's where the comedy and clever writing belong, and what I tune in to watch. The courtroom is (or should be) just a background, and Kelley has apparently broken that notion.
I'm not interested in any of the few characters left from first season, and even Candice Bergen looked awful (skin cancer?) and had an underwritten part. The new additions are all young, innocuous and unobtrusive, probably cast that way so as not to detract from the three bigshots who are left... but who have been given no strong ensemble actors around them to set the stage properly.
Rupert Everett (he does NOT look good) and Rhona Mitra? I think not. A cello-playing witness, using improvised musical responses (like in "Fantasia") to questions? I think not. What were they thinking?
I was even greatly disappointed with the weekly "cigar scene". This show is now a caricature of what it was last year. And I don't mean that in a good way.
This series, judging from just this one first cobbled-together clunker of an episode intended to provide a transition into a newly retooled premise, has already jumped the shark right at the start of only its second season. Strangely Ally McBeal-like, deja vu all over again.
I had more fun watching "Amazing Race".
And I'll lust after Rhona Mitra every week on "Nip/Tuck", where she has been perfectly cast in a very adult, well-written and entertaining series.
I'm afraid BL has gone into the toilet. Wouldn't be overly surprised if it didn't make it through the complete season. It's already had a surprisingly poor overnight ratings result for the season debut.