Our Favorite TV Lawyers

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With your favorite shows back on TV, you’ll be replacing your days of beach hanging with nights of TV watching (not that you ever do anything besides study for the LSAT, of course). Let’s talk about some of our favorite characters on TV with a law degree. Who said procrastination can’t have a motivational element? (Note: Don’t try to convince yourself that TV watching counts as studying, though!)

Alicia Florrick from The Good Wife
Alicia returned to work at a law firm to support her kids when her politician husband is jailed for a scandal. She has to start as a junior litigator—it’s not easy jumping back in after having kids and not being in the work force for several years—but she rapidly rises to the position of equity partner.

Her calm, cool demeanor is worth aspiring to, and we all wish we had her innate lawyering skills (so that we, too, could become partner in three years). From her experience, we see that it’s important to maintain those law school connections (to get a job when your life falls apart) and to have a mentor who will go to bat for you (it doesn’t hurt if that mentor has feelings for you).

Mitchell Pritchett from Modern Family
Mitchell is an environmental lawyer, who works to support his more flamboyant and chill husband, Cam, and his adopted daughter, Lily. Detail-oriented and uptight, Mitchell was probably a gunner in law school.

Mitchell shows us that it is possible to practice in an area of the law you’re passionate about and the importance of work-life balance. The current season, where Mitchell embraces his meager artistic talents while he’s unemployed, also shows us that even the most stereotypical type-A lawyer may need time off to be the one who’s chill.

Annalise Keating from How to Get Away With Murder
Annalise teaches criminal law and selects the top students of the class to work at her criminal defense firm (note: this would never happen in real life). For her, it doesn’t matter whether her client is actually guilty of the crime. Her job is to get the client off, even if her underlings have to resort to less-than-legal means.

She runs a tight ship and commands the total attention of her audience, both in the classroom and the courtroom. She knows how to motivate her underlings, in part by being the best at her job. On the other hand, being too focused on your job to the exclusion of paying attention to things that might cause issues later down the line—such as a philandering husband and associates who might do the dirty work of said husband.

Olivia Pope from Scandal
Olivia is a former lawyer who runs her own crisis management firm. She knows how to manipulate any situation to work out to the advantage of her clients, all while dressing like a total boss.

Olivia shows us that the skills you gain as a lawyer, such as thinking strategically and maintaining your cool in intense situations, can help you kill it at other jobs. She also serves as a reminder that killing it at your job does not mean your personal life won’t be a hot mess. Also, that it might be worth it to get out of the lawyer game so you can incorporate amazing fashion-forward outfits into your work wardrobe.

6 Responses

  1. BP lover says:

    Don’t forget about Harvey Specter from Suits!!

  2. Tarren says:

    Alan Shore, Boston Legal

  3. Ian Johanson says:

    I wish there were more people like Mitchell Pritchett. People who are passionate about their work whether it be law or a janitor. It is definitely easier when you like the work you do. But it is also important to have a life outside of work. Anyway, thanks for your post.

  4. Brian Trujillo says:

    MARSHALL ERICKSON How I Met Your Mother!

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