The Practice
The Test

Episode Report Card
Shack: C+ | Grade It Now!
Take the Bull by the horns

There are no "previouslies" for this episode, probably because the last thing David E. Kelley wants is for us to put this one in context with the rest of the season. Because previously this season, Eugene ratted out Jimmy to the bar association for breaking attorney-client privilege to save a child; Jimmy and Lindsay tried to convince a minister to reveal information told to him in privilege, though it turned out to be a set-up; Ellenor learned that the wife of one of her clients actually committed murder, but couldn't reveal this information due to attorney-client privilege; a million zillion other plots revolved around whether or not to reveal information told in privilege; and Bobby "Emperor Rod" Donnell gave countless speeches about how important it is to protect privilege.

The episode opens in medias yawn as Emperor Rod is holding a meeting in his office with a beefy, goateed man named Russell. Russell is played by Michael Cudlitz, another Band of Brothers actor (Sgt. "Bull" Randleman). Should we hold out hopes for Damian Lewis to make an appearance in a future episode as the Hunky D.A.'s secret boyfriend? Too bad DEK has already used that trick twice this season. He can only use it three more times before he gets tired of it. Anyway, Russell has gotten caught up in some petty drug problems, serving as an agent between dealers and buyers. Rod will be defending him in court the next morning.

Russell starts to leave, but Rod is stricken with a sudden, unexpected bout of empathy and can tell that Russell is upset about something. Russell hems and haws but capitulates under the forceful stare of the Rod. Two weeks ago, Russell tried to rob a drug dealer. It went bad, and Russell shot him. He's dead! Russell killed him! Rod tells Russell that maybe he shouldn't hear this after all. But it's too late. Russell thought this dealer was a solo player, but apparently he's not. He's got a partner, Derek Grant, who has put out the word that the person responsible is dead meat. Does Derek know it was Russell? Russell says he doesn't know, but says that Derek has called for a meeting with him this evening. I would take that as a "yes." Emperor Rod does, too, and warns Russell not to go. Russell tells Rod the reason he's spilling all this: "If he takes me out, I don't want you to let him walk. If I'm dead, you let someone know what happened." Rod urges Russell to go the police, but he can't because of the murder. He tells Rod he'll be at the trial in the morning, and rushes out.

The thing about the theme song for The Practice is that you could chop up the "music" and rearrange it randomly and nobody would be able to tell the difference.

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The Practice




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