As long as there has been television, there have been shows about cops, doctors, and lawyers. "Suits" is one of the latest programs to join the ranks of successful, legal-themed series like "Law & Order," "L.A. Law," and "Ally McBeal." "Suits" was created by Aaron Korsh, a former writer on shows such as "Everybody Loves Raymond" and "Just Shoot Me," with Doug Liman, director of "The Bourne Identity," and David Bartis, producer on "Covert Affairs" and the new "Knight Rider," listed as executive producers. It debuted on the USA Network in June of 2011.
"Suits" is set in New York City and follows the slick and suave Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht), a high powered attorney for the law firm Pearson Hardman. Harvey has built a reputation as the firm's top closer, sort of like Michael Clayton, but without all the cynicism. For all his hard work, Harvey is rewarded with a promotion to senior partner. The only requirement is that he hires an associate and only one with a degree from Harvard Law. Instead, he winds up hiring Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams), an aspiring lawyer blessed with an eidetic memory. Desperate for cash, Mike memorized a math exam and accidentally sold it to the dean's daughter. As a result, he was expelled and lost his scholarship. He's now forced to eke out a living by taking the LSATs for other students. Though he'd never admit it, Harvey sees something in the young man and takes him under his wing while hiding the fact that Mike never graduated from Harvard. Mike's naivety generally clashes with Harvey's calculating demeanor and willingness to do anything to win a case.
At Pearson Hardman, Mike meets Harvey's shrewd assistant Donna Paulsen (Sarah Rafferty) and Rachel Zane (Meghan Markle), one of the firm's most valued paralegals. Rachel also aspires to be an attorney, but hasn't been able to pass the LSAT due to her test anxiety. There's a bit of a love triangle brewing between Rachel, Mike, and Jenny Griffith (Vanessa Ray), the ex-girlfriend of Mike's former best friend Trevor (Tom Lipinski). Trevor deals drugs and convinced Mike to go into the business of running test scams. Also causing problems for our hero is Louis Litt (Rick Hoffman), a junior partner who hates Harvey and poor Mike is usually caught in the middle of their rivalry.
Whedonites may be interested to know Gina Torres from "Firefly" and "Angel" has a big part on the show as Jessica Pearson, one of the firm's founding partners.
Universal has released the debut season of "Suits" on this 3-disc set. The episodes included are:
- "Pilot" – Mike dives in head first at Pearson Hardman when he's handed a pro bono case involving a single mother sexually harassed by a powerful CEO.
- "Errors and Omissions" – Harvey's latest case is in jeopardy as the judge fervently believes Harvey slept with his wife.
- "Inside Track" – Harvey goes behind Jessica's back to remove the CEO of a motor company and replace him with one of the company's most loyal employees.
- "Dirty Little Secrets" – Harvey works to defend Jessica's ex-husband in a pharmaceutical case while Mike's past may be revealed when he's given his first solo case.
- "Bail Out" – Harvey and Mike have their work cut out for them as Trevor rears his ugly head, Harvey's driver is slapped with a lawsuit, and one of their client's is in danger of losing her company.
- "Tricks of the Trade" – Harvey defends a woman falsely accused of insider trading while Mike assists Rachel in preparing for her LSAT.
- "Play the Man" – The firm holds a mock trial with Mike pitted against Louis's number one protégé as Harvey runs into a former flame (Abigail Spencer) during a merger of hotel chains.
- "Identity Crisis" – Harvey and Louis are forced to work together to defend a non-profit organization while Mike deals with a computer hacking girl.
- "Undefeated" – Harvey is matched up against an undefeated attorney in a fair settlement case and Rachel is accused of betraying the firm by leaking vital information.
- "The Shelf Life" – Mike feels sympathy for a long-time employee who was fired after it was discovered he falsified his background.
- "Rules of the Game" – Harvey has to work with Louis again to mediate an estate dispute between two sisters and is reunited with his mentor (Gary Cole), the former district attorney.
- "Dog Fight" – Harvey's efforts to prove the innocence of a wrongly convicted man are hampered by a DA (Chi McBride) more concerned with protecting the system.
The video is presented in anamorphic widescreen with an aspect ratio of 1.78:1. The transfer is well done with bold colors and rich detail for a standard definition release.
The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1. The sound is strong with dialogue coming in crisp and clear.
Disc 1 includes an audio commentary track for the pilot with series creator Aaron Korsh, executive producer David Bartis and stars Gabriel Macht and Patrick J. Adams. Also included are an extended version of the pilot and previews for other Universal releases.
Disc 2 features deleted scenes for the episodes "Dirty Little Secrets," "Bail Out," and "Play the Man."
On Disc 3, you'll find deleted scenes for each episode, a gag reel, and another commentary track on the season finale "Dogfight." Also included is Cross Examination (10:30), a featurette in which the cast and crew answer questions fans have submitted via the internet.
The USA Network used to be known as the home of WWE wrestling and the Westminster Dog Show. Over the last several years, it's been on a roll with original programming like "Burn Notice," "Psych," and "Royal Pains." "Suits" has a tough time standing out amidst those quality shows and so many other legal shows before it. However, "Suits" is slickly made with compelling characters and sharp dialogue.