On the Differences between The Practice and Boston Legal

At times the past few weeks watching Boston Legal I’ve wondered if the Crane, Poole, and Schmidt we’ve seen this year has any connection to the Crane, Poole, and Schmidt we saw last year in the final episodes of The Practice. Beyond the cosmetic changes–the office looks nothing the same–and the personnel changes–the feeling I had last season was that Vince Colosimo was the firm’s managing partner, the role that Rene Auberjonois now fills–some of the dialogue has planted some doubts in my mind, that Boston Legal may share characters with the same name as characters from The Practice but that may be all. When Crane said to Shore a few weeks ago that he was growing sentimental in his old age and that he considered leaving until Alan Shore came on board I felt a certain cognitive dissonance because that didn’t “click” with my perception of last year’s events.

Ultimately Boston Legal needs to establish its own identity, and in the minds of viewers that may mean being something other than simply The Practice, Part II. If that means establishing its own continuity and its own parameters separate from what happened before, then so be it.

That said, I would love to see Alan have a go at Jimmy’s new firm. Oh, would that be fun. 🙂

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