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by Vault Law Editors | January 27, 2010

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For those who hoped ABC’s new series, “The Deep End,” would prove to be a fair depiction of law firm life, Texas Lawyer offers a reality check. Five first-years were asked to watch the series premiere and offer their feedback. Selected comments follow.

On the show’s degree of realism:

  • “I don’t think it portrayed the first-year experience at all with the exception of how everyone seemed quite overwhelmed. … [T]hey portrayed the partners and mentors as incredibly ridiculous people. In reality, they hire you and mentor you because they want you to be trained properly. Otherwise, what good are you?”
  • “I think the show reinforces the (erroneous) belief that lawyers are unethical and self-absorbed.”
  • “Also, no one ever sends me a cupcake basket.”

Does the fact that the show was conceived back in pre-recession 2007 excuse its inaccuracies?

  • “I did my summer clerkship ‘when things were good,’ and sleeping around and yelling at partners were not the norm, to my knowledge, even then.”

Advice to would-be lawyers in the audience:

  • “Going to law school makes you a dork, not charming and witty and beautiful.”
  • “Stop watching this show — or maybe watch this show and then do exactly the opposite of everything they do.”
  • “You are not going to cure world hunger and create world peace by being a 25-year-old lawyer. It’s just not going to happen. Give up.”

In sum:

  • The bad news: Life as a first-year associate is not as sexy or glamorous as depicted on TV.
  • The good news: In real life, ethics do matter and partners might actually teach you something about the practice of law.

- posted by vera

More bad news: these are not for you
cupcakes
AP Photo/Larry Crowe

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