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Raising the Bar

2 Seasons

Season 1
4.4 out of 5 stars (43) IMDb 7.5/10

The series follows the cases and lives of young lawyers who work on opposite sides - the public defender's office and the district attorney's office - as well as those who sit in judgment on their cases.

Starring:
Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Gloria Reuben

Available to watch on supported devices.

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Buy Season 1 HD $19.99

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Season 1

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1. Pilot

Passionate and idealistic Public Defender Jerry Kellerman is convinced his client is not guilty, but when a technicality in the law threatens his client's freedom, will Jerry push Judge Kessler too far?

TV-14 CC Runtime: 44 minutes Release date: August 31, 2008
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2. Guatemala Gulfstream

ADA Ernhardt's zeal to win is formidable and her quick thinking may prevent Jerry's witness from testifying. Will this professional road block interfere with their personal friendship?

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: September 7, 2008
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3. I Will, I'm Will

Jerry makes a deal for his client to testify in a drug-related murder case in exchange for charges against her to be dropped. Yet when a Family Court Judge rules differently, will Jerry's unwavering devotion to his client be enough this time to help her?

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: September 14, 2008
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4. Richie Richer

Jerry tries to make a deal to help his psychotic client enter an out-patient treatment center in exchange for a guilty plea. But when his client cannot be placed, Jerry is forced to trial.

TV-14 CC Runtime: 42 minutes Release date: September 21, 2008
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5. Bagels & Locks

Jerry's client is willing to cop to kidnap and rape, but won't agree to make a deal if it includes a conviction for murder which he adamantly denies.

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: September 28, 2008
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6. Hang Time

Marcus won't allow a wife to drop an assault charge against her husband, insisting the system needs to protect her even when the wife supports the husband's claim there is no battery.

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: October 5, 2008
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7. A Leg to Stand On

Jerry's client is up against a kid whose dad has a lot of power and influence. When Jerry contemplates a bench trial in lieu of a jury trial, will it be the right decision for his client?

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: October 12, 2008
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8. Out on the Roof

Charlie seeks Jerry's legal help, but how far will he go to help a friend when the trial is in his own Judge's court?

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: October 19, 2008
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9. Roman Holiday

Jerry's client, infected by HIV, is accused of attempted first degree murder for spitting on a cop and must face trial. Will Jerry be able to help him win back his freedom?

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: October 26, 2008
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10. Shop Til You Drop

District Attorney Nick Balco and Public Defender Roz Whitman go head to head in court to re-try a case overturned by the court of Appeals.

TV-14 CC Runtime: 43 minutes Release date: November 2, 2008
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Layton E. Huskey on June 17, 2009
Format: DVD
Rasing the Bar is a great and upcoming court/law drama that I have throughly enjoyed. I highly recommend it to others. If your a Gloria Reburn (ER) or Mark-Paul Gossellar (Saved by the Bell, NYBD Blue) fan you will especially enjoy these characters reprise their career. The new season is now on TNT and it's looking good for a second season. I'm enjoying it and I highly suggest it even though it is only 10 episode pilot type season. Go get a copy today!
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Format: DVD
A very surprizingly addictive show. The characters grow on you from the start and make you interested in what will happen next to the characters, personally and professionally. Although it can be a bit predictable at times, it has a freshness to its presentation that will get you through wanting more. I worry that the show walks a thin line of being completely unrealistic as far as case subject matter. " is everyone going to be innocent and wrongly accused?" Where are the bad guys?I understand a noble,honest public defender..who happens to only get innocent and wrongly accused clients? That is Matlock/Murder She wrote cheesey and not what I expect from todays law dramas.Out of the whole first season, I think Mark only had one really "bad" guy. Still a great show, really clean cut; can only get better.
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Format: DVD
The concept is okay if a little worn out: A bunch of attractive young lawyers on opposite sides of the fence; public defenders vs. prosecutors. Mark-Paul Gosselaar is oh so passionate about his clients' innocence and badly in need of a haircut. There are little touches to try and spice it up - the Judge's illicit relationship with a clerk who has a secret and you do get to see a few of the lawyers without much clothes on.

So why did I stop after the first DVD? Part of the reason has to do with the fact that there is only one judge 99% of the time, and this show is not set in some small town where that would actually happen. Raising The Bar is supposed to take place in Manhattan where an actual public defender would have cases in front of dozens of judges.

But more importantly, the break from reality is too complete for me. All the defendants are sympathetic. Every single last one. They are either outright innocent or they had such a good reason for doing what they did that you can't help but root for their side. It's an insult to the watcher's intelligence. Part of the allure of law shows for me is the nuance - this show has no shades of grey. To make matters worse, the prosecutors pull ridiculous stunts to cheat their way to putting innocent people in prison, and the police officers are portrayed as snarling monsters who could have easily been cast for the Sopranos. Watching this show became painful.

If you want to watch a show that's a lot like this one - except that it's actually done right, watch Conviction created by Dick Wolf. The lawyers are just as attractive (one is even the same as in Raising The Bar!) but it's a lot more interesting, nuanced and believable.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
Engaging stories about criminal defendants and the lawyers defending them. The series presents attorneys on both sides of the case with the defense receiving more sympathetic view. The actors begin somewhat woodenly but grow into their roles. Very entertaining and as an aside it depicts judges as the unfortunate and egocentric individuals they are.
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"Raising the Bar" continues to raise the bar with its quality of characters and story lines with each episode. There are thoughtful issues, interesting dilemmas to discover, clients and victims with whom the viewer can identify as the talented attorneys on both sides work passionately at their jobs. I enjoy a legal drama as interesting, entertaining, thought-provoking entertainment and this series meets the mark. It doesn't leap high over the mark, but it is enjoyable, good television, in my opinion. I would recommend it to those who like shows about the practice of criminal law and are finding it tough to find many good series available in this genre. And then, there is Season Two to look forward to! I enjoyed this and wished for more.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
With an assortment of sanctimonious twenty and thirty-something lawyers, set in NYC (occasional stock footage of the city, but not even a pretense of CGI city-scapes out the windows), a succession of nauseating saccharine speeches about how important the “system” is and how the “system” is failing ‘vics’ and ‘perps’ alike, this second rate flashback is best avoided.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
You get the idea that justice is the relationships between the judges, the prosecutors and the public defenders. Facts and the evidence doesn't matter. It makes you think and wonder. That is what makes it entertaining.
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Format: DVD
Raising the Bar is one of the best court dramas I've seen in a long time. The writing is terrific, the acting is great, and they do a great job balancing out serious topic with light hearted humor. Some of my favourite scenes stem from the lawyers meeting up at their usual bar after hours. The budding romance between Bobbie and Jerry is also really entertaining because it gives the viewer something to hope for, giving them a reason to tune in next week. The show can get repetitive at times as Trudy's consistant brash unprofessionalism and unapolagetic hatred of Jerry becomes very annoying at times. That said, Raising the Bar is a fine show and an entertaining way to spend an hour.
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