User Reviews (12)

Add a Review

  • I don't know why it is, but it seem like every time a show with a little intelligence or educational value is put into prime time, it seems to fail. Is the American public really that uninterested ? Or is it that the networks are just so anxious to "make a buck" that they're unwilling to give it time to find an audience and receive "word of mouth" ? I hope one of the cable channels , like USA Network, will show this series. It was excellent, in that it showed the inner workings of the Supreme Court. James Garner, Joe Mantegna, and Charles Durning were great in their roles, and it showed how a decision could affect a Justice's family. It also showed how crucial the research of the clerks is, and how it can make or break a decision. I was so disappointed when it was cancelled after only 13 episodes. Due to the imminent upheaval in the Supreme Court, it should, at the very least, be released on DVD. It was an Emmy -nominated series !
  • "First Monday" gave us something we don't see enough of on fictional television: honest debates on serious subjects. Sure the show was a rip-off of "West Wing" and just an excuse to make political statements, but at least the show recognized the legitimacy of the arguments on both sides of the issues instead of making one side the hero and one side the villain. Unfortunately, that seemed to be the whole point of the show. Court shows have to be about more than issues if they're going to be remotely interesting. Look at "Judging Amy". The political statements are only plot points. The court cases take up only about a quarter of the episode time. The whole purpose of the show is to see how legal issues affect the characters' personal lives and vice versa. But that's far more than anyone can expect from a series by Bellisario. He thinks in terms of plot, not characters. That fine for a series like "Quantum Leap" but not something intellectually deep like the Supreme Court.
  • I have seen each and every episode of this show in the hope that it would improve over time. But any lawyer who is familiar with, or has worked in, the Supreme Court knows that this series just gets worse and worse in each passing episode.

    Many of the facts and issues surrounding the cases heard by the "First Monday" Supreme Court are totally ridiculous. Why would the Court grant certiorari (review of a lower court ruling) to a dwarf who claims discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act just because his employer makes accomodations for him under that act? The episode on electrocution was absolutely unbelievable with a series of shockingly strange coincidences. In short, these types of cases in real life do not get to the Supreme Court docket because they are just a waste of time for justices to deal with.

    Unlike the "West Wing", First Monday distorts every procedure, practice and tradition observed in the Supreme Court. I need to tell its director and writer that justices sit on the bench and conference table to vote by order of seniority. So Justice Novelli (Joe Mantegna) as junior justice cannot be to the far right of the chief justice. As junior justice, Novelli should also vote first, rather than last, so it would have been impossible for him to be the swing vote in any case. Also, the offices of justices are totally secluded from the public and justices do not walk around the building debating about cases and private issues unlike what this series portrays. It is also strange that the law clerks are depicted as secretaries answering phone calls for the justices, removing their trench coats, etc, since justices are staffed with secretaries and messengers. Finally, the chant that is uttered at the start of a hearing is totally incorrect and distorted in First Monday.

    Is it really possible that every case heard by the high court always has direct bearing on only one justice's life? Novelli (who plays the lead role) owns a gun used in a shooting when the Court hears arguments on the gun control law. His daughter invokes the right to privacy from drug testing when a case on privacy (DNA) reaches the Court, etc.

    I would not recommend this series to anyone who is serious to learn about the Supreme Court and its impact on American society. Anyone can read numerous books about it or go to your public library for a video on its work.
  • The cast is fabulous. The U.S. is going through a period of patriotism and the general public is interested in making a connection with the government because we are in `War Time.' Shows such `West Wing' are some of the best television shows at the moment. The movie `The American President' with Michael Douglas (Wonder Boys) and Annette Bening (American Beauty) has inspired many other movies and television shows. As a matter of fact actress Gail Strickland (How to make an American Quilt) played the wife of the President's advisor in `The American President'.

    I believe that the series is very promising because it shows a different stage of a case, which is appeals before the Supreme Court. I have no recollection of any show on television to this date on this topic. All other shows deal with murder, defense lawyers, prosecutors, detectives, and this show is breaking new ground.

    It generates public interest in finding out why attorneys cannot object at the Supreme Court. My husband was asking me why not. I explained to him that the Supreme Court is not looking at depositions by witnesses which happens in the first level court, meaning not on any type of appeal. People will understand when The Supreme Court can 'grant cert.' or deny it, when the Supreme Court can decide to hear an Appeal. The shows reveals a totally new stage in legal proceedings so it is very educational. Basically the show will deal with a facet of the Constitution that the general public is not exposed to such as how the Founding Fathers established in the Constitution the laws under which the Court operates. The title of the show is good because that is when the Court starts hearing cases in the Fall after the Summer recess. It is just great!!!!

    Hopefully it will not be too legalize and that the general public will truly enjoy it! Otherwise I am sure that the legal community will truly enjoy it. The first episode showed that the Court has a new member and how the Junior will relate to the other Justices, specially because it shows how the Chief Justice sets the mood of the Court. There was a real case of a staying of execution which raises issues of death penalty among others. As someone in the legal profession I truly enjoyed the show and think that pretty soon all the clerks will start imitating the Supreme Court Justices. Attorneys use copy Susan Day's hair style on L.A. Law.
  • postdlf27 December 2003
    I loved that a major network show was trying to dramatize the Supreme Court, but I hated that it was done so poorly. This show was dumb from start to finish. Not only was it horribly inaccurate to anyone with even a basic knowledge of the Supreme Court (or law in general), but it was also ridiculous as a drama and its handling of moral discussions was superficial and inane. ABC's "The Court", though certainly not perfect, was a much better attempt, both at depicting the Court, and at making an intelligent drama.
  • tbbnbb30 March 2002
    This show gets into the politics of our high court. It's nice to see a show about lawyers that deal with the soft side, with clothes on. The show is well written and moves well on a theme. I recommend it to anyone who wants to think about an issue.
  • beno198318 January 2002
    A perfect combination of "The West Wing" and "JAG". I hope this show sticks around. I predict in a year or two, this show will be a hit-series. The actors and actresses that are in "First Monday" fit their roles really well.
  • JYJ22 October 2002
    When i first heard about the show i was excited because a show that includes James Garner, Charles Durning and Joe Mantegna must be great. After watching severall shows i have now finally given up, this show clearly shows that good cast alone does not make a good show. Basically the show is all about Joe Mantegna who plays Justice Novelli is new in the supreme court and he always seems to have the decisive vote, IN EVERY SINGLE SHOW. His assistants who research his cases all compete on having their influence on the vote and it gets very irritating after a while. The biggest problem with the show is obviously the writing, is poor by any standards. This show has major problems if it is to survive beyond this season.
  • Inliten1 February 2003
    'First Monday' is (was) a terrific show. Unfortunately, it appears that CBS has canceled it. The cast was great; each character portrayed their respective justice well. I particularly enjoyed the scenes with some of the law clerks, played by Hedy Burress, Randy Vasquez (of "JAG" fame), and Christopher Wiehl. Each episode tackled a controversial current event extremely well. "Novelli" (played brilliantly by Joe Mantegna) always seemed to be the 'breaking vote,' as the other eight justices always had more solid opinions about appeals. Of course, Novelli was always drawn in by the others in hopes that his vote would sway to their side. Novelli dealt with this well, explaining his problems with both sides and his agreements. It would be terrific if CBS were to start the show up again, but unfortunately that doesn't appear likely.
  • Finally, the viewing public will see the "Judicial Branch" of our government. The portrayal of this branch of our government is very necessary. I do wish that James Garner would not smoke on the show. We watched John Wayne smoke through his career and die through the media. Please eliminate the smoke screen and allow the stars to shine.
  • This is a great show. I really appreciate the legal arguments and the quality of the acting. All the plot lines were suspenseful, and facts learned about the Supreme Court were well worth noting. This show has particular significance to me since I am a Supreme Court buff. I am able to say that a lot the facts stated in the were correct as to Supreme Court procedure and previous cases. I especially liked how in a couple of episodes the "imaginary" court was hearing some of the same issues as our "real" court. I.E. sex offenders' right to privacy, child pornography, etc. It was a job well done, particularly for a mid-season replacement. Sadly, this wonderful show did not rate ratings high enough to be put on to CBS's fall lineup, which baffles me to no small degree when I consider the Season Finale cliffhanger that will now be left unanswered.
  • carsch9 March 2002
    While it is true that this show is an obvious rip off of "The West Wing," it has the potential to be very good. "First Monday" has strong cast members and deals with issues that are relevant today. If given time, this show has the potential to rival "The West Wing." Even now, it is certainly better than anything else CBS could put in its timeslot.