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Murder in the First Review: And the Verdict Is...

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As the audio faded right before the verdict was read, I was prepared to roll my eyes and groan at what could have been such a major tease.

Erich Blunt is found… cut to credits. Boo.

But it didn’t end, and I found the use of pure expression from Warren Daniels, from the prosecutors, from Hildy and Terry was the perfect way to reveal Erich’s victory or defeat. Even he seemed a bit stunned as Warren stuck out his hand.

Not guilty.

Frankly, as much as Erich has unfortunately been rather unlikable, the prosecution really didn’t have the proof to put him away for Cindy or the baby’s murder.

Or maybe I like James Cromwell. Plus the way he commands his scenes as the power lawyer, I can’t help but hang on his every word.

I was a bit surprised that Murder in the First Season 1 Episode 8 was the conclusion of the trial, especially with two episodes to go. It definitely made me think of the direction the season was headed.

After all, is the story about finding Erich guilty? Is about a murder case and its trial from beginning to end? Do the good guys have to win?

Certainly, the trial proceedings were spot on captivating, because in a way, we too didn’t have all the answers. We didn’t know who the killer was, only the few details and circumstantial evidence laid out before the jury.

And its true that there were plenty of other suspects with far better motives.

But I’ve enjoyed how that’s been the case throughout Murder in the First Season 1. It hasn’t been so clear cut.

It makes for watching witnesses get on the stand to be engrossing, especially with the prospect of Erich putting himself in the crosshairs of the prosecution. And it was a dangerous move, one that proved so with his little comment about smiling at the end. You just kept waiting for him to explode and break under the heavy questioning.

Unfortunately, the scenes that were meant to focus specifically on the characters' lives outside of the trial, as much as I like them and would like to see more depth involved, felt like they got in the way here.

Sure, you get a sex scene with Terry and his realtor, who gets clingy super fast, and a quiet moment between the police officer and the girl who said Erich raped her. But they just didn’t have the same gravitas as the case itself.

Certainly, it’s good to try and make the characters more than just cop 1 and bad guy 1, but with respects to the main characters, I’ve gotten a pretty good sense of who they are over the course of the episodes. And with the close of the season at hand, it feels like the focus should be more on finishing the Erich Blunt chapter.

Because with his confession to Terry and Hildy that he “did” kill Cindy, and with the pretentious click of his tongue and exclamation about double jeopardy, the not guilty verdict doesn’t end that story. And man, what a great close up of his reveal before walking away. That's the right way to end the hour.

The two inspectors are going to go full force on bringing him down.

And if Erich did actually kill her, and it wasn’t just bravado to gloat in front of the police that had been trying to take him down this whole time, then he is one cold and nasty guy.

I’ve got a feeling though that Erich’s anonymous email for Bill’s wife to see the sex video is going to come back to bite him. Sure, Erich may be escaping jail, but might he not live beyond the finale? Just saying… Murder in the First might find karma for Erich in other ways.

I can only imagine what’s going to happen next, but like Terry and Hildy, iIve become so invested that I’m looking forward to seeing how it all ends. This has definitely been one of the top new shows of the summer, and I just hope it finds a way to close things out so we all want a season two.

Were you surprised the jury found Erich not guilty?

 

Review

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Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (14 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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the post-coital scene with terry and the realtor was.... baffling.
i hope there's some bizarre explanation for whatever that was.. like she was paid by blunt to undercook his eggs so he'd get food poisoning, and the coffee was decaf and it was all and elaborate plan to ruin terry's morning.
that makes more sense than her behaviour.

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Again, the show showed that the rich can buy a "NOT GUILTY VERDICT". I'm glad I missed Monday's episode & checked what happened online before wasting my time to watch the verdict. Glad I changed the channel it's repeat episode, Saturday morning, a quarter way through. What a waste.

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@ Zeus

i don't disagree that the rich get much better treatment at trial, but even a public defender (although they'd have to devote more time and energy than they usually have) could have gotten the same result. the prosecution's case was entirely circumstantial. there was a lot of reasonable doubt and unproven theories.

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@ sensorsweep

He had a motive, he was there on the scene. Plus, he threatened her and tried to hurt her over spilled wine. Which proved he had a temper and had hurt her previously. Money got this guy off!

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@ Bromley

blunt snark-confessed to hildy and terry because a)he did it (or got someone to do it) and he stupidly wanted to rub it in their faces that he defeated them OR b)he's innocent and because of his petulant personality, he wanted to inflict as much emotional damage possible against the cops who wanted him locked up.
whether it was through bad writing or done intentionally, the prosecutions case did not prove guilt.
it's not the responsibility of the defence to prove innocence, but it is the responsibility of the prosecution to prove guilt. besides being the spoiled privileged asshat (who seems to enjoy being uncooperative to the point of self-incrimination) that ejaculated in cindy's mouth shortly before her death, everything else is speculation or unsubstantiated hypotheses. the text she sent him after 9pm when she's supposed to be dead, because science, well blunt is a computer whiz, so he, uhh.... hacked the mainframe.. yeah! there's no proof though. he did martial arts, so he'd know how to break her neck. but again, no proof, just speculation. i also don't see how the judge would allow hannah (the woman blunt raped and settled out of court with) to testify. as much as something like that would go towards showing his true character, he was never charged or convicted for it. i think that even though blunt signed it, his lawyers would probably have required there to be no admission of guilt on it as part of the settlement, so sadly it's probably her word against his in the eyes of the court. her testimony would have been a scene on law & order where the judge angrily calls the lawyers to judges quarters to say her testimony is inadmissible and that sam waterston is on "thin ice". his money didn't buy him his aquittal, but it definitely bought him his freedom on bail the second time, after he blatantly and knowingly violated the conditions of his first bail. that was his money.

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@ sensorsweep

Last comment I'll make on this. If we were on the jury we would disagree. I see from your post that it is very important for you to be right about everything. Relax, per your opinion you are right and that is all that matters. I'm just glad that jury wasn't sitting on a real case. My opinion is that the prosecution proved intent, motive and opportunity! That was enough for me.

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I would of never watched this if I had known he was going to get off scott free! The jury was blind not to see how slimey he was!

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@ Bromley

slimey ≠ guilty.
the prosecution had a really weak case.

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