Therefore, it is easy to see why Gloria Reuben accepted the role without reading a word. "It's a Steven Bochco show. When I got the script and I knew it was written and produced by Steven, I jumped at it," Reuben said to SheKnows while we sipped Mango Martinis at the Beverly Hills Hilton.
Raising the Bar's pedigree does not solely end with Bochco's Midas television touch. "The book that the show was based on, called Indefensible, I very much enjoyed reading it and loved how it portrayed a different aspect of the judicial system that I had never read about or seen," Reuben said. "I wanted to be a part of it."
Based on the life of New York public defender David Vygo, portrayed with vivacity by Mark Paul Gosselaar, Bochco's show spotlights the selfless office, but equally the judges, government prosecutors and everyone else caught up in the scales of justice. "I liked how there's kind of this triangular type of portrayal of the system. I've always been drawn to or interested in the legal system and how it works," Reuben said.
Reuben reports that Raising the Bar removes the veil from the justice system of Manhattan and spreads the drama across the character archetypes. "There are people that really might have more of an altruistic intention of getting involved in that kind of line of work. It's always been a world that fascinated me."
Key to the cast giving their real-life counterparts their proper due was tailing those who did the job, an activity for Reuben that was a pleasure. "I think my most memorable moment came from doing a research trip here in New York. I live in New York," she said. "We went up to the Bronx to go to visit the Bronx defenders, which is where [David Vygo] was a public defender, to watch the proceedings happen in the Superior Court."
Raising the Bar, Reuben said, promises to be a legal show unlike any audiences have witnessed. "I think it offers a different perspective of the judicial system. I think it's different than any other show when it comes to the law because it has a balanced viewpoint of these three different arenas: the public defenders, the district attorneys, the judges," Reuben said.
"Also, there's this element as a society, or in the entertainment world, where we want to have the hero and the villain. We want the good guy and the bad guy. We really kind of blur those lines a lot with the cases that we deal with. I'm really proud of the fact."
A legal show that illustrates points of view from all sides courtesy of the creative force behind some of television's best dramas, must challenge the mind.
"It really raises some good questions about how the system works and doesn't work," Reuben said. "It makes audiences look at the world differently."
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