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Should You Watch … ‘The Fix,’ Marcia Clark’s Definitely-Not-About–O.J. Simpson Legal Procedural?

Come for the metatext, stay for the fabulous mansions and extremely attractive people

ABC/Ringer illustration

The wife of a wealthy black superstar and her friend are found stabbed to death. During the ensuing murder trial, the superstar’s defense team accuses prosecutors of racism and goes so far as to suggest that the Los Angeles Police Department is setting their client up. A media frenzy ensues. The female lead prosecutor becomes a household name—a name that begins with M and ends with A—and, when a jury finds the superstar not guilty, she is blamed by a rabid public for failing to get a conviction.

You should know that The Fix, ABC’s new legal drama, is definitely not about O.J. Simpson. It is, however, a tale co-written and executive produced by Marcia Clark—as in, yes, the real-life Simpson prosecutor.

The Fix’s wayward prosecutor is named Maya, not Marcia, and the star she failed to put behind bars is an actor, not an actor-slash-retired-football-player. The story picks up eight years after Sevvy Johnson’s (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) acquittal, when his young girlfriend, Jessica, is found beaten to death. “He did it again,” Maya’s former co-prosecutor tells her on the portico of the enormous Washington estate to which she decamped after the Johnson case. Maya (Robin Tunney) now spends her days dolefully galloping on horses through verdant meadows and making BLTs for her cowboy boyfriend. She is done with the law! Done with it!

Clark, incidentally, stopped working as a special trials lawyer and moved her family to the Los Angeles suburbs after the Simpson trial. Some other things you shouldn’t read too much into: Maya’s past romantic relationship with said co-prosecutor (Adam Rayner), which is definitely not confirmation that Clark and fellow Simpson prosecutor Christopher Darden had anything going on; a floppy-haired resident of Johnson’s pool house who is tasked with getting rid of an incriminating duffel bag; Maya dramatically declaring, “You have no idea what it felt like to be me eight years ago. Was your face on the news all day, every day? Was your entire life dissected, your hair, your clothes, every single decision, every mistake?” There’s also Clark herself, who says of Maya’s pursuit of Sevvy Johnson, “In terms of revenge fantasy, that was funny.”

But I say you shouldn’t read too much into it because, well, this is an ABC legal drama. So in addition to all of that, we get a parade of fabulous mansions, very hot people, secret gambling debts (and well-coiffed enforcers), a media consultant with a goofy haircut named Ares, and a fabulously villainous Scott Cohen as Johnson’s top-dollar defense attorney. He refers to himself as “the Wolf,” so, you know. Quoth the DA: “Want to know where I just came from? Cher’s house. She was about to sing ‘Believe.’ I love that song. But I had to leave because you all screwed up.” Gil Garcetti could never.

The result is a very snackable show, if not quite the prestige drama that The People v. O.J. Simpson might have primed you to expect. Clark, after all, has—like Darden—spent her recent years writing crime novels about gritty attorneys, and definitely not thinking at all about getting a second shot at locking up O.J. Simpson.

Should You Watch It? If you want a drama that’s just this side of taking itself so seriously that it’s funny, The Fix is for you. Also, O.J. Simpson Easter eggs abound.

Best Advice From the Wolf? “Try wedges. My ex-wives say they’re kinder to the feet.”

Should You Have Taken Your Parents’ Advice and Gone to Law School? Well, you would have a very nice house.