Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Another Law & Order spin-off from producer Dick Wolf, NBC's weekly, hour-long Conviction starred Stephanie March, recreating her familiar Law & Order: SVU role as Assistant DA Alexandra Cabot. Formerly imbedded in the Federal Witness Protection Program, Alexandra was once more able to move about and practice her trade, this time as bureau chief for a group of young, ambitious ADAs. Her new colleagues included deputy DA and law-office manager Jim Steele (Anson Mount); born-into-privilege lawyer Nick Potter (Jordan Bridges), who idealistically left a lucrative private practice to work with Cabot for a paltry 51,000 dollars per year; arrogant grandstander Billy Desmond (J. August Richards), who went to great lengths to secure for himself only those cases that he was sure to win; Jessica Rossi (Milena Govich), Nick Potter's unofficial assistant and a woman with a murky, working-class past; Brian Peluso (Eric Balfour), whose legal brilliance was mitigated by his slovenliness and his messy private life; and Christina Finn (Julianne Nicholson), who'd been working in the office for two years before finally landing her first case and was understandably anxious to make up for lost time. Eschewing the "procedural" format of the other series in the Law & Order franchise, Conviction was built more along the lines of the medical drama Grey's Anatomy, focusing more on the various lawyers' personal problems and hang-ups than on their professional activities. Also breaking away from the Law & Order formula was the series' predilection for having the attorneys inaugurate legal investigations before it was entirely certain that a crime had actually been committed. Conviction first aired on March 3, 2006.