This isn’t a review in the typical sense. I won’t just vastly go over the pros and cons of the series, but really give you a in-depth look at everything and tell you how I feel about them. So naturally, this will contain spoilers, but you shouldn’t read this anyway without seeing the series.
Of the bat, I’m not a professional reviewer, so I can’t tell you in this exact episode at XX:XX mike says this which resembles A said by harvey in episode XX from season XX. I’m just a guy who enjoys series and loves to write about them. Sometimes when describing camera and film techniques I may use phrases that not everyone will understand, but use google and maybe you’ll even learn something. I may also point out stuff that could ruin the show for you, so if you’re easily influenced by others, maybe this or even the internet isn’t for you. Sometimes I point aspects out which I don’t mind but that could help make the show more appealing to the masses and increase the chance of continuation.
So let’s get started:
I’ll go of on a bit of a rant in the beginning, since I need to make some room for the good stuff to come. My biggest complaint is the dramatic overuse of the ken burns effects. The camera literally never stands still. While I do like camera movements in longer talk scenes, when just showing the face of someone reacting to news etc, I don’t always need the picture to move. I know it’s not the camera moving but made in post, but sometimes there’s too much. Also while your audience is smart and most people will be able to follow complex plot points and legal strategies, it’s a real problem for non native speakers and people who aren’t that bright. It also makes it hard to watch it while cooking or just on the side, since after missing 5 min they could already won a case by threatening a class action lawsuit or to bankrupt entire firms. I’m nitpicky and you may not like this, but for example I’m S06 donna holds her iPhone the wrong way when showing photos. It’s just a small thing but when shooting the scene someone must have noticed that, or that suddenly a GoPro 4 (I’m assuming) can transmit live without a smartphone to a surveillance system. Sometimes the writers need to be more creative then just abusing technology.
Usually the difference between sun brightly shining and the sun not being there at all is multiple hours, but in suits it just seems to be a ride a few blocks in manhattan. While traffic can be horrible there and it of course is easier to shoot all the office scenes at once and then cut them into the storyline at the right time, ask your after effects guys to write me a message, I have some plugins for them.(They change the outside to make it look different)
Then we have the case of Donna (She’s awesome). She seems to play in a different league, outside the depicted justice system. For example in S 6 where she’s able to speed up a escrow process from a few weeks to just 2 days. They also admit that it was a impossible task. While I like her and I frankly do not care about the escrow process of the side story, I am worried that the writers someday might use her to get the main storyline moving forward. This would jump the law series into just sci-fy. So let Donna do her thing, just not let her intervene too much into the main story.
But what really bothers me is the perfection on how stuff or people just “happen” to be at the perfect place at the right time. How they are able to perfectly intercept conversations when the chance of them being there is close to 0%. Of course this is needed to make the story progress faster and more seamless, but god dammit why can’t a character show up too late and they just repeat what they talked about before, even if it’s just 2 sentences ? It makes it feel more realistic and not so “sitcom-smooth”.
Now comes the thing that drives me insane: the 1 min replay of the last few episodes. We all saw what happened and we don’t have the mind of a goldfish. It’s a simple way to drag out the show further to insert more ads. I beg you PLEASE stop this craziness and let our brains remember by themselves.
While you thought the article was long, we’re not done yet. Far from it, then now we’re coming the the positive. And holy shit is there a lot. Let’s start with the nitty gritty. The set is actually real, or if it isn’t, it’s extremely well build and has super convincing windows, it give the office and therefor the firm a more official look and feel.
Now storytelling. This is the crux of TV and movie and frankly every kind of entertainment. As a “normal” viewer you might not recognise this, but everything makes a difference. You might not believe me and that’s fine, but let’s do a little social experiment. Your friend text you, he has a idea for a business you can do together on the side to earn a bit of money. Now picture this scenes at 2 radical different locations. A: At 2 am under a bridge, it’s raining you have hoodies on and when a car passes by you stop talking.
B: In a crowded coffee place in the centre of the city. In both places it’ll be hard for anyone to hear what you’re talking about, and since he texted you they would know anyway that you two had contact. But if the location is set under the bridge, the viewer already knows you will probably end on a crooked path. A public meeting still has all the options. And that’s just the setting. There’s lights, viewing angles, sound, setting of the camera focus, movement and distance. So when you watch the next episode image that a scene was shot from far away then up close. What would change in the way you interpret the scene?
Humour. The series has lots of it. That’s maybe a bit weird coming from a law-drama series, but it’s true. Especially when characters who where cold and distant suddenly crunch there ham and cheese sandwich in the speaker. It’s so unexpected that you just can’t help but crack a big smile.
But why I truly love this series, recommend it to everyone, cried when S 7 came out and gave away days of my life watching it: Character depth, development and interaction. Especially Harvey and Mike. Most series display the traits of a character openly during the first few episodes: Friendly, Jealous, Problems since wife died, alcoholic etc. You know everything from the beginning. While that’s fine for comedy series, it makes dramas predictable. Z character dies, you know A wants revenge, B will try to kill himself but at the end C will make it all work out. Characters get thrown into situations (my favourite example is Louis and the architect) where as a viewer you have no idea how he will be able to achieve those goals and how the characters around him will exactly respond. Will he be able to convince them by giving something up, and what should that something be ? Or maybe a complex strategy that is invisible for a few episodes ? I don’t know and frankly I don’t want to know it all at once. Give me small bites and let me wonder how he’ll do it. Would I have acted the same ? Let me applaud him for his genius move or scream into my pillow for a obvious mistake by the character.
I love you suits, never ever leave me.
ps. just WHAT are they saying at the end of the theme song: the great green boogie ?!?
This article was written after seeing till S06, things may have changed till then and points that are made may be no longer valid. Predictions are hard, especially if they involve the future.