This is an episode that's structured around a court case, in a series not normally focused on litigation. In other words, it's an Out-of-Genre Experience
where the genre being shifted into is "Law Procedural
Because lawyers get to have all the fun in court, you can expect a major character to be incongruously forced into playing one. They'll almost always succeed in arguing their case despite not actually having a law degree, or indeed starting the episode with any clue about what they're doing
You should also expect an egregiously
large number of Courtroom Antics
, for reasons reminiscent of the Second Law of Metafictional Thermodynamics
: since the writers don't normally have the opportunity to write such things, they'll feel obligated to cram in all their favorite ones.
Compare Jury Duty
and Rogue Juror
. See also Prison Episode
, which this sometimes doubles as. (Or is sometimes followed by.)
open/close all folders
- The classic Legion of Super-Heroes story "The Legionaire Who Killed" (originally printed in Adventure Comics #342), in which Star Boy kills an outlaw in self defense, violating the Legion's code against killing.
- The Con Sentiency series largely focuses on the exploits of a Secret Agent/Bureaucrat Jorj X. McKie. However:
- A good portion of the novel The Dosadi Experiment focuses on the courtroom drama of the Gowachin, which is much more interesting than its human equivalent.
- The short story "The Tactful Saboteur" also features a Courtroom chapter. However, except for a few additions, the courtroom is rather orthodox.
- The first few chapters of the Sector General book The Genocidal Healer are framed by a misconduct trial for the book's protagonist, though they mainly consist of a recounting of the events that led to the trial in the first place.
- Most of the Sagas of Icelanders contain at least one, with plenty of fancy speeches and occasional bouts of Off on a Technicality.
Live Action TV
- "The Trail Of Eric Bischoff" from a 2005 episode of Raw.
- "Little People's Court"
- The Archers did several for the trial of Tom Archer, including an episode focusing entirely on the jury's deliberations, which was heavily publicised on its gimmick value as the only episode in the show's history not to feature any of the regular characters.