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Work Com-slash-Dramedy created by David E. Kelley about a neurotic lawyer and the wacky people she works with. The series ran on Fox from 1997 to 2002, a total of 112 episodes (all but one of which was written or co-written by Kelley) in five seasons. Ally herself was played by Calista Flockhart.The series went for 'nutty' in a very big way, with preposterous lawsuits (man is fired for having bad comb over and sues, dying boy sues God, etc), dream and fantasy sequences all over the place, spontaneous dance numbers and the like. Probably best known in its early years for the CGI baby dancing to the "ooga-chaka" chorus from Blue Swede's "Hooked on a Feeling", and in its later seasons for a surfeit of "daring" "lesbian" kisses among various women in the cast. Achieved a kind of brilliance in the legal arguments made by the character John Cage. Achieved retch-inducing horror in its mundane romantic complications.The show was a ratings success when it aired, and a big enough part of pop culture that Time ran a cover story on it, accusing it of killing feminism. However, after its cancellation it vanished off the public radar.Among sci-fi nerds, it's known for being the subject of a Futurama episode as a show called Single Female Lawyer.
This show provides examples of:
Angry Dance: Lampshaded when John gets furious at Nelle for being a snobby Rich Bitch. He dances frantically in his office and Richard comes in. He points out to John that it's his Angry Dance. John replies that HE'S ANGRY!
Ascended Meme: The dancing baby is one of the earliest internet memes.
Bilingual Bonus: Ling's argument in a Chinese restaurant, although it's still funnier when you have no idea what's being said.
Birthday Hater: Ally was unable to appreciate her friends' plans for her birthday parties and couldn't even civilly accept their birthday wishes. She hated getting older without a husband in sight, feeling like a bit of a Christmas Cake. However, her friends could have been handling the issue differently. Why inflict parties on her when she hates them?
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: A whole office full of them, and they are literally lawyers. All are very weird, but their firm hardly ever loses the case. Elaine is a Bunny-Ears secretary.
Elaine has the potential to be a subversion here, however, considering that she's one of the most efficient and capable secretaries in TV history; in fact, Word of God states that she has so much free time on her hands (which she often uses to invent things) because she's supremely good at what she does.
Cannot Tell a Joke: Ally is mortified when she tells the patrons at her favorite bar a risque joke and they react with disgust.
Cat Fight: Renee and Elaine in episode "Turning thirty". On a stage during a party, complete with meowing sounds at the end.
In "The Blame Game", the judge in charge of trial of the week greets the defendant attorney Ally, asking how her potato chips hunt goes. The same judge in "One Hundred Tears Away" (8 episodes back) was part of the board considering revoking Ally's lawyer licence (last straw being an alledged assault on a supermarket customer who at first only started arguing over a can of chips).
In episode 5 of season 2, Ally gets stuck with a case without time to prepare, and it's her client's fault, so a judge leaves no room for protest. What judge does do is saying that there are also good news: Ally can dress however she likes. Makes sense in connection with previous episode, in which a different judge cost Ally a night in jail for refusing to meet demands of wearing skirt longer than her mini- in court.
Everyone Loves Blondes: Nelle isn't exactly loved, but she becomes sort of a queen bee of the place and her hair is frequently mentioned as a key aspect to her attractiveness. The previous one (albeit a lot nicer) was Georgia, also a blonde - who explicitly hated Nelle partly because the latter 'out-blonded' her.
Imagine Spot: Ally has them on regular basis. It becomes a problem when she cannot distinguish them from reality. For example, one episode she kept seeing a famous singer, and she nearly attacked a real one who by chance appeared in their favourite bar.
And she DOES full-on kick a child attorney in the back, because she thought she was hallucinating about her "dancing baby"
Over-the-top Christmas Decorations: Ally loves Christmas, but her boyfriend Larry's not too keen. Ally pesters him to decorate his office a bit and he gets piles and piles of illuminated Christmas stuff and mechanized reindeer. We later find out he doesn't like Chistmas and other holidays because he has a small son, and Larry misses him even more during holidays.
Pet the Dog: Ling, despite her abrasive personality and wildly offensive comments, likes to volunteer at an old folks home.
Rant Inducing Slight: Ling hates it when people mispronounce her name by putting emphasis on the G or using a hard L.
Scooby Stack: When Ally is breaking up with Larry, the entire office spy on her and try to learn the latest gossip or see how she's coping. At one point, they all (minus Richard who is in LA) stick their heads in her door and immediately pull them out when Ally notices them.
Sexy Santa Dress: Ally wears a short red Santa dress with white lining while singing "Santa Baby" in one of the Christmas episodes. Very hot indeed.
She's Got Legs: All the female regulars, but Ally in particular is a poster child for the trope. In one episode, a judge sent her to jail for disrespecting him because she refused to give up her very short mini-skirt.
Softer And Slower Cover: The show regularly features various famous songs redone by Vonda Shephard in a slower, quieter style. For example, Bing Crosby's "Swing On A Star" was covered with a slower tempo and emphasis on the "Pig" part of the song.
Elaine once took Ally by surprise and starting kissing her in order to pretend Ally is gay and her girlfriend. Ally's date guy was a douche who would not take a hint to leave. He didn't buy it.
Ally tries Elaine's bit on a guy who is a huge nutbag and loser who becomes convinced Ally and him are soul mates. Ally asks Georgia to do it and she obliges. The guy takes the bait and tells Ally there are ways to be cured.
Ally and Ling once become fascinated with each other and try kissing in a very long scene. They agree it was good, but it missed one thing — a penis.
Tinkle in the Eye: When Elaine found an abandoned baby boy and wanted to adopt him, he tinkled in the eyes of nearly everybody, mainly Ling and Nelle. It made Elaine invent protective goggles.