Thursday, January 26, 2006

Bob Loblaw Law Blog Brouhaha

Kitchen Confidential died after 4 episodes, so my grass-roots blog endorsement of it did no good whatsoever. It’s much more acclaimed lead-in, Arrested Development, is also on its last breath. The final four episodes are scheduled to be burned off on Friday February 10th in a single 2-hour inferno opposite the opening of the Winter Olympics, ensuring it will go out with a whimper not a bang.

The show was produced by Ron Howard (the celebrity I most closely resemble) who also served as the Voice of God narrator. Some of the show’s great inside jokes included a lot of winking references to Happy Days. A recurring character was the Fonz himself, Henry Winkler, playing a hopelessly incompetent lawyer named Barry Zuckerkorn. When Winkler sold his soul to go onto a real network show, the incredibly unfunny Out Of Practice, AD had an inspired bit of casting.

They replaced Fonzie with Chachi. Scott Baio, also from Happy Days, and later Joanie Love Chachi became the Bluth family’s new lawyer. While he will never top his thespianic triumphs in Charles in Charge, Baio’s lawyer character Bob Loblaw was a brilliant running gag. If you say his name fast, as the show’s cast frequently did, it comes out sounding like “Blah, blah, blah” which is of course what most lawyers sound like.

The ultimate play on this was when they revealed that Bob kept a blog appropriately called the Bob Loblaw Law Blog. Say that three times fast. Amazingly, or maybe not, there is a real Bob Loblaw Law Blog. Normally spoof blogs, like the Real Harriet Myers Blog, get their laffs from outrageous parody, but this Robert Loblaw is playing it straight. The cases he covers seem real enough and the commentary is suitably dry but not gibberish.

I am not the first to find this blog. The Chicago Tribune, The Volokh Conspiracy and others have mentioned its existence, which dates to the introduction of the character. I don’t know whether the blog is a plant from the television producers or the work of a wickedly demented Arrested Development fan. Either way, since I know some of my readers work in the legal field, I would like some opinions of how good, or real, a lawyer this phony “Bob Loblaw” is.

And be sure to tape the finale of Arrested Development for when you need a laugh after the spectacle of the Winter Games opening grows tedious.
Which should get you over to Fox in time for the first commercial break of the AD farewell marathon.

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17 comments:

trusty getto said...

With respect to your electronic request for an official legal opinion regarding Bob Loblaw, I do have and am willing to offer same.

However, you must read and agree to the following disclaimer prior to my rendering said opinion:

Generally my office hours are between 9 and 5, Monday through Friday, but sometimes earlier and sometimes later, depending on whether the University of Michigan is playing football, the moon phase, and ocean tidal patterns. I do, however, meet by appointment which is the best way to make certain I'm actually in the office when you arrive. Although my practice is to "play nice" whenever possible and provide answers when I can, I am not a legal think-tank (in fact, I have been accused of not thinking much at all) so, if I do not have a signed fee agreement with you, then I am not your lawyer, you are not my client and this is not legal advice. Meetings in my office, phone calls, faxes, and written correspondence are confidential. Email is NOT. Neither is blogging. Do NOT assume anything you send me by email or type into a comment on the internet is secure. Assume that your blog is being monitored by your enemies, your friends, and the government. While I make every effort to protect your confidential information, if secure government facilities can be hacked, then anyone can be hacked. If, by some chance you receive an email message or comment on your blog from me that was intended for someone else, then do not read it. You should immediately delete it. If by some chance you did read any or all of it (and I sincerely apologize if you found it boring, and for the mistakes in spelling and grammar), then you are required to immediately submit yourself to appropriate therapies designed to wipe your memory. If no therapist is in your area, then I understand, from a semi-reliable source, that a lobotomy works just as well. DO NOT under, any circumstance, rely on anything I tell you by email or in a comment on your blog. By its very nature, many lawyers communicate by email and comment on blogs while we are "free thinking" and you should assume that anything "free" is worth exactly what you pay for it. [This disclaimer was originally written by David L. McGuffey, and edited by me, and agreed to by you.]

If you don't agree, then stop reading immediately.

Yes, he's likely a real lawyer, perhaps a demented fan. I would speculate that his job in some way requires him to update people on the law or regularly review recent developments in the law. It would be far too time consuming to review and summarize cases for fun. As to whether he's good or not, I have no idea. He seems to be good at summarizing cases.

trusty getto said...

BTW: I had no idea anybody listened to my Garage Band stuff . . . Thanks! Your the first person ever to link to it :)

Mooselet said...

My tongue has cramped up trying to say this title properly. I wish I had read your post first, because then I could've said blah blah blah blah BLAH and would not be in needless pain.

Ah, Scottie Baio. I had a crush on him when I was 10. How embarrassing. I also had a crush on Ron Howard - I have pictures to prove this - when I was about 8.

I need therapy.

mg said...

Have I mentioned how much I really love your sense of humor?

Oh, and I can totally vouch for the lawyer "blahdyblahblahblah" noise.

HA!

mg

2fs said...

Hey, mean_girl: Because "mean_girl" is an intriguing name, I wandered over to your bloggy neck o' the woods. But geez: if you're going to play a video with sound, let people be able to turn it off without having to scroll down several screens to find the "off" switch! Frankly I think automatic-play noise on websites is a bad idea at all times - I'm sure if I'm ever murdered, it will be because I accidentally accessed such a site late at night and woke my wife who, half-awake and thinking some crazed rock band has broken into the house bent on perverted mayhem, decides to stab me with a knife. You'll be hearing from my attorney if that happens: Robert Loblaw, Esq.

Plain Jane said...

I regret to say... I've never seen either show.

But Robert Loblaw makes a DAMNED fine point about music on sites. Blech!

Ally said...

Yeah! You really look like Ron Howard! Cool!!!

Enjoy your weekend!

Karen said...

I heard (on NPR, where they apparently love this show) that negotiations are underway to revive Arrested Development on another network(I forget which one)--contingent on Mitchell Hurwitz continuing to produce it, and he hasn't decided yet.

mg said...

This is the very first time I've ever been flamed on another person's comment room!

Yj... sorry that you have to host such nonsense - I guess it would have made too much sense to flame me in my own backyard?

mg

Anonymous said...

This blogger is most probably an appellate lawyer. I'd bet he or she took the opportunity to co opt the brilliantly named AD character either for traffic, or because he's just cool like that.

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I never heard about any "Kitchen Confidential", but I'm curious right now, so I'd like to know if there's a way to download the 4 episodes?

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