Following increased interest over recent weeks, the New Zealand government today announced a development deal to produce a spin-off series to the Legal System. The new show, which does not yet have a title, will bring a “ripped from the Twitter headlines” approach to legal issues.
A spokesperson for the Legal System said that the move was largely aimed at catering for a commentariat that was interested in the cut and thrust of legal issues without necessarily being familiar with either the long-running story lines of the last five hundred years or critical thought.
“The Legal System has been doing fantastic numbers in recent weeks, largely driven by an engaging and mobile legal environment in the form of challenges to aspects of the lockdown. But what many of those new viewers are interested in are Twitter-driven high-farce takes involving moustache-twirling villains conspiring in high-powered roles, with actions that are unequivocally unlawful. Up to now, the Legal System has always been about well-intentioned constitutional actors, constructive legal argument, informed commentary, and slightly staid judgments with plots that stretch across seasons.
“Of course, that is always what the Legal System will be. But rather than lose these new viewers who don’t seem particularly interested in that, we want to indulge them with a separate offering that airs at a later timeslot and a rating that allows for violence and nudity, and then tell them that that is the Legal System.”
The Legal System will not change. The coming weeks will see the conclusion of a judicial review plot and the resumption of jury trials. One of the main characters will seek an extension for the filing of reply briefs.
Meanwhile, the spin-off will be set in an alternative reality that diverged from our timeline in the mid-1970s when Chief Justice Wild performed a citizen’s arrest of Robert Muldoon. The first episode will feature the Attorney-General infiltrating a street-racing gang to try to bust a counterfeiting ring who are printing fake copies of the New Zealand Gazette. Meanwhile, the Governor-General has invited two constitutional crises to the same dance, and must try to make sure they do not meet.
The Legal System airs Thursdays at 7.30pm on TV One. The yet-to-be-named spin-off will air on Fridays after new episodes of “Epidemiology: Revenge Explosion”.
The spin-off will be produced by Matthew Hooton.