Maricela & The Desert
All Rise returns this week with another decent episode, one that showcases a more caring side to Lola while we see the difficult task she has when a little girl takes to the stand. The show continues to keep us hooked each week by offering up a new case to keep the drama feeling fresh and original.
Today’s trial involves Felix Flores accused of killing his girlfriend Linda 18 months ago but no body was ever found. Looking at the case file, Lola exhibits concern about his 11 year old step daughter, Maricela, who has been put in the system 4 month ago. Mark meanwhile is defending a boy called Paul Larson, who was pushed off a roof during a fraternity hazing. Luke has also been asked to help shadow with this case but unfortunately the witness to the accident is in prison in Vegas. This leads them to a road trip to find him after being granted Judge Benner’s permission.
As Felix’s trial begins, both lawyers argue whether his step-daughter should testify. Lola decides to meet with the girl in her office while Felix requests to see Maricela as he hasn’t seen her in 4 months. In her office, they find out that Maricela witnessed a fight between her parents and this convinces Lola that she’ll have to testify, much to the outrage of Lopez.
After trying to come up with a plea deal with the other lawyer, Lopez speaks with Felix about the fight he had with his girlfriend. He explains that she threw a vase at his face but when Maricela came in, he told her it was his fault, in order to protect her. We also find out that Linda was a recovering drug addict as Linda’s friend and neighbour Raquel takes to the stand. He claims to have witnessed a violent fight between Felix and Linda, where he threatened to kill her. Just as Lopez is questioning her, Maricela arrives and an emotional reunion between her and her father ensues.
After bonding during their drive, Mark and Luke arrive in Vegas but struggle to get the witness released as the policeman explains that they need a judge to set bail for him. As it turns out, the judge is in a casino which prompts them to find him and make a deal at a Pai Gow table to convince him. After winning the game, Mark and Luke are able to take the witness back and as they put him on the stand, he admits that Winston did push Paul off the roof as part of a hazing dare.
After decorating the courtroom with toys and teddies, the trial begins again with Maricela on the stand but things get emotional again as she and Felix share another heartfelt moment. This causes Lola to decide to remove the father while they question her. Just as they start the trial again, it’s interrupted by the inspector in charge of the case. As they all meet in Lola’s office, he explains that Linda and her neighbour Raquel took some meth and she overdosed on it. A panicking Raquel then decided to dispose of the body on her property.
After revealing the truth to Felix and watching him reunite with Maricela, Lopez meets with Lola to apologise for her emotional involvement in the case. She goes on to tels her that she needs to be more careful but also understands why she acted that way. The episode then ends with Lola and Mark discussing their day while drinking whisky, reminiscing about their childhood.
While it may not be the best drama out there, All Rise has so far kept a consistent tone and pace throughout its run-time and delivered enjoyable episodes each week; the new cases deal with a lot of different issues but without ever feeling too forced or too dramatic despite their societal relevance.
This week was pretty emotional too, as a little girl is put on the stand to testify against her adopted father. It was quite tough to watch at times and seeing Lopez having a hard time with it too, as she struggles with the ghosts of her past, was a nice touch to the episode. The character development has been good so far too and the individual stories surrounding the different cases make this drama well worth sticking with.
Expect A Full Season Write Up When This Season Concludes!