Fall Review: How to Get Away with Murder

The new ABC show How to Get Away with Murder will certainly be a show that polarizes. I will have a spoiler-free section and than a little more detailed summary of my thoughts including Spoilers!

Like all Shonda Rhimes shows, How to Get Away with Murder involves a lot of drama, sex and murder. This time it is about a group of law students who want to impress their very demanding criminal defense professor (Viola Davis) and do not shy away from going the extra mile for her. It’s definitely not a fact-based court drama like Law & Order, but much more in the realm of Scandal (big surprise there, considering that they were both created by Shonda). I think the actors are great (ranging from Alfred Enoch, Jack Falahee, Charlie Weber, Billy Brown, Liza Weil and Karla Souza to Aja Naomi King, Katie Findlay and Tom Verica), the show is fast paced and has some great music. I am usually not a huge fan of time jumps and flashbacks, but it really worked for me this time, because it added to the suspense so much. One problem I have with the show is that there is barely anyone likable. While most characters have their secrets and are interesting in one way or another, you don’t feel yourself sympathizing with any of them. To conclude my spoiler-free section I’d say that it’s definitely and interesting show that will make you question your morals and standards. I could see that not everyone will like it, but I will continue watching it!

Now here are some more specific thoughts of mine, which are basically for people who’ve already seen the pilot episode. Spoilers ahead!

  • I love the build-up of the mystery and suspense in the show! I kept wondering the entire time who the person was that the students killed, because I just couldn’t imagine that they killed Annalise Keating. It was a real shocker to me that they seem to have murdered her husband, which directly leads me to my next point.
  • Do you guys think that Sam Keating had something to do with the murder of that missing girl? Obviously, there is something going on with Wes’ neighbor Rebecca and the missing girl’s boyfriend, but I have a feeling that Sam was also involved.
  • I really like all the different characters, but especially Wes. He seems so naive and like he’s too nice for everything he got dragged into. That doesn’t mean that I don’t find the other students intriguing, because I do, but I feel like we could connect with him the most during the first episode.
  • There are some logic issues to the show, but I can usually overlook them in favour of being entertained. But why would first-year law students get a job offer at a prestigious law firm and not students who are about to graduate or who’ve already passed the bar? That’s just one of the things I was wondering about …

I’m interested to see how everything continues. All in all I thought it was a gripping start of the season, but we’ll need a lot of character development, while still keeping up the constant suspense to keep viewers glued to the screen for the long-term. What was your opinion of the pilot episode?

15 thoughts on “Fall Review: How to Get Away with Murder

  1. I’ll give this one a try, but I have to confess that it’s mainly because Alfred Enoch is on it, and my Harry Potter senses are tingling 🙂 ! I love court based dramas, but Shonda Rhimes is another matter… I used to love Grey’s Anatomy and then it became too much drama! I like drama alright, but sometimes is just too much. Scandal I don’t watch, I believe it’s a great show, but there are already enough “dramas” out there. So, I’ll give this one a shot, don’t know for how long though. 🙂

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    • Alfred Enoch was definitely one of the reason why I started watching it!
      I have to warn you that it’s definitely not the most realistic court drama out there, because it aims to entertain and not be fact-based, but I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing. I understand your concern about the drama-factor of Shonda Rhimes, but you should definitely tell me what you think of it after you’ve gave it a try.
      I stopped watching Grey’s Anatomy a long time ago, they definitely should have stopped while it was still good. They killed too many people and made up too much drama and problems where there were none to still be watchable.

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      • I remember the episode of Gray’s that I just said “Well, that was enough!” – it was when Callie told Mark she was pregnant in the elevator – He has just got back together with Lexie (my fav couple) and I could see the drama miles away and I decided it as just too freaking much!

        I’ll give it a try (I already have it) and then I’ll get back to you 😉 !

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      • I know which moment you mean! Mine was actually a tad later, because it was when they had the plane crash. I mean seriously? These people were part of almost every natural catastrophe as well as possible accident out there … that’s just not normal. And since my favourite couple was Mark&Lexie as well, I was just pissed afterwards.
        Can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

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  2. ok, I watched it… having mixed feelings here.

    First, I am that naive?! For most of the episode I actually thought they hadn’t killed anybody, that they were somehow doing research about timings and what a group of people could get away with… guess I was wrong!

    Liked Wes the best as well – actually, I think he and Rebecca are the only ones I actually liked, because all of the others are interesting but weird somehow… idk…

    a lot of logic problems – the first year thing is shocking, I don’t know how it works on the US, but something tells me that a class like that wouldn’t even be taught in the first year, let alone hire those guys. But ok, it’s tv… just roll with it.

    There’s something fundamentally wrong with Annalise Keating, right? I mean, the woman has a husband, a boyfriend and she start’s to rub Wes’ chest… weird.

    Something tells me that her assistant (Paris, from Gilmore Girls) has something to do with her husband, given that she clearly likes him

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    • Your thoughts correlate a lot with what I felt after the episode.
      Okay, I did think that they killed someone, but I just couldn’t wrap my head around what could possibly have happened. I still don’t know that, but that’s the thing that keeps me watching.
      Likability really wasn’t their main concern when they created the show I guess. They are probably going to evolve throughout the show, but normally you should be able to connect with more than one person.
      Annalise Keating is a person I don’t understand! The chest rubbing really put me off! What is that about? Does she want something from him? Was she just playing with him to get him to keep quiet? She’s confusing as heck!
      Oh yeah Paris! I loved Gilmore Girls … but I thought the same. Maybe she likes the husband. I detected a little jealousy I think, but I could be wrong of course.

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      • oh, she likes the husband alright, the questions is: does she only likes him? were they evolved? Is she, perhaps, the girl in the tank killer? And who the heck called the maintenance guy?! It looked like someone wanted the body found…

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      • Good questions! I think the husband himself is a contender for the position of murderer in the “gir in tank” case. My opinion on the other questions is that she probably was involved with him at some point, but he might have broken it off or something, because she works with his wife. Also, maybe he had a fling with the tank girl, since she was his student – Paris found out and got even more jealous (could be an explanation if she did kill the tank girl).
        It definitely looked like someone wanted the maintenance guy to find her, because no one at the party called him. No idea who could be responsible for that.

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      • yeah… I might have to learn Paris’ name, eheh.

        I guess I’ll keep watching. That’s why they did it this way, right? By now everyone has so many damn questions that they just have to keep tunning in to find out what gives

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