By Elizabeth Merino ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR
If you haven’t seen, “How to Get Away with Murder,” “Scandal,” or “Grey’s Anatomy” (my personal, die-hard, seen-all-the-episodes-too-many-times-to-admit, favorite show ever), then you are not living.
“How to Get Away with Murder” premiered on Sept. 25, 2014 to 14 million people during its 10:00 p.m. timeslot, according to Variety.com.
Executively produced by Shonda Rhimes and created by “Grey’s Anatomy” producer/writer Peter Nowalk, the legal drama introduces us to Annalise Keating (Viola Davis), a take-no-s***, criminal defense attorney and college law professor.
Davis is empowering and sexy in her lead role, fearsome yet fearfully flawed; she is undoubtedly the breakout star of the series. She portrays Keating as a commanding force; demanding respect of not only her associates, but her overachieving law students as well.
In typical pilot episode fashion, character introductions were made, but they just left me wanting more. Keating chooses five students to intern with her law firm including Wes Gibbins (Alfred Enoch, aka Dean Thomas from “Harry Potter”), Connor Walsh (Jack Falahee), Asher Millstone (Matt McGorry of “Orange Is The New Black”), Rebecca Sutter (Katie Findlay) and Michaela Pratt (Aja Naomi King).
These four (excluding Gibbins) are cut-throat competitive, speaking out of turn and attempting to one-up another within seconds of class starting.
Gibbins immediately took a soft spot in my heart not only because of his previous “Harry Potter” roles, but with his endearing underdog personality as well, seen during the first day of class when he is unprepared in a massive lecture hall but unabashed to admit so.
In flashbacks between three months prior and the present, we watch as the students attempt to destroy a dead body found in Keating’s office on one of the rowdiest nights of the semester. We don’t know how it got there, who it is (until the end, and I won’t tell you because that would be rude), or why they were killed. The episode is also enveloped by Keating’s marriage, personal infidelity and thirst for winning no matter the cost.
Fair warning, if you don’t pay attention you will miss key information. This pilot moves at break-neck speed, spinning a web of deceit, lies and sex you can only come to expect, and love, from a Rhimes-driven show.
If you haven’t already, watch the pilot before this Thursday’s second episode. You won’t be disappointed. “How to Get Away with Murder” is on ABC Thursday nights at 10:00 p.m. EST.