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  • Actor Shared Background: Denny Crane's larger-than-life persona, and his anxieties about being washed-up. One could argue that Shatner fits that bill and in many ways Denny is a reflection of himself. Especially Denny doing Priceline commercials.
  • Crazy Awesome: Denny Crane in a nutshell. Come on, you know you like him.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: More than once. A shining example has to be Brad accidentally cutting off the hand of a priest with a fire axe -- while impersonating an FBI agent -- and then the priest's cat making off with one of the man's severed fingers, whilst a crowd of nuns scream in shock and horror.
    • and when they find the missing finger, they use it to blackmail the priest before giving it back.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: The epic live performance of "War (What Is It Good For?)", remixed with "Over There", used as anti-war and pro-war testimony, respectively.

 Malcolm: And this is why I went to law school.

  • Downer Ending: A lot of the time, especially any time they win when the client was a dick (too many examples to specify) and when they lose and the client wasn't a dick (the season one ending, when they fought valiantly to get a guy off death row and lost. The season ended with his execution).
  • Ho Yay: Lampshaded, subverted, inverted, etc... all by the same two characters. Up until they got married...
    • Alan and Denny have declared each other to be "partners" and "soulmates." When Denny asks why their significant others haven't come to get them out of jail (contempt of court), Alan reminds him, "Denny, we are our significant others." Nobody mentions the Ho Yay because it would be tantamount to pointing at water and saying, "That's wet."
      • They're flamingos.
  • Large Ham: Everyone who isn't The Comically Serious or the Straight Man. Especially Denny Crane.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • James Spader's soft, low monotones, employed in an elegant summary for the defense, is really like warm chocolate for the aural cavities.
    • "Dennnnnnnny...Dennnnnnnnnnny. Craaaannnnnnne."
    • Tara's voice. Holy hell, Rhona Mitra.
  • Squick: The Ass Fat Jungle is about a plastic surgeon who injects his own ass fat in to women's lips.
  • Tear Jerker: While normally a zany, wacky, funny show, when Boston Legal decides to make you cry, you are damn well going to cry.
  • Too Good to Last: Very narrowly averted. David E. Kelley has said he had to fight the network to get a fifth season because ABC had absolutely no interest in marketing it.
    • Even then, it was still too good to last.
  • Woobie:
    • Poor, poor Carl Sack...
    • Jerry Espenson, which is somewhat amazing since his second appearance ended up with him holding a knife to Shirley's throat after he didn't make partner.
      • The only reason he didn't make partner in the first place was because he had Asperger's and the Senior Partners weren't going to accept him because he was different, even though he did excellent work and was more deserving than Brad, who made partner.
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