Proven Innocent is an American legal drama television series created by David Elliot following the employees of a wrongful conviction law firm(Wikipedia).
This review contains spoilers, if you haven’t seen the episode “In Defense of Madeline Scott, Part 2” please do not continue reading.
In the episode “In Defense of Madeline Scott, Part 2,” Madeline’s (Rachelle Lefevre) future was on the line as it was up to Easy (Russell Hornsby) to prove her innocent of Rosemary’s murder once and for all. The wild card was Levi (Riley Smith), who was Bellows’ (Kelsey Grammer) star witness. Gore was confident that Levi would testify against his sister due to being granted immunity. But that didn’t happen, Levi came through for Madeline by refusing to answer the prosecution’s questions, calling Bellows a corrupt politician. So, Levi was jailed for contempt explaining to Madeline he didn’t tell her what he was planning for fear she’d talk him out of it.
When Heather (Caitlin Mehrer) took the stand, her truthfulness and connection to Robert Carter a.k.a. Ravi was called into question. Was she lying? Had she lied during the original trial? Things were looking grim for Madeline.
In non trial news, a social service employee visited Bodie’s (Vincent Kartheiser) home to determine its suitability for Nathan (Ricky J. Hawk). Having swords on the wall didn’t look good. In the end, Nathan had to return to his mother Daniela. Bodie vowed to a tearful Nikki (Tiffany Castro) they’d get him back but would keep an eye on Daniela in the meantime to see if she slipped up. I don’t know whether I see a future for Bodie and Castro but their relationship over the last few episode took on more of a commitment level than the one night stand feel of earlier episodes.
Back to Madeline’s case, in a surprising twist Heather came to Madeline revealing she had one of the mysterious tapes the defense sought. Mrs. Husband also admitted she did believe Madeline was guilty of Rosemary’s murder all these years but has since changed her mind. It’s doubtful these two will ever be friends but at least they reached an understanding. And when Bodie and Violet (Nikki M. James) reviewed the tape, information revealed proved helpful to Madeline’s case. When it was played in court, we learned Ravi wanted to have sex with Young Madeline (Clare O’ Connor), but Rosemary (Casey Tutton) wanted to protect her friend and died for it. In his closing argument, Bellows continued to insist Madeline was guilty and be convicted of murder. Madeline asked for a substitution of counsel in order to represent herself and deliver closing argument. She talked of the depth of Rosemary’s friendship and her sacrifice to save her, delivering one final testimonial of her innocence. When the verdict came in, Madeline was found not guilty to the glee of her friends (and viewers).
Her final confrontation with Bellows was interesting in that she offered him her forgiveness stating “All these years, I took it personally, but now I realize this is just who you are. You may have had a soul once, but it died with Rosemary.” I don’t know whether I could have done that; the man cost her ten years of her life. In a shocking twist (though I suspected it for several episodes), Rick Zahn (Jeffrey Nordling) turned out to be Ravi. He bankrolled Gore’s reelection campaign and encouraged him to reopen the case against Madeline to throw the heat off himself for the crime. He was nonchalant when asked by Bellows why he killed that girl. I knew Bellows would kill him especially after Rick/Ravi threatened to bring him down with him if he were arrested. Bellows’ punishment for murder? He wins Attorney General.
Proven Innocent did an excellent job tying up the storylines of the first season. I’d hope in Season Two we’d see Madeline discover Bellows called Rick/Ravi and go after him like he did her. But sadly that will never happen. It was announced on Saturday, May 11, 2019 the day after the season finale that Proven Innocent had been canceled by Fox.
I thank the cast, crew and writers for their work on Proven Innocent. It was a compelling legal drama touching on the social injustice of the wrongly accused. It’s a pity it was short lived.
Photo Courtesy of FOX
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