• Network: NBC
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 15, 2010
  • Season #: 1
Metascore
36

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 23
  2. Negative: 11 out of 23
  1. Despite a first-rate performance from Smits and a smart, sharp cast, the show stumbles over a clumsy setup from which, alas, it may be difficult to recover.
  2. If you're able to get past the ridiculous premise--and, admittedly, I was not --Outlaw still suffers from other problems, including two-dimensional supporting characters.
  3. 30
    There's not a hint of logic in the procedural aspect of the show. The development and the resolution of tonight's case, in which a man on death row is trying to prove he isn't a cop killer, represent the sloppiest, most factory-like TV writing there is. And there's not much realism afoot, either.
  4. 25
    Not content to simply be stupid, Outlaw is more than a little insulting.
  5. 50
    Smits is breezily bold, but the show feels fussy--flushed out with "interesting" details and characters. [20 Sep 2010l p.54]
  6. So it will continue to be ludicrous. And that's without mentioning the predictability, cliches like kryptonite and emotional pandering. Here's hoping next season, Smits gets to play a cop again.
  7. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    50
    Outlaw isn't bad as much as bogus. The whole faulty premise creaks and groans under the weight of a now-you-see-it-now-you-don't shell game, as key plot points zip by, then are quickly tucked back under their shell in the vain hope you won't remember them, or maybe take them at face value.
  8. NBC's new Jimmy Smits vehicle is called Outlaw. I guess the title 'Contrived, Irritating Star Vehicle' just wasn't as catchy.
  9. 0
    NBC's idiotic drama, Outlaw, is so bad it should be listed as a Class A felony.
  10. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    30
    However you view it--mediocre "House" rip-off, improbable law show or "Like Father, Like Son 2: Judicial Boogaloo"--you have to like Jimmy Smits an awful lot to make Outlaw a Friday appointment. I'm as devoted an "NYPD Blue" fan as they come, and even I'm not willing to make that leap.
  11. Outlaw is as absurdly plotted as too many movies, providing the basis for some two-hour ride that moves along fast enough to keep viewers from noticing the trucks whizzing through holes in the story. You need more than that for a weekly series. You need characters you can believe in.
  12. This series will require better scripts than the death-penalty pilot one, and those kids will have to establish personalities vivid enough to hold the screen with Smits' powerful one.
  13. This show violates so many tenets of storytelling, it deserves to be tossed in the clink. Outlaw is about as entertaining as a legal brief on the case of Wall v. Paint Drying.
  14. 10
    Silly, hackneyed and suffering from a lethal overdose of Hollywood political smugness, it's the biggest lawyer joke of all.
  15. An impatience with subtlety is one of the problems with the first episode of Outlaw--the plot points and the performances are overblown, too obvious and too cute.
  16. From "thinking aloud" scenes in which the team tosses around a Nerf football to a most unfortunate series of conversations between Garza and his law clerk, the only thing that makes Outlaw unique in a swollen genre is its ability to trip over its own feet so early on.
  17. 10
    The show is so ludicrously dumb that your eyeballs will hurt from rolling so much.
  18. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    40
    It could work with better writing and a more grounded characterization, but instead the show just lurches between tones, and the lead performance, between Smits having a lark as a rascally rebel and Smits in high-dudgeon mode
  19. TV needs a lot of fodder to fill the schedule, but junk like Outlaw should be outlawed, with a special-circumstances punishment for completely wasting as fine a talent as Jimmy Smits.
  20. Smits' charisma, plus the fact that future episodes promise more intellectually involving stories, bode well for this series.
  21. 50
    Like so many plot turns in Outlaw, this one is too convenient, too silly, and not a little audacious. It helps that the show knows it.
  22. 50
    Prepare yourself for preachiness in the third degree. Mr. Smits went to Washington, and now is sharing his moral righteousness with the rest of us.
  23. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    30
    All of Jimmy Smits' considerable charisma can't come close to making a convincing case for Outlaw, a jaw-droppingly simple-minded legal procedural that's improbable on most every level.
User Score
4.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 18 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 2 out of 5
  1. Sep 18, 2010
    0
    I taped the first episode on my DVR and although I've never done this before, I actually stopped watching 15 or 20 minutes in, deleted it, and deleted the timer to record future episodes. I'm a big Jimmy Smits fan and although the show is clearly geared towards a more liberal audience than me (that has never bothered me before), it was the ridiculous premise, character set-up, and acting that turned me off. Avoid this show. You won't be missing much as I doubt it will be around long. Full Review »
  2. Sep 23, 2011
    10
    Interesting court and law series - likely to appeal to viewers interested in justice prevailing over law. Anyone that enjoyed "The West Wing" might enjoy this series. Full Review »
  3. Apr 10, 2011
    8
    I have to say that I am nothing short of perplexity over this shows reviews! I saw once review state that due to the shows violation to "tenets" of storytelling, it should be thrown in the clink. Since when is out of the box thinking a crime in creativity?!? For such a new show the writing was quite entertaining. My favorite shows on TV are "Criminal Minds" and 'The Mentalist', both of these shows as compared to there pilot have developed immensely! This series touched on moral conflict, government corruption, and provoked emotion. Last I checked the best way for a production to be entertaining is for it to make you feel something. They made you feel with winning against the odds, and when you least expected it with a loss of a case which resulted in the death of a sick child. It was said more than once that the supporting characters need to develop more personality to match the character of Justice Garza, a pleasantly imperfect hero I might add. WHY?!? His character is suppose to be the strong one leading the personalities that can only aspire to be as profound as him! I would give this series no less than an eight out of ten rating with potential to be a ten. And I am disappointed in the loss of the chance to see more due to the unshared opinion of the masses. Full Review »