BET’s ‘In Contempt’ is Here and Legally on Fire

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"In Contempt" episode 102. (Photo: Steve Wilkie/BET)

It’s not ABC’s politically-acclaimed Scandal, please don’t be mistaken, but it’s BET’s hot new provocative and legal hour-long drama goodness. In Contempt will have you wanting more. Gwen Sullivan, played by award-winning Actress, Erica Ash, takes the leading role as an opinionated New York Attorney. Ash is best known for her role in Survivor’s Remorse.

Sullivan’s passion for her job easily makes her the best public defender in the city. The show depicts her lifestyle inside and outside of the courtroom. This isn’t your average law office, Sullivan is fighting for clients who can’t choose their lawyers or get the legal help they need or deserve. The justice system hasn’t been justified when it comes to people of color, and in this case, the verdict is, she cares.

The cases she juggles are intense and not to mention the distractions she receives from various people. Charlie Riggs played by Christian Keyes is a newly appointed supervisor who is egotistical yet talented, but also happens to be her ex. Earl Sullivan played by Richard Lawson is her father who can be set in his ways and not easy to please plus he is a former judge. Vanessa played by Mouna Traoré is a rookie lawyer who comes from an affluent background and has a rigid (uptight) attitude. Bennett played by Tobias Truvillion is her former law professor and also happens to be, “the one who got away.”

Lawson says in reference to his character, “She’s all about the people. It’s not that I’m not about the people; it’s just the way you do it. She chooses to do it from the trenches, and I think she can do it from the penthouse.”

Gwen’s challenges get real, but she tackles them like a real MVP. Ash told The Root, “This show will show you exactly what happens in the justice system—how much of a disadvantage we come into the courtroom with and why so many black men are in jail. This show is going to explain to you how they slipped through the cracks. This show is going to explain how we can use loopholes to get them out.”

It’s about time and perfect time to have such a leading lady represented on television right now, and thankfully Erica Ash thinks so too. She told The Root that the show has been in the making for 10 years and also says, “BET sort of loved the idea, but held it because of whatever reason, and I feel it’s because they were waiting on just the right cast, just the right mix, and then maybe it was waiting for me? Maybe I was waiting for it?”

The 10-episode legal drama premiered on Tuesday, April 10 and will be air every Tuesday at 10 pm on BET. Click here to view the first episode.

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