In this third edition of Favorites from Fiction, I chose my personal favorite fictional lawyers from film and literature. Enjoy!
Elle Woods from Legally Blonde
I think Elle Woods is probably all of our favorite fictional lawyer of all time but we maybe feel pressure to name more obscure or serious characters. It’s alright, I’ll take the plunge for everybody else. This movie simultaneously satirizes the stereotypical Valley sorority girl and snobby Ivy League culture all in one fun and colorful swing. And Elle is a well rounded character who is charming and silly but never stupid. Not to mention the best wardrobe of any fictional lawyer EVER.
Sydney Carton from A Tale of Two Cities
Charles Dickens is famously known for HATING lawyers. In his books, lawyers are described as the scum of the earth. They’re drunks, corrupt and everything that is wrong with London at the turn of the century. However, even with his hatred of lawyers at the helm of most of his stories, he managed to write one of the most heroic and selfless. For most of A Tale of Two Cities, Sydney Carton is a depressed drunkard longing for Lucie Mannette who is obviously going to end up with goody-two shoes Darnay. But in the eleventh hour he saves Darnay’s life while losing his own in one of the most romantic acts of heroism in British literature.
“It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.”
- Check out this classic novel from UGA’s main library
Vogons from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
Now these guys are pretty much the full embodiment of Dickens’ feelings toward lawyers. They are described as “one of the most unpleasant races in the galaxy—not actually evil, but bad-tempered, bureaucratic, officious and callous”, and having “as much sex appeal as a road accident” as well as being the authors of “the third worst poetry in the universe”. In the book (as well as the movie) they are responsible for the destruction of Earth to make an intergalactic highway. They are the most despicable beings in the UNIVERSE, and they happen to be lawyers.
- Check out this 5-part epic novel from UGA’s main library
Lawrence Hammill from The Castle
While he only shows up for a small part of this sweet Aussie film, Lawrence stands out as one of the kindest depictions of lawyers I have ever seen. The Castle is about a family fighting back against developers trying to build an airport on their property. With little to no education they’re lost until Lawrence joins their legal team and saves the day. He’s not only a great lawyer but also kindhearted and generous. If you want a feel good movie, you wont find a better choice than this.
Dr. Gonzo from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Who ever said lawyers are boring bureaucrats who don’t know how to have a good time have probably never heard of Oscar Zeta Acosta, most famously known as Dr. Gonzo from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. The book follows Raoul Duke (Hunter S. Thompson) and Dr. Gonzo on their search for the American Dream in a haze of drugs and 60’s disillusionment. This is one character you wont soon forget, even if you tried.