Hollywood Embraces Paralegals
From "Perry Mason" to "The Practice," legal dramas have always captured the interest of television audiences. Dramatic monologues, battles of verbal wit and courtroom tension all make for a compelling hour of entertainment.
While most legal TV shows follow the lives of famous fictional lawyers, some recent legal television shows are featuring the unsung heroes of the legal profession: paralegals. Although paralegals are rarely in high stakes courtroom dramas, they play an integral—but unsung—role in the legal profession, and the networks are now increasingly portraying them on television.
Paralegals Portrayed on TV
Here are some paralegal characters you might have seen on TV:
Allison DuBois – "Medium"
While law enforcement agencies often rely on Allison DuBois for her unique supernatural ability to solve crimes in her dreams, she was first hired by the Phoenix District Attorney's office…as a paralegal.
Sherri Sheppard – "Sherri"
Sherri, an aspiring actress and stand-up comedian, spends each week trying to balance a demanding career as a paralegal with motherhood and a cheating husband.
Mary the Paralegal – "How I Met Your Mother"
In this classic episode, star Ted Mosby goes on a date with Mary, who he incorrectly assumes is a lady of the evening. Instead, she is a paralegal and doesn't need any free legal advice to stay out of jail.
Stars Who Began their Careers as Paralegals
The newfound love between Hollywood and the paralegal profession flows both ways.
Check out these former paralegals who are now famous Hollywood celebrities:
- Ellen DeGeneres, comedian and host of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show"
- Patricia Heaton, actress from "Everybody Loves Raymond"
- Richard Schiff, actor from "The West Wing"
Become a Paralegal with an AAS Degree in Paralegal Studies
Most aspiring paralegals get their start by completing a Certificate or AAS degree in paralegal studies.
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