The success of ‘Suits’


When Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht) walks out of his corner office in the USA Network’s hit show, “Suits,” an aura of sophistication and confidence fills the screen. From his perfectly styled hair, classy attire and brandishing swagger, it is made evident from the earliest moments of the show that he is the man.

“Suits,” a drama that shows the exploits of the law profession including behind the scenes looks into politics, relationships, and dynamics that go on inside the workplace of one of the top law firms in the city, is made exponentially better by the presence of characters like Specter.

The concrete jungle that is New York City provides the perfect environment for the characters of the show, who can flaunt their big apple attitudes while decking it out in skyscrapers that accentuate the skyline.

The characters are what separate “Suits” from your average show, because the audience creates special relationships with characters due to their refined attitude and flair.

The focus on character development was installed early into the backbone of the show by its creator, Aaron Korsh, who wrote for “Everybody Loves Raymond”, “Just Shoot Me!”, and other sitcoms. Korsh really values witty banter between characters, which is clear when they are able to show a lighter side of the business aspect through interaction.

“The characters and the complexes between the characters are what makes me watch [the show],” Can Ozturk (’14) said. “I really like how they approach different cases and the way they solve them, how they’re the best at what they do.”

Erica Rawald (’14) agrees. “There are a lot of things I love about Suits that keep me watching, but it mostly comes down to the characters that are on the show,” she said. The two main characters, Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams) and Specter “have this ‘fun-to-watch’ dynamic that keeps viewers hooked. They all work, and I guess to some extent act, perfectly together and the satire and general relationships are very entertaining,” Rawald added.

The premise revolves around Ross, an associate lawyer with photographic memory who forged his graduation papers from Harvard Law School, the only law school from which the firm chooses its employees.

Since Ross proves to be an asset for the firm, Specter, a partner at the firm, allows him to contribute despite learning about his secret.

The two maintain a “Batman and Robin”-esque relationship throughout the series, working on many cases together, and the more that the two work together, the more invaluable Ross becomes to the firm and the more the audience begins to support him on his path to glory.

Another component of the show’s dynamics is the impressive wardrobes shown off by all of the characters, but Specter in particular takes his fashion extremely seriously. His signature tailored three-piece suits are inspired, and his presence alone tells you that he’s got it all.

Michael Fares (’15) tries to emulate Specter when applicable in his life. “Obviously I think about Harvey Specter at times and do try to act like him or be like him,” he said. But due to Specter’s position as a high ranking lawyer, and Fares’ as a highschool student, he added, “He is in a completely different situation than I am at this point in time, so I can’t relate to him as much.”

Ross, on the other hand, dresses well too, but in a slimmer and safer look due to his position as an associate, which means that he isn’t yet worthy of wearing the “power suit” that Specter so perfectly pulls off, which comes with experience and recognition.

It isn’t just the men in the show that show off their style. The female characters, such as Jessica Pearson (Gina Torres), Rachel Zane (Meghan Markle) and Donna Paulsen (Sarah Rafferty), are able to “wow” the viewership with some of their looks as well, sporting powerful dresses, and giving a whole new meaning to the word “pantsuit.”

These characters bring not only aesthetics to the show, however, but also essential content to the story’s plot and character banter.

Pearson, Specter’s boss and managing partner, is able to assert her dominance while managing to masterfully play the political game with a law firm full of people trying to plot against her.

Rachel Zane is the invaluable paralegal that is constantly saving the day with her intense passion for and knowledge of law.

Paulsen is Specter’s secretary, who he couldn’t live or function without. Not only does she allow Specter to do his job, but his close relationship with her as a friend sheds light on him as a character as well.

The USA Network, not necessarily regarded as a quality television channel, is known primarily for spewing out shows like “White Collar”, “Royal Pains”, and “Psych”, with few actors of household fame. What Suits was able to do, on the other hand, was to bring in two huge additions for the third season, “Game of Thrones” actors Conleth Hill, Edward Darby in Suits, and Michelle Fairley, who plays Ava Hessington in “Suits”. These characters are the protaganists in the focal case of the season. “Often, because of school and other commitments, I’ll miss an episode and then catch up on it during the weekend and it’s not a big deal. It’s just a great show to watch when I have time to follow it,” Rawald said. Her busy schedule keeps her from watching the episodes that air every Tuesday night and release online on Wednesdays.

The tension that builds up from the on-scene romances and power plays keep you on edge with your senses alert, as you never know what will come next with this show.

The second it becomes just a little predictable, the writers will turn the tables and leave you gasping for air, and then end it all, making you beg for next Wednesday to come around so you can see the outcome.