The Best Episodes of The Practice

Last Updated: Nov 28, 2018

The Practice focused on the law firm of Robert Donnell and Associates (later becoming Donnell, Young, Dole, & Frutt, and ultimately Young, Frutt, & Berluti). Plots typically featured the firm's involvement in various high-profile criminal and civil cases that often mirror current events. Conflict between legal ethics and personal morality was a recurring theme. Some episodes contained light comedy. Kelley claimed that he conceived the show as something of a rebuttal to L.A. Law (for which he wrote) and its romanticized treatment of the American legal system and legal proceedings.

Liberty Bells (2)

#1 - Liberty Bells (2)

Season 4 - Episode 20

Ellenor continues the Donovan case, following up on the various leads to exonerate her client.

star 8.92
37 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley, Alfonso H. Moreno
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The Verdict

#2 - The Verdict

Season 6 - Episode 23

Lindsay stands trial for shooting Lawrence O'Malley, who became obsessed with her after her firm defended him in his murder trial.

star 8.81
26 votes
Directors: Dennis Smith
Writers: David E. Kelley
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The Thin Line

#3 - The Thin Line

Season 5 - Episode 13

Tensions at the firm are at an all-time high when Bobby is tried for the murder of William Hinks. Bobby is acquitted, though there is little to celebrate when a mysterious cassette recorder is sent to the office. Lucy and Rebecca hear Hinks' voice on the recorder, just before it triggers an explosion.

star 8.81
31 votes
Directors: Dennis Smith
Writers: David E. Kelley, Lynne E. Litt
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Mr. Hinks Goes to Town

#4 - Mr. Hinks Goes to Town

Season 5 - Episode 8

Lindsay defends a psychiatric patient who claims to be a serial killer. His psychiatrist claims he's only a disturbed individual looking for a little notoriety.

star 8.79
33 votes
Directors: Jeannot Szwarc
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Honor Code

#5 - Honor Code

Season 6 - Episode 7

Bobby, Eugene and Jimmy work with an insurance company to settle the claim of a 10-year-old accident victim. But when the case presents a dilemma of moral and ethical proportions, the tension that's been brewing between Jimmy and Eugene finally boils over.

star 8.76
29 votes
Directors: Jeannot Szwarc
Writers: Lukas Reiter, David E. Kelley
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Mr. Shore Goes to Town (3)

#6 - Mr. Shore Goes to Town (3)

Season 8 - Episode 15

Fireworks erupt at Dr. Stewart's trial when shocking testimony is elicited from the defendant's strong-willed mother, a conflicted priest and a crackpot.

star 8.73
26 votes
Directors: Dennis Smith
Writers: David E. Kelley
Hammerhead Sharks (2)

#7 - Hammerhead Sharks (2)

Season 4 - Episode 13

Dennis Mills maintains his innocence. The firm continues the trial, striving against all odds to exonerate Mills.

star 8.72
36 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Convictions

#8 - Convictions

Season 7 - Episode 2

Lindsay's murder conviction tries Rebecca, who's handling the appeal to the Supreme Judicial Court; Jimmy's kidnapping case turns confrontational, in and out of court.

star 8.70
27 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley
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An Early Frost

#9 - An Early Frost

Season 5 - Episode 11

After Scott Wallace kills his friend, Jimmy becomes a witness for the prosecution. Bobby, meanwhile, is still defending Wallace. Lindsay is convinced that serial killer William Hinks has claimed another victim, and fears for her own life. To protect her, Bobby takes matters into his own hands

star 8.69
36 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Life Sentence

#10 - Life Sentence

Season 4 - Episode 22

Ellenor defends a deaf woman who shot and killed the man who allegedly murdered her young daughter. The client's crime is captured on video in front of dozens of witnesses, leaving no doubt as to who committed the act. The only to way to exonerate the client is to manipulate the jury's heartstrings. Meanwhile Lindsay learns that Bobby hates weddings and decides to spring a surprise elopement.

star 8.69
36 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Suffer The Little Children

#11 - Suffer The Little Children

Season 6 - Episode 8

After promising the mother of a murdered teen that he'll find the drive-by shooter responsible, A.D.A. Lowe adopts a ""whatever it takes"" attitude towards the prosecution of the young gang member he thinks did it — who is defended by Ellenor. Meanwhile, Lindsay is moved to help a mentally retarded man find the daughter he lost touch with years ago as a result of being wrongfully incarcerated for over a decade.

star 8.66
29 votes
Directors: Dennis Smith
Writers: Lynne E. Litt, James Solomon
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Small Sacrifices

#12 - Small Sacrifices

Season 7 - Episode 7

An accused molester's defense rattles Bobby, who's also unnerved by the reproach of a venerable priest; a case involving animal sacrifices embroils Ellenor.

star 8.62
21 votes
Silent Partners

#13 - Silent Partners

Season 7 - Episode 10

Bobby has been benched due to his erratic behavior, so Eugene must take his place as lead counsel in a controversial murder case. Meanwhile Lindsay defends a killer, against her own better judgement, and Jamie is placed in a compromising situation involving a judge

star 8.61
23 votes
Directors: Dennis Smith
Writers: Lukas Reiter
The Cradle Will Rock

#14 - The Cradle Will Rock

Season 7 - Episode 4

Religious freedom figures in a criminal case. On trial: a Christian Science couple charged with the murder of their ill child, whose parents' faith forbids medical treatment.

star 8.58
26 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley
Happily Ever After

#15 - Happily Ever After

Season 3 - Episode 23

Lindsay is stabbed by an unknown assailant wearing a nun's outfit during a late night at the office. Lindsay manages to utter the word 'nun' to Bobby before she passes out. Based on the information, Helen drags nuns into the courthouse for interrogation, reasoning that a nun upset over Michael (the nun killer) Kingston's acquittal may have committed the crime. Jimmy finds a photo of Lindsay with her image defaced in Judge Kittleson's office, bring a fleet of police to her home. Other suspects include Kingston himself and Joey Heric.

star 8.58
33 votes
Directors: Dwight Little
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Burnout

#16 - Burnout

Season 7 - Episode 17

The firm defends Kyle Healy, a wheelchair-bound man whose wife is charged with murdering his brother, the heir to a multimillion-dollar estate. Jimmy and Ellenor's defense is damaged by compelling circumstantial evidence; testimony about the defendant's stability — and the prosecution's playing of a shattering trump card. In other storylines, Jamie champions the cause of a lawyer who claims firms won't hire her because she's a rape victim; and Bobby, whose marriage is in trouble, links up with an old flame.

star 8.57
21 votes
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Special Deliveries (2)

#17 - Special Deliveries (2)

Season 7 - Episode 16

Psychopaths plague Lindsay and Helen. The latter is sued by an acquitted killer for defaming his mother; the former is hounded by a deviant she once defended.

star 8.57
21 votes
Directors: Rod Hardy
Writers: David E. Kelley
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Vanished (1)

#18 - Vanished (1)

Season 6 - Episode 5

Bobby represents a couple, the Baldwins, who are haunted by the kidnapping of their son 18 years earlier. The Baldwins believe that a man named John Pierce, who is serving a prison sentence for molesting children, is the guilty culprit. At the time of the disappearance, Pierce was a suspect, but the police did not have enough evidence to charge him with the kidnapping. The Baldwins believe their son was murdered, and they just want to know the location of the body. They persuade Bobby to bring a civil lawsuit against John Pierce for the ""wrongful death"" of their son. They believe that under the threat of a lawsuit, which could jeopardize his parole, Pierce will tell them the location of their son's body. Bobby moves forward with the case, though on the witness stand, Pierce insists that he did not kidnap the boy. At the end of the episode, Bobby is approached by a young man who believes that he is the boy who was kidnapped years ago. Meanwhile, Jimmy still owes money to his bookie, Sid

star 8.57
30 votes
Writers: Crystal Nix Hines
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Poor Richard's Almanac

#19 - Poor Richard's Almanac

Season 5 - Episode 21

Richard Bay prosecutes a murderer being defended by Bobby. The killer warns Richard that if that jury returns with a guilty verdict, Richard should fear for his life.

star 8.53
32 votes
Directors: Jeannot Szwarc
Writers: Jill Goldsmith, Lukas Reiter, Jill Shapiro
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What Child is This?

#20 - What Child is This?

Season 5 - Episode 17

Bobby and Jimmy employ the firm's notorious ""Plan B"" strategy in a last-ditch effort to save a client accused of raping and murdering his teen-aged stepdaughter. Bobby makes a case that the client's wife is actually the murderer, and the accused client is declared not guilty. Meanwhile, Ellenor goes into labor with only a panicky Helen Gamble there to assist her.

star 8.52
31 votes
Directors: Steve Gomer
Writers: David E. Kelley, Lynne E. Litt
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Till Death Do Us Part (1)

#21 - Till Death Do Us Part (1)

Season 4 - Episode 19

Ellenor pursues the Donovan case, hoping to forestall his execution. Meanwhile, Rebecca's case representing a woman with Alzheimer's trying to keep her marriage from being annulled becomes complicated when questions arise about the death of her client's first husband.

star 8.52
33 votes
Directors: Duane Clark
Writers: Alfonso H. Moreno, Adam Armus, Kay Foster, David E. Kelley
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The Candidate (2)

#22 - The Candidate (2)

Season 6 - Episode 2

A sensational homicide case rocks Boston in the series' two-hour, sixth-season opener. The defendant is a charismatic state senator, who's charged with killing the man purported to be his wife's lover. Pretrial drama centers on the accounts of two key witnesses: the politician's intransigent spouse and his reticent teenage daughter. Later, courtroom skirmishes are interwoven with the sometimes contentious strategizing of prosecutor Helen Gamble and her associate, Alan Lowe; and squabbling on the defense team, led by Ellenor

star 8.50
28 votes
Directors: Jeannot Szwarc
Writers: David E. Kelley
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The Telltale Nation

#23 - The Telltale Nation

Season 7 - Episode 6

A sexual-abuse case involving victims of a former priest embroils Eugene; a nuisance suit filed by ex-lovers escalates into violence that rattles an already shaky Lindsay.

star 8.50
24 votes
Directors: Duane Clark
Writers: David E. Kelley
Settling

#24 - Settling

Season 4 - Episode 16

Bobby is kidnapped by an irate former client who claims Bobby's incompetence in a manslaughter trial forced him to spend 12 years in prison.

star 8.50
38 votes
Directors: Arvin Brown
Writers: Todd Ellis Kessler
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Payback

#25 - Payback

Season 5 - Episode 12

Bobby is arrested for conspiring to murder serial killer William Hinks. The entire firm, with Eugene at the helm, must now rally to defend him. Meanwhile, Rebecca discovers foul play in the wrongful death suit of a friend's husband.

star 8.49
35 votes
Directors: Andy Wolk
Writers: David E. Kelley, Marc Guggenheim
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