I am happy to report that, by chance, I have discovered that over the course of 2012-2013, all seasons of L.A. Law will be released in DVD. Amazon now offers season one (at $50). Many months ago, I posted here my bafflement that Steve Bochco had not let the show go to DVD. Now he -- or someone -- has.
I have a warm spot for L.A. Law because it was the first television show seriously to raise legal ethics questions (or as seriously as we can fairly expect from television), and to my mind, though I have not watched all of the follow-on shows, still the best; because I once had the onerous task of having to watch hour upon hour of the show for a contribution to a law journal symposium on law and popular culture ("Taking L.A. Law More Seriously" is the title of my dense scholarship on the subject); and because over the years I informally received calls from the producers and writers in which the question tended to be not "how can I avoid a problem" - the question lawyers ask -- but "how can we create a problem" or something like that.
Oh, and because Susan Dey's expression when encountering the shenanigans of the show's criminal defense lawyers and unsympathetic judges was a delight to behold.
For my efforts trying to help find insoluble moral quandaries for the L.A. Law lawyers, I got to visit the set and meet them; and I was given the script of the maiden show, autographed by the actors, a memento I treasure but one that my descendants will likely some day sell on Ebay for a high two digit sum.
There is one possible drawback to this good news. The DVDs are for region 2, which I think means they may not play on US DVD players. Or maybe they will. I am ignorant of such things. But if they can be converted -- a question we today put to our IT semigods -- we will buy all seven seasons and make fair use (only fair use, promise promise) of select scenes in professional responsibility class.
Victor Sifuentes and Arnie Becker, where are you?