“Murder” Gets Away With Murder

I had such high hopes for “How To Get Away With Murder” when it premiered last September. It was produced by Shonda Rimes, whose “Scandal” has been a guilty pleasure for years. It had at its center a whodunit, a genre for which I’m a sucker. Most of all, it had Viola Davis, one of my favorite actresses. So what went wrong? Or, rather, what went right? It became a breakout hit for ABC, which is airing a two-hour season finale tonight. Otherwise, the writing has been lazy and cliche-ridden. The law students who work slavishly for Davis’s Professor Keating are obnoxious brats. And Davis, hampered by bad writing, is giving a performance week after week which basically consists of scrunching up her face as if she’s bearing the weight of the universe. Yes, it’s nice to see a dark-skinned, middle-aged woman at the center of a basic-network hit. Otherwise, “Murder” has been the season’s biggest disappointment.

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