Listen, listen: Night Court is back in session on NBC, with a new Judge Stone presiding.
Big Bang alumnus Melissa Rauch stars as Judge Abby Stone, daughter of the original Judge Harry Stone (played by the late Harry Anderson), in the new sequel. Tuesday’s series premiere begins with a cheeky Abby arriving in her father’s old courtroom for her first day as a new judge, but not many people there remember Harry and the old Night Court crew. Former prosecutor Dan Fielding (John Larroquette) may still be around — but he’s reduced to hurling lattes at a nearby coffee shop. The barista appearance is just a cloak so he can serve subpoenas as a process officer, but the shaggy beard he sports is very real. (And hey, they kept the old theme song!)
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Night Court Revival NBC Gurgs Lacretta
Abby soon meets her new colleagues: giggling bailiff Gurgs (Lacretta), ambitious prosecutor Olivia (India de Beaufort) and frustrated clerk Neil (Kapil Talwakar). Her first case is a psychic who is accused of fraud, and when Abby puts the psychic to the test, we learn that the judge is “very happily engaged,” even though her fiancé lives out of town and hasn’t moved to town yet is. (Hmm.) She urges the ailing court attorney to try a little harder next time – and so he stops right there. Sitting in her late father’s old judge’s chamber and going through his old stuff (Clarence the armadillo!), she decides she needs a new public defender “who cares about people the same way I do.”
So she knocks on the door of Dan, her father’s old pal, who tries to scare her away at first, but lets her in when he hears she’s Harry’s daughter. He expresses his condolences and reveals that his own wife Sarah also recently passed away. When Abby says she’s the new night court judge, Dan lets out a startled yell and scoffs at her offer to be the new public defender. But she touches his heart by reminding him of how he once persuaded Harry to go back into the courtroom, so he reluctantly agrees to at least pay a visit to his old haunt.
The story goes on
Night Court NBC Dan Fielding John Larroquette
When Dan arrives, he quickly clashes with Olivia, and although Abby tries to persuade him to stay, he walks away, leaving her high and dry. Meanwhile, poor Gurgs is driven insane trying to figure out who rearranges the letters in the courthouse directory to make dirty jokes – but Abby knows it’s Neil, overqualified and bored for the job. She teases him about what he really wants to do, and her upbeat attitude makes Neil agree to give her some more time with her cases so she can dig deeper. Also, Dan takes a stroll through Harry’s old quarters and asks a caretaker if he should open his heart again and risk getting hurt. However, the janitor is too busy disposing of dead birds to help, and when Dan opens a box of Harry’s things, a bunch of spring-loaded snakes jump in his face. Classic Harry.
Next thing we know, Dan is showing up in court with a freshly shaved beard and ready to serve as the court’s public defender — at least for a few days. Tasked with defending a trench-clad flasher, he thunderously lists the reasons the man should be sentenced harshly… before remembering he’s no longer the prosecutor. He quickly switches and defends the man – who, of course, blitzes Abby and the rest of the court before leaving. This is Night Court, after all.
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