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4.3 out of 5 stars129
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 1 September 2009
I was split between giving this three and four stars, because it starts off so well... and then tended to go downhill.

Firstly, the pilot. Wow. This was so tightly written. From that first minute it had me enthralled as to what was going on. Starting at the end, with a murder, then going back six months to see how it unfolds is genius.

Glenn Close in particular was enthralling as Patty Hewes, and Close embodied her with a quiet malevolence with the occasional glimmer of a softer side. But probably the star of the show, for me, is Zeljko Ivanek as Ray Fiske -- purely because he's one of the few characters that feels complicated, likeable and feels like he undergoes any form of emotional journey throughout the first season.

But after about episode 3, the pace starts to stall. Filler stories come in of family antics etc. One character faces leaving the law firm, and it adds nothing to the overall narrative. Now any show ever created tends to have arc plots and episode plots, so I feel bad criticising the show for this. But it was hard to stomach after the extremely focused storytelling of the first three episodes, and the attempts felt half-hearted.

The show then kind of stumbles towards the end, and does pick up some pace again in the last few episodes. And while there are some good plot twists towards the end, the main overall arc feels unsatisfactory. The revelations that have been dangled for the season weren't revelations at all, and some plot devices (such as a stalker story) just make the viewer feel cheated because they were obvious filler.

I think as a six episode season this could have been stunning. As it is, it has its highs and lows. It reminded me most of 24, and I think fans of that show will probably like this. At the price it is, I'd still highly recommend watching it. You could certainly do a lot worse for 13 episodes of TV.
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on 20 February 2008
This is easily the best new TV series so far in 2008. A legal thriller, this show brings back memories of Murder One although it's darker and more twisted. We start with the current time, showing a terrified and broken young lawyer being interrogated for murder. We then go back in time to find out how she arrived at this position, centering on a high profile legal case she was working on. Each episode shows more of how the case evolved and what happened on that fateful day. As the series progresses you are not sure who you should be routing for, how the characters are connected, or what actually happened that night. Full of twists and even some scary moments, I can't rate this series highly enough. In addition it is brilliantly acted especially by Glenn Close (which is somewhat expected) but also by Ted Danson - if you've only seen him in Cheers or Curb Your Enthusiasm, you'll be genuinely surprised by his performance. A brilliant show. I just hope it ends well and that there is another series!
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on 24 November 2008
This is a great series, from first frame to final credits.

I admit that I was completely taken into the glossy, glamorous, ultimately shallow world of the US legal system as depicted here - and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment.

While I fully accept the comment that the show sometimes felt like an ongoing marketing campaign, on a perverse level, I actually felt that element added to its enjoyment. Moreover, neither the show nor the actors involved, ever appeared to take any of it too seriously.

As for the Rainbow comparisons, I actually thought Rose Byrne was pretty good as the clever but extremely naive, rather pompous young lawyer, who makes the mistake of believing in her abilities just a little too much. And Glen Close makes a hugely enjoyable 'villain'.

To any potential viewer, don't over-analyse, just sit back and enjoy!

I've given it 5 stars because it was so entertaining, and on watching the series a second time, I loved it even more. Good television is a rare commodity in this reality/celebrity TV obsessed age, and I salute any series steers away from this sorry state of affairs.
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on 30 September 2008
I watched all thirteen episodes of this drama within four days. The perfomances of the main actors, Glenn Close (as the hard as nails Lawyer), Rose Byrne (the new recruit to her firm) and Ted Danson (the wealthy chief exective they are chasing with a damages claim) are all excellent. The suspense level is maintained throughout, helped by using a flashback style in reverse to tell the story. The bulk of the viewing is done showing the months leading up to the catastrophic finale. This is interspersed with later events leaving you following both the build up and the 'last chapter' at the same time until they meet near the end.
The story line follows a legal battle lead by Glenn Close's character Patty Hewes representing over 5000 former employees cheated out of their savings and pensions by former boss Arthur Frobisher (Ted Danson). With hundreds of millions of dollars at stake both sides will do anything it takes to gain or protect the fortune. The twists and turns continually make you unsure of who's the 'goodie' and whose the 'baddie', whose telling the truth, lying etc.
Watching on DVD allows you the obvious advantage of watching this drama at your own pace, essential as you won't be wanting to wait a week between episodes.
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on 3 March 2009
Some of the characterisation is a little OTT and characters and plot somewhat derivative, but similar criticism could be applied to classics such as NYPD Blue and The Shield, both hugely entertaining and faultlessly crafted. And surely that is the point: we are not critics determined to find fault not pleasure, we are here to be intelligently entertained - and Damage delivers.
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on 27 February 2009
An intriguing, fast-paced and absorbing legal drama. Although the story is told from the point of view of Rose Byrne, Glenn Close steals the show as the hard-bitten Pattie Hewes. The plot twists and turns through every episode, leaving the viewer guessing about 'whodunnit'. The continuous flashbacks to the blood-soaked startpoint at the beginning of every episode are a little tiring but other than that, compelling viewing.
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on 28 March 2013
This show is much loved so I don't want to offend anybody, it just isn't for me. It should be as I'm into similar shows and boxsets but this just doesn't compete for me on content or quality.

The cast is good, storylines are there but it seems to fall flat with no real tension or depth of character. The pilot episode has some genuine drama... and then it dissipates in every following episode. The supporting actors are wooden and seem to metaphorically stomp around the screen while Glenn Close and Rose Byrne float through their scenes with real aplomb.

If it's legal based drama you're after "The Good Wife" wipes the floor with this.

From half way through season 1 I didn't care anymore. Meh.
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on 25 March 2009
There are lots of reviews for this DVD already, what more to add.. The stand-out actor in this for me was Ted Danson as the meglomaniac CEO who's caused all the trouble in the first place. Barely recognisable from his Cheers days, Danson gives a solid - even brilliant - performance throughout. Lots of twists and turns, the flashback and forward works well, keeping you hooked to the end. Good entertainment, but I probably won't pick up series two. An amazing price from Amazon.
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on 14 November 2008
One of the best drama's i've seen for a while, I have currently been hooked on "THE WIRE" which is probably the best show ever made. Damages starts slowly and the character "Ellen" played by Rose Byrne seems an unlikely heroin. But as time passes she becomes all you want from a hero in a series. Glen Close definitly steels the show with a outstanding on screen display, you can't decide wheather you love or hate her.
I can't wait for Season 2 which is currently being filmed. Ted "cheers" Danson also plays a blinder as a Big Bussiness Fat Cat who although shows us how far he will go to cement his legacy he still has a concience.
If you watch it you will love it,If you choose not to watch it you will miss out on what Modern T.V shows can bring us. FANTASTIC VIEWING!!!!
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on 10 October 2008
Although i agree with of the 5 star reviews (gripping story, superbly acted, nice pace,...) i'll stick with a 4 out of 5 for one main reason: at certain points in the series it annoyed that i could see through the concept and feel that it was it built according to a "formula". This could be in little details like choice of shots of the director, the presentation of plot changes,...

Just like blockbuster formats, Damages sometimes feels just a little too much like it was created with just too much marketing in mind.

It is because of this that i have to rate it below shows that could overcome this issue and just feel just more 'real', like -for me- The Sopranos, Shield,...

Show is great though, just not a new Sopranos
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