Luis Villa wrote at 18:09 (EDT) on Thursday:
What episode do I have to re-watch for this to make any sense?
I've watched them all (nearly went to the office as Harvey for
Halloween when I worked for Harvey two years ago) and I feel like I'm
Frankly, it's not just about some specific episode of the show, it's
more about the feel of the show. The bumbling nature of Harvey Birdman
-- someone who basically has a failed career as a superhero (in our
analogy, the developers are superheros) -- and became a lawyer because
it's a way to make a reasonable living, while presumably still having
some connection to the superhero world, is really what the idea is going
The point of the rule is to make sure the Harvey Birdmans of the world
have to at least try to be real superheros again. In essence, if one is
to be a lawyer to superheros, one must remain a bit of a superhero. As
an example in our analogy, one should be using 'git diff' not 'Word
processor track changes', which is why Harvey Birdman rule forbids word
processing documents of that ilk.
Depending on your thematic reading of Harvey Birdman's superhero-ness, one
could argue that Harvey *is* a good superhero, and that's why he's a good
lawyer to superheros, especially given that failed supervillians tend to be
lawyers for his opposition.
In the early episodes of the show, Harvey actually uses his superpowers
to help defend his clients, which supports the latter argument. In later
episodes, it's more clear he's under the thumb of the managing partner and
he seems more "washed up".
Either way, I think this idea of there being a clear distinction between
"superhero" and "lawyer to superhero", and how much of a superhero you
to be to be a good lawyer to superheros is the theme that the name "Harvey
Birdman Rule" is trying to evoke.
At least, that's how I feel about the idea of calling it the Harvey
Birdman Rule. Maybe Fontana has different reasons; we haven't discussed
it at this level of depth before.
BTW, I'm also left wondering: is discussion about Harvey Birdman rule
itself covered by Harvey Birdman rule?