Defending Jacob: Season 1 - Rotten Tomatoes

Defending Jacob: Season 1 (2020)



Critic Consensus: Despite outstanding work from Michelle Dockery and Chris Evans, Defending Jacob stretches its source material too thin, undermining its own rich tension with too much melodramatic padding.


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A gripping, character-driven thriller based on the 2012 New York Times best-selling novel of the same name, and starring Chris Evans, Michelle Dockery, Jaeden Martell, Cherry Jones, Pablo Schreiber, Betty Gabriel and Sakina Jaffrey. The limited drama series unfolds around a shocking crime that rocks a small Massachusetts town and one family in particular, forcing an assistant district attorney to choose between his sworn duty to uphold justice and his unconditional love for his son.


William Xifaras
as Father O'Leary
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Critic Reviews for Defending Jacob: Season 1

All Critics (58) | Top Critics (18)

You've seen it before, perhaps, but don't let that stop you. "Defending Jacob..." is gripping enough in its own way, despite some of the familiar moves, and the acting is consistently fine.

April 23, 2020 | Full Review…

For a show so devoted to stringing you along for answers, "Defending Jacob" doesn't leave you with much once it's over.

April 22, 2020 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

The high-profile names involved and impressive production are what really separate it from your standard basic cable crime dramas and not necessarily the content itself.

April 15, 2020 | Full Review…

Defending Jacob suffers greatly from its format, stretching 120 minutes of story max into eight hours of episodic television.

April 24, 2020 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

The ambiguous ending to the eight-part series is a bit frustrating, but it sets the stage for a possible second season.

May 20, 2020 | Full Review…

A good show whose premise ends up being secondary as more profound (and relevant) themes are explored. [Full review in Spanish].

June 19, 2020 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

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