This article, “Who is Mickey Haller,” contains spoilers regarding Netflix’s The Lincoln Lawyer season 1.
The actor to play the main character in the best-selling Michael Connelly book series was never supposed to be Manuel Garcia-Rulfo. That honor reportedly went to Logan Marshall-Green (24, The O.C.). But networks do what networks do. In this case, axing the series because of production issues stemming from the pandemic. However, in casting Garcia-Ruflo, they found an actor who could adequately explore the beloved character’s Latino heritage. Mickey Haller, whose mother is Latino, not only wheels and deals with the law at his will by manipulation and bargaining below the ethical lines, but the new David E. Kelley Netflix series also explores his roots by righting a wrong.
So, that begs the question:
Who is Mickey Haller in season 1 of The Lincoln Lawyer?
Mickey Haller is a defense attorney in Los Angeles who just finished a stint at a detox center in recovery from his addiction to opioids. How did he become addicted? He had an accident surfing, and you know physicians; they have handed them out like candy the past decade. He is now starting over and climbing out of rock bottom when he gets a call from his ex-wife, Lorna, that he has a meeting with an esteemed Judge. When he takes the meeting, he is told a fellow defense attorney, Jerry Vincent, was murdered, and his practice was left to Mickey.
Including a trial of the century! A billion-dollar video game mogul is on trial for killing his wife and lover. The case now belongs to Mickey. That’s, of course, if he can convince Trevor Elliott not to fire him.
What does Mickey Haller do?
Haller has two significant cases on his mind. One is the Trevor Elliott case because the money can get him and his practice back on his feet. The other is the case he dropped when he went to rehab, the case of Jesus Menendez, who he thinks is innocent of the murder of a woman named Martha. Haller is also trying to put his family back together, including his ex-wife Maggie and daughter Hayley.
However, Haller never lets his personal life get in the way of his ethical duties as a lawyer, especially after his rehab. For instance, Haller sends an anonymous note to the judge that a juror is not who he says he is (and knows he has taken a bribe from his client). He does this so he doesn’t have to commit the crime. What crime? If the jury goes to deliberate, and he knows a bribe has happened, that is a crime for not reporting it. However, as we know, Trevor claimed he did this because a Russian henchman was the main investor in his company. If he is found guilty, he and Mickey will be killed because they protect their investment. This puts Mickey and his family in jeopardy instead of just taking the sure win.
Haller still can win a not guilty verdict, but he finds out later that it was Trevor who did murder his wife, but also it was Judge Holder who ordered the hit on Jerry Vincent. Trevor murdered his wife because she was the real genius behind the code that made them rich. They had no prenup, and if she could prove that, she could have everything. Vincent and Elliott bribed Judge Holder. Holder’s husband was a defense attorney, and they paid a man named McSweeney to be the juror and train him on how to act so he would get through the vetting process. To cover her tracks, Holder had the same man kill Jerry and try to take out Mickey.
Lastly, Mickey clears Jesus Menendez of the murder of Martha. This indirectly ruins Maggie’s career because the cop assigned to the case she is basing her claim on framed Menendez. Maggie is upset and breaks things off with Mickey just as they start to make amends.