Dick Wolf must have known Law and Order: Trial By Jury was a complete mess -- they lost Jerry Orbach midway through the season, the scripts were terrible, and the chemistry didn't exist. "No, that was a fluke. I shouldn't have called it Law and Order: Trial By Jury, I should have called it…" A young exec in his studio raises his hand. Mr. Wolf nods and allows him to interrupt.
"You should have called it Trial By Jury. That way there's no connection to the others."
Dick sits on that critique for a minute as the other execs laugh and giggle at the one who spoke. "You think I can do that with a new series?" he asks the young exec.
"Sure you can, Mr. Wolf. No one will know the difference."
This had to be the mindset he had when he pushed Conviction, which surprisingly was the second spin-off (I don't count Arrest and Trial or Crime and Punishment as canon) of the Law and Order franchise to be cancelled. Two — not one, but two — cancellations should be a sign that this formula needs changing. The WB style should have made it unique from the other Law and Orders, but it didn't.
The premise could be best summed up as a coming-of-age drama with the world of law as a backdrop (I smell the frog all over this). ADA Alexandra Cabot (Stephanie March, who played a character of the same name on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit) leads a bureau of other younger ADAs (Eric Balfour, Jordan Bridges, Milena Govich, Anson Mount, Julianne Nicholson, and J. August Richards) in the city of New York. There's not much more to it than that.
With so many universes created within one city, it's amazing they don't all have lunch at the same places. Could you imagine those conversations?