I am not sure at all what to make of it. As I indicated previously, very unlike the Burr version. I do not see that Mason in this HBO version is even a lawyer, much less a highly skilled trial lawyer. He is a private investigator, which would have been Paul Drake's job in the Burr series. I am confident in the books, which go back quite a ways, Perry Mason was always a criminal trial lawyer. Do the writers not know the difference? Did they disagree with Erle Stanley Gardner's choice of occupations for his protagonist? Did they feel there was an extreme dearth of detectives in fiction and too many lawyers?We watched the first episode, not sure what to make of it. Unlike the Burr version that I remember, indeed.
At this point, the story seems okay, but why call it Perry Mason. Kind of like putting out a new Sherlock Holmes story and making Holmes a banker in New York.
[I just looked it up. Apparently the HBO version is intended to be a prequel to the time Perry becomes a lawyer. We shall see if that makes any sense. Perry so far does not seem like the kid of guy who would be able to tough out law school and get past the bar exam, including the background check. Nothing so far indicates he would have the ability to evolve into an unshakeable, charismatic criminal (mostly capital case, if I recall) trial attorney. Weird.]