Marshall Law: characters

Lisa McCune

Ros Marshall (Lisa McCune)

Junior Prosecutor

Ros Marshall is the younger daughter of legal legend Joe Marshall, Supreme Court Judge, Director of Public Prosecutions, QC. Recently deceased, Joe’s brilliant career and colourful reputation hangs heavy over Ros.

Although much more like her father in temperament—she too likes a good time—she didn’t inherit his brains. They went to older half-sister sister, Verity.

Ros was the rebel, dropping out after school to do the backpacking and bar thing. After a good dose of the real life, she was persuaded to return to the fold and follow family tradition into law. Encouraged by Verity and her then husband Dylan, both barristers, Ros ploughed her way through university and gained a position as Junior Prosecutor at the Office of Public Prosecutions.

Success doesn’t come easy to Ros who finds it tough living under the shadow of a father she was always ambivalent about and a brilliant older sister. Yet Ros is a much better barrister than she thinks she is. Gutsy, compassionate and intuitive, she throws herself into each case like it’s her last, determined to get a good result for those she is acting for.

Ros is the result of Joe’s second marriage and is six years younger than her half-sister Verity. It was Verity, rather than her own coldly ambitious mother, who gave Ros a sense of security as she was growing up. She was Verity’s real life dress-up doll. The close emotional bond formed in those early years has never been broken, despite their wildly dissimilar personalities. With Verity’s mother suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, Ros’ from disinterest and Joe now dead, the two sisters are in a sense alone in the world. And it only makes their bond stronger.

Ros is best mates with Verity’s ex, Dylan Boyd QC. He’s like an older brother to her and was totally supportive during her ‘rebel phase’. Both armed with finely tuned bullshit detectors, Ros and Dylan know they can always confide in each other.

Just like her father, Ros has a great appetite for sex and refuses to apologise for it. She’s much messier in thought and deed than Verity, but she knows more about life than her cautious older sister.

Alison Whyte

Verity Marshall (Alison Whyte)

Freelance Barrister

Verity is all class, style and perfection.

A high-achiever since the day she first drew breath, Verity was the apple of her doting father’s eye and destined to follow in his famous footsteps when she topped Law School in her final year.

Then she met and fell madly in love with Dylan Boyd, an ambitious boy from the wrong side of town. She devoted herself to his career and even that she did brilliantly. He rose swiftly to become one of the most highly regarded QCs in town. By that stage his arrogance and self-serving opportunism had finally worn her down. A stormy marriage ended in acrimonious divorce and Verity was left with nothing but a major case of debt.

She’s now trying to work her way back up the career ladder. Even with her fine intellect and knowledge, making it in the highly competitive world of the independent bar is not easy. Aggravating the situation is her ex, Dylan. He’s everywhere she goes and knows precisely how to push her buttons. Can’t live with each other, can’t live without!

Verity has a façade of sass and self-confidence but underneath there is the constant worry that it’s all going to fall apart. She keeps herself in great shape, is a gourmet cook but hasn’t ventured near a relationship, let alone sex, since the divorce. The emotional battering from her failed marriage is just too close to the surface.

With a six-year age difference, Verity used to ‘mother’ her little half-sister Ros when they were children. With her own mother suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and Ros’ from disinterest, the two sisters have forged and extremely close emotional bond.

That makes the gulf between them on other matters—particularly in areas of love and sex—a great source of angst for Verity. For a control freak like Verity she finds her adored sister’s carefree attitude often quite appalling.

Alison Whyte

Dylan Boyd (William McInnes)

Queen’s Counsel

Son of a western suburbs’ butcher, Dylan Boyd comes from a solidly working-class Catholic family. His parents worked to put their bright son through a minor private school from where he won a scholarship to study law. After graduating he went straight to the Bar. Fuelled by a determination to beat the sons of the Melbourne establishment, he brilliantly played them at their own game.

On his way up he met Verity. Dazzled by what she offered—brains, style, family connections—he fell instantly in love, or was that lust? After marrying his ‘prize’, Dylan made sure Verity’s potential would never overshadow his. He ruthlessly took all the advantages and support that she offered only to see his marriage combust just as he reached the top of the pile.

The affront to his pride, and disbelief at Verity quitting the marriage, made him behave very badly during the divorce. Driven by a fear of returning to the poverty of his childhood, he screwed Verity dry in the property settlement.

And yet Dylan Boyd loves his family. Although he can now mix it with the high end of town underneath he’s still a boy from the western suburbs who’s just as happy down at the pub or kicking a footy at the local oval.

He regrets not achieving his dream of becoming the head of family with Verity at his side as the perfect wife and mother. If he can’t be with her the next best thing is to bother her. Revelling in the fact that he is a successful QC and she is a struggling barrister, he regards winding her up as terrific sport. One at which he’s very good.

On the surface Dylan seems to have a lot of friends but in reality he has few. When Joe Marshall died, Dylan was robbed of a soul mate and mentor.

In Joe’s daughter Ros, he sees a similar temperament. He’s like an older brother to her and they are best mates. He was the one who supported Ros through her ‘rebel’ phase and encouraged her to enter the law. He has a higher opinion of Ros’ potential as a barrister than Ros does. And she is the one he confides in because he knows she’ll never take his bullshit seriously.