Two of the most popular legal analysts are revving up to argue about some of the country’s most infamous criminal trials.
Nancy Grace and Dan Abrams are appearing together on A&E’s Grace vs. Abrams premiering Thursday evening at 11 p.m. EST where they will discuss new information about cases that have gripped the nation.
“The problem with some of these debate shows is they feel staged. It’s the prosecution versus the defense,” Abrams tells PEOPLE about the duo’s new show. “That’s not the way Nancy and I are taking this. We’re being very honest about our opinions, about these cases.”
The series will discuss the courtroom drama surrounding Chandra Levy and Robert Blake, but the first episode focuses on Casey Anthony, who was accused in 2008 of killing her 2-year-old daughter Caylee Anthony. Casey was tried and acquitted of her daughter’s murder, but her case continues to fascinate crime buffs.
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On Thursday’s episode, the pair dives deeper into the case with added insight from Judge Belvin Perry, who presided over the trial; Russ Huekler, an alternate juror; and an exclusive interview with Robyn Adams, a friend of Casey’s during her time in prison.
“I think our conversation about the Casey Anthony case – Nancy seemed willing to entertain the possibility that it was an accidental death, which she would still argue is criminal because of the way the accident occurred,” says Abrams. “I think it’s possible she didn’t premeditate it.”
For years, Abrams and Grace have appeared on television segments, including ABC’s Good Morning America, where their conversations would turn into epic legal battles. Viewers – even famous ones – couldn’t help but notice the fiery chemistry.
“Julia Roberts came up to me at a party and asked me what Nancy Grace was like,” Abrams recalls. “She complimented me on my patience but was curious about our interaction off camera. I just thought, ‘Wow! Julia Roberts watches our segments.”
The pair has crossed paths for nearly two decades when they started working at Court TV. They didn’t know each other well, Abrams says. But now, Grace and Abrams have turned their heated chemistry into “conflict magic” while debating well-known cases.
“Is this going to be Nancy and Dan getting mad at each other over a story that everyone already knows,” Abrams asks. “The answer is no. We’re debating new developments.”