'Rebel': Katey Sagal New Series Is Based on a Very Familiar Real Person

Katey Sagal's new series Rebel follows a law clerk named Annie “Rebel” Flynn Ray Bello who, [...]

Katey Sagal's new series Rebel follows a law clerk named Annie "Rebel" Flynn Ray Bello who, while her name has changed throughout a series of marriages, she and her dedicated pursuit of justice become her calling card. For many ABC viewers, used to seeing Scandal's Olivia Pope (played by Kerry Washington) and Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) of How to Get Away With Murder, Grey's Anatomy showrunner Krista Vernoff's new series might seem a bit too familiar –– though, not for the reason many may think. This familiarity could be due to the real-life character the show is based on, which is the very famous Erin Brockovich.

The series isn't the first attempt at recreating Brockovich's story. Brockovich's life story of taking on polluting corporations was prolific because of her success and her no mercy approach, inspiring the film named after her, which earned Julia Roberts an Oscar in 2001.

The differences lie in the places of Brockovich's career in which the movie and the show take place. The film focuses on the 1993 investigation into chemical groundwater pollution in Hinkley, California that launched Brockovich's career and helped her earn a reputation as an environmental activist and consumer advocate. Bustle reports the series picks up where Brockovich is currently at in her career. Katey Sagal's Rebel, much like her inspiration, earns a living within the legal arena without holding a law degree. The series begins with Rebel starting an investigation into the manufacturers of a piece of faulty medical technology.

In her personal life, there are more similarities that come. Rebel's kids and ex-husband make appearances throughout the series and it's obvious the strain her practice has on her family. While her son seems to resent her for the time she spends away, her daughter cares enough to bail her out when her investigations go overboard. Brockovich, a mother of three in real life, also serves as an executive producer on the show –– which is a change from the Hollywood film. Vernoff says the advocate is very hands-on in the making of the show. "We have Erin visits our writers' room, and we just steal and absorb, and put it into the script," she says.