Rotten Tomatoes Reveals Half the Story of Chris Ambrose’s Tarnished TV Writing Career

Chris Ambrose knows how the marketplace works whether it is the food market in the town center, the stock market on Wall Street, or the child market in CT Family Court.

MADISON CT: Chris Ambrose is fighting in CT Family Court to stop his three teenage children from being with their mother and force them to live with him.

The teens, horrified by the idea of living with him, left the state.

Judge Thomas J. O’Neill…

To win over Judge Thomas J. O’Neill and gain control of his children, Ambrose spun tales claiming his kids’ opinions were irrelevant and blamed their mother for turning them against him.

Storytelling is Ambrose’s forte; he was a Hollywood writer until allegations of plagiarism ended his career. 

Though his Rotten Tomatoes page offers some insight, it leaves out how his career came to an end.

Let’s look at his Rotten Tomatoes profile.

Christopher Ambrose

“With credits on the massively influential procedural show “Law & Order” and the cheerily gruesome forensics drama “Bones,” TV writer and producer Christopher Ambrose has a penchant for dark dramas that traffic in the ugly side of human behavior.”

FR comments:

Specializing in dark dramas, Ambrose has crafted one for his family, even pushing for his wife’s arrest to force the teens’ return to his home.  His kids, repelled by his behavior, rather than any maternal influence, refuse to return. 

Continuing with Rotten Tomatoes:

Ambrose got his start as a writer in 2001, writing several episodes of the critically-acclaimed but low-rated series “Family Law,” about one woman’s struggle to rebuild both her law firm and her newly single life.

Ambrose, a lawyer, started writing for a TV show called Family Law. Skilled in TV drama and family law, Ambrose outmaneuvered his wife to isolate her from their lives. Leveraging his legal know-how, he’s used parental alienation—abusers’ go-to tactic—to oust the woman his kids want to live with twice.

First, in 2020, with controversial Judge Jane Grossman, and last month with inexperienced Judge O’Neill, who disregarded a restraining order request from Ambrose’s nearly 17-year-old daughter, Mia, aimed at Ambrose – not her mom. 

His children were safe and happy with their mother for the first time in three years, after escaping a father they claim is abusive. Now they live with their maternal grandfather.

Back to Chris Ambrose’s Rotten Tomatoes page:

He next worked as a story editor and series writer on “Judging Amy,” a family drama that examined the lives of three generations of women: grandmother and social worker Maxine (Tyne Daily), newly divorced family court judge Amy (Amy Brenneman), and Amy’s teenage daughter, Lauren (Karle Warren).

With substantial experience in writing fiction about Family Court, Ambrose deftly navigated the line between fact and fiction, mastering the system’s intricacies to impose a saga of tears and heartbreak for his teens and their mother in a quest to force them to live with him.

Back to Rotten Tomatoes:

In 2006, he joined the writing and production staff of “Bones,” starring Emily Deschanel as socially awkward forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan and “Angel” star David Boreanaz as her often-confused FBI partner.

Since then, he has written and produced over 40 episodes of the long-running criminal justice series “Law & Order.

The review omits Ambrose’s role in CBS’s “Instinct,” notable for its controversy with “Bones,” where Ambrose had written and produced several episodes. 

FR offers this additional language to add to the Rotten Tomatoes review.

Years later, Ambrose joined CBS’ “Instinct” and penned an episode strikingly similar to one from “Bones,” raising plagiarism claims. Although he’d never written the comparable “Bones” episode, major outlets like CinemaBlend, Quartz and The Wrap called out the uncanny resemblances.

Plagiarism Today did a detailed analysis. 

Even CBS-owned TV Guide reported the controversy calling it a “stolen storyline.”

Michael Rauch, “Instinct’s” showrunner, publicly apologized to “Bones” creator Hart Hanson, and Ambrose lost representation, effectively ending his TV career.

Showrunner Michael Rauch apologized for the plagiarism committed by writer Chris Ambrose.

Ambrose’s last IMDb credit is the contentious “Instinct” episode, “Secrets and Lies,” which aired ironically on April Fools Day, 2018, which was also Easter Sunday.

Ambrose’s varying explanations for his exit didn’t hold water, especially since Rauch returned for the next season while he did not.

Secrets and Lies was about an Amish teenager with a passion for piano who gets murdered.
Bones” episode titled “The Plain in the Prodigy,” also about an Amish teenager with a passion for piano who gets murdered.



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Frank Parlato


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  • Doreen Ludwig is pretty well hated by the state of Connecticut. . She has loads of accurate duplication info on the family court system. Mothers if you want to know why this is happening to you read her research. We are moving towards a motherless American. Birthing person.. second class citizen to endure abuse and tossed in the trash when ever your abuser feels like it. Rich men North of Richmond are running the head of the Snake . Rich privilege white men using the fatherhood initiative federal welfare reform act funding. Exploiting the minority community to keep it going.

  • According to Doreen Ludwig motherless American. 2010. $453,558. 2011 $494,008, 2012$503,015, 2013 $ 851,912, $218, 172. Doreen Ludwig is pretty accurate on her information. Thank you for responding. Most women are in the dark about the family matters and surrounding laws and information. Our government is not transparent about family court system. Outside of CPM absolutely no one is educating them. We have had to follow the Frank report and troll the interest. Doreen Ludwig motherless American has reported the financial insensitive on the war on women. Motherhood is on the attack. It’s difficult to know who is helping and who is behind the war. We have to go to the Frank Report to get answers. Use the comment section to ask questions and provide information. The state of Connecticut doesn’t like to answer. Doesn’t like the public to ask questions.

  • At what point will Mr. Mandel, DCF and Mr. O’Neill consider “The Safe and Together Model” for the Ambrose case? says:

    “… The Safe and Together Model is an internationally recognized set of tools and interventions designed to help child welfare agencies and their partners (including law enforcement) become domestic violence-informed.

    The model was developed by David Mandel & Associates (now the Safe & Together Institute) in Connecticut. 👈 🤔?

    It has been implemented at the statewide or local level in a number of different states, including Colorado, Connecticut, Florida (several counties), New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.”

    • Lets get honest about David Mandell and his crew. They have already proven to be a failure to assist the Connecticut family court. He’s partnered with the fatherhood initiative and I believe sold Connecticut on current model. It’s concerning Domestic Advocacy groups would push the safe and together model from the same person who created the current program. More money spent on education. I’m pretty sure after being through the courts education is not the problem. The uneithical conduct of Connecticut attorneys and psychologist. Do we really need the added expenses of high conflict divorce coaches? I’m going to say no. No more laws in Connecticut can and should be passed until the curruption is addressed. The domestic violence organization know all about it. Intimate knowledge of cases and reviewing GaL complaints. Any laws passed are going to be manipulated like Jennifer’s law. What could David Mandell offer to stop the curruption from manipulation? What is a high conflict divorce coach going to do to stop curruption and bias? The criminal court is appearing to be every bit as problematic as family court. Please explain how father’s rights supporters David Mandell who already had a hand in created the bias broken 💔 system for Connecticut should now straighten out the problems? People have the right to have opinions and ask questions. deflimation of character who don’t agree with you is not going to stop people from asking questions and reporting information. Blind faith is not an option when considering safety and well-being.

      • David Mandell safe and together model and engagement of abusive fathers. David Mandell has made considerably amounts of money 💰. Lots of it through the fatherhood initiative in Connecticut. Trying to hash out “safety” while giving custody or access/ visitation to abusers. Domestic violence unfortunately is big business. Billions of dollars. Why is David Mandell not speaking out publicly about the family court issues? Why is he not knocking down doors in Connecticut and speaking out about our broken 💔 system? A system he has greatly profited from.

        • David Mandell hasn’t addressed corruption and collusion in Connecticut family courts? 🤔

          • He’s still a partner with the fatherhood initiative. He is aware of the access and visitation grant program run through the child support office. He knows all about the dangerous daddy problem in Connecticut I’m sure. He knows that the program designed to rehabilitate father’s is not just being used by the minority community and low income. He has not stepped up to make a statement or look for changes. I wonder how many minority mothers have endured abuse not just those murdered no one hears about. How many children have been placed in harms way? Healthy marriage and rehabilitation to make them more marriageable. Do we have statistics on how successful co parenting is going? How many custody flips have accured as a result of gatekeeping? How many women are actually not reporting forced to stay in order to protect their children. David made more than a few hundred thousand dollars a year off Connecticut in the past. Would you not think he would be considered about the information being outed in the frank report. Has Betsy Keller ever contacted him to assist with the state of Connecticut legislators and judiciary committee? Her mom’s in the past have suffered a great deal. Look at warrior Mom Karen Riordan and her children. Where is David Mandell and the programs he profited off of?

          • “David made more than a few hundred thousand dollars a year off Connecticut in the past.“ Where’s the evidence of money well spent?


            Submitted by:
            David Mandel, MA, LPC Executive Director
            Safe & Together Institute PO Box 745
            Canton CT 06019

            Dear Sen. Winfield, Rep. Safstrom, and members of the Joint Committee on Judiciary,

            … I want to close by also highlighting my support for the provisions of the bill that address the training and experience needed to provide expert testimony or meaningful evaluation recommendations to the court, the parts of the bill that seek to remove allegations of alienation off the table in situations of abuse, and the sections that helps the court contextualize the protective efforts of a parent and seeks to prevent the harm to them caused by the perpetrator used against them. These are important and forward thinking provisions. …”

            Why hasn’t it been accomplished yet?


      • Walking in the hallway after the hearing today, Mr. O’Neill looked like he was a little frustrated and on some kind of mission.

        So new to the bench, new in the field of family law and new to a tough case with clear and present dangers, why did Judge O’Neill walk out of Courtroom 5B like a light-weight wrestler in the middle of a fight?

        He took long strides, chest puffed out, arms swinging free like he was ready for battle. Does he always walk that way?

        Judge Rodriguez was there today, too. He should have heard that hearing. Or. Judge Nieves should have heard that hearing. Who’s calling the shots at that courthouse? Did we ever find out?

        Mr. O’Neill’s body language says he wasn’t there to be an impartial trier of facts.

        He knows nothing about children and families in crisis, or he doesn’t care.

        Someone needs to investigate and report how and why the case went from Judge Rodriguez to Judge Nieves to the Day Pitney LLP guy.

        • Judges Grossman and Adelman got that snowball rolling down the hill on purpose. O’Neill’s a corporate lawyer, not a domestic violence expert. As a new judge, he might feel compelled to slam Karen for any slight violation of Gerard Adelman’s sinister plans to gain the approval of his new colleagues and superiors.

          Either O’Neill doesn’t know the backstory of how Gerard Adelman (AFCC Inc.), Robert Horwitz (AFCC Inc.), Sidney Horowitz (AFCC, Inc.), Lynda Munro (AFCC, Inc.), Bruce Freedman (AFCC, Inc.), Robin Deutsch (AFCC, Inc.), Stephen Grant (AFCC, Inc.) etc. created that racket or O’Neill doesn’t want to think that Connecticut “family courts” are a purposely adversarial racket for profit.

          Or, maybe O’Neill knows how corrupt the system is because he’s friends with those who created that hell of a “family court” racket years on purpose to pit as many parents and children as possible against as many other parents and children as possible for profit, kicks and control.

          As a corporate guy, if he’s a decent man and eventually realizes that family bonds shouldn’t be for sale, may that sudden realization happen before Friday.

          • DV advocates or anti-DV advocates …

            Or, anti-family-court-corruption reporters and activists?

            For example … “Courtwatches are a vital tool for securing professional conduct in the courtroom! Judges, lawyers and other professionals perform on their “best behavior” when faced with several citizens neatly dressed with similar attire (white tops), sporting badges like the one here, pens and clipboards at the ready. Use the instructions below to create your own courtwatch; for more information, go to Family Court Terms or Helpful Hints for Pro se Litigants. …


          • “… WATCH was founded in 1992 and has trained over 760 volunteers who have monitored more than 61,000 hearings. Its mission is to make the justice system more effective and responsive in handling cases of violence against women and children, and to create a more informed and involved public.

            WATCH volunteers, who carry red clipboards when monitoring a hearing, are among the only people in the courtroom with no personal stake in the outcome. They are there as public observers of the justice system. As any WATCH volunteer will tell you, the organization’s training emphasizes appropriate courtroom demeanor and respect for the system.

            But Judge Jack Nordby doesn’t like what he sees. In his December tirade he accused WATCH of using the red clipboard — an “ingenious device” — to say to judges, “We are watching you. We do not trust you.” He compared the “flashing” of clipboards to signals used by gang members in the courtroom to intimidate witnesses. Curiously, there was not even a WATCH monitor in the courtroom when Judge Nordby erupted — no clipboard to make him see red — so the outburst was not only inappropriate, it came out of left field. …”


          • “… General Resources

            Community Support Court Watch Form
            Congressional House Resolution 72

            Expressing the sense of Congress that child safety is the first priority of custody and visitation adjudications, and that State courts should improve adjudications of custody where family violence is alleged.

            Code of Conduct for United States Judges
            National Council for Juvenile and Family Court Judges
            American Bar Commission on Domestic & Sexual Violence
            NOW Foundation
            National Council Against Domestic Violence

            Effective Intervention in Domestic Violence & Child Maltreatment Cases: Guidelines for Policy and Practice …


        • “Mission Statement

          The National Family Court Watch Project is dedicated to providing an impartial assessment of the effectiveness of family courts in dealing with custody, visitation, support, and property issues. This project has a strong focus on how child protection and family violence are addressed by the court. …

      • How could you possibly know that Frank unless you’re working with one of the parties? Kind of identifies you as someone working with one side as opposed to reporting as a “journalist”.

        • Judge O’Neill is desperate to jail Karen.

          Anyone watching Mr. O’Neill / watching the case can see that. What he did and what Judge Nieves did were totally opposite approaches. Such totally opposite approaches to the exact same case don’t belong in a fair and balanced court of justice.

  • So many “family court” tragedies ... but ... no crime, corruption or collusion anywhere in “family courts”? 🤔 says:

    That’s a good article on the “Connecticut Protective Moms” website, but why is there no mention of blatant for-profit purposely adversarial collusion and crimes in the family court system?

    Shouldn’t some of the larger organizations advocating for family court reform such as “Connecticut Protective Moms” and “Safe Kids International” mention family court corruption and crimes every once in a while?

    Less business-as-usual “non-profit” politics and more of those bright red flyers with the shredder logo from California’s Center for Judicial Excellence saying: “STOP FAMILY COURT CRIMES” would probably help more than articles and ads asking more parents to join in that living nightmare of a struggle that’s gone on for the past forty years.

    “… Our CPM membership of over 400 mothers in family court are still hopeful that Jennifers’ Law will provide victims with needed legal protections against their abusers in family court proceedings. We need to:

    Address the gender bias in our court systems,
    Address the denial and disbelief of children who report their abuse,
    Address the training of court professionals to see the signs of abuse as opposed to assuming children need two parents to thrive even if one of them is abusive and harmful to their emotional and physical safety. …“

    • I believe CPM is trying not to get on the bad side of the judges or state government. The courts abuse has ramped up because of exposure. The judges have frankly gotten worse. Trying to stop 🛑 custody flips for the safety of children. Women comic forward with evidence and alligations of curruption have been labeled “unhinged, negative and bad for publicly.” Members having to walk away because they speak the truth and want justice for the crimes committed in their cases. Women have little places to go to seek help for what is and has been going on in family court. The government in Connecticut labeling women with proof, the alienation group does not recognize the bias against women. Is not advocating for children safety. The woman speaking out about curruption are on an island 🏝️. They are from many states beyond Connecticut. Fighting for justice with little to no support but a small group. They are determined to out the truth. For protection of children. Liberty 🗽 and justice. We will continue to report what is happening. Even if it is bad for publicly. We wish not to risk safety of the children and women in court but with out accountability these crimes are humanity will continue. Exposing Connecticut the leader will have an effect on the rest of the system.

      • Yes there is one person who has taken it upon themselves to control everyone. Controlling all information and conversation. Many women have had to walk away. No one should have to continue to suffer until their children are 18. Let all their financials drained. Any one with a difference of opinion on how to handle the situation is run out of the group doesn’t have a voice there either.

          • Plenty of documentation against the state for discrimination being gathered. Plenty of documentation on the lack of safety and failure to investigate and prosecute crimes. It would appear that the state is more interested in defending crimes against the residents including children than protection. Secrificing public safety to save on prosecuting criminals and incarceration. In family court the people pay. In criminal court the state pays. Buying custody and freedom from criminal prosection. Karen Riorden and the use of Jennifer’s law against her is a clear message the state is going to torture and nail you to the cross for daring to come forward. Women and children are dying in the state of Connecticut for money not only to the attorneys but for the states benefits. The department of justice urgently needs to step in. For the welfare of children and women in the state. Sos.

  • Not a bad write up.
    How’s grandpa doing with those kids living with him? Must be tough for a senior citizen to house and take care of 3 teenagers for the mother. Her issues must be serious since it’s almost unheard of that mothers lose custody which makes this case incredibly troubling. I hope she gets help she needs and those kids get a emotionally stable mother to spend some time with.

      • Even you, a man, a grown man, thinks anyone pointing out the obvious must be the other party and that ordinary readers aren’t capable of based, common sense deductions.
        Good grief, Frank

    • Someone who doesn’t know about corruption in the courts or a sick and dangerous person wrote those lines: says:

      “… it’s almost unheard of that mothers lose custody which makes this case incredibly troubling. …”

      “… I hope she gets help she needs and those kids get a emotionally stable mother to spend some time with. …”

  • Whenever I see that photo with the white van in the background I always think, “That should be an FBI truck monitoring his online activity – – and none of this would be happening right now if the good guys were paying attention back then.”


    Hollywood cared more about his plagiarism than the fact that the subject matter was cray cray.

    When you look at the garbage that Hollywood puts out like « little demon » ( glamorizes satanic children, Child sacrifice etc) or Smallville, a show that is literally about Mind control, you can not be shocked that these writers and producers have carte blanche connections through the big wigs.

  • “… Ambrose’s last IMDb credit is the contentious “Instinct” episode, “Secrets and Lies,” which aired ironically on April Fools Day, 2018 ….“

    … and then, Adelman heard only Chris’ side of the case and didn’t notice his lack of credibility.

  • He threw the showrunner Michael Rauch under the bus for his own dirty deeds.

    Ambrose uses judges just as he used his boss, his colleagues, his wife and his kids.

    His motions reveal his insanity.

    Pages upon pages of single spaced fantasy and delusions of grandeur.

    If anyone forces these teens back to him the liability will be catastrophic.

    Medical records prove it all. As does the teens evidence gathered over three years.

    But they should not need evidence. They are valued and worthy. Stop enjoining Ambrose in his maniacal determination to discredit his own kids and his wife.

    All was well until she had the audacity to demand a divorce.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

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Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083


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