The Mongoose Seminar: How Defendants Can Defeat the ‘Reptile’ (Retired)

General Credits:

Course Description

The ‘Reptile’ approach to trying plaintiffs’ cases in a variety of litigation areas remains hot. In ways that are sometimes obvious and sometimes subtle, plaintiffs’ attorneys in Med Mal, PI, Products, employment, and other areas of litigation try to motivate fact-finders based on fear and the need for safety supposedly rooted in the “Reptilian Brain.” That goal determines their strategy in taking depositions, examining witnesses, crafting a persuasive message, and conducting voir dire.

So what’s new? While the plaintiffs’ tactics are relatively consistent, defense responses can be all over the map. Some ignore it. Some rely on the judge to police it. Some try to turn it to their advantage. This seminar reviews the most recent research and practical experience and offers a comprehensive system for providing your best defense against the Reptile. By staying nimble, identifying plaintiffs’ weaknesses, and focusing on your strengths, you and your witnesses can be the Mongoose to their Reptile.


  1. How do you recognize Reptile strategies and questions?
  2. What is the best way to respond to a ‘Safety Rule’ question?
  3. Is it safe to employ a ‘Reverse Reptile’ by adapting the same tactics?
  4. What are the legal options for keeping the Reptile out of the courtroom?
  5. How do you nullify the effect of a Reptilian voir dire?
  6. What themes best answer a Reptilian message in opening and closing?


Ken Broda-Bahm, Ph.D.

Credit Details

Course Type

Course Instructor

Ken Broda-Bahm, Ph.D.

Original Date Of Course

General Credits