Credit: CBS

As The People v. O.J. Simpson winds down to its finale next week, it’s clear that Sarah Paulson’s performance as prosecuting attorney Marcia Clark will stand as one of the show’s greatest contributions to cultural understanding of the trial. As Paulson explained Stephen Colbert on Thursday, Clark was unfairly maligned by the media at the time of the trial.

“She was really considered to be — and I think I bought this too — she was a strident, really aggressive attorney,” Paulson said. “Is there any other kind of attorney? And also if she were a man, these would all be positive ways to describe an attorney. No one would talk about his bad suit and his bad hair.”

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A new view of Clark isn’t the only thing The People v. O.J. Simpson has given Paulson, though. Clark smoked a lot, forcing the actress to pick up the habit.

“When we first started, I was coughing a lot,” Paulson said. “And then eventually I was ready for a smoke. I was like hey, hey. It got me a little crazy for the ciggies.”

Watch the clip below.

The Late Show With Stephen Colbert
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