The Good Wife 5×06 “The Next Week”

It’s another fantastic week on The Good Wife, as the show continues to fire on all cylinders, with no signs of slowing down. 

As the fallout from the Florrick Agos/Lockhart Gardner divorce continues to dissipate, the show is beginning to move back into the multiple arc per episode format. This not only allows us to get back to the rich, layered storytelling TGW team is so spectacular at creating, it makes my recap gimmick relevant again. Bonus.

The People v. Hunter Parrish from Weeds

The son of a mid-level LG client, Jeffrey, played by Hunter Parrish, is arrested when he’s pulled over by police. He calls LG to find Alicia, who had previously represented his father on an assault charge. The details of his arrest are sketchy; he’s being brought in for driving under the influence even though he’s not been issued a breathalyzer test. Will intercepts the call, and, because of the young man’s father’s influence, decides to take the case.  The case is, of course, more complicated than it appears. After all the legal wrangling one would expect from a DUI case, including Will issuing Jeffrey a breathalyzer with his iPhone (there’s an app for that!), Pine’s true intentions are revealed. Jeffrey is a suspect in an unsolved murder. DNA from Jeffrey’s father, obtained during his arrest for assault, indicated that one of Jeffrey’s father’s male relatives DNA was found under the fingernails of a murdered college student. Who went to the same school as Jeffrey. The arrest was to collect DNA from Jeffrey, which the Supreme Court just decided was legal over the summer.

Kalinda is brought in to save the damn day, like she does. She immediately decides Jeffrey is guilty. Although the show doesn’t resolve it, I’m pretty sure she’s right. She follows several leads, none of which point to a viable alternative suspect. Eventually, Pine offers Jeffrey a deal, two years for manslaughter. Jeffrey turns it down, still claiming to be innocent. He probably shouldn’t have done that, because the DNA under the dead woman’s fingernails is a 100% match to his own. We don’t see the resolution, but it’s not looking good for Jeffrey.

As interesting as this case is, the purpose of it is to make us remember how much we love Will. He may put on his fancy I GIVE NO FUCKS, BURN THEM ALL face when he’s hurt, but underneath all that bluster is a kind, empathetic, vulnerable fella. This is punctuated with a few scenes between Will and Alicia’s brother, Owen, who is a professor at Jeffrey and Dead Girl’s university, conveniently placing him in Will’s path. Owen doesn’t know about Florrick Agos yet, Will ends up spilling the beans in an awkward and endearing moment. Owen, hardcore shipper for Alicia + anyone who isn’t Peter, tells Will that Alicia has left LG because she loves Will. It’s sweet and all, but he also says Alicia’s never wanted to start her own firm, which we know isn’t true. Peter mentioned a few episodes back that it’s something she’s always wanted to do. Interesting, because we all know Owen as the one person Alicia can cut loose around. Owen apparently looks at himself as someone who knows her better than she knows herself. Knowing how much Owen hates Peter, this is an interesting ironic tidbit for his character. Big brothers are a theme this week, more on that later.

Before we leave Will, let’s touch on the moment when he and Alicia saw each other in the LG offices. The feels I feel, readers. I’m not even a shipper, but that look hit me right in my black, black heart. Let’s just give this show all the Emmys and call it a day.

Gopnik and Gopnik v. Lockhart Gardner

The reason Alicia is called to LG is to be deposed in a malpractice suit being brought against the firm by an adoptive couple, the Gopniks. The Gopniks share a lawyer with the couple whose surrogate Alicia represented in this season’s “A Precious Commodity,” played by Broadway actor Christian Borle. The Gopniks’ ripped from the headlines adoption fell through when it was discovered the child they adopted was Chippewa, and he was returned to his biological parents. The Gopniks are suing for $6 million. LG’s malpractice insurance won’t cover it, claiming LG was reckless. This is a fair point, as one of Florrick Agos’ associates, Anthony Wright Edelman, in fact bribed the tribe with $10k to make it all go away when he still worked for LG. This is the same Fourth Year who has repeatedly fucked up things for FA, and the same one who keeps whining about his damn missed bonus.

Alicia, on her original visit to LG, plays hardball with Diane, and only agrees to share the information she has, which should clear things up for LG, if LG agrees to return Alicia’s capital contribution down payment of $150k. Diane asks if Alicia has always been so crafty, to which Alicia replies, “I’ve had the world’s best teachers. Of course I changed.” I like this Alicia. I still want her and Diane and Will and Cary and Nathan Lane! and even Car(e)yII to be on the same side, but I like this take-no-bullshit Alicia. Let her stay.

Being as this is The Good Wife, of course Alicia’s testimony doesn’t clear things up. AWE’s bribe is revealed, blame gets batted around, and eventually Lockhart Garner re-hires Edelman — as a partner — and has him claim Alicia instructed him to bribe the Chippewa nation, under oath. This places the full fiscal responsibility of any settlement the Gopniks win squarely on Alicia’s shoulders. It may be completely worth it if it means she never has to work with Anthony “Joffrey” Wright Edelman again.

Zach v. Cam Ratting

The Good Wife knows its tech-speak, this is well established. This week, the tech buzz term of the week was “ratting.” If you don’t know, this is the process of hijacking the webcam on a remote computer, granting the hijacker access to turn it off and on at will. I’ll wait here while you all go put tape over your webcams. Ready? Good.

Zach notices that the cam light on his mom’s computer is on when he passes through all the lawyers in the living room to escape to his room. He asks Grace about it, then tells Alicia, who immediately suspects David Lee. As did I. As Zach is not wearing the blinders his mother is, he puts all the other pieces of the “Grace sure is grown up now!” storylines together and discovers his classmate Stiles, aka Shitweasel the Younger, has not only ratted the Florrick webcams, he’s sold footage of Grace dropping her towel to a porn site. This plot will be long and full of terrors, but in this moment, there is only a big sibling who’s angrier than he’s ever been before. The next day at school, Zach punches Stiles right in his shitweasel mouth. I hope this is the first step of  a lengthy comeuppance that culminates with a prison sentence for Stiles. This is The Good Wife, it won’t possibly be that simple. In fact, I’d lay money on LG eventually representing Stiles. Because this show is going to keep breaking our hearts by making the people we love do terrible things to each other. George R. R. Martin may kill everyone you love, but the Kings show no such mercy.

Key Points

  • I guffawed when the Gopnik’s lawyer quipped something about there being a German word to describe the wrought situation in front of them, and Diane didn’t miss a beat before dropping said word. (Even the closed captioning didn’t get it, and I’ll embarrass all of us if I try to type it out phonetically.)
  • Alicia has new clothes, and they’re divine. Is it me, or are there hints of Diane’s style in Alicia’s new look? Not a copy, just a slight homage.
  • I loved how supportive of Alicia Cary was after the Gopnik case fell apart.
  • Grace seems to have inherited her mother’s ability to look composed when it hits the fan. I would have thrown all the computers out the window and crawled under my bed if I’d been secretly taped, and I’m a grown-ass woman. She’s a sophomore in high school. Being in shock wouldn’t be unlikely, either, but Grace is a lot tougher than I’ve ever given her credit for. #teamGrace.
  • I didn’t even touch on Nathan Lane! riding in on his adding machine of justice and common sense to fix Florrick Agos, but he was as delightful as ever. I hope we see more of him, he’s a crafty devil in a sharp suit.
  • I work at home, on top of doing P-Mag, and I spend giant swaths of time alone with my three cats. During the process of watching the show twice and writing this recap, I’ve taken to randomly shouting “GOPNIK” at them to see what happens. At present, I seem to be enjoying it immensely more than they are.
  • Next week: America Ferrara returns! I love her character, but I could never get behind the romance between her and Eli.

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[E] Selena MacIntosh*

Selena MacIntosh is the owner and editor of Persephone Magazine. She also fixes it when it breaks. She is fueled by Diet Coke, coffee with a lot of cream in it, and cat hair.

3 thoughts on “The Good Wife 5×06 “The Next Week””

  1. The first moment that Hunter Parrish said, “My sister,” I assumed they were going to bring out a transgendered sister storyline. I was surprised when the uncle turned out to be trans, but I am still sort of waiting for the sister to be his twin. Or have I been watching too much SVU?

    Also, was anyone else waiting for the Donna from West Wing storyline to play out more? I thought those characters would come back, the baby would be fine, and then there would be a custody battle between the birth mother and biological parents. Maybe that will still happen in a future episode?

    Damn, love this show.

  2. So much good. So much. I will just ramble now. Owen, STFU. Cary is a better brother to Alicia than you were just then. I’m enjoying the reduced emphasis on Kalinda, which might make me a member of a very small group, but I just find her whole irresistible temptress thing tedious. Also, is it just me, or is suborning perjury (via Sleazy Wright Edelman) and making Alicia culpable for $6 million something that puts LG permanently in the Bad Guy category?

    Also, Nathan Lane’s crush on Cary is adorbs. Please don’t get your heart broken, Nathan Lane’s character. Hunter Parrish is a beautiful young man.

    1. These are all excellent rambles.

      I want more Kalinda, but GOOD Kalinda, Kalinda from the first two seasons. For a show that is so good, so much of the time, they’ve totally forgotten who she is.

      On supporting AWE’s perjury, I don’t know. We’ve seen them reeeeally bend the rules to win, but I don’t know how they’re going to get away with this. I’m pretty sure we’re not supposed to be rooting for any of them at this point, except maybe Cary and Nathan Lane.

      Hunter Parrish is not unpleasant to look upon at all, is he?

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