Who owns the rights to a cover song when that cover song is used in an unauthorized fashion? This episode won’t actually clear up that question, but it does answer several others. Is Will ever getting over Alicia? Did Marilyn make Baby Peter with Governor Peter? Whatever happened to those mysterious ballot boxes from last season? Who wouldn’t want to hug Cary Agos? Whatever happened to that actor from the Scooby Doo movie with Buffy in it?
Readers, you followed my instructions and caught up with TGW over break, right? RIGHT? *sigh.* Is it because it’s on CBS? I know. CBS is supposedly the home of the silver haired demo and murder shows. Even if you’ve sworn you’d never watch CBS until you were eligible for AARP, you should still give The Good Wife a try. And then we’ll talk about the other CBS shows you’re missing, like Elementary and Person of Interest.
As alluded to in my intro, the case of the week is about copyright infringement. Finally, a law topic on this show where I know enough not to wonder if what I’m seeing on my TV is even possible. I know enough to know anything is possible with copyright law. Two white guys with guitars (Matthew Lillard and Christopher Fitzgerald) have created a cover of a rap song, called “Thicky Trick,” in a bowling alley. The song was then used in the fictional television show Drama Camp. The white dudes claim FauxGlee directly ripped off their cover. A meeting with the band’s lawyer reveals they hadn’t received the derivative rights to use the original song, which would have protected them if they made changes to it. Conveniently, Peter was in prison with the original artist, Rebel Kane (Charles Malik Whitfield). Alicia, Cary, and the band head to Kane’s estate, where he sells them the derivative rights for $5.
When the network learns they’re being sued, they send no less than Salieri himself, F. Murray Abraham, to fix things. He storms into Lockhart Gardner, pardon, LG, looking for Alicia. LG is having its own issues, namely Diane is still trying to get rid of seedy Damien, and seedy Will wants to keep him. Will has also gone completely ’round the corner from sympathetic, broken-hearted, and misguided to metaphorically peeing on everything and declaring himself king of the world. When Will overhears F. Murray Abraham’s plight, he jumps right in to help crush Alicia.
F. Murray: But I don’t like you.
Will: I don’t like you either, what does that have to do with the law?
I need to take a moment to share something with you. The whole time I’ve been writing this review, “Thicky Trick” has been going through my head. As it happens, the cast put together a fun video featuring the song from the show. Keep an eye out for Christine Baranski, who is officially in everything. She is also the only cast member who can dance.
Which brings us to the court room, where Will and Alicia pull each other’s pigtails and act like assholes, all while a fairly interesting case unfolds around them. Kane, visited by F. Murray Abraham, transfers the derivative rights to the network, instead of the white boy band. So the network, of course, sues White Guys with Guitars for ever covering the song. Florrick Agos try to have White Boys with Guitars’ usage of the song legal pre-emptively (much like Goldiblox did in their dispute with The Beastie Boys and Adam Yauch’s estate). They lose. The next tactic is to have the song declared as satire, citing White Guys with Guitars softened, melodic interpretation of the song as the catalyst that exposes the misogynistic lyrics of the original. They lose again, because, as Kane later testifies, the original song is satire of misogynistic rap lyrics. Rebel Kane isn’t the narrator of “Thicky Trick,” he’s merely shining a light on the man who would treat women so shoddily as to refer to them as a “Thicky Trick.”
It’s interesting that race is never mentioned directly in this episode.
Robyn, who says maybe five different words in this episode, saves the day yet again, when she discovers FauxGlee lazily used the White Guys with Guitars’ original recording with the lyric track stripped out in the show. She discovered this by reading the FakeYouTube comments, where an attentive person pointed out a weird sound at 1:23 in the video taken from the show. The weird sound was, in fact, a bowling ball from WGwG’s original, low-budget recording. This proves WGwG were the no-questions victims of copyright infringement, so F. Murray Abraham hastily settles.
Meanwhile, Kalinda’s magical vagina has claimed another attractive suitor as its victim. Damien’s friend, the lady cop, is broken-hearted when Kalinda won’t sing Katy Perry with her or return her calls. She pulls Kalinda over to demand answers, but Kalinda just blinks. Kalinda has become Seven of Nine, with boots instead of a shiny, shiny catsuit, and no Janeway to teach her how to human.
A brief scene between Will and Diane gives me a few ideas. Will, still peeing on things, tells Diane to back down. She’s left the firm and come back, but he stayed, he argues, which in his mind gives him the right to make all the stupid, harebrained decisions he wants. Diane, uncharacteristically, does not argue with him. I don’t believe it’s because she actually agrees with him, I think she’s given up. Wouldn’t it be fantastic to see her abandon the three-headed brodog of David Lee, Will, and Damien to join the ranks of Florrick Agos? Maybe alongside judge Jeffory Tambor? I think I’ve just decided Will Gardener AND Kalinda might be irrelevant to this show.
Finally, in a slapstick lead-up of communication misfires rivaling a Moliere play, Eli is trying to determine if Governor Peter put a baby in Marilyn’s sound system ensconced belly. We get three read herrings, a spit-take, and Cumming pulling faces no other actor could get away with before we discover that the baby is subterfuge. The shit is about to hit the fan in Springfield, but this time Peter’s wang has nothing to do with it. A reporter has the video of stuffed ballot boxes from Peter’s campaign we last saw on election night last season. I’ll need to re-watch to remember if Eli knew this video existed back then, or if this is all new to him, but he was shocked enough for me to believe he’s been in the dark. Also, the Peter who fathered Marilyn’s baby is Peter Bogdanovich. I’ll let you Google that for yourselves, youths.