The Good Wife Declares 'Civil War' in Season 5, Welcomes Back America Ferrera and Gary Cole

The Art of WarThe Good Wife‘s upcoming fifth season will be “more about our team” and “not the guest stars coming in,” exec producer Robert King told reporters at the Television Critics Association press tour in Beverly Hills, adding that Alicia and Cary’s impending exodus will spark a “civil war” between their new firm and Lockhart Gardner.

The new season will pick up pretty much where last May’s finale left off, with Alicia agreeing to follow Cary out the door. But the pair won’t immediately make their intentions known to their bosses. “We want to get the audience wet with this difficulty of betraying your firm,” revealed King. “What we want is the quiet before the s–tstorm.”

RELATED | The Good Wife Retains Ben Rappaport to Play Alicia and Cary’s ‘New’ Spoiler

Other highlights from the panel, which also featured fellow EP Michelle King and star Julianna Margulies:

GUEST STAR UPDATE | America Ferrera and Gary Cole will be back for arcs in Season 5, joining previously reported returnee Carrie Preston.

THE MOTIVE | Margulies theorized that Alicia is “leaving the law firm because she knows if she stays there, in her peripheral vision will always be Will… In her heart of hearts, she thinks [leaving is] the smart move.”

RELATED | Good Wife Exclusive: Meet Kalinda’s Whip-Smart New Love Interest

FINALE POST MORTEM | For her part, Margulies was relieved that it was Cary — and not Will — who showed up at Alicia’s door in the finale. “I would not have been happy if it was Will,” she admits, candidly. “[Reading the script], my heart sank. I thought, ‘Oh God, I hope we’re not becoming that soap opera, that constant love triangle.'”

NICK FALLOUT | King is unsure if we’ll ever find out what happened to Kalinda’s ex Nick. “It might be like the Russian assassin in Sopranos. It might be one of those people still out there in the woods.”

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50 Comments
  1. Mary says:

    Personally, I hope Alicia leaving the firm means she wants to be with Will. :D

    Love this show! It’s one of my favorites! Can’t wait for the return.

    • Cort says:

      I was hoping the same. One of the interviews with the Kings right after the finale mentioned how this move ratchets up the tension between them all the more and we all know how thin the line between love and hate can be. Bring it on. Also happy about America being back. Really enjoyed her.

    • Baileigh says:

      My first reaction to last year’s finale was that with Alicia leaving the firm the obstacle between her and Will (him being her boss) is gone so what excuse will she give now for why she can’t be with him when Peter betrays her again? On the other hand, when Peter does betray her again (and that is a question of when not if) will Will be there for her? Alicia after all owes everything to Will, he was the one who gave her a second chance after Peter disgraced himself and their family. Will took a chance on her, he put everything on the line for her and she betrays him by leaving the firm and starting another firm with Cary? Honestly, I do not see how Will will be so forgiving of this betrayal.

      • DL says:

        I’m not convinced Peter will betray her again, just because I think that’s getting stale as a storyline. It was enough this past season with the campaign aide who was lying about sleeping with him (and spinning stories about an “open marriage).
        I just think it would be way too easy and an uninspired writing decision to let that be the thing that breaks them up again. I don’t doubt they probably will be broken up at some point, but I’d rather it be about their inherent incompatibility or something interpersonal (like the kids, or Peter’s mom), than yet another Peter mea culpa. “Whoops, you caught me!” I’ll pass.

      • James Butler says:

        It seems that no matter how much Peter try to correct his mistake there are some fans who continue to blame him for Alicia’s infidelity. Will didn’t do any thing for her but give her a job and that was in hopes of him reaping the spoils and creating a poignant situation. Will has nothing to lose in this matter and Alicia has everything to lose; including her Integrity, not to mention her family. Forgiveness is a Virtue…..

        • Joe says:

          On the subject, i think Peter’s more commited to Alicia than Will is. Will’s a bit wayward when it comes to women the only difference’s that he’s not married.
          Peter comes off as the better option for Alicia and if daliance with Will becomes public, she stands to lose the trust of her kids, we all know how much she values them.
          Somtimes a love triangle is not necessary but simple moral values and decisions are enough to sell a show, the show should’nt just entertain, it should also teach.

    • Tav says:

      “I hope Alicia leaving the firm means she wants to be with Will” uh, I wouldn’t count on it. Did you read what JM said? She didn’t want it to be Will at the door and thinks the “triangle” is “soapy”.
      Sounds like if she has her way Alicia will never get back with Will, and she’s been pretty effective in getting what she wants thus far (banishment of the Kalinda and Alicia friendship). She’s probably pressuring the Kings/writers to oblige her whims on every front.
      *sigh* I miss the show when it was actually about “Alicia” and not “Julianna.”

      • DL says:

        Personally, if JM is responsible for nixing her character going back to Will, I’d send her a fruit basket.

        • Kyle says:

          If you’re hoping that means she stays with Peter then you’d probably be disappointed if JM got her way. She’s even more against Alicia being with Peter, she’s said numerous times that she doesn’t understand why people want her with him.

      • Jennifer says:

        “banishment of the Kalinda and Alicia friendship”

        Source? I hadn’t heard this…

        • allison says:

          If you search TVLine, you’ll find an article from a couple of months ago where JM is quoted as saying “That relationship (between Alicia and Kalinda) has run its course.” She seemed pretty adamant about it as I recall, basically saying Alicia might be able to forget what Kalinda did (don’t want to spoil just in case), but she’d never be able to forgive. And since Alicia is leaving LG and Kalinda is staying, we’ll probably see even LESS of Kalinda next season – which, frankly, sucks (IMHO). Hope this helps to answer your question.

  2. DL says:

    So glad to hear the show is focusing on the professional aspect next season, at least to start with.
    I don’t love Peter, but the truth is I don’t really like Will at all. Not necessarily for Alicia, but just as a person (though he’s a great character). So I find it hard to root for them as a couple, despite their great chemistry. Peter, on the other hand, I actually like a little more, despite his past failings. I don’t think he and Alicia have much chemistry at all, though (unlike Alicia and Will).
    I hope Alicia’s love life gets pushed into the background more this season. My favorite parts of the show are her dealing with her job and her kids, the romance has gotten too angsty for my taste.
    That said, I wouldn’t be completely closed off to an eventual Option C for Alicia in the man department. Someone both likeable and with good chemistry. I guess Cary’s reserved for Kalinda… or is he? ;)

    • A says:

      I completely agree. I want her love life to take a back seat this season and have the primary focus being on this new firm and the fallout it will have. Of course, I know her love life will be hard to avoid especially now with her jumping ship and leaving Will, but I am definitely in support of a new love interest for Alicia. Someone other than Peter and Will because this lame love triangle CANNOT happen again!

  3. A says:

    America Ferrera was an unexpected casting return, but I’m still excited nonetheless!

  4. neha says:

    I still think that the Nick “ending” was lazy writing. But, I’m super excited about America returning. I loved her and Eli’s chemistry.

    • Eric says:

      I don’t care how lazy it was or how they ended it. I just care that they ended it. Lol It was pretty much one of the worst plotlines of the entire series. I don’t think they can come up with anything worse than what they did with that whole plotline. So I can forgive the lazy ending. Also, did they write it ahead of time? Because I figured they ended it at that time and the way they did once they saw the backlash from the fans. I don’t know a single person who liked Nick or that plotline. So I figured once they saw the fan reaction and how much people hated it, they decided to end it as soon as they could. I may be wrong about that, but regardless, I’m glad they ended it.

    • Dizzle says:

      I actually thought it was smart writing – by leaving it so open-ended, they made Kalinda mysterious again, which was one of the biggest defining draws of the character in earlier seasons. I don’t give two hoots about Nick and his fate but I do love the Kalinda character and am happy they found a way to take it back to what made her so popular in the first place.

  5. Brock says:

    HATED Nick. That broke Kalinda. Agreed – worst arc ever on the show.

    And get the audience “whet” as it “whet their appetite” – lol.

    • A says:

      I personally don’t understand all the hate for that storyline. I actually thought it was ok. Did it drag out a bit? Sure. Could they have handled it better? Of course. I did however appreciate getting some backstory on Kalinda. She’s such a mysterious character and before the husband storyline they were very slow with unravelling her many layers. I was left very dissatisfied with that ending of him just disappearing without us knowing what really happened. It felt like they just rushed that ending because people kept complaining about him. Anyways, I hope they handle Kalinda’s storyline better this year. I definitely don’t want them to listen to what Julianna said a few months ago about not envisioning them as ever being friends again. I hope they work on the Kalinda/Alicia relationship a bit more because that was one of the best aspects of the first few seasons.

      • neha says:

        I think it was a combination of the actor not having real chemistry with AP, the relationship not making any sense (Kalinda’s so scared of him she ran away, but she plays him and taunts him in every scene we saw), and the fact that they tried WAY too hard to make it sexual (ice cream scene). I hated Nick the second he showed up on the screen, and I think a lot of people felt that way.

        • A says:

          But wasn’t that the point of their relationship–it was very destructive and dysfunctional, Kalinda being scared of him yet playing him and taunting him at the same time was very believable (to me at least). Kalinda is a very sexual person so it didn’t surprise me one bit the way she used sex to engage him and use him. I mean she uses her sexuality to pretty much brainwash Cary to doing almost anything for her. The way she played him and taunted always seemed to me as her way of trying to get control of the situation. She was afraid of him back in her life and messing with the progress she’s made away from him so she tried to use sex (it seemed like his weakness) to try to get information or whatever she wanted out of him so that she could use it to ultimately screw him over. Anyways, that was my take on the story arc. I know others felt differently.

  6. danny says:

    Kalinda needs to kill Nick. Then Alicia defends her and gets her off on self defense. Problem solved.

  7. Tina B. says:

    If Willicia are done and Alicia stays with Peter, I’m done with the Good Wife. Will and Alicia are electric and are the reason why a lot of people watch.

    • wonderwall says:

      If you only watch for willicia then shame on you. It’s an amazing show sans Will/Alicia.

    • A says:

      I have to echo @wonderwall. Shame on you for threatening to quit a show after four years just because your precious couple might not end up together. This is why I sometimes hate when a lot of people watch the same shows I do. A lot of them stick one aspect of the show and ignore the rest of it. This show is phenomenal and will still be amazing even if it completely eliminated the element of romance and love from the equation altogether and focused on the professional and legal aspect of the show. I’ll go so far as saying that Alicia’s love life is the least interesting aspect of this show. It’s an added bonus for those people who just watch shows to see two people get together, but it is not everything and there is so much more of this show to love than Alicia’s boring love life.

    • Kim says:

      If Alicia leaves Peter for Will then the show couldn’t be called THE GOOD WIFE any longer. I personally do not like Alicia and Will together…I think he is not strong enough for her. I love Chris Noth and was the only reason I started to watch in the first place but now love the show for all of the characters!! Would love to see the Alicia/Kalinda relationship the way it was in the first few seasons!

      • Karen says:

        The Kings have said before that they actually regret The Good Wife being the title of the show precisely because of that reasoning. In an interview they did they said “Leave the Bastard” was actually a contender for a title, which I think I would have preferred, simply because I’m tired of people saying she can’t leave Peter because of the title. Technically, the past 2 seasons she hasn’t really been “The Good Wife” because they’ve been separated.

        • Stephanie says:

          One of the reasons I love this show is that Alicia has been evolving as a person. She was blindly defining herself as “Good Wife,” but the scandal actually helped her to discover who she really is and what she really wants. To say that the title no longer applies implies that women must blindly follow and take crap. I prefer to see the title as revolutionizing the term. A Good Wife now becomes a woman who knows herself and can stand on her own two feet. Alicia is one amazing character who is redefining how people portray women on TV.

      • A says:

        There are shows out there that have appropriate titles no matter what change in storyline occurs such as Bones, House, Castle, and Dexter, however, the titles of a lot of shows pretty much become almost near irrelevant after a few seasons. Grey’s Anatomy is barely about Meredith Grey any more. When Weeds was on it almost completely eliminated the selling of weed from seasons 4-6. True Blood is rarely completely about vampires and faeries any more with all the werewolves, skin-walkers, shape-shifters, and mediums on the show. Show title’s don’t matter much after a couple of seasons because the stories change in whichever way they need to go and often that means going away from anything having to do with the original title. .
        As a side point, the story is about her life in general and if she decides to end people’s perception of her as “The Good Wife” by leaving Peter (and hopefully Will too for that matter) and meeting someone else, then why shouldn’t she. It’d be a heck of a lot more interesting than watching her stay with Peter when it’s pretty clear that, while her relationship with him has improved since the infidelity scandal, she still isn’t 100% happy with him.

    • James Butler says:

      Will and Alicia are fornicators and Alicia feels the guilt while Will has a big grin on his face and gloating. There is nothing good about a cheating wife.

  8. Lucy says:

    My first thought about that panel was : zzzzz.

  9. Pat says:

    So the TCA panel was basically a summary of what we already knew, plus a bunch of news about the next round of guest stars. Not impressed. And it looks like we won’t be able to see that Florrick/Agos & Associates firm so soon (well right now I doubt we’ll ever really see it). I was more interested in the new firm’s start up but it looks they’ll just use that 4th year associates’s rebellion to write the umpeteenth plot about a “new” L&G’s crisis.

  10. I'm the good wife fan says:

    So I take it we won’t see florick and associate till the 10th episode then? Am I too pessimistic? Whatever they do: do not ruin Kalinda.

  11. Princess1020 says:

    JM has mentioned they are taking 3 top clients to the new firm,Colin Sweeney and Lamont Bishop… Does anyone know who the third client may be? I have to go back and watch season 4, for the life of me I can’t think of anyone else lol.
    Season 5 will be massive!!!! I can’t wait for all the explosive plots. I hope all the funny judges are back especially Judge Abbernathy he is my favourite :)
    Lastly I can’t understand why ppl hate the Willicia romance, I for one ship that union having said that the show is so well written that it does so well even without any sort of romance but I do hope there’s a happy ending for them…maybe one day :)I Can’t stand Peter and his cheating ways… Once a cheater…..Season 5 will prove this theory right ha!
    Who is the third client???? Help ppl lol

  12. Elz says:

    As much as I like Will I don’t wanna see him & Alicia together.Forget what Peter did in the past, since he came home from prison he’s put more then enough effort into trying to get Alicia back and making their marriage work (not to mention they were still having sex).Peter has changed Wills a great guy but he doesn’t fit they had their fun Peter & Alicia is much better.

  13. I could not agree with Julianna Margulies more! I was so happy it was Cary and not Will. So many shows, because of bad writing, cannot escape the ‘Soap Opera’ angle. Characters need to make intelligent decisions so that they remain real and not fanciful. That way they will have the full strength of the audience at their backs rooting for them. And it will keep the show at a certain level.

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