The Good Wife Recap: The Personal Is the Political

And you thought the clowns from American Horror Story: Freak Show were scary? How about the ones haunting the mind of The Good Wife‘s Elsbeth Tascioni?

OK, maybe they’re not exactly haunting her, but some of ’em are darn sure trying to stop her from coming up with a solid defense strategy for her corporate client in a gender discrimination lawsuit by a fired CEO.

“Shiny Objects,” as the hour is titled, pits Elsbeth and partner Rayna Hecht against Florrick-Agos’ Alicia and Dean — and provides an altogether less stressful and significantly more self-contained viewing experience than the quartet of Season 6 episodes that preceded it. (Anything where Cary isn’t at risk of being shanked in a jail cell, frankly, is the equivalent of a spa day this season, no?)

This isn’t to say we don’t get further advancement of the “Alicia for State’s Attorney,” “Kalinda/Cary” and “Florrick-Agos ‘Rustic’ Office Space” story arcs. In fact, Peter and Alicia’s literal backroom battle represents their most significant interaction since her immediate mourning of Will Gardner’s death — and damn, Julianna Margulies and Chris Noth bring excessive amounts of poison to their delivery. But just like Elsbeth’s bedroom wallpaper — for a minute, I thought her treadmill was in a nursery! Was it just me? — the action is more pretty pastel than dark and bubbling and emanating toxicity.

Let’s jump right to the major action — and the major questions raised over the course of the hour, shall we?

105247_0386bTHE FLORRICK-AGOS HOSTAGE CRISIS OF 2014 | The week’s intermittently funny and terrifying through-line begins with Diane innocently opening an email from Alicia with the message, “Your files have been encrypted: Click here to access.” Turns out it’s some kind of ransom malware that’s essentially holding hostage all of the fledgling law firm’s files — and if they don’t pony up $50,000 in 72 hours, everything will be deleted. The partners decide they have no choice but to pay up — but things take a painful turn when Diane’s computer auto-fills her info, and the password to freedom gets sent to her old Lockhart-Gardner email address. David Lee, practically rubbing his hands together like an old-timey villain, wants Diane to grovel, and threatens to tear up the information she needs. (“Go ahead, David: It’s a copy of an email — the paper doesn’t matter,” purrs La Lockhart, deliciously in control even with her entire business on the ropes.) Finally, David proposes a trade: He’ll hand over the email, but he’ll need Diane to sign over her control of the lease that allows Lockhart-Gardner to utilize the 27th and 28th floors where they’re currently housed. Whoops! Talk about showing your hand! Diane realizes she’s got leverage in her relationship and nixes the deal. Meanwhile, Kalinda (with an assist from FBI agent and occasional lover Lana) manages to turn the tables on the Russian blackmailer by uploading “Free Pussy Riot” and “Go to Hell, Putin” imagery onto his computer. The ransom standoff neutralized — and a giant cockroach in Diane’s filing cabinet — and suddenly there’s talk of trying to wrestle control of LG’s office space. I mean, the exposed brick at Florrick-Agos is to die for, yes, but the transient homeless guy showering in the bathroom, the lack of doors on conference rooms and the perpetual drip from overhead pipes kind of cancels out the rustic charm, no? Should be interesting to watch Lee and Canning’s heads explode if Diane follows through on her brainstorm. Oh who are we kidding, she’s soooo going to follow through.

Side note: Best line of the week has to be Eli observing the ransom clocks on the Florrick-Agos screens, and wondering, “Why are all the computers here counting down? I feel like I’m in a Bruckheimer film.”

KALINDA EXPLORES HER OPTIONS | Don’t say Robert and Michelle King aren’t satisfying our inner pervs this season. Cary and Kalinda are midway through their foreplay when the call comes in from Florrick-Agos about the malware situation. Kalinda tracks down Lana for help, but the federal agent takes it personally that Kalinda only comes calling when she needs something. “I don’t like it either,” coos Ms. Sharma. “Then stop it,” says Lana, as the temperature in the room rises by seven or eight degrees.

Cary spots Kalinda on the elevator with Lana and pretty much surmises they’ve purchased non-refundable tickets to the isle of Lesbos — and sure enough, the gals get their sexy on, on more than one occasion. It’s just that when Lana attempts a serious conversation about coming out to her mother just a month before her death, Kalinda throws a flag on the sheets. “I can’t do this,” she admits. Later, when Kalinda thinks it was Lana who turned the feds on to a case involving Florrick-Agos’ big client, she gets super turned-on: Ultimately, it seems like she prefers dangerous games to deep, meaningful connections. Lana, exhausted, makes her exit: “Just because you would do it, Kalinda, doesn’t mean I would.” The bigger question, though, is whether Cary was expecting any kind of exclusivity from Kalinda, or if her side dalliances are the kind of thing he’ll gladly overlook. I mean, Kalinda in a leather skirt is kind of a tough proposition to turn down — especially since his plate is pretty full with his case load + trying to stay out of jail.

A MARRIAGE OF INCONVENIENCE? The week’s juiciest side plot finds Finn agreeing to introduce Alicia’s first major speech — which gets complicated when Peter agrees to take on the task, in exchange for her brushing Finn off the lineup. It’ll be “the beginning of a long line of distasteful acts,” admits Alicia’s campaign managr, Jonny Elfman. But after drinks at the ADA bar with Finn — did Candidate Florrick order straight tequila? Oh yes she did! — she realizes she can’t, or doesn’t want to, dismiss her pal/possible flirting partner. This leads to a delectable battle with Peter — one that makes Eli and Jonny promptly sprint for the nearest exit. When Peter huffs that Alicia wants a political favor, she reminds him of everything she’s sacrificed publicly for his aspirations. “You go off banging prostitutes two at a time — and I stood beside you like a grinning fool,” she seethes. “For God’s sakes, let it go!” he screams back, maybe forgetting the sins of his past are barely a half-decade old. Alica, though she’s the political newbie, has the bigger stick in her arsenal: “Your favorables will plummet through the floor,” she hisses, when Peter threatens to bail on her campaign announcement. “On the day you want to be talking about pensions, every question will be about the state of your marriage. Yes, I need you, Peter, but you sure as hell need me, too.” It looks like Peter’s willing to go down with Alicia’s campaign ship as she strides to the podium, but whaddaya know, he sweeps in at the last possible second and gives her the introduction she deserves and he, frankly, needs. And then, sweetening the deal, the Governor stands on stage behind her as she begins to speak — ensuring every major news outlet runs a split screen from 2009 (when Alicia first stood behind Peter during his political scandal) and 2014 (with the Phoenix not just rising from the ashes, but flying triumphantly toward her own destiny).

THE CASE OF THE WEEK | Alicia and Dean take on the case of an Internet CEO fired two weeks before her options vested — on account of her being a “bitch on wheels” (Alicia’s private description, not mine). Rayna is on the defense team — until Elsbeth gets a flash of inspiration inside her candy-coated, sometimes macabre mind palace that includes the music of the xylophone and the pan flute, ham sandwiches, wicked witches, a multitude of clowns and train conductors who deliver to her brilliant defense strategies. (The CEO’s cellphone was broken — and her schedule included notations from five subsequent assistants: Maybe it wasn’t sexism, but just hellacious management, Elsbeth concludes.)

Alicia, though, knowing the beautiful mind she’s up against, lines her plaintiff’s table with pamphlets about feeding South African Penguins and the pleasures of Ocean Liner Adventures — using Elsbeth’s weapons against her and distracting the eccentric redhead right in the middle of cross-examination. As the momentum pings back and forth, back and forth, like a Federer-Nadal match, U.S. Attorney Josh Perotti (Kyle MacLachlan) halts the proceedings by bringing a claim of corporate espionage and theft of trade secrets against the defendant. And if he prevails, there won’t be a penny for Alicia and Dean’s client to collect. Looks like the opposing sides will all be working together as a happy family next week — a settlement means neither Alicia or Elsbeth has to lose, huzzah! — whether they wanted to or not.

What did you think of this week’s Good Wife? Whose side did you take in the Peter-Alicia battle? How surprised (or not) were you by what goes on in Elsbeth’s mind? And should Cary break it off with Kalinda — or is he getting exactly what he signed up for? Sound off in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Hayes says:

    So Diane and Cary are supposed to find out their partner is running for SA via a news conference, like the rest of the public? I don’t know if there’s a point to this or just a massive oversight. I still can’t believe they weren’t involved in Alicia’s decision to run.

    • jen says:

      Agreed! Why are they glossing over this?? Where is the conversation that the responsible Alica would have with her partners BEFORE publically announcing her
      run? And going back to last week, she’s ok with a drug dealer raising money for her, but turns down a check for Cary’s bail from a real estate investor?

      • Mike R. says:

        I don’t know where you got the impression she was ok with Lemond Bishop starting the PAC, it wasn’t brought up this week anyway, but she really doesn’t have a say with whether Bishop raises that money or not. I agree it should not have been glossed over, but it really is no ones choice but Alicia, if she wants to run, and I’m sure she told them at some point.

      • Stefanie says:

        I agree with you; please read my take on this. I posted at 10:21pm- Stefanie

    • Walter Freeman says:

      Why are you people still freaking out about this? Remember way back in the beginning when Lockhart/Gardner picked Alicia over Cary in no small part ’cause she was the wife of the state’s attorney? Imagine what they’d do to have the actual state’s attorney in their ranks rather than just a simple spouse! Good grief. Like Cary and Diane would complain? They be the first ones in line to write her a campaign donation check if need be.

      • Stefanie says:

        When Lockhart/Garner picked Alicia over Cary they were an established Law firm, unlike Alicia and Cary’s new firm. It is not a good comparison. I elaborated on this in my comment at 10:21pm–hope you read it. _Stefanie

      • Hashtag says:

        Keep in mind that if Alicia wins State’s Attorney, she will have to quit Florrick/Agos and divest all her money from the partnership.

      • Hayes says:

        Lol what? You know that’s not how it works right? If she wins, she won’t be “in their ranks”. She has to leave the firm, and she prosecutes the cases Agos/Lockhart defends.

    • Stefanie says:

      I hope you will read what I think about this issue, in my post Stefanie at 10:21pm

    • I was thinking the same thing but it’s possible she did talk to her off screen or that this scene didn’t make it to the final cut of this episode.

    • I thought the same thing but it’s possible they had that conversation off screen or that this scene was cut from the episode.

    • Jeri says:

      Perhaps the discussion was “off screen.” Everyone seems to know she is running (and/or was being wooed to run). I don’t think Diane, Cary & the rest of the firm are the only ones that do not know. She may stay active at the firm, behind the scene, just not taking on cases & appearing in court.

      Just another option to her omitting to discuss the situation with the firm and quitting,

  2. Elena says:

    Any episode with Elspeth is a winner for me. And, yes, a break from the prison story with Cary did feel like a welcome breather from the previous episodes (which were still fabulous but in a very tense Cary-could-get-killed-here way). I loved getting a peek into Elspeth’s mind and Carrie Preston always slays it every time she guests on this show.

    With the other story lines, I’d love for Diane to get her old offices back as long as that includes keeping David Lee. I’ll always love that character, so I’d love for the writers to find a way to bring him back into the fold somehow. With regards to Cary/Kalinda, I just think he would be better off with someone else. Cary just seems more the relationship/monogamy type, which Kalinda is clearly not. I was actually hoping he would break it off before the episode was over, but maybe that will happen in the near future. (I’m still personally hoping for a Cary/Robyn pairing before the show ends.)

    • Someone says:

      Well, something will happen to Kalinda anyway, because the news came out last week that she’s leaving the show when her contract expires at the end of this season. Cary will have to move on.

  3. Jan says:

    One of the worst episodes, I didn’t like it at all

  4. SB says:

    There is little to no coincidence that Kalinda is extra more interesting when she is in other relationships than Cary. I like Cary as a character and lawyer, but with Kalinda he ties her down and makes her common. The Lana/Kalinda relationship has been one of the more interesting ones since the show first started. It’s so unhealthy, but really intriguing and hope they get away from the Cary stuff for a little. With Archie Panjabi(Kalinda) leaving the show at the end of the season they have to tie up loose ends and have other characters move on. I would love if Kalinda can work on stuff with Lana and move on from Cary and let him move on too, maybe with Robyn or someone new. But this was my favorite Kalinda episode of the season, by far.

    • CJ says:

      What they are doing with Kalinda/Lana in this episode is so much more interesting than than the stuff they’d done with Cary and Jenna last season.

      Lana is actually trying to connect with Kalinda in a more meaningful way. Maybe we’ll finally see Kalinda let her guard down and be more emotionally available with Lana.

      So happy that Jill Flint is finally back!

      • KevyB says:

        Kalinda/Cary were created just to give Kalinda something to do. With two episodes not being allowed on the same set as Alicia limits her options, unfortunately. This whole computer subplot was moronic and was obviously created to give Kalinda some screen time. Honestly, I’m no law firm but my anti-virus software wouldn’t allow this idiocy to happen!

  5. Via Bona says:

    Diane was fab. in this episode. Her laughter and declination of Lee’s offer was one of my favorite moments tonight. I hope they do go to the LG offices (although I’m wondering what Cary will think of it—considering how he feels about this whole Diane business in the first place?). I agree with the great line about the Bruckheimer film. The malware thing was interesting and I wondered if they’d do something to where no one really won in this instance between Tascioni and Alicia. All-in-all, it was a pretty good episode. Not fantastic, but it had a lot of good points going for it. Besides, “mediocre” for a TGW episode, is still somewhat exceptional amongst most of television.

  6. me says:

    I can’t help but feel this is an assassination of Elsbeth’s character (puns all around). Carrie Preston (the actress) made a very loud pronouncement back in April that her character _should_ come back, and even hinted about a spin-off series. The Kings must be annoyed.

    • G. says:

      Really? I didn’t feel that way. We’ve always known she is beyond eccentric and into outright-weird territory. She’s also a brilliant legal mind. This was just the first attempt the show’s made to give us a glimpse into her disjointed thinking style.

      She didn’t do poorly at trial or anything. Her novel defense very likely could have won it — we don’t know how the judge was going to rule.

    • Stefanie says:

      I think they just showed (more clearly than before) that Elsbeth suffers from Adult Attention Deficit Disorder). Elsbeth is easily distracted & spontaneous, which many creative people are. I love this character. Hope you will read more on my take on this in my comment I made at 10:21pm-Stefanie

    • me says:

      I guess I wasn’t very clear. I wasn’t thinking about ADD or that she is too weird in this episode. I was thinking this was the worst execution of an episode (this season at the least). Even the clips they use in her imagination are lame. The clown wasn’t even trying: “Here I am, a clown in your mind.”

      In previous seasons, she wouldn’t have a line like “I don’t even like penguins.” That was out of character for her, and she’s intelligent. She would know when people are manipulating her. In this episode, she is the sum total of her condition, which it wasn’t before.

      • Stefanie says:

        I agree! Elsbeth behavior in this episode was too over the top–they really made her look too irresponsible to be practicing law, and this weakened her character. Elsbeth use to come up with unexpectedly “thinking outside the box” ideas and appeared a bit scattered & disorganized. But this episode made Elsbeth look like she had psychotic thoughts and was so easily distracted that she was an incompetent lawyer.

        • Saabgirlatx says:

          Exactly. It made me sad they showed this way about Elsbeth. And how would Alicia know to distract her with pictures??? Someone please explain!

        • Amy says:

          Season 4, “Je ne sais what” Elsbeth is arrested and can’t pass her mental evaluation. They haven’t really gone out of their way to make her seem sane…

    • Amy says:

      She retweeted an article suggesting an Elsbeth spinoff. Why would the Kings be annoyed she liked they character they created for her and that she wanted to continue working with her?

  7. Stefanie says:

    The writers are changing Alicia this season. Biggest change is that suddenly Alicia’s running for political office–odd because the writers were just beginning to tell the unfolding story of Alicia starting her own law firm. Second change is in Alicia’s integrity–now we are being show distasteful tidbits of an Alicia who does NOT have the fine character we have been shown the past 6 years. Now Alicia can be very mean (cutthroat), by intentionally exploiting a fellow friend and attorney, Elsbeth’s, mental weakness. Knowing Elsbeth has adult attention deficit disorder, Alicia purposefully distracted her at trial. Now, also, we are shown a selfish narcissistic Alicia, in that she apparently does not consult and get the full approval of her original partner Cary and the other new partners at her new firm about running for State Attorney. Alicia apparently does not care about her partners’ feelings or opinions, although these other lawyers went out on a limb with Alicia, and have put their personal money and careers on the line for the new firm. The new firm has barely been established and stabilized–yet Alicia apparently feels no sense of obligation to them at all in winning an election that will require to leave the new firm. These changes in Alicia, coupled with Gloria Steinem encouraging her to run “for the sake of feminism” and Alicia yelling at Peter about how she “foolishly stood by his side smiling” through his sex scandal, has led me to believe the writers are intentionally morphing Alicia’s character to make her look more like Hillary Clinton. It was announced in the first show that “Zac is gone now” (not Zac is away at college)–making Peter & Alicia “look” more like Bill & Hillary with just one daughter. Alicia’s brother is involved with a gay pornographer who doesn’t use condoms. This makes Alicia similar to both Bill and Hillary, each of whom also have siblings who have been involved with bad people. Peter had an Intern who was flirty and didn’t wear underwear this season, just like Bill Clinton did in the Clinton’s last season. Tonight Alicia “drank like a man” downing a tequila shot like a “tough as nails” type woman would do, in contrast with what Alicia has been for 6 years: a refined, feminine woman who would have been too dignified to throw back a tequila shot. Alicia has always sipped & savored good wine, daintily. I believe the Good Wife Writers are intentionally working to get Hillary Clinton elected to the Presidency, by shaping a popular TV character, Alicia, into looking like Hillary, in order to subtly influence people. Those who have negative opinions about Hillary, might change their minds (the writers hope) after being shown that even a favorite beloved TV character, Alicia, isn’t perfect. Alicia ignored her son’s obvious sexual relationship with his high school girlfriend because Alicia was too self-absorbed. Alicia is a proud atheist, cynical about Christianity. Alicia works for a dangerous psychopathic drug kingpin (on the “clean”side of his business- money laundering), just like Hillary has her bad baggage from her days at Rose Law Firm. This is a logical explanation for the erratic storyline this season–

    • “…. an Alicia who does NOT have … fine character”
      “… Alicia can be very mean (cutthroat)”
      “…we are shown a selfish narcissistic Alicia…”
      “…erratic behavior this season-”

      “… The writers are changing Alicia this season.”

      Sorry, no. She’s always been this Alicia.

      She’s never had “fine character”, has always had the capacity to be cutthroat, and has ALWAYS been some (still indetermine) degree of narcissistic. She’s HUMAN. Always has been. The “good wife” back in Highland Park was the fake Alicia, I don’t think you appreciate. This is the real, unrestricted Alicia.

      “Alicia has been for 6 years: a refined, feminine woman who would have been too dignified to throw back a tequila shot …”

      Wrong. She has a tequila shot with Kalinda in Season 1, and has had others since. You’re missing (or just ignoring) character history. That undermines your credibility.

      Also, a comment on your statement: Alicia has always sipped & savored good wine, daintily.” She doesn’t drink daintily, she drinks quite a bit, and almost (and occasionally, as some HUMAN BEINGS do) to excess. The show has been pretty clear about showing us that even she occasionally notices and is concerned by this behavior. Alicia flees to drinking wine whenever she has bad news or has to have an unpleasant conversation. It has given her pause at least a couple of times that we have seen on screen — most recently in “Oppo Research”.

      • Stefanie says:

        I have seen Alicia drink beers with Kalinda, not shots of tequila, but if you say she did,I stand corrected. Can you give me specific instances of when Alicia has been mean (cutthroat) or selfish and narcisstic in past seasons? I have tried to think of some and I cannot. Using her knowledge of Elsbeth’s attention deficit disorder to distract & undermine Elsbeth at trial is a mean cutthroat move, not “just being human”–Alicia has never practiced law like that before. Those kind of lawyers are snakes. Alicia was never a snake before, not like this. I agree that Alicia has been shown drinking alot this season, most recently when she felt unnerved by the oppo research. The amount she drinks is different than the style. When I said she had a “dainty” way of sipping wine I meant her style–last night she was at a bar, with a man, and really threw back the tequila shot with him. That was a different Alicia from the way she has been portrayed in the past.

        • Someone says:

          I think the comment section ate my original response to you, so I’m going to try again. Rewatch season 1 – her first shot of tequila with Kalinda was in the very first episode, and she’s had many more ever since. There are also other instances of Alicia winning cases in cutthroat fashion – see “Crash,” for example. And what, then, do you make of the different instances when Alicia has screwed Cary over for promotions? And what do you make of Alicia’s affair with Will?

          There’s a reason Alicia snorts when Eli calls her “Saint Alicia”.

          • Stefanie says:

            Alicia did not screw Cary over for promotions–she just accepted the promotion she was offered (and she tried to reach out to Cary after she got the promotion and he did not). The partners at Lockhart/Gardner screwed Cary in their choice of Alicia over Cary. I am a lawyer and have carefully followed the legal cases and the way Alicia practices law. Alicia has never done anything like what she did to Elsbeth during the trial–her conduct with Elsbeth actually violates the Legal Profession’s Code of Ethical conduct. This Elsbeth incident is the FIRST time the writers have had Alicia cross this line. Alicia and Peter have maintained their legal status as “married” but have been separated and have not been living together. Their marriage has been in a state of “limbo”. The question of whether their” separated physically but still married on paper state” is the first step to an official divorce or the first step to a reconciliation has been left unanswered by the writers–they have let Alicia “live in the question”. I do not see her affair with Will as immoral conduct because she was separated from Peter. I think Eli snorts when he says “Saint Alicia” because he’s been frustrated by his inability to manipulate Alicia–she always makes choices based on what is the right and wrong thing to do, not what is expedient in the pursuit of power.

        • Jeri says:

          I don’t think they are turning Alicia into Hilary. You are over thinking this. It’s a great show, just enjoy it.

    • Margreete says:

      Alicia has evolved, but her core has always been this person. She’s actually never been hugely likable – she’s been who she’s been, although often we sympathize with her. The rest of what you’ve written comes off kinda cray-cray. We see Alicia’s warts – no political candidate (or writers trying to stump for a real-life one by paralleling a fictional character’s actions) ever ever ever wants to show their warts. Nobody wins an election – fictional or otherwise, by showing the list of bad traits you presented. Just … no.

      • Stefanie says:

        The showing of some bad traits in Alicia is being done to make Alicia seem flawed in a Hillary and Bill kind of way. Maybe you have not felt Alicia is hugely likable, but if you read what has been said about Alicia since the show began, Alicia is a very popular well liked fictional tv character in our country.

        • abz says:

          I’ve been an Alicia fan from the beginning, but well-liked or not, Alicia is and always was a flawed woman and after reading your comment I don’t think you’ve been truly understanding her character over the years. There’s a reason why Alicia finds it ironic that she is called “Saint Alicia” because she is self-aware enough to know that she is far from that characterization.
          Way back in her Lockhart & Gardener days, there are countless examples of the ethical dilemma’s Alicia has had to face. She worked for Will who was unethical at times and pretty cutthroat and you would see it on her face and in her remarks that she didn’t agree with what they had to do for their clients. But there’s one thing to note, regardless of her disagreements and her own set of ethics, she has never backed away and always crossed the line when she had to. The show has portrayed her evolution and we are coming to see that this is who Alicia is. She’s not a bad person (she has her idea of what’s right and wrong and she like rules), but she’s also not always a good person as well. She’s human just like the rest of us which was what makes her such a compelling character to watch. I mean look at the oppo research where she was asked why she got in to law. She was so blunt and honest and unchanging in her answer whereas most other people when posed the same question, may have said the opposite.

          • Stefanie says:

            Alicia works for a psychopathic drug dealer who commits murder, she allows the money this drug dealer contributed to her PAC to remain in it, she used her knowledge of a personal friend and fellow attorney (Elsbeth)’s mental handicap to “play” Elsbeth–knock her off balance—during a trial (which a Violation of Lawyer’s Professional Code of Conduct). Alicia is a bad person now.

          • abz says:

            Two things: 1) You are jumping to conclusions. The PAC was only revealed a few episodes ago, and was shelved probably to resurface at some point later on. It was clear that she was shocked by that fact and wasn’t happy with it, however, we have not yet seen how she will deal with it.
            2) You don’t seem to have understood my post. You’re looking at this too simplistically and from a lawyer’s perspective, but other people like myself are viewing this show from an entertainment and character analysis perspective. There is no black and white here. It’s very grey. Of course, the way Alicia exploited Elsbeth’s mental handicap to mess with the defense was ruthless and a low blow, however, when we are talking about Alicia’s character as a whole, you can’t just say “Alicia is a bad person now” because she did X or Y or Z. A lot of good people do bad or questionable things. Hence why I commented earlier that Alicia is a FLAWED woman. She has both good AND bad qualities which makes her human.

    • Hashtag says:

      I don’t know about the Kings’ motives with Alicia, but I firmly believe that “Madam Secretary”s entire purpose is to get Hillary elected. Fortunately, it’s a pretty good show as well. It’s a nice lead-in to The Good Wife.

      • Stefanie says:

        I’ll have to check out Madam Secretary. Thanks for telling me about it. And yes, Good Wife is still a pretty good show to watch, even with the new Hillary-like Alicia. I love watching Diane, David Lee (hope we see more of him), Peter’s mother (hope she shows up again) and the plot with Grace.

    • Amy says:

      They have repeatedly made Clinton comparisons. Wife stands by cheating husband, how could you not. Will even called Alicia/Peter Bill and Hillary on crack, when Peter took Diane’s judgeship away.

      Alicia and Kalinda have had tequila together before when they were allowed to be in scenes together.

      And how is having a picture of a penguin on your desk more “cutthroat” than going home and changing into the outfit you wore when you slept with the opposing attorney?

      • Stefanie says:

        Showing Elsbeth the penguin pictures to knock her off balance at trial, IS VERY different from Alicia purposefully changing into the outfit she wore with Peter to throw him off his game at trial. The difference between the two situations is that Will was consciously AWARE that he would be sitting close to Alicia and that he could be thrown off balance in trial by seeing her. Will could have worn the clothes he had on with Alicia when they were lovers, to throw Alicia off balance. It was a “fair play” because she and Will were both in the same position of being able to, if they wanted to, to try to sabotage the other on an emotional level at trial. But Elsbeth was NOT AWARE of the potential weapon (distracting her with colorful pictures) that Alicia could use against her at trial, so Elsbeth did not have a chance to prepare herself before trial to avoid being “played” by Alicia. Alicia saw a chance to manipulate Will’s attention at trial, based on their past love relationship (and Will could have done the same thing back to Alicia). How different and down and dirty it was, on the other hand when Alicia saw the chance to manipulate Elsbeth’s attention at trial, based on Alicia’s knowledge of Elsbeth mental struggles and weakness. Alicia’s conduct toward Elsbeth was the behavior of a BULLY.

    • Anne says:

      Your “long awaited” comment at 10:21 was underwhelming. You seem a little looney on the Bill & Hillary subject. Most of what you say is not in line with the show I’ve been watching – so obviously just your weird interpretation.

      • Stefanie says:

        Unless you give me specific examples of what I said that is not in line with the show, I can’t understand why you say my interpretation is weird.

        • To borrow your own phrase:

          “Please read my comment at 10:47 p.m.” :)

        • Someone says:

          See notanseladams’s comment at 10:47pm, my comment to you earlier (which, by the way, the show has always been about Alicia straddling the line between what is legally “correct” and what is morally “correct” and the way she treats others within the law, so saying “I am a lawyer therefore I know what I’m talking about” doesn’t mean Alicia acting within the law makes her Saint Alicia), Margreete’s comment at 12:58am, and abz’s comments at 6:09 and 8:07pm.

  8. Lucy says:

    “And should Cary break it off with Kalinda — or is he getting exactly what he signed up for?”
    The real question is what exactly did Kalinda sign for when she started to date Cary knowing he has been ALWAYS willing to have more than this with her?
    Everyone here is saying he knows her and how she handles herself. But does she know him? I mean, Kalinda always does what she wants. But it’s like she doesn’t even consider what other people wants or feel and keeps hurting them. I think both of them, Cary and Kalinda, should be conscious of what that relationship means for both of them which shouldn’t be read or explained just from Kalinda’s point of view.
    Especially because I’ve a problem with her point of view and is that we never found out why she “can’t do it”. So that’s reason why I’ve enough of it. There’s nothing new here. It’s the same old story. Every season we’re told she can’t commit that she uses people and bla bla bla. Now she and Cary are an item more than before and what’s the point of this?
    As much as I like Cary and Kalinda, I think I really want him to be with someone he can share something else with besides the sheets. And apparently Kalinda for whatever mysterious reason can’t do it. Well, if it’s so, maybe, I say maybe, Cary wouldn’t break it off with her but Kalinda should leave him alone, that’s for sure.
    And can they give Archie Panjabi something else to do besides the usual “sex” stuff? And could they have Cary and Kalinda having some serious talks about their relationship or feelings for once at least? I mean they’re having a lot of sex but can we have some other kind of development? I loved their moments in the season premiere. And they’re weren’t about the sex at all but they said a lot about their relationship.
    I think it’s absurd that Alicia didn’t inform Cary (and Diane) about her decision. Period.
    Also I suppose the only purpose of that Cary’s arrest was to make him completely irrelevant in his own firm. Again.

  9. Coal says:

    Huh ? That was the reaction I had after this episode. For starters what made characters like Elsbeth, Bishop, Louis Canning and various others so compelling was that they were used sparingly and their eccentricities were not over exaggerated. Well I think over the course of last season Canning was over used, Bishop is going the same route this season and Elsbeth’s eccentricities were over exaggerated in this episode. I’d also like to see David Lee having some else to do than pity office politics. Watching Kalinda today made me realize Archie’s exit can’t come any sooner, a terrific character dying a slow agonising death.

  10. Celesta says:

    Am I the only one that thought the way Alicia distracted Elsbeth with all the pictures really below the belt? I mean, the woman’s helped her in so many situations and that’s the thanks she gets? I know they’re lawyers and they’re so supposed to look out for their clients but I just thought that was so cruel.

    • me says:

      They made her a caricature in this episode.

    • Stefanie says:

      I thought it made Alicia look like a snake. It was the first time Alicia lowered her standards of how she practices law. I am a lawyer myself. Well respected good lawyers at well respected good firms litigate cases and win with their brains and do NOT resort to “tricks” like Alicia did to Elsbeth with the pictures at trial. Sleezy lawyers who were at the bottom of their law school classes and struggle to make money as lawyers are where one can find “snakes” who use tricks like Alicia did last night.

      • cp1945 says:

        As a lawyer your duty is to represent your client zealously, which Alicia did. Elspeth didn’t have to look at the pages; she could have walked on by. She was just as distracted by the AUSA in the courtroom, and Alicia had nothing to do with that.

        • Stefanie says:

          The duty to represent one’s client zealously refers ONLY to using the tools of the practice of law, not to the use of tricks or any other conduct OUTSIDE the professional practice of Law. The Lawyer’s Code of Professional Responsibility makes this very clear, and every lawyer in this country has to answer questions about the Professional Code on the Bar exam–in other words, all lawyers know about it. Alicia crossed a line that other lawyers of her caliber (big law firm training and clientele) would never cross. Ambulance chasing unethical (desperate to make a buck) sleazy lawyers do stuff like that because they do not have the brains, the high paying jobs and clients that Alicia does. The fact that AUSA in courtroom distracted Elsbeth not relevant to what we are talking about at all–it doesn’t make it all right for Alicia to add more distractions. IF Alicia had something in front of her at the trial that she needed to have on her table, and that distracted Elsbeth, then Alicia would not be worthy of any blame at all–THAT would have been “like” the AUSA in the courtroom. But Alicia did not need to have the penguin pictures there for any other reason than her intended purpose to exploit Elsbeth’s mental problem.

  11. aaron says:

    I want to meet Oliver the Hero dog that rescued a boy from a swimming pool. couple of other nuggets in the montage at the end of the episode if you missed it.

  12. Alexey says:

    (rant from Russia) It becomes unbelievingly hard to watch a show made in US without encountering some cheep propaganda. Here is a question for you guys, do you really think you can blackmail a seasoned criminal (or any person for that matter) by implicating him in antigovernment activities? What do you think would happen? That a speznaz would knock on the door in a few hours to send the said person to a gulag? Oh, come on, I thought better about the show and its viewers.
    P.S. Yes, of course, the message sponsored by KGB. It is a pleasure for our organization to post lies on American sites.

    • Stefanie says:

      This was a ridiculous storyline that was insulting to the viewers. The writers of the Good Wife must think their viewers are stupid. I think maybe the writers were trying to be funny?

  13. rockgolf says:

    Kudos to TGW for being perhaps the first tV show in history to have a “countdown to disaster” clock that wasn’t stopped with only seconds left. There were still 6 hours on the clock, or since it was running double speed, three hours.

  14. LT says:

    Further proof that the 12-16 episode season is better for TV writers. This episode just did not cut it.

  15. Jan says:

    Loved the Alicia-Peter confrontation! [And, I was on HER side, of course!] Cary should know by now that monogamy isn’t in Kalinda’s wheel-house. Holy cow … that character is HOT (will hate to see her go)!

  16. Fall says:

    Horrible episode, the writers are lazy and just throwing crap out there. Those courtroom scenes were stupid and embarrassing . Now I understand why Archie is leaving, her character was interesting in the first two seasons, but since certain people were threatened by her growing popularity, her character has turned into some damaged bisexual s!ut.

    • Hayes says:

      Agreed. But we all know how it works, 24-episode seasons on network TV means we’ll get throwaway episodes here and there. It’s usually around this time, then picks back up for November sweeps. Then duds again in January, right before February sweeps.

  17. Jennifer says:

    1. The Internet: That’s not how it works.
    2. Roaches: It’s unlikely a structure in Chicago would be infested by Madagascar hissing cockroaches.

  18. Jen says:

    “Isle of Lesbos” ??? Seriously?

  19. Mary Morris says:

    Love the episode. Don’t see how a wife can be State Attorney with her husband as the Governor. I hope this plot line eases Alicia out of the race. I think she is only running because of the slime, Castro.