The Good Wife Mystery: Is Cary Gay?

Bi, Felicia?

Pardon the pun, but something queer is happening with The Good Wife‘s Cary Agos in Season 7 — and we mean that in every sense of the word.

During the CBS drama’s Season 7 premiere, Matt Czuchry’s character had a moment — an out-of-left-field moment that might’ve been sexually charged, or might’ve just been a misunderstanding — with a young associate played by Phillip Shinn.

Their connection began after Cary encouraged Lockhart-Agos’ junior attorneys to come to him with their concerns, then wound up getting Shinn’s character a few minutes in front of the firm’s partners to present an idea for new management software. When the pitch ultimately got rejected, Cary swung by his underling’s office at the end of the workday to break the news, pulling up a chair, leaning in, and adding, “I don’t want you to give up on pitching new things, so just come to me and I’ll walk it in with you, OK?”

good-wife-cary-gay-romanceThe young lawyer definitely heard the part about “pitching new things,” placing his hand atop Cary’s as his boss smiled and offered to be there if Shinn’s character “ever needed anything.”

Cary promptly pulled away — the way you’d expect from a character who, despite the series’ limited focus on his personal life, has always appeared to be straight by virtue of his long-term physical (and sometimes romantic) relationship with the now-absent and sexually fluid Kalinda. “It’s just the way you were talking,” offered Shinn’s character, to which Cary replied, “No. No, I wasn’t.”

The “what the heck is going on here?” subplot continued in last Sunday’s installment, as Shinn’s character lingered in Cary’s office at the end of a meeting to apologize for the misunderstanding and then drop this peculiar tidbit on his supervisor: “I want you to know I’m not gay.”

Before you accuse us of making a big gay mountain out of a heterosexual molehill, let’s remember that Good Wife creators/showrunners Robert and Michelle King are nothing if not efficient storytellers. When they introduce an idea or a random plot thread, you can bet it’ll somehow be woven into the larger fabric of the show.

And that raises the question: What’s the endgame for Cary and the puppy-eyed brunette? We can only imagine a handful of plausible scenarios:

cary-gay-on-the-good-wife* Cary is gay, bisexual or at least questioning his sexuality — and the Kings have introduced Shinn’s character as a means of exploring that territory. The idea shouldn’t be entirely inscrutable to anyone with a fleeting awareness of the Kinsey Scale; lest we forget, Cary spent most of Season 6 in jail and/or desperately fighting to stay out of the clink. Major trauma has a way of jolting people into pursuing unexplored truths and pushing them to live their most authentic lives. Could Cary have had a same-sex romance in high school or college? Might that explain some of the iciness between him and his father? Did his handsome employee’s advance awaken something dormant in his psyche? Stay tuned!

* Conversely, Cary might be as straight as a Steven Seagal movie — and the Kings have introduced Shinn’s character for some other purpose. A number of TVLine readers commented on TVLine’s Episode 2 recap that perhaps the young associate is setting up his boss for some kind of sexual harassment lawsuit. What if the arc is more about Cary taking the time to mentor a young man who’s struggling with his sexual orientation? Or maybe the Kings are secret fans of the Beyoncé-Idris Elba campsterpiece Obsessed — and Cary is about to experience some scary and unwelcome romantic overtures.

* A third and least likely/least appealing possibility is that the Kings merely threw a couple of random scenes into their first two Season 7 installments to stir the pot, make viewers go “huh?” and prompt TV writers such as myself to fuel the publicity machine with “Is Cary going gay?” headlines. That would be a massively disappointing stunt for a show that — even in its least successful moments — has always been meticulously written and impressively committed to genuine character motivation.

I honestly can’t think of any other way to explain what’s going on in Cary Agos’ world in Season 7, but perhaps you can.

Take our poll below to vote for what you think the Kings are up to, then share any additional theories 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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46 Comments
  1. Kitty says:

    I think it’s telling that you don’t even know the name of the other character. SO not such great efficient story telling.

    • MattySi says:

      IMDB states his characters name is Dirk, but I don’t recall that being mentioned in the show. Sure a little investigative work could have been done but its not a big deal.

      • Pixel says:

        Well, the article makes a big deal about those two brief scenes and considers them a big proof that Cary could go through a bi/gay fase (apparently Cary could have been turned into gay by touch. It happens). But apparently they don’t even know what’s the guy’s name. I suspect they don’t even give a damn about knowing anything about the character not even his name (we know abolutely zero about him but apparently they want suddenly pair him with Cary just for the plot’s sake). It’s only matters that it’s a guy.

        • Please untwist your panties.

          There wasn’t even a loose implication of “proof” suggested by the author of the article. The scene was odd and it is very unlikely that it was a throwaway. Something will come of that initial interaction and the article suggested a few possibilities. Although I don’t suspect that Cary is going to have a sudden gay epiphany, this show has gone in stranger directions before.

          Work on your hyper-sensitivity and perhaps learn how to comprehend what you read.

  2. suzi says:

    You’re making “a big gay mountain out of a heterosexual molehill”. IMO, of course.

    • Kim R says:

      My thoughts exactly! My “theory” would be Cary’s straight and has zero interest in getting involved in any way in his co-worker’s sexual questioning. I’d say Cary is quite focused on how to get the old guy out and the firm on track. I miss Cary and Alicia’s firm. It seems we went through that for nothing and Cary is pretty much back where he started, with little power.

      • TRB says:

        Which could be why they are going this route. Diane and David could try to force him out and he would be running back to Alicia. Which I would prefer than him stuck in the place he is now.

    • Pixel says:

      I think it’s more a case of making “a big gay mountain out of a lousy current storyline for the character”.

      • Doo Bee Doo says:

        Annnnd I think I’ve finally put together why I’m so not excited about this season so far. Don’t like Alicia as much as I thought I did (at least, not enough to have a vested interest in her being in a firm by herself), and, with the exception of Eli, the characters I do like have been thrown to the side or don’t exist on the show anymore. This whole Cary thing is just… ugh, either way, being bi is totally out of character and the whole young-partner-vs-old-farts (and where the heck did Cary Zepps, Robin, the rest of the young partners, or even Clarke Hayden go?) is so stupid, both feel forced.

        I have no idea if this storyline (if it is a storyline and not just a few scenes) is leading to a harassment suit, but I agree with Pixel that TVLine seems to be making too much out of this.

    • Luk says:

      I think the whole point of the article was more to remark the fact that those scenes seem deliberate in their bizarre and it is strange that they are just random scenes without any consequence plot-wise. The issue is which consequence. I don’t believe it’s to explore Cary’s sexuality though, if not fleetingly.

  3. Lizo says:

    I’d love to see another queer character be explored on the show. I really hope it’s not the beginnings of a harassment suit, the King’s are above writing such a tired and cliched trope

  4. Anna says:

    I’ll be really mad if he is being set up for a harassment suit. Like, seriously? Can’t the poor guy catch a break? Does he have to go to prison AGAIN? If those are my choices, I say Cary is bisexual and has always been. Like you said, it could explain the bad relationship to his father. And even though he has never openly shown interest in a guy doesn’t mean he can’t be bi. But whatever is going in, I’ll be happy if Cary gets more screentime because I want to know more about him.

    • Steven says:

      I ageee. Cary getting stalked and Cary getting sued just sounds so depressing. This character has always been a punching bag. However Cary exploring his sexuality and trying new things? THAT would be interesting.

    • Lara says:

      Mistresses did a storyline of a partner getting set up with a harassment suit and it was not that exciting. I feel like it is easy tv lawyer story writing. I also hope he is not gay. Not that that is not ok, but because Cary has never shown that he was gay. It feels like it would be out of left field.

  5. Jared says:

    I’d much rather see Cary explore his sexuality or at the very least question his romantic history instead of having him get set up for sexual harassment by a co worker. It seems like a useless sub plot if that were the case. I haven’t watched the new season of The Good Wife yet but it’s time that Cary gets his own love interest(whatever the sex).

  6. EJ says:

    I hope by the final episode of the season they’re not shooting their scenes a la JM/AP.

  7. aph1976 says:

    It would be interesting if Cary was gay or just bisexual.However whether Cary is straight, Gay or bi he may not want to get with someone he has a working relationship with again.

  8. Bill says:

    Efficient storytellers? They drop plot lines like hot potatoes all the time. Characters disappear without explanation all the time. Does someone have Robin tied up in a basement somewhere? What happened to her? Why was Taye Diggs brought in for 3 episodes only to suddenly disappear? Why is Zach never shown anymore? Did Eli’s daughter go back to the kibbutz? As to Cary, he reacted like a heterosexual being hit on by a homosexual. He’s not into it. That was obvious.

    • Desiree says:

      THIS! This times a million!

    • lululime says:

      Zach at least got a proper exit. He went off to college, they physically showed him leaving and I wouldn’t be surprised if the actor just wasn’t interested in returning. He’s young and five years on a show is a long time. Now all those other characters …

    • B says:

      This. I get it if the actors can’t come back for whatever reason, but it is not that hard to put in a quick line about how Robin moved back home because one of her parents was sick or something, or to explain that Taye Diggs’ character got fed up and quit.

    • Doo Bee Doo says:

      ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ There we go!

  9. Tony says:

    Haven’t seen it yet. But I do hope they’re not doing the thing of tv shows where black people tend to be one in one out lile a quota. Now kalinda has gone they need an “arc” for Cary and being the ambiguous/gay one is it.

    • B says:

      Yeah, that’s what a gay/bi/questioning Cary storyline would feel like to me. “Oops, we need a bi character. Might as well let Kalinda’s lady parts have transmitted it to Cary.”

  10. Denise says:

    My first reaction was that of confusion, then later figured it might lead into the sexual harassment line. After the associate denied he was gay, I’m just really confused.

    I’m not against an arc like that but I doubt the show has the interest to dedicate the appropriate amount of time to sell this as something other than being out of ideas for a character. As you mentioned, TGW has never been invested in Cary’s personal life so I doubt it. I’d rather have this mean something, anything really, than be played for laughs.

  11. Pixel says:

    Did you see how did Cary react? I didn’t get any “gay/bi” vibe from him. He was completely uninterested in what the young associate said. I’d say he completely ignored him and it wasn’t ” I can’t admit this with myself” indifference but a complete “I coudn’t care less about your sexuality” one.
    You should focus less on Cary’s sexuality and more on the young associate’s attitude. Your boss is giving you his support but you wrongly suppose that he’s flirting with you and you move on him without even thinking about it but you’re not gay….really? That sounds to me like limitless ambition in my book. And I smell troubles.

    “Could Cary have had a same-sex romance in high school or college? Might that explain some of the iciness between him and his father? Did his handsome employee’s advance awaken something dormant in his psyche? Stay tuned!”
    And do you think they’ll waste screentime explain us Cary’s past they never talked about and to build foundation for a storyline which right now doesn’t have one? For what purpose in terms of Cary’s storyline? To conclude his storyarc in that show saying “And in the end Cary, who always fought for his dreams and who rarely got what he was looking for, not even a fully reciprocated love, experimented his out of blue bisexuality and they ended with happily ever after? What’s the point, really, in terms of what has been Cary’s storyline until now? The fact that he was in love with a bisexual woman has nothing to do with Cary’s sexuality. I’d like to think that the main thing about Cary and Kalinda had nothing to do with the fact she was bi but with the fact the both of them truly cared about each other and turning Cary into bi would be also a mockery of their relationship. Could they save something of Kalinda’s story at least?

    And last but not least: give Cary a real serious storyline and bring him in court again because what we know for sure about him is not that he’s 100% straight or not but that he always wanted to be a lawyer and after the prison’s arc he wasn’t even allowed to be in court.

  12. bar says:

    I remember watching the first episode of the season being exhausted, but what can you do? It’s The Good Wife, you have to watch it night-of. So I must have completely missed the initial transgression. When he said he wasn’t gay, I was really, really confused. But now I’m very interested. Cary’s story had always been distinct in a way. Hopefully this gets explored more.

  13. Et al. says:

    Their first lovemaking scene will be shot splitscreen in seperate locations.

  14. Mary says:

    If he becomes gay I’m done. So flipping tired of shows all of a sudden making somebody gay just to have a gay character. If they are gay MAKE EM GAY FROM THE BEGINNING. This is bull. I will be ticked!!

    • Castlefan says:

      Agreed. I’m not that interested in Cary anyway (I’d like a lot more of Diane) but to suddenly decide he’s gay/bisexual in season 7 would be too much. We’ve already had a major bisexual character: there’s no need to convert someone else just to fill a quota and I don’t think there’s any original way they could do that storyline.

  15. fiberlicious says:

    Um…. people are inscrutable; ideas are not.

  16. Niallerz1992 says:

    I think its the first option. I think Car is bisexual. I think Cary had a few gay experiences in college or high school as experimentation but because of his pushy father and the issues there Cary didn’t want to act on them and disappoint hi father even further. Cary continued on his lawyer career. We haven’t seen a lot of Cary’s personal life bar the few instances. Cary was hurt that he couldn’t live a life he wanted and he has tried relationships with women but they didn’t work out (and we saw some of them on screen). He fell hard for Kalinda, and possibly the first female he really loved. However when she left suddenly and got no closure there (and the trial taking its tole on him) he felt lost, depressed and alone. And in 7×01 he felt lost and alone at the top at the firm. He sacrificed he personal life to get to the top only to discover that he is alone there and no one to share it with.
    When the associate made a move on Cary in the premiere, it could have awoken those feelings again and he began to question his sexuality again and realize that after being hurt by Kalinda (her not saying goodbye or closure in their relationship) and the failed relationships with women in the past, experimenting with guys again is an option.

    Thats just my scenario that I concocted up in my mind a while ago,
    If the producers decide to head down the bisexual/gay rout with Cary I hope that tell the story truly and not soap it up. And I hope that if this story-line come to be, it better be the story where Matt Czuchry gets his Emmy nomination and win!!!

    • Pixel says:

      And all this will be explained in his usual 3 minutes screentime for episode. I really think that could win and Emmy….for best fanfiction ever.

  17. Povalles says:

    I think the idea of him exploring his sexuality isn’t out of the gate. He could react as not interested at first, but it could grow on him, believe me, it happens. And remember his only love interest in the past is a widely known bisexual, so it doesn’t seems like he’s too focused on labels.

    Sometimes storylines in the Good Wife get messy, as it does in every show with that amount of episodes per season, but we’ll have to stay tuned if we want to know where this is leading.

  18. me says:

    I say cary is Gay and his congressman father knows it that is one of the many reasons they are estranged.

  19. Elizabeth says:

    I disagree with the idea that the show drops plot lines like hot potatoes. The son is at college which is why we don’t see him. They mentioned that Robyn was going to be let go in the show. They didn’t film a goodbye scene but we know she isn’t in a basement. Eli’s daughter worked for Alicia’s campaign and Alicia isn’t in a campaign anymore.

  20. lululime says:

    The split screen jokes and comments will never end and I am entertained.

  21. Deion says:

    The only way I will accept any such change to the Cary character is if it explains the his relationship with his father. Exploration of sexuality is a very human thing and while it is always nice to see Cary as human, this wasn’t something that could have been explored during the two season long relationship with the practicing bisexual woman?

  22. vegas says:

    It seems like the networks can make heterosexual characters gay anytime they want, because some people come out later in life”?”. Why don’t you hire new characters for these roles and leave the characters that fans have come to know and love as is. I’m waiting for someone to write a show about gay people going straight later in life.

  23. Judy Friday says:

    I have loved this program and its characters for so long i could have almost predict what a few would do. But when i read that one of my favorite characters, kinda, was leaving, i thought
    The show would be lost and not as interesting.
    Cary part wasn’t all that hot, but now that he’s finding his true self, bisexuality, we may be in for a new type of ride.
    Thank you for this entertaining program.
    judy Friday

  24. bridyyc says:

    Since Phillip Shinn does not seem to be listed in the next 3 episodes, I’m guessing this hot potato is dropped and dead. It’s painfully clear that the King’s don’t know what to do with Cary and Diane. They are busy building a new supporting cast and the former sits and spins.

  25. V. says:

    I’m thinkg they are going with the setting up his boss for some kind of sexual harassment lawsuit. But wouldn’t mind Cary xploring other options, I miss dear Kalinda explorer of all and any options.

  26. Jim says:

    Cary is feeling uncomfortable with his firm, feels shut out by Diane and David. He was trying to establish himself as a good guy/mentor with the associates but it was misunderstood. I think they’re setting up a story line where Cary leaves the firm to start another firm with Alicia.

  27. Heather H says:

    The Kings have offloaded the complex script writing to someone who obviously has neither the talent nor the respect for the viewer.
    Literally everyone that I know that regularly watches this show thinks the same thing.
    We want more Cary, Diane, Peter, Eli, Alicia, etc. Less Howard, Louis Canning, Ruth, Jason.
    BTW, Whatever pill Howard took to miraculously recover from his Alzheimer’s, I’d like some for my Mom.

  28. Everything… EVERYTHING..in The Good Wife is about conflict. No one goes untouched. Even though Cary went through hell last season with the Lemond Bishop tension and nearly landed in maximum security, there is no mercy in Good Wife! think the writers may be setting him up again. Good Wife characters lead such complicated lives! (But I do agree with Bill about how the writers drop plot lines)