The Good Wife Recap: No-Longer-Running Target

Welcome back, Diane Lockhart!

Oh, yes, I realize that this week’s episode of The Good Wife was, at its heart, about Alicia Florrick’s return to Lockhart-Agos-Lee (aka the firm that used to be Florrick-Lockhart-Agos, and Lockhart-Gardner before that). But allow me to take 10 seconds and shout “Yassssss, Queen!” (a phrase I try to use sparingly) over the fact that after a verrrry quiet season, Diane Lockhart came roaring back to formidable life with her blinged-out green jacket, triple strand of pearls and “don’t ever forget who’s in charge here” authority.

Better still, in the CBS drama’s first outing since the network announced the show will go the way of the Dodo at the end of this season, we got a fascinating tech-centric case, a little tingle of sexy romance and a sense of who might take the biggest tumble before the action draws to a close. (Interestingly, though, in an episode that ultimately uncovered a massive threat to Peter’s future — and perhaps his freedom — the Illinois governor was utterly absent.) With that said, let’s recap the action from “Monday”:

THE CASE OF THE WEEK | On Alicia and Lucca’s first day after joining forces with Lockhart-Agos-Lee, the firm’s IT guy (and Kalinda’s old partner in treachery) Howell (Jason Babinsky) reaches out for representation — as his girlfriend found a not-yet-on-the-market Chum-Hum tablet and needs help negotiating its sale to tech blogs. It doesn’t take long before TAPS (Technology Allied Protection Service) — a quasi partnership between the FBI and Silicon Valley that I never realized existed — swoops in, and the Lockhart-Agos-Lee is forced to come to his aid. Diane wants Lucca working on another case (more on that in a moment), but it’s Alicia’s new bestie who finally comes up with a defense that gets Howell off the hook. With his 419,000 Twitter followers, he’s essentially a journalist, and therefore doesn’t have to give up the source of his information. Chum-Hum’s CEO Neil Gross may still believe Goliath is the new David, but he’s also got to be impressed by his old firm’s keen-eyed ability to steer the law in its favor, no?

JUICY DEVELOPMENTS Eli’s daughter Marissa — who really, really needs her own spinoff (see the gallery at the bottom of this recap) — gets approached by a superhot stranger at her job at a juice bar, and quickly realizes he’s squeezing her for intel. Because she’s a bad-ass boss, she records their conversation and reports back to Eli, whose response is a Good Wife one-liner for the ages: “Now, I get why people have children: They can admire themselves in someone else.”

After Eli has a face-to-face with the cocky agent, and then his old nemesis Ruth shows up saying she’s gotten an FBI subpoena, Eli realizes Peter is the target – and it’s probably some deep, dark scandal on which he never even kept a file. (Hmmm… perhaps rigging the election for Alicia?) As Ruth pointed out weeks ago, though, Peter’s failed run at the presidency has made him a target, and now that warning is bearing fruit. Eli goes so far as to visit Judge Schakowsky (a powwow that bears no fruit), but Ruth goes a different direction, visiting Alicia with a bottle of next-level tequila and some sage advice: “Cash out while you still can” on her marriage to Peter. The investigation into his misdeeds, Ruth suggests, won’t just ruin everything Alicia has accomplished in her past, but also everything she hopes to tackle in the future. One would hope Alicia was already pondering this idea given her recent smooch-fest with Jason (more on that below), but it’s pretty clear Ruth’s words are also filed under “Things That Make Her Go Hmmmm.”

PUTTING THE ‘MATES’ IN WORKMATES | Alicia and Jason acknowledge their previous-episode kiss, his sexy beard and their ongoing chemistry in a brief and very flirty conversation at the Lockgart-Agos-Lee offices. Good thing he’s just a freelancer, otherwise their definitely-going-to-happen hookups might violate company policy!

HER NAME IS LUCCA | In a hat tip to the weirdly un-diverse world of Lockhart-Agos-Lee (which shook out very differently from the very diverse firm Alicia and Cary set out to create), everyone keeps telling Lucca she needs to meet the firm’s other black female lawyer Monica — a ridiculous/infuriating fact that makes both women treat each other with a touch of suspicion but with an undercurrent of camaraderie. That final “Do you know any spirituals?” parting shot almost made me spit sauv blanc onto my computer screen.

The larger problem for Lucca, though, is the fact that her independent, small-firm spirit is somewhat at odds with the Lockhart-Agos-Lee way of life. When she proceeds to make moves on the Howell case, Diane calls a tense, terse sitdown with Alicia — and there’s enough ice in the room to chill every martini the two women will drink from now until the end of their lives. Diane’s fear that Alicia may exhibit “a certain independence and a resistance to oversight” isn’t invalid — but then, why not bring her on as a name partner (or at least not insult her recent stint in bond court)? Alicia, though, is a woman who’s fallen from grace after her political scandal, and given that the larger firm saved her from a malpractice suit catastrophe, perhaps can’t expect to be on equal footing with her former mentor/pal/nemesis/frenemy/role model. It’s a dynamic that manages to feel fresh after seven seasons, and probably as much a testament to the acting prowess of Baranski and Margulies as anything on the page in front of ’em.

On that note…

What did you think of this week’s Good Wife? Should Alicia take Ruth’s advice and file for divorce ASAP? Or should she stand by her man marriage of political convenience? 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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38 Comments
  1. ABG says:

    If the show ends with Peter in jail I’ll be happy.

  2. Jimmy says:

    I thought this episode was, at best, simply filler which is annoying considering we have only a finite number episodes left. I also wish this whole boring Alicia/Diane dynamic would come to an end.

  3. Marilyn says:

    Liked it. Seemed more like third year “The Good Wife.” These writers have to keep this show going in some form. The spiritual comment make me laugh straight out loud.

  4. Rob says:

    Well for me this episode confirmed a theory of mine that I posted on here around Season 5: the show ends with Peter giving a resignation speech as a disgraced Governor about to face charges only this time he stands on that stage alone, Alicia having divorced him. The Good Wife ends when Alicia is quite literally no longer that, The Good Wife.

  5. abz says:

    That scene between Alicia and Diane was TENSE!!! The Ice Queen is back and I hope she’s here to stay. I am so gonna miss this show. I hate that it’s ending.
    Alicia needs to divorce Peter once and for all. Everything is coming full circle. Peter started the show as a disgraced public figure and will most likely end the show as one. Alicia stuck by him the first time but she better not this time.

  6. bar says:

    Lucca was wearing a leather skirt near the end and I had all these Kalinda feelings. Oh, and how happy was I to see Elsbeth in the preview for next week!!

  7. For the past 3 seasons I have been bemoaning Alicia still being married to Peter. If they show runners do right by Alicia, then they have to give her a divorce so that she can go frolicking free. I think it is all going to come down to the fact that Peter participated in Alicia’s losing the AG race (remember he had the polling machines fixed). I have always thought it strange that Eli is just sitting on that piece of information….Fingers crossed that Peter finally bites the dust.

  8. JosiahBartlet4President says:

    I love the icy reunion between Alicia and Diane.
    Glad to see Margo Martingale make an appearance!

  9. bridyyc says:

    I could spend all hour watching Margulies and Baranski together. The scenes they have had together this season (both of them) stand out so far above anything else being done on that show. I find myself wondering if there is more to the “Alicia returns to the firm” storyline, or is this what we’re in for over the next 8 episodes, while Peter and their marriage take centre stage.

  10. Anna says:

    After watching this episode, I really, REALLY want an Eli/Marissa spinoff. It just needs to happen.

  11. Louise says:

    I could care less. I think the ‘star’ and show have let viewers down. I haven’t bother watching since I first heard of her royal highness and her attitude. She needs to stop reading her reviews and start dealing in reality. Ask Kanye West avout that.

    • Eran says:

      Well you certainly could care less….

    • JoMarch says:

      The phrase is “couldn’t care less”; could care less makes no sense. It conveys that you could actually care less when I think you meant to convey that you have no care whatsoever. If you haven’t bothered watching why are you reading the recaps. Maybe you could care less…

  12. EllenAce says:

    Love TGW! “Everything is ending.” My best to cast and crew, God’s speed.

    Meanwhile, it’s insulting/infuriating/disrespectful, for the writers to suggest that Alicia needed to be told by someone on the sidelines, the periphery or outside of her own marriage, giving unsolicited advise concerning divorce. Ruth, of whom I like by the way, had no right, as “Miss. Watch Out for Friends”, warns Alicia that although Peter loves her, he’ll hurt her, so–Cash Out!

    Totally inappropriate, no matter how pleasant the interaction, with Ruth’s good intentions were, on the subject. Alicia is the one to deal with this long overdue, seven year old elephant in the room–no one else!

    Alicia needs to stop stalling/kissing dude, (adorable/irresistible JDM), and dissolve her marriage, on her own more than capable terms! I’ve been saying it for seven years, Alicia is brilliant and highly capable of having an open honest dialogue with Peter and then leaving him for good. I’m disappointed the writers have Ruth stating the obvious, but it wasn’t her place! It’s for Alicia to do and no one else! In other words, Ruth–don’t even suggest it! I can’t! So flipping disrespectful!

    • Nanners says:

      Ruth is warning Alicia because of the new FBI investigation, basically saying Peter could take Alicia down with him. It has nothing to do with her meddling in the marriage.

  13. robandco says:

    I think this was a great episode, very solid. Typical almost, with the wining combo of a funny judge we now all love on a chumhum case with special appearance by NG, office tensions (that scene between Diane and Alicia was so tense you could cut it with butter) and the political drama for Alicia that will have consequences over the rest of the season.
    I hope she divorces him quick. I hope he is disgraced at the end and that she gets all the glory. Yes, JM may or may not be a bad person (to not be rude), but Alicia and her portrayal of her is good, of not great. She is Saint Alicia after all.

  14. sanchopanza says:

    I have to say I really like some of your spinoff ideas (and your “don’t-do-its”.)

  15. rowan77 says:

    I agree that Diane’s cattiness about bond court was out of line, but she was trying to put Alicia in her place. She’s playing nice because she hats, but there’s a lot of history and misunderstandings between them and I don’t think Diane is happy to bring Alicia back at all. I don’t think she trusts her.

  16. H says:

    So this show managed to ruin Diane and Alicia’s relationship as well. Great.

  17. Sandy Duncan's Eye on Network TV says:

    To me, Marissa was one of the few bright spots in last season and Lucca in this season. I really like the actresses and the characters. I wouldn’t mind seeing a Lockhart-Agos-Lee spin-off with the current cast minus the Floreks.

  18. cp1945 says:

    Two points: 1. Wasn’t the point of Alicia withdrawing in disgrace from the State’s Atty. race to cover up the fact that Peter cheated to win the Gov.’s race? 2. Once Alicia finds out Peter was behind fixing her race, I see her as a government witness with immunity.

  19. Neener says:

    Eliminated:
    1. Adam Lasher
    2. Amelia Eisenhauer
    3. C.J. Johnson
    4. Kory Wheeler
    5. Shelbie Zora

    Advanced:
    1. Dalton Rapattoni
    2. Jenn Blosil
    3. Lee Jean
    4. Manny Torres
    5. Olivia Rox
    6. Trent Harmon
    7. Tristan McIntosh

  20. Maxsmom says:

    I am so glad season 7 is the final season, I would watch until the end but this show is operating on the fumes of how great it once was. I hope the wrap up is worthy and as Peter is my favorite character, I hope he gets a happy ending

  21. Dee says:

    Eli’s line “Now, I get why people have children. They can admire themselves in someone else.” was hilarious and so true. I love Eli and Marissa’s scenes.

  22. KO says:

    Please, I’d dump him in a Chicago minute for Jeffrey Dean Morgan!

  23. . I sure hope the series does not end with Peter, Alicia and Zach eating onion rings at Holsten’s restaurant in northern New Jersey as they wait for Grace. Alicia turns on the juke box and plays “Don’t Stop Belivin” by Journey. Then, after having trouble parking her car, Grace walks into the restaurant, a bell rings, Alicia looks up at Grace and the screen fades to black!