Thursday’s Season 3 finale of Suits found Mike trading his (fake) lawyer job for a gig as an investment banker.
Now that Harvey’s protégé has become his client, TVLine chatted with executive producer Aaron Korsh to find out what that means for their relationship. (Hint: There’s a twist coming.)
The EP also dished about the future of Mike and Rachel’s romance, Donna’s role in Harvey’s life and much more.
TVLINE | Mike accepting this job offer seems like a way to shake up the setup of the show. What kind of new avenues and storylines do you hope this opens up?
Well, first of all, I wanted to comment that I was very happy after reading [many of] the reviews of [Episodes] 14 and 15. They all said they always knew he would never take that job because Suits can’t exist without Harvey and Mike at the same place, which was exactly what I wanted people to think at the end of [Episode] 15.
TVLINE | You got them.
[Laughs] I wanted them to be shocked at the end of [Episode] 16. Believe me, I’ve been killing myself not to tweet, “I want to see what you say at the end of [Episode] 16.” [Laughs] … So the idea for us was to shake up the dynamic at the firm, but still keep Mike very present in our television universe. The way to do that was, if he leaves and goes and takes this job, but he’s still a client at the firm. What it does is it allows for him to still interact with Harvey, but completely changes their dynamic. Mike is no longer his employee. And in a sense, he’s his employer. While at the same time, their older brother/younger brother dynamic, that’s embedded in their personalities now. So it’s changing up their formal power structure while keeping in place their inter-personality dynamic and letting those two tensions go up against each other.
TVLINE | So it’s safe to say this is something that is going to play out over a while? It’s not going to be like Mike ends up back at Pearson Specter within an episode?
Correct. It is safe to say that. I thought to myself, if we’re going to do this, we’re really going to do it. I mean, he may at some point get back to the firm. I don’t know for sure if he will or not yet, but it’s not going to happen very quickly.
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TVLINE | How does it alter his relationships with some of the other people in the firm like Louis and Jessica?
It alters his relationships with everyone. For one thing, he’s not illegally practicing law anymore so probably it’s a huge burden off of his mind. But he’s just not their employee anymore.So in the same sense that it affects him with Harvey, it affects him with everyone else. Early on, there’s going to be a twist in their working relationship that will play out over the course of several episodes and most of that twist has to do with his relationship with Harvey, but also with Donna. … In Episode 4, he’s got major Louis interaction, so yeah, it shakes things up. But we’ve got some new characters coming in that are going to shake up Louis and Jessica’s dynamic with each other.
TVLINE | We’ve seen that Mike has a knack for memorizing things. Is he going to take to investment as easily as he did to the law?
I think so. He’s just a very, very smart guy, and he’s learned a lot working with Harvey. It’s like he’s got the best of both. He’s got a great mind. He’s got great knowledge for the law. He’s going to take to it very well. The difference is — and it can be both a strength of Mike’s and a weakness of Mike’s, just like it was in the practice of law — is that he still cares about companies and people and that’s going to be a little bit of his defining outlook in terms of investment banking. He’s not interested in just making money off the backs of others.
TVLINE | What does Mike’s new job mean for his relationship with Rachel?
She’s very happy that he ends up taking the job. We start off with them in a very good place. Outside pressures will be placed on their relationship in a different way. But it will not be directly because he took this job. It will actually be as a result of him taking the job and in a very off-the-wall way.
TVLINE | Turning to a different couple, are Harvey and Scottie definitely over?
The truth is Abigail Spencer is a tremendously in-demand actress. We don’t know whether we’re going to have her for a certain amount of episodes. We were lucky enough to get her to commit to four of the last six, and we were so happy to have her. As of right now, Scottie is not reemerging in Season 4, but we’d always love to have her back, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see her at some point.
TVLINE | There were some great scenes between Harvey and Donna in the finale where she was talking to him about Mike and Scottie. Now that both of those two people in Harvey’s life are out of the picture, where does that leave Donna and Harvey?
They get married in Episode 2. Just kidding, Vlada. Where does that leave them? Here’s the thing – and I know that there are plenty of Harvey and Donna ‘shippers out there – getting Harvey and Donna together, if it’s done too soon, in my opinion, will really harm the show. I will go ahead and say that. Their relationship is always going to move forward in bits and starts, so to speak, and they’re always going to have be there for each other. Donna is definitely going to have a lot of things to say about Harvey’s new place in the world now that Mike is gone. I don’t think she focuses too much on Scottie being gone because it’s just not as much of an issue. But Donna has a lot to deal with when this twist kicks in.