Running Away from Running
A Television Review by Akash Singh
NOTE: SPOILERS OCCUR!!!!!!!
I love The Good Wife. Each episode bristles with an electric nature and the idea that shows become stale after a few seasons or so is thrown right out the window. From the opening frame on Alicia’s visage to the final shot of her embracing Cary, the episode waltzes and zigzags around the various story lines with a ferocity that’s nearly unparalleled. There’s a certain sense of closure as the hour fades away but there’s enough on the horizon to make you anxiously await next Sunday evening. As the second episode of the season, it doesn’t have the benefit of the premiere to establish a solid story line throughout the hour. But likewise by not being the premiere it has the added benefit of increasing the tension from last week and extrapolating further drama and characterizations from the plot.
The Good Wife has never shied away from having its protagonists make difficult, ethically compromising choices and in many insistences those decisions have revolved around Lemond Bishop, the not-drug dealing drug dealer. It makes sense that his enterprise, coupled with the State’s Attorney drama, would become a centerpiece for Season 6. There’s certainly more than enough groundwork laid in the previous one hundred plus episodes to make the Bishop developments feel earned and organic to the narrative. Plus it’s always a treat to see Mike Colter’s Bishop show up. Colter manages to imbue what could be a stock character with just the right amount of complexity.
Cary’s fortunes seemed bleak when Bishop’s name was called for a subpoena. He immediately withdraws the $1.3 million in funds for Cary’s bail. Alicia goes for the second mortgage, but Peter has to co-sign. He refuses, citing how it would look bad if the Governor of Illinois helped his wife’s co-worker who was in jail on drug-related charges. It’s possibly the most logical thing we’ve ever seen Peter do, even if it is completely frustrating for those of us who really want to see Cary out of jail and not have any more of his blood spilt by Bishop’s agents. One of the three men he talked to was tapped by Diane and Kalinda as being a witness who could turn the jury in their favor, but Bishop kills him as he believes incorrectly that he was the one wearing the wire. Kalinda finds Bishop and tells him so and he in return asks for the name of the remaining witness Cary needs. Or both of them die. Kalinda begins to respond and the scene cuts away. Will Kalinda reveal the witness they need to save Cary? It’s a massive ethical dilemma that in either result condemns at least one person to die.
The case of the week follows Chum Hum and a dispute between the giant company and its programmers. It’s a standard case of the week that’s executed flawlessly, brining in Lorraine Joy, who just wanted the details of the prostitution scandal and used the job offer as a front for gossip. At the end of the case, she quips “I should have hired you. You’re an assassin.” “I know,” Alicia retorts with a smile right before she walks off. BAMF. The case has the result in keeping Chum Hum on board with Florrick Agos. The tech giant pays an advance and Cary is out of jail, now returning to Florrick Agos Lockhart. Yep, the teams have shuffled yet again. Diane brings along an impeccably dressed Taye Diggs and multiple department heads with her from Lockhart Gardner. “Good-bye,” she whispers softly to the firm she had built up over thirteen years through thick and thin. It’s a triumphant moment for Diane and opens up a plethora of opportunities for the narrative.
Eli is having a stellar season so far, driving the State’s Attorney storyline. His playing multiple cards at once is thrilling to watch. He brings in Valerie Jarrett from the White House to coax Alicia into running for State’s Attorney. Alicia naturally sees right past this and considering the whole Cary thing and bringing in Diane, running for office is the last thing on her mind. It’s a C-plot that is cleverly integrated with the main story lines and anything that gives Alan Cumming more screen time is fine with me. And when it’s great material like this, it’s thrilling to watch. All signs point to Alicia running and I trust the show enough to drive us there. Whether or not she runs, the journey at the very least looks promising.
Great Moments Not Mentioned Above:
+Kudos to the diversity in the team Diane brings with her to now Florrick Agos Lockhart
+Eli’s benchmark of the most incredible thing to happen in the world: “College kids vote!”
+Diane’s “I don’t give a fuck” moment: “Hold the elevator.” She closes it anyway.
+Eli: “…stuck by your husband”; Valerie: “I’m not saying that.”
+The money laundering front with the health clubs gets 20% of its proceeds from dead people, info courtesy of Finn Palmer
+Alicia rolling her eyes at the knowledge of Deena Gross from Chum Hum feeling better with a man being in charge
Title: Trust Issues
Written By: Ted Humphrey
Directed By: Jim McKay
Image Courtesy: TV.com