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The Good Wife Review: Good Doesn't Always Triumph

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The moral of "The Art of War" was that you can't win them all. Alicia learned that in court and in her personal life on this week's The Good Wife.

Even in a big city like Chicago, there are only so many lawyers and judges, so it was nice to see the return of both Judge Abernathy (Denis O'Hare) and Judge Kuhn from the military court. 

In Defense of Amanda Peet

This season has been more cohesive than others because storylines seem to be carrying over more than in the past. There's a new case each week, but several story arcs are holding the show together. It gives the series an authentic feel. Rather than moving from courtroom case to courtroom case each week, we are learning more about the characters' lives in general.

For example, I hate Nick. And I don't like the Nick-Kalinda relationship at all. Although this week, I didn't mind it as much since we didn't have to see the two of them together. Wasn't it awesome for Nick to lose the city contract? He was so angry, but it was satisfying to see him fail. And then disappointing to find out that Alicia and Cary could fight for him to win the bid after all.

Alicia tried to drop Nick as a client once for Kalinda. She can't fight for him to win it now, especially after getting the full scoop from her friend. It was heartbreaking to hear Kalinda talk about her relationship with Nick. She knows it's bad for her, but she can't stay away. As her friend, Alicia should do whatever she can to make it such that Nick is forced to leave town. 

Losing the city bid could be looked at as a good thing. The bad guy lost, but in court it was just the opposite. In the end, Alicia proved that Ricky assaulted Captain Hellinger, but he and the military contractor were let off without any punishment.

It was awfully convenient that he was activated at midnight that night. I thought perhaps Alicia would have still won based on time zones or something, but it wasn't meant to be. Though, why can't he be court-martialed for the incident now that it has been shown he was active military at the time?

And why wasn't that known at the time of the criminal case? It's inconsistencies like that annoy me on The Good Wife and other law shows. They always try to pull some last minute fact out of the air to prove one side or the other's case, but often it destroys the integrity of the storytelling.

The premise of the case was intriguing, though. Military contractors work side-by-side with the government military. They get paid more and don't have to abide by the military command structure, yet they want the protections afforded the military. They want the best of both worlds and that certainly causes some conflicts. 

This duality played out in Alicia's life as well when her "friend" Maddie Hayward decided to run against Peter. She said that she didn't plan it, but I don't buy that for a second. She had never supported a male candidate before, so why now to only turn around and run against him? 

The donation she made, if she even turned over an initial one, was worth the price to get secret information from Alicia. It's possible that Maddie won't use that information in the campaign and it would be the right thing to do, but I doubt it will happen.

If nothing else, Maddie will use the intel behind the scenes to help her campaign. She's manipulative, rich and will probably beat Peter. Despite his 97% straw poll result, she has the means to take him down. It will be intriguing to see if the Lieutenant Governor position comes up again. Though, it doesn't make sense that she would want him to run with her any way.

With the exception of a few small issues with the episode, it held my interest and provided a few surprises along the way. So much story was packed into this one hour, but none of them felt slighted at all.

Odds and Ends

  • Nice play by Eli to use Peggy Burne (Kristin Chenoweth) to bring down Mandy Post. Too bad Mandy lost her job, but she did leak the story to the blog even when it was proved to be fake.
  • Is that the last we've heard about the alleged affair? If it is, it's been a bit of a let down. So much time spent on it with little reward to the story.
  • The Trustee continues to wreak havoc at the firm, but he does have good intentions. Hilarious that he was attempting to use management methods from the Steve Jobs' biography.
  • Kalinda brought up a good point to Eli. Which one of them is under federal investigation? Could it be a legitimate case that Lana is working on? Scary for one or both of them.
  • Loved that Judge Kuhn used her power of her investigation panel to get the witness Alicia needed to prove her case. 
  • Jackie and her male caretaker were a riot to watch. The flirty was a bit creepy, but hey if it keeps her occupied then that's a good thing.
  • Peter's up for a fight. His "Let's get started." comment to Eli is definitely just the beginning.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
  • 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (98 Votes)

Carla Day is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.

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In response to Bill---
You must be mindful of the fact that this is fiction...Really no need for a personal attack. I spew no venom and have never been scorned. Please remember that this is a fictional story...

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"Though, why can't he be court-martialed for the incident now that it has been shown he was active military at the time?" This is the obvious question. Why not?

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What episode will Mattie bring out the real bomb and blow the lid off of Peters campaign, i'm talking about the $700 room she has pictures and video of. Don't forget the reporter who had a folder in her hands when talking to Eli a couple of episodes ago regarding a staff member but the picture in the folder was Will. Make you think who is after ?

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Great episode because for the most part it stuck to the law. I agree however with the legal question raised by the rapist being activated at midnight. If that is the case, there should certainly be a case for court martial in a military court. Although clearly the military doesn't want to touch this with a 10 foot pole.
Loved Cary's little quid pro quo triumphs and smiles from helping Diane with her problem.
Respected both Alicia and Peter for the way they responded to Maddie's trickery.
Definitely an enjoyable hour in the classic mold.

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last comment I promise!
Forgot to mention: after giving up the 27th (I think) floor, all the talk was about expansion and keeping clients from the idea that the firm was in trouble.
With the first scene of a crammed waiting room we were aware (more than office space) of what it really means and that it's not only about "status".
Great story telling. I truly love this show and thumbs up for the director of the ep! ^__°
see you next week!

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@Kallie: sorry wrong quote.
stepphie59 is the naughty one! ^_°

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(damn!)
Yet who cares, he is about to go!
Hip Hip... ^_°

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love this review, yet I disagree on one point:
"As her friend, Alicia should do whatever she can to make it such that Nick is forced to leave town."
As a friend, you ask, counsel and the let them be, not deciding for them.
At least that is how I would like my friends to treat me. I really enjoyed the ep. Court case was interesting, loved the interactions, even the small ones (dismissal of Will was fun)
trustee reading and acting on Steve Job's book hilarious, Eli's sympathetic comment lost to the wind and so much more.
I agree with the review, I am engaged because no matter what goes on in court inside story-lines continue.
This is what I really like about TGW, it isn't just a legal drama, it has the right (now, wasn't always like this) balance.
We are interested in the personal lives of the characters yet, love to see it develop trough work and other issues.
BTW I read elsewhere the Kings decided to cut short the K/N story lines, for all the wrong reasons (IMO), Yet who cares, he is about to go!
Hip Hip... ^_°

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Quote Kallie:
"I can't wait to see Peter and Will in bed together." LOL!
Since we are under election I'm starting to feel like Alica&Peter sustainers are republicans, Alicia&Will democrats, kalinda/alicia/whatever/who cares the rest of the world ^_° This is one Naughy republican! ^_°

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@RonB Its not Sex in the City either but to manny people think it is. @stepphie59 Court is fine but there is more to this show than this all the time, her family comes first to her so she says so lets see it more.

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