The Good Wife

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The Good Wife Review: Alicia Gets a Break

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The Good Wife taught us just ugly people can get with "A Precious Commodity" this week.

People were all over the map in terms of loyalties and sensibilities and it didn't necessarily paint a pretty picture of the human race.

Alicia was out of the hot seat for a while as all attention was focused on Diane after she put the firm at risk with her tell-all interview about Will. That won't last, however, as Will asked her to consider taking over as Managing Partner and, if she says no, the jig is up.

Will Needs Alicia

The Case of the Week

There was really no happy ending to it. A loving couple unable to carry their own child implanted their baby in a surrogate, only to learn very late in the second trimester that it had an 85% chance of being severely deformed upon birth. As they had already lost an infant to a birth defect, they wanted the pregnancy terminated. So far, so good.

The surrogate must have worn a boat load of St. Judes's medallions around her neck because she was the champion of lost causes and refused to give up hope on the life kicking inside of her. As it turned out, all of it was moot because the pregnancy was viable and into the third trimester, which was unexpected. 

Along the way, both sides mixed up heartfelt pleas with vindictive cries of financial ruin or gain, dependent upon the side. It felt as if there was more of a power play going on than anyone thinking about the best interests of the fetus. It was a roller coaster of sadness and anger and nobody won in the end.

The Governor Elect

So it turned out that Peter's attempt to remove Marilyn Garbanza from her position on the Ethics Committee in order to drive away temptation and keep up appearances had the complete opposite effect. A reporter thought he did it to pad the committee with his own, softer members, so back came Marilyn.

This time around Marilyn seems less professional. She's using Peter's first name and digging into things that really don't seem to matter overall. When she made a suggestion that Peter choose a different member for the Water Board because of a loose conflict between he and the lease Alicia signed with her new firm, Peter chose to stick with his pick who was best for the job and let the naysayers be damned. 

After that little conversation, Marilyn was all aflutter and considered reading Dan Brown to broaden her horizons so she could better understand the difference between a good candidate and a poor one. Really, Marilyn? You need to read crap to suss out Hemingway is probably better than a book turned into a movie you watched with Tom Hanks? This appointment has disaster written all over it. 

If Peter's sudden desire to run to Hawaii to renew their vows is any indication, he's already certain where Alicia's mind is going to go, and why. I can only hope The Good Wife is not going to take us down that lonely road of infidelity again.

Grace the Homely Girl

This week the Grace story finally took a ridiculous turn. Alicia saw the "10 Hottest Politician's Daughters" website and put everything together. She even went so far as to toss Grace's pastor out on his rump when he showed up, leaning sexily against the door asking if Grace was in. Seriously, that dude should have introduced himself and shown a little class. I don't know that I'd let my daughter go to church with him any longer.

Top that off with this and I no longer enjoy the story - Grace said she just wants to be pretty. That is a truckload right there. If she doesn't already get that she's considered pretty merely by her appearance on the website, then the girl needs some serious counseling. What would have been a sweet mother/daughter moment on The Good Wife Season 4 felt contrived now. Her mother isn't the only one telling her she's pretty. So, get over it and grow up. You're on the minds of predators. Congratulations!

Alicia is Sitting Pretty

For just a little while, Alicia has the world at her fingertips. She's the wife of the Governor Elect, on the cusp of forming a brand new law firm and was just asked to consider being Managing Partner of her current firm. Of course, on the negative side, she also has all of those things happening. They're all double-edged swords, aren't they?

Cary tried to talk some sense into Alicia about accepting the Managing Partner position and staying under Will's thumb, and it didn't hit her until she saw Will and Diane interact. As it was hitting the fan for Diane, it seemed that all was going well for Alicia, but she's about to come under some fire herself.

Even if she accepted the position, if Will ever found out about the other firm and that she was on her way out the door (which he will, after all; Robyn told Kalinda about Alicia, so that's one more person who knows the big secret. It's also one more person they need to fear taking with them because she's clearly a blabber mouth incapable of being trusted. Oops.), he'd be just as hard on Alicia as he was on Diane. 

We still don't know if the new firm will take flight, but tonight I realized it could work for the show. It was the first time I thought so. Will and David Lee against Alicia and Cary with Diane on the Supreme Court and Peter in the Governor's mansion would be an interesting show to watch. After all, it's not about law firms. It's about The Good Wife. Wherever she goes, we follow. I could be down with that.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (69 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.

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I thought the Oct. 27th show was a disgrace. It showed the relevance of friendship and loyalty. The show has become R rated with vivid sex scenes. No longer is the show worth watching. Alicia is not only an unfit mother but is the epitome of our society today, all materialistic. Values have been thrown out the door. Her daughter is trying to learn some truths but gets no support from her mother. instead she has the new law firm meeting in her apartment, some of which are flirting with Grace. All is bad, shame on CBS.

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...precisely because surrogacy is such a grey and undefined area. Grace and Zach have always been a problem for the writers of The Good Wife in that they, the writers, have to come up with interesting story lines about adolescents for adults. Grace, in particular, has been something of a scapegoat but she now being used as the conduit of dilemmas every parent has to deal with. How do you instill a sense of self esteem in your daughter if self esteem is tied to how other people see you and how other people see you is tied to how attractive they deem you? (And as an aside, I loved the geek joke about Trajan being the least boring font. Brilliant!)

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...Their friendship has finally reached a plateau after her revelation about sleeping with Peter and, given that she has kept the secret about Cary and Robin leaving - and taking into account her efforts to find Grace when she was feared abducted - this will throw into sharp relief her feelings about Alicia. It has always seemed to me that the Alicia and Will storyline was pulled to quieten the cries of adultery from certain areas of the internet. I still believe this, but now I see that if Peter cheats with the pouty one Alicia's sacrifice - to give up her desires for what society deems as seemly - will have an almighty fallout. Janel Moloney (whom I loved as Donna in West Wing) was suburb as the woman whose eggs were implanted in another woman and the storyline highlighted the judicial, and ethical, questions about surrogacy. It made the point that abortion is a woman's right - the woman whose body it is - but I do agree that this story will probably come back precisely because surrogacy is such a grey and undefined area. Grace and Zach have always been a problem for the writers of The Good Wife in that they, the writers, have to come up with interesting story lines about adolescents for adults. Grace, in particular, has been something of a scapegoat but she now being used as the conduit of dilemmas every parent has to deal with. How do you instill a sense of self esteem in your daughter if self esteem is tied to how other people see you and how other people see you is tied to how attractive they deem you? (And as an aside, I loved the geek joke about Trajan being the least boring font. Brilliant!)

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I've had one foot out the the door for the the past season, but this episode has me hooked again because the dots are finally starting to join up. (This was subtlety alluded to in the microsecond shot of the goat on Zach's computer screen which itself alluded to the previous episode and underlined the immediate and connected way in which we all live - a theme I think we're going to see again). I deplored the writers for what they did to Kalinda's character. I could believe she had been in an abusive relationship, but I couldn't believe that she enjoyed it. Bringing in a young blonde to cover up the mess of the storyline seemed like someone was placing a lot of trust in the art of misdirection. But this week a few dots were joined and it began to feel like the writers were working to some kind of a plan rather than a few random ideas loosely thrown together. Kalinda's been placed in a very awkward position which throws up questions about her allegiance to Alicia. Their friendship has finally reached a plateau after her revelation about sleeping with Peter and, given that she has kept the secret about Cary and Robin leaving - and taking into account her efforts to find Grace when she was feared abducted - this will throw into sharp relief her feelings about Alicia. It has always seemed to me that the Alicia and Will storyline was pulled to quieten the cries of adultery from certain areas of the internet. I still believe this, but now I see that if Peter cheats with the pouty one Alicia's sacrifice - to give up her desires for what society deems as seemly - will have an almighty fallout. Janel Moloney (whom I loved as Donna in West Wing) was suburb as the woman whose eggs were implanted in another woman and the storyline highlighted the judicial, and ethical, questions about surrogacy. It made the point that abortion is a woman's right - the woman whose body it is - but I do agree that this story will probably come back precisely because surrogacy is such a grey and undefined area. Grace and Zach have always been a problem for the writers of The Good Wife in that they, the writers, have to come up with interesting story lines about adolescents for adults. Grace, in particular, has been something of a scapegoat but she now being used as the conduit of dilemmas every parent has to deal with. How do you instill a sense of self esteem in your daughter if self esteem is tied to how other people see you and how other people see you is tied to how attractive they deem you? (And as an aside, I loved the geek joke about Trajan being the least boring font. Brilliant!)

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@ Ceci

Just wanted to say great review here... you encapsulated most of my thoughts in response to this episode and coming through last season. I also felt deeply disappointed in how the treated the storyline of Kalinda. Only time will I suppose, in how things pan out for her in the future, and if they go the way I would like to see them for her. But I felt it also very hard to swallow that development to date, for the exact reasons you stated.
Thanks for a great comment! Definitely agree on all counts, including the treatment of the interest between Will and Alicia. I also appreciated and found interesting the way they dealt with the potential challenges and minefields that lie in the field of surrogacy, both for the surrogate and the parents involved. I always enjoy seeing Janel Moloney also, and watched her on TWW. I imagine (though maybe I'm wrong0 that she hasn't been offered bigger roles due to her perceived lack of 'conventional' attractiveness, compared to other actresses her age or younger. I would love to see that change for her in future, though. She has a warm, Everywoman persona that always comes across to me every time I see her and I always enjoy her in anything she does.
Loved the thing about the fonts too! I'm neither an amateur nor professional publisher, writer or artist, yet I have a strangely sizable collection of fonts on my PC! I just love them, for some reason, and I have my favorites (I also have them very anal-rentively categorized, lol.) So that small point in the show was not lost on me!

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I guess I'm in the minority given all of the positive comments already posted, but I thought there was simply too much going on in this episode--is Alicia leaving or staying? What about Diane and Will? How about the beautiful aide to the Governor? The interesting case? Grace and the minister?
And I'm probably missing a few subplots. Although I enjoyed the episode, I truly feel that it was a bit unfocused with too many balls in the air.

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at the beginning I couldn't understand Alicia's choice to leave the firm,now after seeing what Will has done to her long time partner and friend, Diane, well, I'd say: Alicia, you'd better run! I don't care about Peter, the blonde (by the way Melissa George will alsways be the bad girl in Alias...I know, ages ago!but still...amazing!)...don't care if he wants to "elope" with Alicia, I do not buy it....
Will and Alicia are not done yet... although what I saw in Will tonight...mmmm did't like him for the first time!

Terrie

@Carissa.........
It's fine you can't talk about previews........that doesn't mean we can't.........I mean, isn't what this site is for actually.......to talk about the current episode and what you think will happen next....even if it is based on previews........??????????? Someone did bring up a good point about the surrogate story coming back later in the season.........I can see that happening........

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It is kind of sad to see the destruction of Will and Diane friendship. They had a wonderful friendship. What Alicia saw happened push her away than anything Cary could have said. Peter is tempted that is being human. Melissa George certainly can flirt well. I am quite sure Kalinda is a going to hint to Will very soon! Storm is brewing, it is gonna to be here soon !

Modwild

Thank you, Betty Eagan - fixed. No need to yell. :-) For everyone who wonders why I don't mention what's coming via the previews, it's because we're here to talk about this episode only and spoilers about the future are a no-no on our part. Spenser Amadeus - I have that same feeling, and it makes me sick. It's too bad they did't have the foresight to decide the fate of the child during that hearing, as well.

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Why is Cary so smart when it come to office politics but so stupid when it comes to Kalinda? Kilinda and Will belong together because they are both users. I am glad Diane did not let Will and David Lee push her out. Hey Will you did steal from a client...jerk. Why would anyone want you as their laywer? I hope Diane goes with the new law firm. Why does this show always make fun of God. That guy who came to the door was a pastor looking like that and wanting a beer? Why did he not say good afternoon Ms. Florrick I am Pastor so and so and I am here to pick up "stuff" from Grace. Any normal Pastor would have done that. I don't have a problem with him being a biker but for him to show up and ask a mother about her teen age daughter and go yes I would like a beer?! Please! We get it Alicia you don't believe or care for God and you will do everything in your power to turn your daughter agasint him to yet you don't know your daughter is friends with that evil girl who use to like your son and tried to say he was the one got her pregnant when she was sleeping with a teacher!

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@ Grimmfan#10

I also thought that bit with the youth pastor was a bit contrived. Yes of course, any normal teen pastor, aka, in Real Life, would have courteously introduced himself to the obvious parent in front of him, and even if he was a beer drinker, would have not instantly chimed in "oh yes, now is a perfect time for that, thanks!" (paraphrasing there). I have known many, many youth pastors over the years, unless there's a "rebel" variety I'm as yet unfamiliar with, they are always very earnest to be respectful to both the youth they serve, and the parents in the congregation. There's nothing wrong, as you said, with riding a motorcycle or wearing bike gear, but somewhere along the way in that interchange, any actual pastor would have quickly introduced himself so the mother (or father) wouldn't have gotten the wrong idea. So that bit in the show was too much of a stretch for me. I get why they did it though, basically it was a small plot device to set up and continue the dismay of Alicia at the existence of the "hottest daughters" website. But they could have done it differently and kept it realistic, and still found a way to show that, methinks.

The Good Wife Season 5 Episode 3 Quotes

Alicia: What's going on?
Will: Diane.

Well, I've already been to prison myself, so I guess I'm pre-inoculated.

Peter