Yes, the writing is good. The acting is excellent, as is production value.
It's the storyline that gives me grief on The Good Wife Season 6 Episode 1. After waiting what feels like forever for Cary (and Matt Czuchry) to get a great scene, he's the focus of one of the most uncomfortable hours of television in a very long time.
Or, perhaps it's that Czuchry so fully embraced the confusion, fear and utter what the hell feeling of Cary's situation that I couldn't stop bristling.
The Good Wife Season 6 premiere picked up seconds after The Good Wife Season 5 Episode 22. It turns out we didn't know just how much of a weird year was had by the associates at Florrick/Agos. Not then, anyway.
It's always interesting to consider the consequences of representing a criminal the likes of Lemond Bishop. He's so good at being bad that it gives the partners of Florrick/Agos an easy feeling that comes back to bite them in the butt. Well, Cary is the only injured party at the moment, but it seems impossible this situation would not carry over to the firm.
Who knew there were no bail bondsmen in Illinois, or that this was the first we learned of it after five years of The Good Wife? I suppose that speaks to the quality of clients our favorite attorneys have been representing. Cary, however, could have really used the help.
Even though Bishop is a seasoned criminal mastermind, it was encouraging that he didn't turn his back on Cary and Alicia. Bishop should have known Cary wouldn't turn on him without Alicia's reassurance. Thankfully he put his weight behind the guys who could have sold Cary down the river for drug trafficking.
I can't help but wonder if, after the humiliating and painful experience of his stint in jail (no, I don't think he's there to stay), Cary might have a different attitude toward the law and the type of clients they represent at Florrick/Agos.
Alicia may have been incredibly shocked at the idea running for State's Attorney, but if she wished even for a second for it to come true, what better motivation than that very position going after her partner to try to bring down Bishop? It seems targeting a fellow attorney to try to trap their clients is fairly dirty business.
Alicia has never been a fan of dirty politics, and that's what is happening on her watch. Going so far as to keep her from representing Cary, Finn being the State's representative in the lower court Cary was being held and denying use of the bail cash just in case it was from drug money all makes an even stronger case for her to jump into the madness.
The scenes between Alicia and Finn were really strong. Juliana Margulies and Matthew Goode have a striking on-screen rapport and their characters' shared history with the life and death of Will Gardner point to the possibility of something more. At the end of The Good Wife Season 5 it seemed unclear if they would go there.
But in a matter of hours (their time) both have come out of their doldrums and are seizing the moment. Does that mean a romantic ecounter? No. But it doesn't close the door on it, either.
It was a little bit disappointing that both Alicia and Diane even let it cross their minds that Cary wouldn't be at a meeting about Diane joining the firm for any reason other than life or death. His commitment to either woman has never been in question. Diane was his mentor. While Cary doesn't necessarily like the idea of Diane coming in for various reasons (wait until he hears about her proposed equal partnership), he would never be petty about it and skip a meeting to discuss it.
I couldn't be happier that Diane is "retiring" from her own firm because I still don't like Louis Canning. If, eventually, they steer away from the firm that started it all, I won't be sad to see them go. Since Diane has to represent Cary, that may force her to stay at Lockhart/Gardner a little longer than she anticipated. That could also mean her $38 million in clients is siphoned off by her partners before she leaves.
If the idea was to shake things up for the new season, it was achieved. Kalinda came through for Cary and in doing so likely cemented her future with Florrick/Agos, which would help them meet one of Diane's demands to join the firm.
It would be impossible to talk about everything that happened. Peter's reaction to Alicia's poll numbers and Eli's concern over Peter's panty talk will just have to be handled by you good people. What did you think about the opener and where do you see the season going as it continues? Have fun in the comments!
Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.