The Good Wife Re-Cap (2/15-3/18)

I watched the previous four episodes (2/15- 3/8) of The Good Wife in a marathon session. They are some of the best EVER.  The series continues its clever construction of suspense, chronicling the trials and tribulations of lawyer Alicia Florrick (played by Juliana Margulies in her best role to date), who decides to go back to work after a 15-year stay-at-home hiatus and stand by her politician husband Peter Florrick (Chris Noth, who was *wasted* on Sex and the City) despite his involvement in a high-profile sex scandal.

These past few weeks have sure turned up the heat with Alicia re-exploring (introspectively) her love for her boss and Georgetown Law classmate Will Gardner, the reinvigoration of implied romance between Cary Agos and bisexual Kalinda Sharma (Archie Panjabi), Peter closing in on winning the race for State Attorney (his job before going to jail), and the surprising but short-lived softening of sharkish Eli Gold (Alan Cumming) as he manages his attraction to political collateral Natalie Flores (America Ferrera).

The sub-plotting is masterful. When the series focuses on the campaign, I can’t wait to get back to the legal case of the episode, when it focuses on the legal case, I can’t wait to know more about the FBI investigating Kalinda.  Speaking of law, the show has also explored some first amendment cases in interesting ways.  The series makes no apologies for the shadier moral quandaries of motives and tactics, leaving us on somewhat existential ground. Except for Alicia saying “It’s wrong” and then you’re like come on, why don’t you do something about it then??

In one of the episodes, Alicia’s gay brother encourages sister to break the rules and to indulge her naughty side for once.  “It’s Alicia time!” he says in his advice to her on how to seduce her boss Will.  Indeed, I think the viewers are left wanting, waiting for Alicia to make her move in her career, love life, and family.

For a legal show, The Good Wife is a doozie of a thriller.  The series paints Chicago with noir-ish edges that could have been lifted right out of BladeRunner, employs sexual tensions from the frames of Gladiator, and dark, perverse suspense from Alien.  This is classic Ridley Scott all over.


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