The Good Wife Review by Henry Tran

The Good Wife 6.07: Message Discipline

The Good Wife 6.07: Message Discipline

Written By:
Craig Turk
Directed By:
Matt Shakman

At the end of this episode, I could swear I saw the blood drain from Alicia's face. She got flush, and then looked like she wanted to go on the warpath. It's a good look for her. She should have had someone from the campaign take a picture to slap on to the campaign posters. That look -- typical of her "ice queen" persona that has been honed over the years -- is a bit frightening and means business.

A large portion of the episode was missing that look, in part because she was taken off her game. Politics is an arena where Alicia isn't comfortable. Perhaps this was something that Frank Prady noticed as a commentator for CBS (maybe as an admirer from afar) and saw their interview together as his opportunity to pounce. It could have been a part of a long-term strategy to chip into Alicia's surprisingly comfortable early lead.

As I mentioned in the review for the previous episode, Alicia seemed to actively avoid directly answering questions on topics where she isn't prepared. Prady knew about that and used it to size her up. Being a lawyer, she's used to the position of out-thinking and out-manuevering her opponent. Going on the offensive a lot of the time. The political arena and early campaign process is forcing her to look at herself, and to see what her opponents see in her. It's putting her on the defensive, which she knows isn't the best place to be.

The thing is, Alicia knows about these flaws. She recognizes it immediately when she's talking to her handlers. She can't ask for things because she hasn't had to actively ask for much of anything since she came back into the legal world. It's a bit of an elitist attitude, but that's how she's been hard-wired. She's had to fight for everything that she got. Her job, her position as partner at Lockhart-Gardner, her position as senior partner at Florrick-Agos-Lockhart, and so on. She has done all of it without much charity.

It looks easy simply because that is how the show is set up. Eli and Johnny have the monumental task of re-wiring her brain for politics. While I have no doubt Alicia will win out in the end, the race is probably not going to be the landslide that it looks like at this point. Prady is a new candidate so there isn't as much known about him as Castro, but that look in the final scene means that Alicia wants to take this man down as much as the other one.

Left to his own devices, Cary largely looked solemn and resigned to his own fate. The way this case with Lemond Bishop is going, there is the real possibility that Cary faces a lot of jail time for a serious crime. Unlike the court cases that he has tried before on this show, there doesn't seem to be the sense that something will come up at the last minute to bail him out. The judge's 30-foot rule prevents any physical interaction between Cary and Kalinda, although they have several methods of getting around the restriction that fluidly continue their relationship. It's not forcing Kalinda to interact with the other main players, but at least the writers aren't force-feeding the relationship to the audience here.

Kalinda at least actively engages in finding a sliver of hope to help with Cary's case. She got the witness to testify on his behalf. Then it was harshly and swiftly ripped away when the witness died in a car accident. There was no word on whether Kalinda was involved in the accident, but that can't be discounted. A lot of Cary's plot here is an extension of what's been happening since the season premiere. He's slowly being disconnected from the firm. As a result, Alicia and Diane have to exert more control in order to compensate for his absence.

Even with all of things Alicia has to deal with on a daily basis, the show has to keep feeding the relationship between her and Finn. It's more friendly than romantic here since Finn is given a little more to do other than levying more charges against Cary. I get the sense that Finn genuinely looks out for Alicia's interests while still doing his job to the best of his abilities. He warns her (in a somewhat oblique manner) that trouble is coming for Cary. He figures out that Castro is only going after Cary to get to Alicia, which then prompts his surprise resignation from the SAO.

There is still the possibility that Finn and Alicia will have a romantic relationship (it feels like an itch that the writers are just begging to scratch at this point), especially now that they will share office space, but I like the easy conversation between the two of them here. There are no hidden agendas, no sense that one is about to betray the other. Just colleagues sharing drinks and talking about their respective days in the game. It is a reasonable facsimile of what Alicia had with Will before her betrayal and his death. She will need it as a tonic for the inevitable time when politics will poke and prod at everything about her. Judging from that game face at the end, though, she's ready for whatever's coming.

Our Grade:
The Good:
  • Nice to see Alicia struggling a bit
The Bad:
  • The mess with Kalinda isn't getting better

Henry Tran is a regular contributor of review for Critical Myth; The Critical Myth Show is heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. You can follow him on twitter at @HenYay

The Good Wife by - 11/4/2014 5:26 AM175 views

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