The Good Wife closes out a mostly stellar premier season with a mediocre legal case, but with plenty of good stuff about the main players. The title, "Running," at first refers to a cop trying to cut a deal to enter witness protection. But it soon takes on an entirely different meaning as Peter mulls a decision about whether to try regaining his former job as state's attorney.
Besides the Alicia-Peter story, we also learn that Will is still seeing that law student who caused him so much trouble a few weeks back--and she's incredibly rich. (Based on the episode's end, though, I don't see Will becoming incredibly rich anytime soon.) And Diane is still involved with Kurt, the ballistics expert. But unlike Will and Ms. Richy-Rich, their oil-and-water romance continues to hold promise.
Entered into Evidence
This week's big case involves the aforementioned cop, Arkin, who is killed during a drug raid. Because the man had earlier come forward with evidence of police corruption, Lockhart-Gardner offers to represent his widow in a wrongful-death case. The team works on the assumption of a leak within the state's attorney's office. It turns out that the police are in fact innocent of both the shooting and the corruption--the actual corrupt cop was Arkin. A drug dealer shot him after being tipped off by Arkin's wife about the raid, because she was a battered wife.
Now that Cary works for Evil Glenn Childs, the case served largely as an excuse to get Alicia and Cary nose to nose in a conference room. We also learn that Kalinda continues to have major trust issues (duh). She alienates her sometime-boyfriend, cop Tony, by appearing to suspect him of corruption. On the flip side, she may or may not have kissed FBI Agent Delaney during the investigation. As the agent appears to be moving in for a kiss, the camera coyly pulls back behind a set of doors, so all we can see are feet moving ever closer. Cop out or red herring? We'll have to wait to find out.
Finally, it was really cool to see Amy Acker, AKA Fred on Angel, playing Trish Arkin. Even though she arranged for the murder of her husband, I rooted for Widow Fred.
This week's episode was disappointingly light on Will-and-Diane banter, so the spotlight award goes to Jackie Florrick, Peter's mother. The woman is made of stern stuff, which is why Eli Gold asks for her help to persuade Peter to run for re-election as state's attorney.
You can tell she doesn't quite approve of the political operative (did I detect a whiff of anti-Semitism when she asks him if is name is Goldberg?), but they realize they need each other. She also blames Gold for introducing Peter to Pastor Isaiah, who seems to have pushed her son into assessing his morality, when he should be focusing on his political future. She agrees to "handle" the pastor (which she does later). They part with these words:
Jackie: Are you good, Mr. Gold?
Eli (not sure at first what she means): I'm the best, ma'am.
Jackie: I need you to be.
Now--what we've been waiting for: the big triangle! In the final minutes of the season, Peter is revving up to announce his run for office. Backstage at a news conference, he makes it clear to Alicia that he needs her if he's going to take down Evil Glenn Childs. He explains that government only works if good people step up. She seems moved by his argument, but she's all business. They need to keep the kids out of it, and she wants to work. "I want you to work," he says. She nods.
He walks on stage. Her phone rings--it's Will. "I just want to make myself clear," he says. "I just need to say it. We've been up and down. Back and forth. I look at you Alicia, and..."
She interrupts him. Still all business, she says she "gets" the romance--she needs a plan. When he protests, she says that everything that matters needs a plan. She has kids, and the media breathing down her neck, and a husband. "So if you want to cut through all that noise, then show me a plan. Poetry is easy--it's the parent-teacher conferences that are hard." She gets the signal to approach the stage and says goodbye to him.
As she moves toward Peter, Eli says "You're going to make my life hard, aren't you?" and she nods wordlessly. (Honestly, I think Eli may be the man on the show who "gets" her the most.)
As Peter reaches out his hand, Will calls again. She looks at Peter with an unreadable expression. The phone continues to ring as the credits roll.
Come on--you didn't think they were going to resolve this so soon, right? We won't know until next season if she tries to be Peter's "good wife" again, if she runs into Will's arms, or if she opens a boutique legal and political consulting firm with Eli. So goodbye, Good Wife--the court is now in recess until next fall.