If you aren’t already a fan of The Good Wife, you are missing out on one of television’s best dramas. Julianna Margulies stars as Alicia Florrick, who is the wife of Peter Florrick (Chris Noth), a former state’s attorney embroiled in a sex and corruption scandal. In the wake of her husband’s scandal and jail stint, Alicia must move forward with her life and provide for her teenage children, Grace and Zach.
When Alicia takes a position as a junior associate at the Chicago law firm Lockhart-Gardner, she is put back in contact with her former law school friend, Will Gardner (Josh Charles). Will and Alicia have some serious chemistry, and they dance around each other as they wonder about taking their relationship to a romantic level.

If you are new to the series, now is a great time to catch up on past episodes when the Hallmark Channel begins airing the series on January 2. Still not convinced? Here are five reasons why you should watch CBS’ The Good Wife.

Warning: Teasers ahead for those who haven’t watched. 

Alicia’s Strength (and Vulnerability) Will Have You In Her Corner

 Julianna Margulies, who is also known for her previous work as nurse Carol Hathaway on the series ER, is a revelation as Alicia Florrick. She is able to show the nuances of Alicia’s relationship with her teenage children, and her husband, Peter. Alicia’s relationship with Peter is complicated because of his many betrayals.

On the work front, Alicia must face the humiliation of her husband’s misdeeds as she struggles to gain her footing as an attorney. Margulies gives Alicia both an air of uncertainty and a fierce determination that will have you rooting for her.

In 2011, she was nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, and is a 2014 Golden Globe nominee for her work on The Good Wife.

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Will and Diane’s Brutal Rivalry

What is a bit of conflict between law partners, after all?

In 2011, Christine Baranski was nominated in the supporting actress category for her work as fearless attorney Diane Lockhart.

Josh Charles was nominated for a 2011 Emmy Award in the supporting actor category for his portrayal of Will Gardner, Diane’s law partner. He is also nominated for a 2014 Golden Globe in the same acting category.

Although they are often friendly, when push comes to shove, this duo is not afraid to morph into attack mode, like when Will attempted to oust Diane. The tension between Will and Diane often simmers just under the surface, causing us to wonder what they will do next.

A Volative Love Triangle

The writing on The Good Wife is intelligent and leaves you on the edge of your seat. The show has comical touches, but the show’s focus is rooted in the character’s complex relationships and the intricacies of the legal system. The Good Wife explores the world in shades of gray, instead of black and white, right or wrong.

There have been some memorable plot twists in the series. Some of my favorites have dealt with Kalinda’s past, her shocking link to Peter, and the fall-out from that secret. One of my favorite scenes is Kalinda sitting in a chair, in the dark, watching a door while holding a loaded gun.

The love triangle with Alicia, Peter, and Will has been a tortuous road indeed, and once again the characters’ choices are neither black nor white. The love scenes between Alicia and her husband and lover are sizzling, yet also have an authenticity rarely seen on other dramas. This season’s explosive confrontation between Alicia and Will was startling, and memorable.

Peter’s election night drama with the stuffed ballot boxes led to his being elected Governor, and Alicia making the choice to stay by her husband’s side in spite of her love for Will. It also set up the turmoil and secrets as lawyer Cary Agos (Matt Czuchry) plots a secret exodus from Lockhart-Gardner to start a new firm with Alicia.

The caliber of the writing on The Good Wife is top-notch, and the show certainly deserves it’s 2014 Golden Globe nomination for best drama series.

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Guest Stars Like Michael J. Fox, Matthew Perry, and Martha Plimpton Add Some Fireworks

Many familiar faces have appeared on The Good Wife. Several well-known actors have appeared as Judges, including Jeffrey Tambor as Judge Kluger, and Denis O’Hare as Judge Abernathy. I must admit that I am a Judge Abernathy fan!

Stockard Channing has guested several times as Alicia’s mother, and Rita Wilson has played sly attorney Viola Walsh. Michael J. Fox played attorney Louis Canning, who at one point offered Alicia a position at his firm. Clarke Hayden, played by Nathan Lane, is now working at Florrick-Agos. It seemed that Eli might have a shot at love with the return of Natalie Flores, who is played by America Ferrera. Even Peter’s challenger for the governor’s seat, Mike Kresteva, was played by Matthew Perry.

Martha Plimpton won an Emmy Award in the outstanding guest actress category in 2012 for her role as the win-at-all costs lawyer Patti Nyholm. The following year, Carrie Preston snagged the same award for her guest-starring role as the hilariously quirky attorney Elsbeth Tascioni.

Let us not forget to mention Diane’s husband, rugged firearm expert Kurt McVeigh, who is played by Gary Cole. That is some incredible talent, which illustrates just how smart, and deliciously dramatic, The Good Wife is.

Kalinda is the Sexiest Character on TV

This is one drama that is not afraid of a little steamy action. There was one scene with Peter and Alicia in a bathroom that was almost too hot for television. Oh, my!

Of course, Kalinda really takes the cake in this category, doesn’t she? Archie Panjabi, who plays the mysterious Lockhart-Gardner investigator, won a 2010 Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.  Panjabi’s portrayal of the tenacious Kalinda is simply amazing, and her friendship with Alicia in earlier seasons was fun to watch.

Kalinda’s exotic looks and brooding eyes have definitely helped her in her job as an investigator, and she doesn’t shy away from a little physical action if it helps her with her cause. She is also fascinating because she is bi-sexual, and tends to fall for people, rather than gender types.

She had a fling with Cary Agos (Matt Czuchry,) and he wanted her to leave Lockhart-Gardner to join his new firm. Kalinda is focused on survival, and who can blame her with what she went through with her ex-husband? She rejects the offer when it is not enough money and when she finds out that Agos also made overtures to the other female investigator at Lockhart-Gardner.

The Good Wife is a series that has it all. It stages its characters against the fascinating backdrop of politics and the law. At the heart of the series is Alicia, and her struggle to be a wife, mother, and excellent attorney. Along the way, throw in some sex, lies, love and betrayal, and you have one intelligent and sexy thrill-ride!

Don’t forget to tune in on January 2 when the Hallmark Channel begins airing the series from the beginning.

The current season of The Good Wife airs Sundays at 9pm on CBS.    

(Image courtesy of CBS)

Kim Stempel

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Kim has been covering television entertainment since 2013. She is addicted to Real Housewives, Pump Rules, Dancing with the Stars, and many more shows.