On this episode of Suits, “Live to Fight,” Gibbs tries to turn Donna against Harvey, Louis discovers who turned on Mike and Jessica goes to Jeff Malone for help.
Anita Gibbs is not playing around. But she may wind up getting more than she bargained for when she picks a fight with Donna.
Gibbs Threatens Donna
As predicted, Gibbs bring Donna in for questioning, and also as expected, Donna has nothing to say. But as Donna is leaving, she spots her father in a room across the hall. It seems Donna’s daddy was involved in some shady real estate deals a few years back. If Donna isn’t willing to turn over something Gibbs can use against Mike and Harvey, her dad could suffer the consequences.
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Louis Meets His New Norma
For anyone worried that Gretchen might find herself unemployed, no fears. She is now working for Louis, and this woman has come prepared. Gretchen knew Louis’ previous secretary, Norma, for over 30 years. The two played Mahjong together every week, a game Louis had tried and failed to infiltrate.
It was Norma who blackballed Harvey from the gathering. It was the only guaranteed respite from Louis’ never-ending tyranny. But Gretchen’s willing to put in a good word, and thus is the beginning of another beautiful friendship.
Gibbs Goes After the Firm
Donna has returned to Harvey’s desk, and the two dispense with any sentimentality and get right to work. Harvey’s schedule is now devoted to Mike, his number one client. They hit the ground running, because Jessica informs Harvey that Gibbs has subpoenaed every case Pearson Lecter Litt ever touched. Gibbs has openly declared war on the entire firm.
Jessica has zero doubt that if Gibbs gets in the door, she will find something to pressure someone into saying whatever she wants, and Jessica doesn’t want some stranger rifling through her house.
Jessica thinks it’s time to bring in outside counsel, and she wants it to be Scottie. Harvey doesn’t want to involve his ex, but Jessica argues they don’t even have a strategy to stop the subpoenas. Good thing boy-wonder Mike shows up with a plan.
The best defense is a good offense. Mike says they don’t have to prove Gibbs can’t subpoena their records, she has to prove that she can. As far as they know, Gibbs doesn’t have any evidence that Jessica knew about Mike. Jessica isn’t so sure. She believes those subpoenas are proof Gibbs has something, but Harvey, having worked in the D.A.’s office for 5 years, and judges were known to give subpoenas out like candy. Jessica suggests Harvey and Mike get down to the D.A.’s office and take Gibbs’ candy away.
One Step Closer to Finding the Snitch
Mike, Harvey and Gibbs meet with a judge. Harvey argues that Gibbs has no grounds to issue the subpoenas, and when Mike accuses Gibbs of trying to come after Harvey, she doesn’t deny it. Gibbs doesn’t believe there is any possible way Harvey couldn’t have known.
Harvey wants to know what evidence Gibbs has to corroborate any of her claims. Gibbs isn’t about to turn over any evidence until she absolutely has to, but the judge begs to differs. She wants to know what got this whole ball rolling.
Gibbs responds that she received an anonymous email from a reputable source. The judge demands to see a copy. The message was sent from a general Harvard faculty address, and Gibbs says they are working on tracking down the sender. The judge says Gibbs better be successful, because if she doesn’t produce more concrete proof, she’ll toss the whole case.
Now Harvey is convinced the whistle blower is Henry Gerard. Mike doesn’t understand why Gerard would wait until now, but Harvey doesn’t see who else it could be. Mike wants to go and talk to Gerard, use the leverage they have against him to get the guy to back down. Harvey argues this is a terrible idea. Gibbs is all over Mike, and if he goes to Boston, Mike will be leading her straight to the source.
Harvey quickly comes up with a Plan B. Mike may not be able to go to Harvard, but he has someone in mind who can.
The two arrive back at the office and are met by Rachel who tells him that Donna has been taken to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Before Harvey jumps onto his white horse to go rescue her, he orders Mike to proceed with their mystery plan.
Mike tells Louis it was Henry Gerard who turned him in. Louis doesn’t believe it, questioning how Gerard could possibly know. Mike explains Gerard figured it out, and now Louis has to go see Gerard and get him to recant the accusation. Louis has no idea how the hell he’s supposed to pull that particular rabbit out of a hat, and Mike says they need to figure it out, together.
Louis wonders where Harvey is, and being relentless as a dog with a bone, he gets Mike to admit that Donna’s being questioned. This was exactly what Louis feared, and his first instinct is to jump up and rush to Donna’s aid. Mike convinces Louis that the best way to help Donna make Gerard, and this whole case, go away.
Louis reads the email and notices that it accuses Mike of being a “potential” fraud. Why would someone who knew for sure would use the word “potential”? Louis doesn’t believe it was Gerard, and he believes he know who did. Obviously, Louis believes it was his ex-girlfriend and Harvard recruiter, the kinky Sheila Sazs, who bleeds crimson.
Jessica Covers Her Ass
Jessica goes to see her ex, Jeff. Jeff, like every other lawyer in the city, has heard about Mike. He questions how Jessica could let this happen, but before she offers up an explanation, she has a favor to ask. Jeff guesses she wants him to represent the firm, but Jessica clarifies that she wants him to represent her. Jessica admits she made a mistake not trusting Jeff once, and she doesn’t want to make the same mistake twice.
Jeff wants to know everything, and it isn’t going to be protected by attorney-client privilege. Jessica is going to have to trust Jeff won’t turn her in. Jessica was never worried that Jeff would narc her out, she didn’t want to put him in a position where he had to lie, but she’s ready to come clean now.
Donna’s Father Calls Harvey Out
Seven years ago, Donna’s dad came to her with an idea. He wanted to get back into real estate development after losing everything years earlier. Donna’s father wanted to have Harvey help him secure the loan. Donna assured her dad that Harvey would never go for it because it wasn’t legal, but her dad called it a slight of hand, nothing more, people do it all the time. So Donna’s dad is a charlatan apparently, and not a very good one.
Even though Donna thought it was a risk, she asked Harvey for the money. But Harvey said no, primarily to protect his Girl Friday from getting pulled into her father’s sketchy business practices.
Donna gets to see her dad and apologizes for getting him dragged into this mess. He assures her it’s not big; people have tried to rattle his cage before. Harvey asks that Donna step out and give the two a minute.
Once she’s out of earshot, Harvey lays into Donna’s father, demanding to know what the old guy did because Harvey can’t get him out of trouble if he doesn’t have all the facts. Donna’s father says he did what everybody else did, he inflated his collateral.
Donna’s father isn’t about to sit back and take any of the blame or a tongue lashing from Harvey. He makes it clear that his daughter is in her current predicament because of Harvey’s shady dealings, not his. Gibbs is trying to get daddy dearest to convince Donna to testify against Harvey, But dad won’t do it because he knows it would kill Donna, and regardless of what Harvey might think, he wouldn’t do anything to hurt his daughter.
A Matter of Trust
While Harvey is busy trying to save Donna’s ass, Jessica is covering her own. She wants to know if Mike still has the letter he has proving Jessica knew he was a fraud. Mike wants to confirm Jessica destroyed the affidavit that Jessica had Rachel signed saying his girlfriend knew the truth about him. That would be a resounding “no” on both counts. Jessica says she’ll get rid of hers if Mike gets rid of his, but he gives just enough pause to piss Jessica off.
Jessica isn’t convinced Mike won’t throw her and Harvey to the wolves, and Mike doesn’t trust Jessica, given some of her past conduct. Jessica suggests that Mike has a chat with her attorney, Jeff Malone.
The Source is Revealed
Louis reunites with Sheila, and she admits she’s the source. She read an article about Mike’s promotion to junior partner and it prompted her to do some digging. Not to mention she remembers EVERY Harvard Law grad, and she had zero recollection of Mike. Her intentions weren’t insidious. She just wanted to protect the prestigious law school’s reputation. Louis questions why Sheila didn’t come to him first, and she answers that she didn’t think she had to. Louis doesn’t understand why she sent the email anonymously, and it was simply because this happened on her watch.
Rachel doesn’t understand why Louis is defending Mike and figures out Louis was in the know. He tells Sheila he wants her to retract the email, tell them she made a mistake and found the file. She refuses and on top of it all, she’s heartbroken at Louis’ betrayal. His last play is to beg her not to come forward which she says she never had any intention of doing.
Rachel’s Loyalty to Harvey Waivers
Rachel finds Donna in the ladies room and tries to offer some comfort, but things take an ugly turn. Rachel hasn’t abandoned the idea of turning on Harvey to save Mike, and the same holds true if Donna does it to save her father. Rachel’s life would get a whole lot better if Harvey take responsibilities for his actions. Donna defends Harvey to the ground, stating all her boss did was give Mike a chance, and Rachel says this is exactly why Mike won’t turn on Harvey.
Mike Strikes a Deal
Mike is spiraling. He now knows it was Sheila, and Louis is upset that Mike is more concerned about covering his ass, than the personal toll this revelation is having on Louis.
Mike goes to see Harvey to find out what’s going on with Donna’s father. He’s frustrated that Donna’s father is in this mess because of him, and Harvey won’t let Mike help. Mike is under investigation and has no reason to help with Donna’s father’s case. Harvey is the man’s counsel, period. Mike’s frustration reaches another boiling point, but Harvey advises Mike to focus on what to do about Sheila, because if Gibbs finds her, they’re in deep shit.
Mike decides to call on Gerard for help. Mike wants Gerard to sign an affidavit saying that Mike was in his class. That should be enough to dismiss the case, but even if it isn’t, the affidavit creates reasonable doubt if he goes to trial. Gerard sees another possible scenario. The affidavit doesn’t create reasonable doubt, Mike goes to jail, and Gerard is guilty of perjury.
A desperate Mike threatens to anonymously call Harvard and accuse Gerard to taking a bribe from a student for a grade. Gerard tells Mike to do what he feels he has to, but Gerard is jeopardizing his whole life to sign that affidavit. Mike bluffed and lost. Pretty fitting since Gerard is a gambling man.
But Mike has another idea, one that won’t put Gerard in such a precarious position. I’ve got to say he has balls to still ask for help after making that threat. Mike equates his battle to a game of poker, right up Gerard’s alley. And all Mike needs is the guy to help him bluff. Hopefully, it will work out better than his half-assed attempt at blackmail.
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Harvey’s Past Comes Back to Haunt Him
Donna suspects Harvey did something seven years ago to derail her father’s developments plans. After she asked him for the money, and Harvey refused, he also advised Donna not to lend the money to her father out of her own retirement savings because Donna’s dad was a crappy businessman. This didn’t go over well, and Donna thought Harvey’s judgement was clouded by his own dysfunction relationship with his parents.
The past has caught up with Harvey. Donna tells him her father is officially going to be charged with bank fraud and wants to know what Harvey did. He admits to strong-arming a banker, and when Donna questions why, Harvey admits there was evidence that needed to get “lost.” Donna’s intuition has always served her well, so she wants the full story of what happened years ago.
Harvey not only refused to give Donna’s dad his money, but told the man that if he took Donna’s money, Harvey would pull every string he could to get the deal shut down.
Harvey feels he did the right thing, but all Donna can see is that he went behind her back and set the wheels in motion for her dad to do something illegal. Now she has to choose between them.
Mike and Harvey Take a Risk
Things keep going from bad to worse, so Mike presents Harvey with a Hail Mary. It’s a letter from Gerard. And while it doesn’t state point blank that Mike attended Harvard, Gerard does write that he knows Mike to be an amazing lawyer, he’s how mastery of the material Gerard teaches, and that Mike is an outstanding student of the law. Harvey knows it’s not much, but it’s all they’ve got.
Harvey presents the letter in court, and it goes as badly as he expected it would. But when Gibbs tells the judge it’s likely Harvey coerced Gerard into signing the letter, Harvey points out that while their exhibits are from blackmail, Gibbs’ are squeaky clean because she’s Mother Teresa. Harvey tells the judge about Gibbs’ going after Donna’s father in an attempt to get Donna to give false testimony. Mike also brings up Gibbs’ plan to have a federal marshal rough him up in a holding cell.
The judge claims if there’s proof that Gibbs’ is abusing her power, she’ll become the subject of an investigation.
Gibbs changes course and says she wants to question Gerard. Harvey asks for a minute, during which Gibbs says she’s knows the letter is crap, and Gerard will fold when she gets him on the stand. Harvey dares her to pick a fight with a renowned ethics professor.
Gibbs questions what Harvey wants, and it’s simple. He wants Donna and her father off limits. She still gets to go to trial, and they both live to fight another day. She still wants the subpoenas, but Harvey won’t bend there either, and he has the judge in his corner on that one.
Harvey won the battle, but the war rages on. Gibbs shows up at the firm the following day with the subpoenas. The judge granted them after Sheila came forward.
Jeff shames Mike into agreeing to make Jessica’s letter “disappear.” But the real mastermind behind the emotional manipulation is Jessica. Jeff did her this favor, but he decides not to represent his former girlfriend but leaves the door open for them to possibly rekindle their romance.
Gretchen comes to Louis and makes a confession. She’s the one who called the ABA journal to get them to write the article about Mike making junior partner. The same article that tipped of Sheila. Gretchen knew Louis and Harvey and Jessica were aware of Mike’s deception, but her lips are sealed.
Suits airs Wednesdays at 10pm on USA.
(Image courtesy of USA)