The Good Wife may be winding down, but you wouldn’t know it from the latest episode, “Unmanned.” With a fast pace that barely allows the characters to take a breath, more happens to Alicia and company in three days than most of us deal with in three years.
How hectic are these days? Alicia faces huge decisions — and opportunities — in her personal and professional life. Eli must choose between his daughter’s happiness and his loyalty to Peter. The fight over the firm’s future comes to a head. And Peter realizes he may be losing both his wife and his freedom. So yeah, hectic and head-spinning.
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Private Lives, Public Safety
What better place to discuss religion and morality than in bed with your hot new boyfriend? In Alicia’s case, bed is where she learns that a) Jason’s Greek Orthodox and believes in God, b) he’s a little judgy about their relationship and c) she’s doesn’t care she’s a bit of a “bad person” when she’s with him. And, boy, does she look happy, even when she has to leave for work.
Work is a privacy-rights case involving drone surveillance in a Chicago suburb. Diane and Alicia’s client, a psychiatrist, is suing a security firm for violating his patients’ privacy. But the real client is Reese Dipple, the right-wing billionaire. According to the defendant’s attorney, Caitlin D’Arcy (returning guest Anna Camp), this is one of Dipple’s “trial balloons.”
Alicia’s impressed by Caitlin’s work and glad to see her back in the courtroom after leaving the firm to marry and raise a family a few years ago. Alicia’s admiration turns to dismay when the judge buys the defense argument weighing privacy against security. He dismisses the case.
But the real showdown isn’t in court. Peter arrives at Alicia’s apartment and discovers a half-clad Jason drinking coffee in the kitchen. After knocking the cup out of Jason’s hand, Peter gets all huffy and says, “She’s still my wife!” (A little late, don’t you think?) But as Jason leaves, Peter stands in his wife’s messy bedroom and realizes he may have lost her for good.
Could Marissa Send Eli to Jail?
Moving on! At the mall, prosecutor Connor Fox (Matthew Morrison) tries to get to Eli through his daughter, Marissa. If her dad won’t testify against Peter, he’ll bring Eli up on bribery charges from the Schakowsky case. (He has evidence from tapping Marissa’s phone.) What’s a juice-bar gal to do?
And at the law firm, Diane and Cary ask Howard to vacate his prime office space to make room for Alicia. Howard asks Cary if he’s “thrown in with the girls.” Howie warns David Lee that Diane’s out to get rid of all the men at the firm.
Cary and Alicia talk about how things have been a little crazy over the last few years, what with all the changes, but they don’t talk about Diane’s plan to have a female-run firm. Cary also doesn’t mention that he’s been called to testify in front of the grand jury.
After losing the case, the doctor takes aim from his backyard and shoots the security firm’s $80,000 drone out of the sky. Back to court for him — this time as the defendant.
Alicia arrives home to an empty apartment. She calls Jason, who’s sitting in his truck. He drives off without answering.
There’s No Place Like Drone
Marissa brings the news about Fox’s threat to her father. Eli’s concerned that Fox said he would ask him to testify at “the trial,” not the grand jury. This could be more serious than they thought.
And it is. When a furious Eli confronts Fox, the prosecutor makes it plain: “You help me take down Peter Florrick or your daughter helps me take you down.”
In court, the doctor admits to shooting down the drone. Alicia says he’s allowed to protect his property. The judge tells them to prove that the doctor’s home was threatened. Bring on the expert witnesses! Apparently, drones can carry weapons, steal your data, even enter your home.
But in this case, the drone was flying away from the doctor’s house, so destroying it was the equivalent of shooting an intruder in the back. Score another victory for Caitlyn.
David confronts Cary about allowing Alicia to move onto “our floor.” Cary says they’re partners — they’re protected. David sees it differently. “This is war,” he proclaims. He goes on the offensive. His first move is to undermine Alicia by burying Lucca in work.
Jason hasn’t left town. (Yay!) He’s upset that Peter learned about their affair and wants to cool it. She tells him she wants him in her bed that night. (Yowza!) After that, he can do what he wants.
Then she marches into the governor’s office and drops a bombshell on her husband. “I want a divorce,” she tells him.
Alicia’s Done Being a Wife
Peter assumes this is all about “your investigator.” After rolling her eyes, Alicia retorts,”Yes, I would never think of divorcing you unless I had another man to call my own.”
She makes it clear she no longer cares what he thinks, what Eli thinks, what anyone thinks anymore. Even when he reminds her that he’s about to be indicted, she’s ready. “Oh, Peter, you’re always about to be indicted. If it weren’t today, it would be tomorrow. I’ll have my lawyer call.”
Back to drone court. This time, the doc’s brought down the security company’s unmanned craft using a “drone dropper.” Since the device wasn’t actually destroyed this time, it becomes a matter of whether he violated FAA draft regulations about unmanned vehicles. Now the judge wants to talk to the FAA. (In typical Good Wife fashion, this is very up-to-the-minute stuff, folks.) But the FAA attorney isn’t much help, since most of the laws about drones remain unsettled. For now, it’s “the wild, wild west.”
Eli comes to the firm. He needs a lawyer of his own now. He asks Diane to take his case. He’s worried Fox will make good on his threat to use Marissa’s knowledge about the Schakowsky bribery incident against him unless he turns against Peter.
Alicia lets Lucca in on Diane’s plan to make the firm female-led. Alicia confesses that she doesn’t have the stomach for a gender war. Lucca’s just intrigued by the idea of making more money.
Chicago is Filled with Sad Men — and One Greedy One
It’s getting clearer why this episode is called “Unmanned.” When Alicia stops by Cary’s office, he asks for a favor: don’t side with Diane. She says it’s none of her business — she’s not a name partner; he is. When she doesn’t immediately agree to help him, he looks anguished.
Eli tells his daughter that he’s hired a lawyer. For now, things are developing — just don’t talk to AUSA Fox. Marissa’s worried that she’ll be responsible for sending her father to jail. She also wants to know if Eli thinks Peter really didn’t do anything wrong or if he’s still trying to protect him. He stays silent.
David finally confronts Diane about her plan. Cary notes that Diane originally didn’t even want to bring Alicia back. Diane says she was wrong about that — and she wants Alicia to become a name partner again. Cary flatly says, “No.” (Oh, Cary! You really are sad, aren’t you?)
An equally resigned Howard learns he’s not getting his office back anytime soon. But unlike all the gloomy guys around him, David admits that it’s not worth getting into a big fight just yet. He wants to “milk this place for all it’s worth while it’s still standing.” He goes to Diane, offering to support Alicia’s rise to name partner — under one condition.
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Winners and Losers
Alicia enters her apartment, weary from the long day. Is the place empty?
No! Jason is sitting on her bed. He greets her with a big smile. They immediately start tearing each other’s clothes off.
The next day, the judge rules on the drone case. He’s annoyed he has to do it, but since no one else will, it falls to him. Based on an old case law he has to find for the security company, the doctor can’t be shooting down drones more than 83 feet above his property.
Alicia congratulates Caitlyn for her win. The younger lawyer admits that things aren’t easy for her now — she’s separated from her husband and she’s a single mom. “I guess you were right,” she tells Alicia. “I never should have left.”
“No,” Alicia responds with a rueful smile. “I wasn’t right.”
Cary charges into David’s office, accusing him of throwing in with Diane. Howie gloats, “Life’s a bitch, kid.”
Cary’s Big Decision
Diane and Eli go to see Fox. Eli’s willing to confess to obstruction of justice in the Schakowsky case. Fox reminds him that he could serve real time for those charges. But that would make Eli a less-than-stellar witness against Peter in the Locke murder mistrial case, Diane reminds the prosecutor.
Diane lays it on the table. Do you want to hear his confession now or wait to hear his testimony at the trial? Fox doesn’t answer, but either way, Eli’s freed his daughter from any more trouble.
Alicia thanks Cary for helping her become a name partner. He says, don’t thank me — I voted against you. But David Lee supports you.
He also tells her he’s quitting. He’s asked Diane to buy him out.
She thinks it’s about her, but it’s really not. “I don’t like it anymore,” he says. “I like being a lawyer. That can be fun, but this isn’t. I’m not good at it. I’m not good at looking over my shoulder.”
When she says, “You can’t just quit!” he disagrees. Oh, and he’s been subpoenaed to testify against Peter in the Locke mistrial case (which Cary was actually part of). “It’s not good,” he says as he walks out. Oh, Cary, no!
Will Alicia Do Peter One Last Favor?
Back home, Alicia’s in her kitchen alone when Peter comes calling. “I’m not here to argue you out of the divorce. The kids are grown. We live apart. Things have changed. But I do need to ask you a favor.”
He’s worried that this time he’s really in trouble. He needs her to stand by him during this. He just needs her to keep it out of the public eye until it’s all over. Then they can go their separate ways.
She’s about to answer him when we cut to black.
With only a few episodes to go, “Unmanned” moved as swiftly as that surveillance drone, moving from storyline to storyline. In fact, given how many ongoing plot threads still remain unresolved, it’s amazing that the writers managed to slip in another case about today’s legal issues.
But let’s put the law aside and talk about the lawyers instead. It’s so great to see Alicia happy with Jason — and Jason willing to make her happy. So sad to see Eli face the possibility of betraying Peter, but it’s for a noble cause: to keep Fox from forcing Marissa into narcing on her dad.
It’s also great to see Alicia moving back into her rightful place at the firm (and bringing Lucca along with her), but how sad to see Cary heading for the door. Can the old comrades in arms ever be friends again? At least with Cary testifying about Peter, we know we’ll see him again, so there’s still a chance.
What do you think? Is Cary gone for good? Will Alicia stand by her soon-to-be ex-husband? Is Jason a keeper? And when will CBS order up a spin-off about Marissa and Eli?
The Good Wife airs Sundays at 9pm on CBS for a few more weeks.
(Image courtesy of CBS)