“What do you do when someone has a gun to your head…You take the gun, or you pull out a bigger one. Or, you call their bluff. Or, you do any one of 146 other things.” —Harvey Specter
Jessica and Harvey both have guns to their heads at the end of tonight’s episode. And, I’m not sure how they’re going to get out of it. (Real talk: This is Suits, so they will probably win in the end, but not without some kind of sacrifice). What’s even more surprising, however, is who is holding the guns to their heads and why. “Uninvited Guests” was, naturally, filled with a ton of guests, some of whom I’ve tried to forget and others I accidentally forgot about. With Hardman making his opening salvo on the firm, it was nice to see the heroes of Suits band together to fight this new old threat.
The partners meeting to decide Harvey’s fate is held at the top of the hour. In an act of humility that’s completely out of character, Harvey not only admits to his colleagues that he did punch Louis, but also apologizes for his selfishness up until now by reducing his compensation to the median amount and giving the rest to the partners. This humble act convinces enough partners to vote in his favor, and he isn’t suspended. Seeing his opening, Jack proposes that the firm accept Hardman back on a trial basis because he has just netted a billion dollar client. Jessica and Harvey object, but Master of Spin Jack frames their objections as wanting to keep money out of the partners’ pockets.
Speak of the devil and he doth appear, Hardman pays the office a visit right after the meeting to make sure everyone knows he wants his firm back and that he isn’t messing around this time. He means business, and by business, I mean Pearson Spectre Litt’s business. Hardman, after insulting her age, gives her two options: either she accepts him back with his rich client, which would put him in a position to kick her out of the firm, or he and his new client will start acquiring all of Pearson Specter Litt’s clients. Normally, I wouldn’t be worried, because no one messes with Jessica and gets away with it, but Queen Pearson looked worried throughout tonight’s episode.
Fast-forward through some Harvey and Louis bickering about whose to blame for Hardman’s return, newly minted partner Mike figures out which client Hardman is going after first, McKernon Motors. While Mike figures out how to save McKernon, Harvey visits the
Bearded Man In Black McKernon Motors leader Dominic Parone (Titus Welliver) and admits that Hardman is coming after the company because of him. But, Dominic doesn’t care and agrees to stick by Harvey’s side. It seems as though Harvey’s obsession with loyalty is paying off.
What’s enjoyable about “Uninvited Guests” is that it builds on what’s come before instead of having the characters go through redundant character beats. For example, last week’s episode saw Harvey take some big steps in therapy, which he builds on in tonight’s episode with his two humbling acts. Similarly, Rachel’s wedding planning drama with her mother works because it ultimately ties into this season’s exploration of the sacrifices she’s making because of Mike’s secret and makes her wonder if she’s willing to give up things she’s dreamed about since she was a child for *love*.
Speaking of Rachel, while Jessica’s Army is fighting the good fight, she’s busy butting heads with her mother about wedding plans. Laura Zane not only wants to announce Rachel and Mike’s wedding in the New York Times, but also has guest list of 300 people that includes the Attorney General and the Dean of Harvard Law School. Although this is the wedding she’s always wanted, Rachel has to shoot these ideas down because they would open Mike up to too much scrutiny. When her mother pushes the issue, Rachel lies and pretends to be angry at her mother for making this wedding about her and threatens to elope.
Rachel hates keeping secrets from her mother and seeks out Donna’s sage guidance. Rachel’s considering telling her mother about the secret, but Donna immediately shoots that idea down because then her mother will be burdened with a secret she has to keep from Papa Zane. (Casualty of Mike’s secret: Rachel’s relationship with her mother). You know, that stripper from The Office episode “Benjamin Franklin” was right, “Secrets, secrets are no fun. Secrets, secrets hurt someone.”
NEXT: The tide turns against Jessica’s Army
Mike is blissfully unaware of what Rachel is dealing with because he’s found a way to save McKernon Motors, which, unfortunately, involves turning to Jonathan Sidwell and Tony Giannopoulos for financial help. In a cleverly shot sequence, Harvey visits Sidwell and Mike visits Giannopoulos to ask for help and skillfully manipulate the men into funding the proposed venture. Because it’s not winning unless you gloat, Harvey and Mike pay Hardman a visit and throw their win in his face, and then go celebrate with drinks.
Unfortunately, Mike has to cut their prostate-filled banter short because he has to go meet up with Rachel and her mother. When he arrives at the Zane home, he’s surprised to find himself alone with Mama Zane, who is worried about her daughter’s out of character behavior and thinks Mike is the one forcing Rachel to not have the wedding of her dreams. Blindsided by the situation, Mike says he has no family to invite to the wedding and that’s why he was asking Rachel for a small wedding. Breaking out the guilt trip, Laura says to Mike, “If you could find it in your heart to let my little girl have the wedding that she’s always wanted, I am telling you she’ll remember it for the rest of her life.”
Naturally, Mike is upset that Rachel kept all of this from him. In their discussion, he confesses that he spoke to Claire about her knowing his secret and now he’s worried that Rachel is having second thoughts about marrying him and that he’s dragging her into something that’s going to ruin her life. No, Rachel is staying the course and sticking by the man, because not marrying him is more devastating than not getting her dream wedding. Did you catch feels during this tear-filled scene? I sure did.
Meanwhile, Louis figures out that the only reason Jack is helping Hardman is because Hardman has something on him. So, Jessica tasks him with figuring out Jack’s secret, which forces Louis to pay Benjamin in the IT department a hilarious and McDonald’s reference-filled visit for help. Unfortunately, Louis can’t figure it out. Donna, noticing Louis’ frustration, suggests Louis smoke some pot because that’s what Harvey and Mike did last time they battled Hardman and it helped them beat him. But, Louis refuses to “take the pot.”
The war with Hardman takes a bad turn when Hardman manages to overcome Harvey and Mike’s plan to save McKernon Motors. Alone, Hardman doesn’t feel like a veritable threat to the firm because we’ve been through this before, but Gabriel Macht and Gina Torres’ performances pick up the slack. Those two are selling Harvey and Jessica’s worry, especially when Jessica shows up uninvited at Harvey’s apartment again. She’s desperate and he’s desperate, so Harvey decides to “go see a guy about a thing,” which we’ll get to shortly.
Unfortunately, Louis couldn’t find out Jack’s secret, so that leaves them with one option: they need to flip Jack to their side by making him a named partner, a promotion Hardman was offering him in return for his allegiance. Jessica makes Louis believe that she’s going to go through with the idea, but when she meets with Jack that night, she asks for his resignation. Offering him an olive branch, she says she’ll wave his non-compete. Jack cockily offers her the same offer because he’s certain that Hardman will win and the partners will vote her out. And, she’s confident Harvey will win, too.
Speaking of Harvey, he pays Charles Forstman a visit in jail. As it turns out, Forstman is the one backing Hardman. He doesn’t care about Harvey’s war with Hardman or the firm. All Forstman wants is to ruin Harvey’s life, and he tells him that he’ll back off if Harvey quits the firm. We know, as does Forstman, how big of an ask this is. Earlier in the episode, Harvey admitted to the partners how much his position in the firm mattered to him.
Mike also ends the episode at a crossroads. His conversation with Rachel’s mother moved him to reach out to Trevor, who we find out is now married and out of the shady game. In fact, Trevor’s wife didn’t want him to come see Mike because Mike’s breaking the law every day doing what he’s doing. Before leaving, Trevor advises he stop pretending to be a lawyer because there will come a time where this new life he’s created for himself—a.k.a. all the money he’s making—won’t be worth the burden of the constant anxiety about being found out.