We gave it a B
Jessica Pearson is in the house! Dulé Hill makes his Suits debut! What’s not to love about “The Statue”? Honestly, not much. Picking on day one of Harvey Specter’s regime, this episode does a nice job following through on some of the promise of the season premiere. I wish it had done a bit more with that potential energy, but I enjoyed how it explored Harvey’s adjustment to being the man in charge. Let’s dive in.
The day after hooking up with Paula, Harvey decides to take a page out of Jessica’s playbook in order to solidify his reign to the outside world: tearing down her metaphorical statue. As Jessica told him 13 years ago when she got rid of the old partners’ names — which we see in a flashback featuring the Queen herself — “When you overthrow a dictator, you don’t leave their statue up in the square. You tear it the hell down.” Damn right! So Harvey does just that and decides to drop Jessica’s oldest client, Jim Reynolds, in favor of bringing Pfizer over to the firm. However, in order to do that, he has to make his old friend Alex Williams (Dulé Hill), a senior partner at another firm, a named partner as PSL. Like Harvey, Alex likes his poker metaphors, but we don’t learn much else about him in this episode. But Hill is charming as always, so I’m looking forward to seeing how Alex gets on with the rest of the characters.
Harvey agrees to make Alex a named partner, which is easier said than done given that he needs both Louis and Jessica to say yes. Louis, who is still working through his issues with his therapist, immediately says no when Harvey meets with him and Donna to talk about it, and the meeting devolves into Louis and Harvey arguing back and forth while Donna sits there silently, like she’s not even there.
To be fair, Louis has a point about how they shouldn’t just make any Tom, Dick, or Harry a named partner, but it’s obvious to everyone else that he’s also worried about what that will mean for his friendship with Harvey and his position at the firm. Louis tries to net Pfizer’s business without having to bring Alex over, which pisses Harvey off even more. When Harvey tries to pull rank, Louis reminds him that he needs both his and Jessica’s vote.
So, Harvey hops on a plane to Chicago to see Jessica in the episode’s best scene. Jessica understands what Harvey is trying to do, but she thinks this is the wrong way of going about it because it’s clear he’s not seeing the big picture: If he gives being a named partner away so easily, what’s going to happen the next time he wants to bring someone over? Most likely, PSL will start looking like the firm Diane Lockhart left at the beginning of The Good Fight (Lockhart, Decker, Gussman, Lee, Lyman, Gilbert-Lurie, Kagan, Tannenbaum & Associates). Alas, Harvey doesn’t take this constructive criticism particularly well and tells Jessica to stop messing with his firm, to which she says he should just take her name off of it. Raise your hand if you hate it when mom and dad fight!
Maybe it’s therapy from two seasons ago or the fact that he’s dating Paula now, but it doesn’t take Harvey too long to realize he screwed up. Sure, a call to Paula helps, but so does a chat with Katrina, who warns him that making Donna a partner conveys to other lawyers on the senior partner track that partnership might not mean what it used to. Basically, this episode is about Harvey realizing that his decisions not only affect him but the entire firm, and he has to take that into account with everything he does now. While I find this interesting, I kind of wish the show had found a way to dramatize this development in a more interesting manner, as opposed to several scenes of people yelling at each other. (Recap continues on page 2)