The Good Wife
Credit: David M. Russell/CBS

A funny thing happened when the writers in EW’s TV department each sent around our Top 10 shows of 2009, aside from the usual chastising: CBS’ The Good Wife (new episode tonight!) made many of the lists. It’s a phenomenon I’ve experienced outside the office as well. More than once, I’ve been at dinner with friends, one asks what we’re all watching these days, someone mentions The Good Wife, and suddenly the whole table is having a discussion that resembles what Lisa Schwarzbaum said in a recent issue of EW: “I stay with The Good Wife because the truth — passed from woman to every TV-watching woman I know — is that this traditionally constructed 10 p.m. show is the most pertinent, articulate, observant, and realistically feminist network-TV drama on the air today. There’s no flash, no wisecracks, and no singing cheerleaders — just superb plotting, crisp writing about issues that matter, and harmonious ensemble performances led by Julianna Margulies, who is all steel and interesting stupor.”

But it’s not just women who get how good this show is, right? The fact that men at EW — including Ken Tucker, who ranked it No. 10 on his official countdown of the year’s best shows — are fans, gives me hope. But I still want to take it to a vote:

In tonight’s episode, Alicia (Margulies) learns more about Peter’s fall from grace by representing his nemesis’ wife in a divorce, and Will (Josh Charles) “gets cozy” with his opposing counsel during a wrongful death suit against a TV commentator played by guest star Craig Bierko (Boston Legal). I’d be lying if I said the tension between Will and Alicia wasn’t one of the reasons I tune in. I wouldn’t want them to cross that line (now), but the sight of two intelligent adults, working late in the office, having a beer in relaxed business attire, is sexy enough for Tuesday at 10.

Photo credit: David M. Russell/CBS