Jeffrey Neira/CBS
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S3 E8
March 02, 2015 at 07:24 PM EST

You probably shouldn’t use the title of a song from Flickerstick, winners of the brilliant 2001 VH1 reality show Bands on the Run, as a headline. But the phrase “Execution By Christmas Lights” does capture the strange juxtaposition Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King were after when they wrote an episode featuring both a guilty death row inmate with information that could help an innocent Lockhart/Gardner client accused of murder and a nice politician with a naughty old photo of himself with a Santa statue. We definitely needed the levity of the latter. Snooping Jackie not being able to find the power button on Alicia’s laptop isn’t comic relief enough on its own, people (though it was wonderful to see her!). Let’s dig in.

Ricky Packer — a man sentenced to death for kidnapping two 14-year-old girls from the mall, raping them for three days, and slitting their throats — told a documentary filmmaker interviewing him that he knew where a gangbanger’s body was buried but doubted the police would care because the killer was from a rival gang. The body was found, along with the nearby remains of a female who’d been missing for six months. A 14-year-old wannabe gangster confessed to the first killing, and the state’s attorney’s office arrested the woman’s boyfriend, Tom, for the second. As ASA Dana saw it, the couple had fought, she tried to leave, and Tom shot her. Tom told Lockhart/Gardner that they had fought, but he wasn’t the one to report her missing because she’d told him she was headed back to Canada. Kalinda went to see Cary to peek at crime scene photos, but with him not in his office, it was Dana who offered to share them. Kalinda suggested the two crimes were related: whoever killed the gangbanger had killed the woman, who’d stumbled upon them, with the gun Tom had given her to carry in her glove compartment the week before (after they’d been burglarized). I’m always amazed at how much of the state’s work defense lawyers’ investigators do. Dana was willing to consider that scenario if Kalinda brought her proof. If this was Bones or NCIS, wouldn’t the authorities have recognized that similar decomp on the bodies probably meant the murders were related and investigated on their own? I mean, what are the odds of two people burying bodies in the same place at the same time? But nevermind that: What’s important here is that Kalinda has access to the state’s attorney’s office again. But has she met her match in Dana?

Later, Kalinda phoned Dana to meet her at a bar and asked her for a favor: She needed access to a blue-light anti-gang camera so she could get a photo of the gangbanger who took over the dead guy’s corner the night after his death. He’s probably the real killer. Dana knew how Kalinda works — always wanting something for nothing — and she wasn’t going to play that game. Her back would have to be scratched, too. She asked Kalinda to find out the backstory of Will’s relationship with corrupt Judge Baxter for their investigation into Will. I’m all for Dana making Kalinda work for her tips (someone should) but that was a stupid thing to request. Dana ended up telling Kalinda more about Judge Baxter than Kalinda told her — it was the state’s attorney’s office that got Baxter off the bench, not Will — and Kalinda took a ferry from her island, Ikindawantyoutoleavemealone, to Will’s office to offer her services. Will told her he hadn’t paid off Baxter, but he thinks he knows why Peter’s office thinks he did. Then ask for her help, Kalinda said. “I feel like hugging you,” Will answered, relieved that he wasn’t in this alone. (How long does he think he can keep Alicia and Diane in the dark? Oh, maybe until next week!) “No,” Kalinda said. “Just ask for my help.” Maybe helping save Will will be the way Kalinda begins to repair her friendship with Alicia? Or will this situation end up being something else that Kalinda should have told Alicia about? Either way, in that moment, I wanted to hug Kalinda, too.

NEXT: Cary and Kalinda kiss

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Julianna Margulies, Josh Charles, and Chris Noth star in the legal/family drama.
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