The Good Fight recap: The one that CBS 'censored'
Let’s start with The Good Fight’s latest insane move: “Gary Carr” (I’m using quotations to distinguish the fictional Gary Carr from the real Gary Carr) is getting into Scientology. No, I’m not making this up.
“The One Where Kurt Saves Diane” picks up the dangling thread of Lucca’s burgeoning romance with “Gary Carr,” who shadows her as she goes to court for the firm’s latest Chumhum lawsuit. Lucca ends up kicking “Gary” out of court because he makes a few offhand comments that throw off her game, which in turn leads to a pretty amazing soliloquy/aria-like moment in which Lucca quotes Clarence Darrow to psyche herself up.
At some point, “Gary” sits down for an interview with Ted Willoughby and shares that he found someone special while in Chicago and wants to see it through because they’ve changed his life. Of course, everyone thinks he’s talking about Lucca, who bristles at the thought because he sounds so serious after only knowing her for a week. In a truly shocking twist, though, “Gary” reveals that he wasn’t actually talking about her in the interview. He was talking about Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and Dianetics. Again, I’m not kidding. It turns out that “Gary” took a personality test while in Chicago that really opened his eyes “to the reactive mind,” whatever that means.
“It’s really great. You should think about it,” he says to Lucca, who dashes out of the room as quickly as possible.
Honestly, I don’t even know what to make of this truly surprising turn. By choice, I know very little about Scientology, so I have no idea if all of the things Gary said to Lucca about throwing up before he goes onstage/before she goes to court or giving her advice about her good side were hints at this turn. Nevertheless, I am impressed by not only the Kings’ galaxy brain approach to storytelling but also the fact that the real Gary Carr agreed to take this fictionalized version of himself in this direction. If you had told me that The Good Fight was going to do a story about “Gary Carr” getting into Scientology, I wouldn’t have believed you. The best part of it all is that this wasn’t the only time that the show’s puckish sensibility came out in the episode.
This week, the firm defends Chumhum in a lawsuit filed by gay right-wing provocateur Felix Staples (John Cameron Mitchell), who alleges that the hilariously named search engine kicked him off its video platform and buried him in the search results because it disagreed with his politics. Cheryl, a Chumhum executive, maintains that the platform banned him because of hate speech and that it doesn’t manipulate the algorithm. Spoiler alert: She’s lying.
Eventually, it comes out that Chumhum is developing a customized version of its search for China. By customized, I mean that this program allows China to censor content. Adrian and Lucca are reasonably vexed by this revelation, but Cheryl says that Chumhum is simply obeying the laws of the land in China so that they can gain access to the market. And that leads into this week’s animated short, which is just a black screen that reads “CBS has censored this content.” !!!
Again, I’m not kidding. The Good Fight left that message on the screen for about eight seconds. It’s a small thing in a very busy episode, but I loved this, too, because it’s another moment that reveals how impish this show is. CBS is known as the conventional broadcast network that tries its hardest not to offend, and here you have The Good Fight poking fun at the people who sign the checks. Again, it’s still hard to believe that The Good Fight actually airs on CBS because it’s the opposite of conventional.
Anyway, Chumhum’s work with the Chinese government comes out in court. Because of the ensuing PR nightmare, Chumhum just decides to settle for $20-28 million. While I didn’t find this case totally compelling, it does lead to one important development: Adrian and Liz warn Chumhum about the Carl Reddick Me Too issue. They think Chumhum will stand by them, but Cheryl says she has to consult with Neil Gross, who may decide to just fire them.
Elsewhere in the episode, NSA analyst Stephen slips Diane a note warning her that they know about the voting machine hack. Kurt reads the note first and confronts Diane about it. She says he has nothing to worry about, but Kurt decides to pursue it. Because he’s a badass, he figures out Stephen is the one who sent it and has a clandestine meeting with him. Stephen reveals that he deleted all of the audio files to protect Diane, who is facing jail time if they don’t stop the hack, (yes, he loves our queen as much as we do) and that he plans on quitting the NSA.
Worried that Diane is in too deep, Kurt decides to handle the situation himself. Leveraging his close relationship with the Trumps, he calls the voting commission and tells them that Mar-a-Lago wants them to take the voting machines out of service and replace them with new ones. Eventually, the Book Club — which spent the entire episode worried about a mole — finds out that their hack is going nowhere, and Diane simply laughs because what else is she supposed to do and heads home to her man, unaware of what he did to save her. God, Diane and Kurt are my favorite fictional couple.