Alicia defends Judge Cuesta, Cary returns to Lockhart Gardner, and Kalinda tries to convince Agent Delaney to drop her investigation 

By Breia Brissey
Updated March 02, 2015 at 11:14 PM EST
Jeffrey Neira/CBS

There’s only one episode left of season 3 of The Good Wife. And I object! Clearly, we should leave the lawyering to the acting professionals. The honorable Judge Richard Cuesta (David Paymer) found himself in hot water after being put in the “penalty box.” Cuesta had led the prosecution on a murder trail 20 years ago. Recent DNA testing — which wasn’t available at the time — proved that the man Cuesta put behind bars was probably innocent. As a result, his 15-year judicial career was hanging in the balance. Cuesta reached out to Diane & Co. to represent him in the civil and criminal case. Incidentally, Cuesta hired Lockhart Gardner because of Will’s recent judicial bribery accusations. Funny how those things work.

As Kalinda began to look into the facts of the case, it became more and more evident that the man Cuesta sent to jail was, in fact, innocent. They had to bring in an outsider to preside over the inquiry: Enter small-town judge Murphy Wicks. Suffice it to say, it wasn’t so easy to revive the details of a case 20 years old. Testimonies were traded. Prejudicial evidence was left for the jury to find. And Cuesta wasn’t willing to incriminate his co-counsel, Lloyd.

Kalinda eventually reached out to Cuesta’s former investigator, Mara, and paid her a visit to see if Cuesta bent to rules to get a conviction. Mara pointed Kalinda to some neglected evidence, four purchases on the victim’s credit card after her death and the accused’s incarceration. But the meeting with Mara was probably most interesting because she offered Kalinda some unsolicited advice: “Get out while you can. Just don’t go into retail.” More on this later. But eventually, despite Cuesta’s original qualms, Alicia and Diane were able to place the blame on Lloyd, the co-counsel. It helped that Lloyd had an addiction to pain killers he failed to mention at the time. The inquiry ended, and perhaps so did David Paymer’s guest judgeship. He’ll no longer be able to preside over any Lockhart Gardner cases. Damn conflicts of interest!

NEXT: Cary returns to Lockhart Gardner!

Speaking of conflicts of interest, Diane, Will, and Howard decided hiring a new litigator was necessary. (Ed. note: Can I just say I love Howard? He really has no business still working at a law firm, but he certainly is entertaining. And someone has to always be around to irritate Eli and ask the important questions: Who would you take to a deserted island?) Anyway, Alicia recommended Cary for the job. And all seemed to go well, but Will didn’t want to hire him considering the potential conflicts of interest. Diane calmly pointed out, “are we really suddenly worried about conflicts of interests? We face 50 between here and the elevator.” Yeah, probably not your best argument, Will. Still, Diane agreed to consider other potential candidates before bringing on Cary full-time.

But of course the legal world of Chicago is a small one. Eli noticed Cary in the offices and spilled the beans to Peter about him leaving the state’s attorney’s office. Peter was none too pleased because loyalty is so important to him. (Forgive me for rolling my eyes at this. Remember cheating on your wife, Peter?) But Cary lost respect in the state’s attorney’s office after his demotion, so Peter offered him one month’s severance and they parted ways.

Meanwhile, Diane agreed to consider other non-Cary options for the new hire. She reached out to Callie Simko, former cocaine addict and current Will Gardner lover. Of course, Diane didn’t know either of these things prior to the interview. Diane loved Callie, and I was worried that she might get hired instead of Cary. Especially after Will canceled one of their dates. Thankfully, Callie got a better offer from another firm, and the prodigal son Cary returned to Lockhart Gardner. Cary and Will even agreed to let all of their unresolved issues go. Cary is clearly back where he belongs, but his transition seemed a little too simple. Are we being set up for something big in next week’s season finale? Discuss.

NEXT: Kalinda tries to convince Agent Delany to drop her investigation

When Kalinda wasn’t troubled with the Cuesta case, she was dealing with her own issues. Lemond Bishop stopped by the office to say a FBI agent approached him. And Lemond isn’t the kind of guy who let’s a visit by the FBI just go. “I don’t like the FBI coming to me. So take care of it. Fast. Are we understanding?” Because that’s not threatening, right?

Kalinda went to Lana at her apartment, and they had a very sexually charged moment. They kissed. And then Kalinda told her to stop her investigation. Kalinda said she knew Lana had gone to Lemond Bishop, and that he was going to kill her. Now, I knew Kalinda was in some deep trouble, but I didn’t think that it was the kind of trouble that would get her murdered. But even Kalinda’s teary-eyed plea didn’t seem to make a difference. Lana’s not stopping, and that makes me nervous for Kalinda’s well-being. And perhaps she should heed Mara’s advice: Get out while she can!

What did you think of “The Penalty Box”? Who would you most want with you on a deserted island? (Thurgood Marshall? Keith Richards? Yo-yo Ma? Brad Pitt?) What’s going to happen at Lockhart Gardner now that Cary has returned? And what kind of trouble is Kalinda really in? Sound off in the comments below.

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