The Good Wife recap: Liar Liar Pants on Fire
Alicia steps up her political involvement when Mike Kresteva becomes Peter's political rival, and Jackie suffers a stroke
Hell hath no furry like Alicia Florrick scorned. In last night’s “Pants On Fire,” Alicia took on Jackie and Mike Kresteva. Picking up where we last left off, Alicia interrupted Jackie’s salon visit to call her out on purchasing the Florricks’ old home. Jackie had put a down payment on the house, so Peter and the kids could move in. (And she probably hoped she could join in on the family fun, too.) Obviously, that didn’t sit well with Alicia, who felt like Jackie was trying to replace her. Alicia threw down the gauntlet and promised to stop her. “I’m not really sure how you’ll do that,” Jackie taunted. To which Alicia promptly responded: “I’m a lawyer. Watch me.” Get it, girl!
Alicia sent Kalinda to investigate the home purchase, and she learned that Jackie got the money from Zach and Grace’s trust funds. But Alicia didn’t even have to use that information against her. Instead Peter stepped in and told Jackie if she wanted him to remain in her life, she couldn’t buy the house. She seemed to take it as well as any overbearing mother could. But shortly after Peter put his foot down, Jackie suffered a stroke. Off to the hospital she went, and while looking pretty sickly, Jackie ominously told Alicia “I forgive you.”
Meanwhile in court, Diane and Alicia were representing a young girl who had been charged with murder after a slumber camp killing. (The two other girls accused had different representation.) The original DNA evidence used against the girls was thrown out because of crime lab infractions, and the conviction was vacated. But the state’s attorney’s office decided to re-try the defendants, and offered them an Alford plea. The girls could take the plea, go free, and remain convicted felons for the rest of their lives. The other option was to decline the plea, not admit any guilt, but remain in jail. The girls would be able to sue and potentially take home a reward with the latter option.
Kalinda set out to find evidence to help their client make an informed decision about the plea deal. Through her investigation, she learned that the victim might have ridden a bicycle the night she was killed. That new information convinced Kalinda & Co. that only one of the girls — Megan, who wasn’t their client anyway — was guilty. And that essentially ended the procedural portion of the show, which was quite alright because Alicia was a bit distracted with other, much more important things. (More on this later.)
NEXT: Mike Kresteva reprises his role as the newest jerk in Alicia’s life…
Perhaps the point of the case was to introduce us to Callie, Megan’s lawyer. Callie went after Will, who was barely present in the episode. As a former cocaine addict who had gone through her own suspension, she decided to take Will to Behind the Bar, a support group for sanctioned lawyers. She spoke to Will about the dangers of not having the law to fall back on, and then not-so-subtly invited him over for some, ahem, alone time. I think the real danger of not having the law to fall back on is having Will end up with women like Callie. I wasn’t a fan of her character, but I also know she’ll be back next week. So prepare.
Anyway, as I mentioned before, the procedural aspect of the show to a backseat to the return of Mike Kresteva — the man who is definitely not Alicia’s Friend. Kresteva showed up at Alicia’s office unannounced to discuss the blue ribbon panel report. The findings would censure Peter and the state’s attorney’s office for covering up the shooting. Kresteva asked her to write a minority report for the panel, and unsurprisingly she declined. Kresteva then announced his intentions to run for governor at a press conference. And while he was at it, he lied about how Alicia dealt with the blue ribbon panel, making her and Peter look pretty bad. Alicia was pissed.
The lies just kept on coming. Eli advised Alicia to just let it go, and accept it: “People lie. And politicians are just people.” But she couldn’t handle that fact that Kresteva lied and was going to get away with it. So she confronted him, and he just continued to lie, solidifying his douchebag status on the show. But lying seems to work for him: “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting its shoes on.” UGH!
NEXT: Alicia stands by her man…wait, what?!
Mike Kresteva’s smarmy behavior may have worked to Peter and Eli’s advantage, though. Alicia’s hatred of Kresteva encouraged her to step up her activity with Peter’s gubernatorial campaign. She even reached out to him and told him to run. And at that point, Peter was seriously considering not entering the race at all. But Peter’s elevator run-in with Kresteva seemed to change his mind. “You may not regret it. But your wife will,” Kresteva threatened Peter. And I officially hate that guy. (Props to Robert and Michelle King for now having created two characters that I hate even though I love the actor and don’t want to. I’m looking at you, Michael J. Fox!)
In other — albeit less exciting — campaign news, Vanessa Gold returned to work on her state Senator campaign with Eli. But their productivity and happiness was short-lived. Frank Landau of the Democratic party came to Eli and told him that the party didn’t want Vanessa to win the race. They had another person in mind. Landau gave Eli an ultimatum: Drop out of his ex wife’s case or lose their help with Peter’s campaign. And although it made him look like an ass to Vanessa, Eli decided to choose the campaign he was managing, instead of the one he was just consulting on. Vanessa was none too pleased with the decision, but Eli didn’t have much of a choice.
At the end of the episode, Peter officially threw his cap into the race for the Governor of Illinois and Alicia proudly (?) stood by his side. Enter flashbacks of season 1. But that’s why she’s the good wife.
Is there any way this will end well? What has Alicia gotten herself into? How involved do you think she’ll end up being politically? Did you enjoy seeing Eli’s messy, postcoital hair as much as I did? How long before Cary returns to Lockhart Gardner? And what on Earth did Jackie forgive Alicia for? I’m accepting all theories in the comments.