Seven seasons in, and only The Good Wife could find a way to still make the show’s title relevant. This time around, it’s because of Alicia’s rehabilitation, but we’ll get to that in a bit. First, let’s check in with the wife herself.
After a quick “cleaning up the streets of Cook County” montage, Alicia finds herself working as a bar attorney in bond court. At least, she’s attempting to work as a bar attorney, but let’s just say her first go-around in the fast-paced world doesn’t go exactly as planned. But it does introduce us to Cush Jumbo’s Lucca Quinn, a successful bar attorney (and the only other female attorney in the room).
After the judge excludes Alicia from the day’s proceedings, she meets up with him afterward to ask why. The long and short of it? Bond court is about quantity, not quality, and considering that Mr. Judge Man has to get through 350 cases a day — that’s one case every 90 seconds — he isn’t willing to let Alicia slow him down. After all, isn’t she just play acting? He’d rather give the cases to those who actually need the money.
Well, here’s the thing. Despite her many successes, Alicia always finds a way to have to reinvent herself, and now, she really does need the money because she hasn’t been able to get a job since the voting scandal. Not helping her case? The limo that just pulled up to take her to lunch with Canning. Classic Canning: Screwing everything up for everyone but himself.
Over lunch, we learn what Alicia told Canning when he asked if she wanted to partner: No. And now, she’s sticking to her guns, simply because he’s “the devil.” For the first time in her life, Alicia isn’t answering to anyone, so despite the fact that Canning has some theory about how when two people bump into each other, one apologizes and the other says “watch it,” Alicia doesn’t care that she’s the apologizer. She’s not going to work for Canning. (Even though he says they’ll be equals.)
Speaking of not answering to anybody, Alicia realizes that she doesn’t need to be making decisions for her husband. With that, she calls Eli and tells him that Peter can officially run for vice president. (Sure, make yourself feel better and doom the nation, Alicia.)
Once she’s back home at her new office, Alicia is welcomed by her daughter-turned-secretary, Gracie, who’s ready to introduce Alicia’s first client: a woman whose mother just died, leaving either her or her brother to inherit a signed Chagall painting worth $8 million. The twist? The lawyer for the brother is none other than David Lee. The second twist? The mother, who put Post-it notes on everything she owned to designate whom the item should belong to didn’t use anything to secure the notes. So by the time the lawyers arrive to see which client rightfully gets the painting, all of the Post-it notes are on the floor. Let the fun begin.
Elsewhere, Eli is doing his best to get his hands on Ruth Eastman — Margo Martindale! — to help Peter’s campaign. Eli knows that she could help them get second place in Iowa, which would lead them to Hillary. In fact, Eli seems so confident in Ruth’s ability that it rubs off on Peter … so much so that Peter replaces Eli with Ruth. And despite the fact that Eli is now the kind of man who drinks smoothies, he’s still Eli, so his reaction isn’t too surprising: “You just lost your greatest asset and made your worst enemy.” #TeamEli
NEXT: Cary’s feeling old
Important Lockhart/Agos update: Partners are old. Associates are young. Cary hates his life.
Meanwhile, Alicia is giving bond court another go around, and after the judge tries to exclude her, Ms. Quinn offers up some of her cases. (And the poor guy who just got $500,000 bail probably wishes she hadn’t.) But Alicia will catch on at some point … right?
At the end of the day, four of Alicia’s six cases are still behind bars. Oh, and she forgot to get them to check a box on the form, so she’s not getting paid for anything that just happened.
But at least she’s getting paid for her other case, which Alicia settled with David. Both siblings will split their mother’s assets 50/50. Well, that was the plan. But after Diane calls an “adhesive expert” to the stand — yes, really — things get dirty. Alicia brings in an aerodynamics expert, and then Diane and David bring in an industrial suction expert to talk about a Roomba. And when they find that the Roomba had sucked up a note with the name of the housekeeper written on it, things really get fun.
Outside of court, Alicia has her first run-in with Ruth, which doesn’t go well to say the least. But, being the good wife she is, Alicia does an interview with Peter to tell the entire world that, should he run, they should vote for him because of his “loyalty.” Take that, Peter. Alicia then attempts to visit Eli, but he’s in a dark place where all he wants to do is watch movies at high volumes. (So, he’s me on a Friday night.)
But that attitude doesn’t last long. After watching a movie about snow Nazis — because if anything’s inspiring it’s snow Nazis — Eli gets a haircut, a new suit, and makes Alicia an offer: He wants to be her chief of staff to coordinate with Peter’s campaign. He warns her that Ruth will want to rehabilitate her, make her a good wife again. And when Ruth confirms that to Alicia’s face by offering to “mold a real you that [the American people] will like,” Alicia informs Ruth that Eli will be her chief of staff or she won’t be involved in her husband’s campaign. Oh Ruth, you have no idea what you just stepped into.
Back at bond court, Alicia is covering for Lucca when she gets stuck there, unable to make her court date with the painting case. Thankfully, Lucca is able to step in for her — I’m feeling a new partner in crime — and uses her knowledge to inform the court that the housekeeper can’t have the painting because in Illinois, a caretaker to an invalid cannot inherit more than $20,000. (Who knew?)
With that victory under their belts, Lucca and Alicia go grab a drink — at a country bar? — where Lucca tears up the dance floor and Alicia gets yet another unwanted visit from Canning. Apparently, he gave her that case. So yeah, he’s using Alicia as a pawn against Lockhart/Agos. But no, she doesn’t want him to stop sending her cases. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
Other important revelations: Eli is going to undertake and eventually destroy Ruth — and maybe Peter, depending on his mood — and Cary is trying so hard to seem in touch with the young associate’s that one of the male associates thinks he’s hitting on him. (But is he?)
So we end the hour with a lot of questions up in the air, but all I have to say is: I’m a fan of Lucca. Give me more of her, please.