17 February, 2013

The Good Wife: "Red Team Blue Team" – The Elephant is Back

Season 4, Episode 14 | Original Air Date: Sunday, February 17, 2013

Some fascinating things happened in The Good Wife this week – and I’ll get to all of them – but not before I celebrate a little first.


Because Team Gardner FINALLY got a reunion kiss!  I've been waiting for this moment for 24 episodes.  But who’s counting?  Oh wait.  Me. It was like “Heart” and “A New Day” rolled into a delicious passion-infused package… and it was amazing.  Like ‘pass me a paper bag I’m losing my mind’ amazing. 

But before I get into my dream scene, I must first back-up, because this story’s too good not to share.

Money in the Bank
It was a chilly day in February.  Actually, no.  It wasn't.  Well, maybe it was, but who are we to know?  All we’re given at the beginning of this episode is a laundry list of clients who seem to be paying their bills to Lockhart Gardner… in gold bars.  Chum Hum?  That was a win.  Cha-ching.  Sweeney?  He and his turkey baster secretly (or not) love Alicia, so they’re paying their invoices.  Bishop?  Sure, his legit businesses are money pits, but the illegal dealings are handsomely paying the bills.  What this means?  Lockhart Gardner is out of debt.  Not only that, they've got $113 million in the bank.

I'm sorry.  What?  When did this happen?  I feel like I missed six months.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I know the Chum Hum win was big and that Sweeney and Bishop are high-rollers (and both deliciously diabolical and definitely on my ‘must-see again before the end of season four list’) but seriously.  How could they get this far out of debt in one episode?  Yes, we had a three week hiatus, and I’m willing to be somewhat lenient on their timelines, but being debt-free after having an entire season built on the drama of the firm’s survival is this side of crazy town.  Now, I love The Good Wife writers – I think they do an incredible job – but I can’t help but wonder why they ended this arc so abruptly.  Was it because things weren’t going to be fun without Clarke lurking over Cary’s shoulder?  Or was it because everyone is a little sick of Lockhart Gardner being unable to manage any of their finances?  Either way, nothing prepared me for David Lee unofficially assuming the role of resident accountant.  I imagine him sitting at his desk calculating profits by moving M&Ms from one column to another.  He’s dastardly… and evil… and I’m not sure why he hasn't been overthrown.

In any case, all the equity partners are high-fiving and talking about all the champagne they’re going to drink when the beloved lover of early-bird specials, Howard Lyman, stands up and mentions all of the offers of equity partnership they threw out in an act of desperation.  Diane, in an attempt to be loyal to those she used only days (months? Who knows, I’m confused) earlier, says the offers should be honored.  Will agrees – no takesies backsies.  No one else cares though; Time to go crush some dreams.

Challenge Accepted
Who better to break bad news than David Lee?  All signs point to this being his favourite time of day – the time when he shatters people’s realities and then offers them chocolate like it makes up for anything he’s ever said.  Heading into Alicia’s office, we knew he was going to drop the bomb: Alicia’s offer for equity partnership has been delayed a year.  Why?  Well, why not?  The firm needs some “time.”  Great.  He didn't even bring his germ-covered candy dish to this meeting.

Now I’m mad.  This was the worst decision the equity partners could have made, proving the firm has zero loyalty to anyone.   While I found myself yelling at my TV, “this is garbage!” I realized this is the game of The Good Wife.  It’s all about how far the characters can be pushed until they fight back.

With Cary, Alicia and the other fourth years all out of luck, there was nothing left to do but hold a mutiny meeting in Alicia’s living room.  With Grace and Zach eavesdropping like two pesky flies, the five associates decide to band together and take all of the firm’s high net-worth clients out for lunch.  It’s all about business development, seeing if the clients are happy and stirring the pot.  Genius!

Florrick Agos and Associates
Before Alicia could hand Cary a Tupperware filled with tomorrow’s lunch (which, by the way, I LOVED that she packed him leftovers!), Cary suggested the one thing I've been thinking for years: They go into business together.  If they pooled their equity partnership funds, they would have money for a start-up firm.  They could almost surely secure some of the Lockhart Gardner’s top clients and in a flash they’d be the eighth biggest firm in Chicago. Pa chow!  Cary Agos, I didn't think I could like you any more… but I was wrong.  

Meanwhile, back at the office, Cary and Alicia are teamed up against Diane and Will for a mock trail surrounding the death of a girl who drank “Thief,” a hyper-caffeinated energy drink.  With the mandate to ‘give it your all’ and ‘come at us hard,’ Alicia and Cary put all of their energy into winning.  Of course, this meant hiring Kalinda for $400/hour and channeling the rage from the partnership deferral into the courtroom.  The result?  A resounding win for Florrick and Agos, but not before an epic encounter between Alicia and Will…

Good Timing
Will, hot off the heels of having his ego handed to him on a silver platter in court, headed to the office for some late-night business.  Or Scotch.  Either way, he got off the elevator (my favourite set) in a flurry and headed down to Alicia’s office. 

Will: You got a problem, you bring it to me, you don’t take it to court. 
Alicia: What? I’m a lawyer.  You asked us! 
Will: We asked you to take this seriously. 
Alicia: I am taking this seriously! 
Will: You’re losing us a client. 
Alicia: That’s not my fault! 
Will: It damn well is your fault. 
Alicia: Well then take us off of it! Fire us! Get rid of us! 
Will: Oh, is that what you want, huh? That’s what these meetings with clients – is that what this is about?! 
Alicia: Oh my god. Listen to yourself Will. You are not the injured party here. 
Will: Oh what, and you are? 
Alicia: I AM. YES!

Will looked at Alicia looking at him and he couldn't help but kiss her, because a) it’s the best decision he will have made all day b) he loves her c) he feels bad about the equity partner schmaz-fest and d) it’s been 24 freaking episodes and Team Gardner fans deserve a little love, too!

Oh yes, and is if Will leaning in wasn't good enough, Alicia 100% kissed him back.  Take that “Mom pick up the phone” ringtone.  Take that.

That Awkward Moment When...
So, Alicia ran out of her office and somehow made it home without grabbing her purse or keys.  Meh – the details aren’t important here because we should all still be reeling from the gloriousness of that kiss and the face we’re (I’m) still hyperventilating… and also that we've (I've) watched that scene six (or more) times already.  Let’s flash forward.  The verdict in the mock case was unanimous:  “Thief” didn't have a leg to stand on and was off to settle for $12 million.  That left Will and Alicia with some time to talk.  

Alicia: What are we going to do?
Will: I don't know.  It was a weak [but amazing] moment.

Their official verdict?  They shouldn't be alone in the same room together and Alicia is sorry… for basically everything in life.  Will, with his sad, but understanding eyes, knowingly agreed that this was just another example of bad timing. 

While we aren't left with a proclamation of love, we have been given a renewed sense of hope.  The elephant is back in the room and that’s all we need.

Congratulations, Alicia Florrick
The next day, David strolled into Alicia’s office with a new offer: Of the five fourth-year associates, she was the one they were picking to take the single new equity partner spot.  Alicia accepted.  Cary congratulated her and said it was the right move.  Alicia, now strong allies with Cary (and not just because he has her Tupperware) made the bold move of saying now they can get what they want – she can work to sway the other partners.  Could Alicia be working to further her own interests with Cary while taking Lockhart Gardner along for the ride?  It’s what they've done with her… and I for one am definitely open to her playing the game. 

Elsbeth and Eli, Sitting in a Tree
In other news, Elsbeth and Eli are busy fighting with the FBI over wire taps, dirty calls and cutting a few political deals.  New on the scene is Josh Perrotti (the ever-handsome Kyle MacLachlan), whose character is strangely matched by Elsbeth’s whimsical brilliance.  In the minefield of bizarre, these two dance around like nimble woodland creatures in search of the next song to sing or petticoat to fluff.  It’s an intoxicating match-up as they both one-up each other’s last move.  Even the offer of biscotti won’t sway Elsbeth, which was good news for Eli as he strapped on a wire and pretended to lure Jordan into a trap.  Instead, Eli ended up at David LaGuardia’s office (Remember him? The accordion-playing agent who raided Eli’s office after they met in a diner and shared a bottle of hot sauce?).  The result: A confession that Josh had forged documents to get Eli’s phone tapped… which means the taps they have are inadmissible.  Poor Josh.  All he wanted was a dinner date, but instead, he was Tascionied. 

Predictions to Ponder
While we have another hiatus for the Academy Awards, March is looking to be fully stacked with four new episodes.  Of course, this means there’s plenty of opportunity to ponder and predict how this season is going to play out.  Here are a few things that have crossed my mind:

1) The window of romance for Will and Alicia has once again been opened.  Word on the street is we’re going to get some flashbacks to their relationship from season three, which is sure to please any Team Gardner fan.  I am, however, doubly intrigued by Will’s comment about not being allowed to end up alone in the same room.  Prediction: A case will throw these two together in an unexpected way.  I don’t know when and I don’t know how, but with chemistry like this, Team Gardner could be back in business.

2) David Lee was all about dropping names in “Red Team Blue Team” which always provides a meaningful nudge to the audience as a way of saying, ‘don’t forget!’… as if we could ever erase the image of Sweeney’s smarmy smile from our minds.  I've read that both he and Bishop will make the rounds in the last half of season four – I can’t even imagine what Sweeney will have done… and as for Bishop, here’s hoping they spring from prison.

3) Alicia and Cary will continue to grow as friends and colleagues (working late nights on the floor, exchanging addresses… it’s almost like Cary is Alicia’s second Kalinda, no?) and her loyalty will now secretly defer to him rather than Diane and Will. 

Now, over to you! What did you think of “Red Team Blue Team?”  Do you think Alicia was right to accept the offer of equity partnership?  What do you think of the Team Gardner reunion? 

Related to this post:


  1. Alicia is planning to take down Lockhart Gardiner. Clues: She apologized to Will and didn't explain why, so it is for something she is going to do in the future. She told Cary that she will be able to do things as an equity partner, then stopped herself. She hates that fact that she got offered partner because of Peter's name instead of her own abilities. She doesn't like being lied to by the partners when they withdrew their offer of partnership. I just don't know how she is going to "get them"

    1. I totally agree with this assessment! I think she's there to build her career and make the connections she needs to before veering off with Cary. Oh, it would be so delicious if she took down Lockhart Gardner!

    2. My brain rejects the idea of Alicia taking down Lockhart Gardner because How can she do that and have a relationship with Will? I hope n prayer that they will have "Good timing" before this series ends. Team Gardner forever :)

    3. I agree, it would be complicated... but maybe that's part of the fun? I mean, look at Will and Alicia in this episode: They feuded with each other, but they still couldn't avoid their chemistry. I don't know - I don't see Alicia being diabolical enough to take down the whole firm, however, we are dealing with Alicia 2.0 - she's willing challenge authority and take her future into her own hands. This could get fascinating!

  2. After losing count of how many times I've watched THE scene and THE after talk, I have finally calmed down enough to comment lol.

    First of all, I love Eli and Elsbeth! Unfortunately she won't be going up against WSC. I'd love to have seen Elsbeth trick her again and get her furious. And without a doubt Eli's delighted expression because of it would have been great, too.

    This episode continues on Alicia's character development, which is great. If it were the first seasons, she would never consider leaving the firm (as she made clear on various occasions). Due to changes in her relationship to the firm (and its partners) and in herself, she was even hosting the "mutiny reunion". Before maybe she wouldn't have accepted the partnership, or even if she did, she would have felt A LOT guiltier than she did (although, she did look guilty in the end, showing us she hasn't changed completely). As pointed out on the comment above, maybe she's only doing that to take down L/G later, but I don't know. As much as I’d like that to happen (got to love drama), the writers have been slowly showing us the changes in Alicia's character.

    Last, but definitely not least, our much awaited Team Gardner reunion! Unlike ‘Heart’, this time Will pulled back, too and on the next day, he doesn’t want to pursue this, he states it was a moment of weakness. I think it shows how much he was hurt by Alicia and fears to go there again. But like you excellently put, Pink, the elephant is back in the room. I hope it’ll get us back our moments and looks like the first two seasons. Although my hope of late night in the office conversations or extra hours pizza (like on earlier seasons) was crushed by Will’s proposition that they don’t be alone again. I still can’t make up my mind about Alicia’s reaction to it. Was it surprise about the fact that Will didn’t trust himself to be alone in a room with her or disappointment due to the fact that Will wanted to be that apart from her? It got me thinking and it occurred to me that this was really the first time (aside from the elevator scene in the season 3 finale) they had been completely alone since the break up.

    The only thing I missed from this episode was Kalinda actually saying something to Alicia like she always did, because she knew something had happened and Alicia was acting strange.

    Congratulations on the great post, Pink (as always)! I loved “Take that “Mom pick up the phone” ringtone. Take that.” LOL.

    1. THE scene... THE talk... so many wonderful things to rewatch this week!

      Now, to dig in:

      1) I'm disappointed Wendy Scott-Carr isn't continuing with Eli's scandal. I can't help but think it must have been a scheduling conflict on the back-end, because she was the perfect fit. Her ultimate goal is to dethrone Peter, right? At least that's what we've been lead to believe. That's why she ran against him, that's why she went after Will... and that's why she was heading up the witch-hunt for Eli. I can't imagine why they wouldn't continue with this arc. That said, I'm adoring the addition of Josh and David and all of the zaniness they bring to the table.

      2) Is it wrong to say that I'm madly shipping Alicia and Cary? Not romantically, of course, but professionally. And as friends. I seriously need to create and/or find a support group, because I'm loving these two more than ever before. Also, what a great episode for Cary! While some fans will likely be mad he was overlooked [again], I think that's the point. He's a reflection of everyone else at the firm, aside from those characters we know well.

      3) Alicia 2.0. I'm loving her moxie. Never before would she have yelled back at Will. This was a great continuation of her development from "The Seven Day Rule" when she took Diane's advice and played the game. Her blow-out with Will came from a place of pure frustration - she's tired of being the pawn - and yes, she is the victim in this game. In the moment of pause before the kiss, I think Will knew she was right.

      And then... the kiss. The epic kiss! Oh what a fabulous Team Gardner moment to add to our highlight reels. If only Will had met Alicia down in the garage (maybe with her keys!) - that would have perfected the episode.

      That said, I think they landed exactly where they needed to... for now. I completely agree with you - Will had to pull back again because he doesn't want to get hurt. It doesn't take away from the fact they kissed each other back - and they both know it. I think we're now being set up for a time when they will be forced to be alone together again... and for that, I can't wait. Even if this kiss was a moment of weakness, it was a moment that happened. Even in weakness there's truth.

      I will confess, when Alicia asked, "What are we going to do?" I wanted Will to come out with something alarmingly romantic, even though I knew it wouldn't happen. Nor should it have, I mean, they aren't there yet, even though the hope is that they will be again. I couldn't help but draw parallels to the season two finale: "I need a plan." But this time, Will isn't willing to put himself on the line again - he's not out to say, "my plan is I love you" because Alicia already knows that, and to this point, it hasn't been enough. There's nothing he's been able to do to convince her otherwise. In many ways though, I don't blame Alicia - she's trying to protect her family, she's made a promise to Peter, she's working to build her career. A relationship with Will is exceptionally complicated and as much as she was the happiest she's ever been, it's not enough. At least not yet.

      4) As for Kalinda, I love that even though she and Alicia didn't speak about things this episode, K shot her a knowing look. I think everyone knew a word didn't even need to be spoken. Alicia and Cary aren't there yet though. Flashback: Kalinda walked past Alicia and knew something was up, whereas Cary had to say to Alicia, 'hey, you left your stuff here last night.' It's such an interesting range of friendships that are developing here.

      Thanks for your great thoughts, again, Jule! I'm so glad to have connected to you through our mutual love of The Good Wife!

    2. 1) Yes, it must have been scheduling problems, unfortunately. But I think Josh will come after Peter, too (he has already tried) and that makes things even more interesting (yey, drama).

      2) “I'm madly shipping Alicia and Cary?” – I was in shock for a moment. I would be devastated if that had happened LOL. I like them as friends as well. Like a lot of people have said, they’re like the younger Will & Diane. Throw Kalinda in the mix and it’s perfect.
      Maybe it will be weird Alicia being Cary’s boss, but I don’t think he’s mad at her. He would have done the same thing and between the two of them, she was the obvious choice. Not only because of her political connections, but she’s worked at L/G for four years now, while Cary has been away for quite some time.

      3) I agree. They’ve had some disagreements, mostly due to morality and ethics in cases, but it never came even near close to being this heated. I think her yelling back at Will shows not only the change in Alicia’s attitude, but also the change in her relationship with Will.

      I’m hoping for the moment they’re forced to be alone together, especially if they are trapped in an elevator (wait, I think I'm having ideas for fanfiction...)
      I agree that a relationship with Will is complicated and too much. I only hope that she’ll get there someday.

      4) I like what you’ve said about the difference between Alicia and Kalinda’s and Alicia and Cary’s relationship. It’s nice that they showed that.
      I was just wishing Kalinda would say somehting, because I love when Kalinda says something insightful/knowing and then just says “Going now”, leaving Alicia speechless and confused.

      Aww, I’m really happy, too. I love your thoughts and theories about the show and then to be able to discuss it.

  3. I am so disappointed in Alicia Florrick. Her acceptance of the partnership in Lockhart, Gardner was just stomach turning. When she stood up to Will I thought finally, FINALLY Alicia's breaking out and making her own way; the talk with Cary about forming a new firm reinforced that feeling. But no, Alicia just jumped right back into her go-to good girl position and accepted the partnership (throwing Cary and the other fourth years under the bus in the process). Badly done Alicia. Very, very badly done. I thought there was more to you than this.

    Again, I'm really disappointed in the character and in the show. I've never missed an episode, but I think I'm going to take break for awhile.

    1. Alicia's choice definitely was an interesting one, especially when considering how her character has evolved. I don't see her accepting the partnership as selling out necessarily though - I hope this opportunity gives her the leverage needed to take her career to the next level. I don't think she's going to leave Cary behind though. My hope is that now she's on equal footing with the other partners, she won't be used in the same ways. The fact is though, she was only offered the single partnership opportunity because of her name. Of course, she's good at what she does, but David calls a spade a spade: it's because she's a Florrick. Now that she's on the inside, she has an opportunity she's never had before: She can fight for what she believes is right... and that's a brand new situation.

      I hope you do continue on with the show though - I think we're going to be in for a wild last eight-ish episodes!

  4. It's an amazing episode though an uncomfortable one.

    I mentioned uncomfortable because I do not really think Alicia had any plans of taking down the firm at least not yet. This is an episode about office mutiny gone wrong. I think Will is very smart. He stop the mutiny by offering the chief the gold and the plan works. I am a big Alicia fan hence I do not feel good but I think this time she really sold out her friends to be make partner. I do think she is sincerely sorry about Cary and she feel bad for him but that is life. This is probably the closest I come to really feeling sorry for Cary in all 4 seasons.

    This is also the new Alicia. I doubt 4 years ago, she would have even started the mutiny. Perhaps after making partner she might push for Cary to be the same but at the moment, I think she just really wanted partnership.

    On the bright side, I am really so happy being "Tascionied" ! I loved that word Pink! Brilliant ! I honestly thought this was Eli wanting to kick Jordan out of the campaign. I did not see that coming at all but was happily surprised !

    I just loved Elsbeth. She and Eli are now officially my favorite duo in the show ! It brought such a big smile to my face.

    Two things the TGW writers did mess up. Firstly you are right, I do not think any audience actually believe they could be 100 million in the black now.Ha!It was also perhaps a little too easy they got Josh to agree to take down Jordan instead of Peter.

  5. I was so disappointed with Alicia accepting partnership. I feel Carey's character hasn't been fully developed as yet.
    I hope he actually leaves and starts his own firm

  6. Hey! I keep coming back to read your recaps cause they are amazing, and this is the first time Im actually brave enough to comment. I knew Alicia is still felling things for Will and my shipper heart exploded watching that kiss. Im really interested in how everything is going to change for Cary and Alicia, and how the dynamics between these two are going to evolve. Enough to say Im gladly appreciating the back of Will and i would love to see how this place out with Laura in the picture. Again thank you for giving us a well written and detailed review.

    Xo, Beth

  7. I love you posts! I check your blog first thing on Monday mornings!

    Just a few things I wanted to say:

    The Elephant in the room is back! I love that. I cant wait for this last half of the season because I was not happy with the first half.

    I really hope Alicia doesn't break Will's heart again. Before THE KISS in the last episode it was breaking my heart that it seemed that he still has feelings for her (the way he reached for her hand early this season) but she seemed to have no feeling left for him at all. Like their time together was just a distraction for her real life. Will deserves more. I hope we get a little more from her.

    The look between Cary and Kalinda and Alicia at the very end with the glass between them was actually a very sad scene for me. She is no longer their peer she is now pretty much their boss and that is going to create a lot of tension.

    When Alicia was stammering talking to Cary about being able to fight for things with the partners. I think they both knew she was talking BS. I believe that she does feel bad for being the only one to be offered partnership but I think it was poor attempt at making Cary feel better. I guess it was just an awkward situation and she didnt really know what to say.

    Anyway..... Thanks for your great posts!

  8. Great review Pink and I love reading all of the comments.

    GMB I think your post reflects my feeling the most, WHILE I absolutely LOVE the Will and Alicia kiss and all the their interactions after...the courtroom awkwardness so full of sexual tension...both of them were just two cute!

    I too really hope that Alicia does not break Will's heart again. Because the first part of this season she has been so COLD AND DISTANT toward him this season, as if there were NEVER anything between them at all...Friends, Lovers...NOTHING!!!!

    I'm glad she took the partnership, Alicia is ambitious! She is drawn to power. She like powerful man...that is why she sticks to that sorry azz Peter, she likes the opportunity the his name affords her. FLORRICK her biggesst assest (professionally) and her biggest liablitiy (personally)!

    I agree with you Pink, the blowup came from the place of pure frustration: "she's tired of being the pawn - and yes, she is the victim in this game. In the moment of pause before the kiss, I think Will knew she was right".

    I'm starting to like Cary more and more. And after they took Kalinda down such an unlike and ridiculous storyline with that crazy husband her appeal to be has faded. That took to much of an edge off her character to me.

    The thought of Cary and Alicia having their own law firm is so "ballsy" and such a risk, when Alicia looked over at her kids I thought she would never risk it. But if David Lee and do-nothing Howard (the nerve that he didn't want to share money with new 5 partners because they have not DONE ANYTHING) keeps coming at Alicia all DavidLee "bitchy" she might get tired of it and LEAVE.

    Another idea....Elsbeth, Alicia and Cary could rule Chicago Law! :)

    Pam in Dallas

  9. This episode was my favorite this season.

    Aside from the kiss (which was great, I'm Team Gardner too) and Alicia/Cary kicking their bosses' ass in 'MOCK COURT' (!), the Eli storyline is getting better and better. Kyle MacLachlan as Josh Perrotti just became my favorite guest star, next to Carrie Preston/Elsbeth. They're also great with each other. Their chemistry, italian last names, behavioral similarities and both have brilliant legal skills. I hope they do this until the election day. And an episode focusing more on the election would also be great. Matthew Perry needs to return, dammit!

    I felt bad for Cary. Screwed up by LG again. The writers need to re-improve his character development and make it more intriguing. Find him a love interest, a new job or a new case or anything!

    Disappointed in Alicia for taking the partnership. But she deserved that. David Lee was really an ass in this episode. No surprise. He's still great, though. Power and wealth. The greed of the equity partners are just astounding. If LG keeps doing this in the next few episodes or season, then I hope at the end, Alicia takes down LG and take all their clients and start up a new firm. Florrick, Agos & Associates sounds really sexy.

  10. Coming out 5 episodes in a row ! I really hope they will really be no break for 5 weeks in a row !


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