22 April, 2013

The Good Wife: “A More Perfect Union” – Mixing Business with Pleasure

Season 4, Episode 21 | Original Air Date: Sunday, April 21, 2013

It’s election season.   Grandma Veronica is in town and has brought stuffed puppets with her.  Zach is 18.  Peter has a ring.  Alicia’s partnership paychecks are clearly rolling in and making their way straight to her closet.  Lockhart Gardner admin staff is on the verge of striking.  Grace is saying crazy words like ‘porn.’ Owen is giving out favours in the form of campaign analytics. Charlie Rose interviews Alicia.  Kalinda fights for a raise (again) and Cary continues to recruit for his new firm. 

Now that you’re all caught up, I’m calling it quits for a more official recap.  Why?  Because there are so many other things to discuss!  Take, for example, the intrigue behind David Lee’s obsession with Veronica or how (and why) the campaign bus has become the ‘it’ spot for dinner.  If only someone had a nice car we could kick back and dine in.  I know, I know, I’m such a dreamer…

Of course, then there’s the big question: When does the idea of ‘it’s not personal, it’s business’ go from an excuse to something more?  All of our main characters like to dip their toes into the watery unknown where the line between personal and business is blurred.  Diane is marrying Kurt (I mean, right? I think that’s still happening), Will and Alicia are… well, whatever Will and Alicia are, and Peter is drawing closer ties to Diane, Owen and yes, even Alicia.  What’s business and what’s personal?  Or is business, personal, just by its very nature?   

For as long as we both shall live – Peter Florrick              
It’s a vow with which most people are familiar.  Okay, not everyone.  People have their issues and their reasons for making the choices they do.  Peter is a good example of vows gone wrong (which is different than Girls Gone Wild, but not by much).  I’ll confess that season four Peter is a pretty decent guy.  Punching Krestiva upped his overall merit; however, that wasn’t enough to get me to join Camp Florrick.  Sure, I think he would be the best Governor (I have the campaign signs and coffee mug to prove it #FlorrickForGovernor), but that doesn’t mean I’m on the Florrick for Husband bandwagon.  

That's why when Peter popped the ‘will you renew our vows with me in Hawaii?’ question over a campaign bus dinner of pizza and wine, I was strangely intrigued – half because I wanted to hear her answer and half because I wanted to see someone storm off that blasted bus.  The resulting conversation after the popped question was, I have to admit, one of my favourite parts of this episode:

Alicia: “I don’t know.  Because things are good right now, but that doesn't mean they’ll stay that way.” 
Peter: “ Doesn't mean they won’t.” 
Alicia: “No – they never do.”

When I first listened to this, I thought, “oh Peter, you are *so* destined to screw this up,” but then I realized Alicia’s rationale might not have to do with Peter at all.  If Alicia goes through with the vow renewal, she wouldn’t be following her heart, which means an inevitable crumbling of this relationship.  She could be the one to bring down the house of cards.  Alicia Florrick – it’s time to get off the campaign bus.

Then, of course, there’s the whole idea behind a vow renewal.  We all saw how well that went for Jon and Kate (Plus Eight) – didn't they renew their vows in Hawaii and then have the biggest divorce on the planet?  I didn't watch, but I’m pretty sure there’s a life lesson there… and it’s not that Hawaii is a bad place for vacation – it’s that it’s cursed for vow renewals.  Hmmm… on second thought, maybe this isn’t such a bad idea.  I’m seeing this plan unraveling already.

Before I digress further, here are my two main concerns (minus the whole Hawaii thing):

1) I’m feeling uncertain as to whether Peter is trying to secure last minute votes by being able to announce that he’s recommitting to family… or not.  I’m hoping that’s not the case… but this is business.  Wait.  This is personal.  Wait.  What is this?

2) Alicia is having some seriously competing feelings when it comes to which side of the fence she’s on.  One day it’s Florrick the next it’s Gardner.  While I’m sitting comfortably on the greener side of the fence – Team Gardner – Alicia can’t separate what happens at work with her personal feelings.  She’s a mess.  Which makes Will a mess.  And both of these things make me a mess.  Even David Lee’s a mess, but that doesn't have to do with Will and Alicia, but rather Veronica who he is potential canoodling with in his corner office.  Ewww.  That’s all if have to say about that.

Before that mental picture gets painted to vividly, let me change the subject:

When it comes to the ring, I’m not the one you should be asking about specifics – not because I don’t like jewels, but because I spent that entire scene with my head in my hands like an inconsolable fool.  For those of you on Team Florrick, I understand the appeal of a vow renewal – I mean, they are, well, married (insert sigh).  This development would mean the family is back on track.  

Technically, it shouldn't fundamentally change things.  That fact is, it will though.  As Veronica so astutely pointed out during her dead-pan chat with Will:

“You have a window, but it’s closing.  That schmuck of a husband of hers wants to renew their vows and I know my daughter – if she does that, you’re never going to pry her away from him. So you've got to move now.”

And breathe.  That just happened.  I think my heart stopped. 

This scene was for the record books.  The awkward beauty of this interaction paired with Will’s thoughtful and deep stare was telling before words were even spoken.  The final moment of silence said, 'I understand' -  and it's what every Team Gardner fan has been thinking since season one’s “Heart.”  “Make a move she can’t refuse.”  It’s not only catchy, it’s accurate.  You've got this Will Gardner.  Maybe.   It might involve tequila and two plane tickets, but I know there’s a plan out there that could work… I just don’t know what it is yet.

Side note: Am I the only one loving that Will is now on a first-name basis with Veronica?  Sometimes it’s the little things in life that lead to happiness.  This is one-such example.

A love since Georgetown – Will Gardner
Damn you, unrequited love.  I’m sure that’s what Alicia is thinking, too.  While her romantic shuddering subsided this week (thank goodness – that was bizarre), it was replaced with something entirely different: rage and disappointment.  When it comes to Alicia at work, she tries to take the high road.  I’m not saying Will doesn't  but he seems to be focused on it less often.  This week, with the administrative staff of Lockhart Gardner up in arms over salaries and benefits, Will and Diane had some tough decisions to make.  In the end, they gave the admin ringleaders new titles and salary bumps, as a show of good will.  Well, sort of.  It was a borderline payoff to keep the others at bay, but that’s part of the game.  Who doesn't know of someone who has been paid off every now and again?  Okay, me, but that’s not the point.  They did what they had to do.  It’s business.

But, not for Alicia.  Upon hearing of the decision, Alicia looked at Will with disappointment, while I looked at them both with frustration.  Once again, I discovered that yelling at my TV is completely pointless. 

So, she looked at him; he looked at her; they never made eye contact, but they knew they'd failed each other in some way (and me in all kinds of ways).  Alicia’s problem here is that she can’t separate the business decision from her personal feelings.  Will let her down with the admin vote, so she immediately jumped to the conclusion that all of the feelings she’s been having – all of that shaking nonsense – was a blip on the radar and that yes, Peter is the most stand-up chap of her suitor pool, so she will, indeed renew her vows with him.  Say what?  This is a bloody disaster.  The worst part is, it doesn't even make sense.  Her saying “I don’t know” to Peter was logical.  This... this is absurd.

With the words, “I’ve loved you since Georgetown” running through my head I can’t help but be heartbroken for the third time this season.  Why can’t things go right for Team Gardner ever?  Like ever.  Now I’m quoting Taylor Swift.  Oy vey.

Kalinda, Cary and the Raise
Cary is off to the races.  His firm is coming together and he’s slowly picking off recruiting the best of Lockhart Gardner.  Alicia is thinking about Cary’s proposal and now Kalinda is contemplating her next big move.  Of course, if there’s one thing Kalinda likes more than Alicia, it’s money, so she’s out to get the best deal between these two competing firms.  Game on.

While Will seems as sick of these ‘I need more money’ conversations as I am, he’s willing to play along – at least for the short term.  Part of me really wishes I could see Kalinda’s pay stub, because I can’t imagine they’d be underpaying her by that much, especially given the value she adds to the firm.  Not only that, Alicia has a $10,000 office decorating bonus – how can Kalinda be missing out on important things like health care?  There goes my aspiring career to be a PI – it sounds like a rough life, even if I can run in stilettos (which, by the way, I can). 

When it comes to keeping business and personal relationships separate, I’m not sure where Cary is going to fall on the spectrum.  Sure, he likes Kalinda, but he’s out there starting a new firm and he knows she’s the best.  He doesn't want to go up against her again… but she’s not lured by any kind of loyalty to anyone.  For Kalinda, business is business.

Other highlights:
  • Peter “I don’t want to get caught with my pants down, if you know what I mean.” Oh yes, Peter, we know what you mean.
  • Owen helping Peter with his campaign analytics – I didn't see that coming.  Also, was Owen turning a Peter corner this week, or was it some reverse psychology in action?  I love Owen, but I also love that he lures Alicia into the areas I most want her to be…
  • Veronica – Always so crazy, always so entertaining, always left wanting more. 
  • Alicia giving David Lee the stink eye when he started talking about her Mom.  I’ll take ‘Priceless’ for $500 Alex.
  • Nancy Crozier at the top of her game, always willing to tell Alicia how much of a Mom she is.   Somehow her 'I'm just an innocent girl from Michigan' routine is still working, but her legal acumen is definitely increasing.  Might Cary find a good legal partner in Crozier down the road?    

What’s Next?  Spoiler Alert!

Well, this to start:

“What’s in the Box” marks the final episode of the season and it looks like we’re in for a real treat.  It’s election night, there’s voter tampering, Alicia may or may not get a little tipsy and something steamy happens with her in Will’s car.  Who needs a campaign bus when you’ve got a back seat?  Oh yes, and Peter wants to punch Will.  So there’s that.  Let the season finale drama begin!

Side note: How many times do you think I can watch this preview this week?  Hint: More than 15. 

Side note part II: Next week’s blog might be a little delayed, as I’ll be writing from the UK.  Happy season finale!


  1. Hey Pink, great post.

    This was an okay episode in my opinion. It wasn't that bad, thought it needed some more action. I loved the administrative judge (Rob, right?). It's stuff like this that make the character development of TGW amazing. He reminds me of the liberal judge who we haven't seen for a while. Speaking for a while, Julius is still gone. :(

    Anyways, love it when Alicia and Cary work together. Nancy Crozier is back with her secretly ruthless 'innocent schoolgirl' persona and I'm loving it.

    I'm eager to see what happens next week if Cary will really leave at the finale taking Kalinda, the fourth years and the richest clients. Also with Diane marrying and leaving LG for judgeship (IF Peter wins), what happens to the firm?

    Next week's preview sure is awesome and will give us lots to digest. I also expect a juicy cliffhanger at the end. Let's hope!

    Enjoy the UK!

    1. Hi Josh - thanks for dropping in!

      I liked this episode - but I wouldn't put it at the top of my list for the season. It's always nice to see Nancy Crozier back though - she's so stealthy. I definitely agree with you - the character development on this show is terrific (minus the whole Jordan piece - I think that was a miss) and the judges are always a great example of this in action.

      Oh Cary Agos. I can't imagine that Cary will leave in the finale - he's been talking about a three month plan, so what would it take to move this timeline up so aggressively? I can't wait to see where this storyline goes - I just hope it means more Cary in season five.

      As for that preview, well, to be perfectly honest, I can't stop watching it! Diane pounding on the hood of Will's car?! I'm dying inside! The timing of Team Gardner really couldn't be worse and Diane will be thrown for a serious loop finding out these two are back at it, especially because she thinks Will is with Laura. Can you say hot mess? I seriously couldn't love this show any more if I tried.

  2. Can I just say, I really DONT want Peter to win the governorship.
    He screwed up Will's life (well, his reputation) and he cant just walk away from that.
    I want him to LOSE.
    And I want the Feds to come after him for corruption. We do know he is corrupt; CARTIER necklace anyone?
    I want him to rot in jail
    And I want Will to somehow apply some of the pressure in getting him there!!!!

    1. This is a totally fair point! I want Peter to win for a variety of reasons... not the least of which includes the fact he would likely move. That aside, I do think he's the best candidate of the three, but that's not to say he's not without some serious faults - politically and personally.

      I certainly see where you're coming from though - he always seems to win, some way, some how. Look at all he's done and he still has the girl. Where Will seems to have the worst luck, Peter always finds himself at the end of a rainbow, basking in a pot of gold. It just doesn't seem fair.

  3. hey pink! @emily_loves_instagram here!

    In my opinion, id give the episode an A. Not my usual standard, but i agree with josh, it needed something dramatic.

    Alicia's family unites - Yay owen and veronica are back! Owen is one of those characters who just crack you up. I loved his talk with alicia while sitting on a pew talking about peter and will (but mostly will :D) and loved the talk while in the kitchen as well! Oh veronica with her tricks up her sleeves! if alicia wont let her talk to peter, she wont talk to peter, shell talk to will! Definitely will make will reconsidered his thoughts about alicia.

    The Case - overall the case was all over the place! one minute its a contract settlement, the other theyre fired, the other theyre pretending to unionize. The judge was awesome and i remember seeing him in pitch perfect! i believe the last time we saw him, was in season 3 episode 10 (and who could forget that episode!) In the end they won, and it was all because of alicias and carys hard work.

    Cary stating up his own firm - A part of me is saying, cary dont leave! and the next it's okay leave with the forth years and some clients, start up ur own firm, you deserve to. Also they will be up against (lockhart)/Gardner which was fun last season. Also i dont want kalinda to leave! or Alicia! but in some ways maybe kalinda will leave because 1. money 2. be with cary 3. win against her old bosses. Probably another reason why the writers made robyns character was because kalinda will leave.

    Proposal - In some ways i was shocked, then the next i wasn't. It was about time he asked, and it was about time alicia thought about her marriage. I mean us an as audience have been through this love triangle, and we should find out who she will be with. Im hoping she will be with will, but my gutt is saying peter, only because the title of the show is called the Good Wife.

    What's to come - OMG! pink (aka glitterkorn) first a make out sesh in an elevator, but now his car! well why not! perfect area! however once theyve stopped and realized they kissed again, their forheads leaning against each other, diane catches them red handed! What is going through in my mind is what diane will say to them once they get out of the car!! OMG cant wait till sunday!

    1. Hi Emily! Thanks for the great comments - here and on Instagram!

      Okay, let me start first with that preview. Completely amazing. "First a make out sesh in an elevator, but now his car! Well why not!" - yes, yes, yes! It's better than the campaign bus, that's for sure. I've been going around telling everyone, "the campaign bus is out and Will's car is in!" I cannot even imagine what Diane is going to say to them when they exit the car, but it's going to be insane. How is it only Tuesday?!?!

      The Proposal/Vow Renewal - Urgh. The problem here is that Peter appears to be a pretty reformed guy. I mean, season four Peter is not season one Peter, and for that I'll give him credit. The problem is that I know if she stays with him, she'll end up getting hurt again. I think it's inevitable. Wouldn't it be interesting if instead of Peter's 'Good Wife' she became Will's 'Good Wife?' Hello season five campaign. After the break up in season three, I always said season five (or seven) would be their year. Maybe I was right?

      Re: Cary. I would LOVE to see him start his own firm, mostly because I think he deserves it and also because I don't think Will and Diane value him nearly enough. Come on - his three folding chairs made into a couch? The guy can never catch a break. Splitting off and tackling his own cases would be just desserts for LG - plus, we'd get to see the inside of another firm, similar to how we saw more inner workings of the SA's office last year. I'm thrilled by the prospect that he could go out on his own and succeed. I just hope Alicia jumps on board - I love the ring of Florrick, Agos and Associates.

  4. Hello Pink, I recently discovered your blog and really enjoy your recaps! They fuel my obsession with The Good Wife story lines, without question!

    I think this episode needed more Will and Alicia interaction, considering the preview for the finale. It's hard to know the context of why they're in the car together, but I suppose we'll have to tune in to find out. Diane slamming the hood of the car surprised me - and it seemed a little out of character!

    It was great to see Nancy Crozier return this episode, although I have to share that last fall I was in a restaurant seated directly beside Mamie Gummer. At the time though, I couldn't quite place her, except that she looked incredibly familiar. So, Sunday's night episode had me distracted and thinking too much about seeing her in the restaurant, haha!

    I actually have a quick question for you. In prior seasons when the show was on Tuesdays, I couldn't catch all the episodes (I know, the horror!) But there's one show I caught a part of that I'd like to read your recap on. It's the one where somehow Alicia overhears Will (on a recording?) that "he's done...and over it" referring to their relationship I think? If it's easy for you, can you help with a link to your post?

    Thank you so much!

    Will you able to watch the finale live if you'll be traveling? Hope you can catch it as soon as it airs!

    ~ Margaret

  5. Pink, I loved your assessment....
    Blurred lines are being crossed every which a way by these characters between their personal and business lives. Alicia can not separate the two when it comes to Will that's for sure. Her look of disappointment at Will when he said "what we did was best for us(L/G)" was so heartbreaking and so Alicia. Then she compounded it and agreed to that sleaze Peter's renewal proposal.

    Cary taking 4 of L/G top clients, I find that hard to believe that they would trust a new firm with 4 year associates with their business.

    Kalinda to the highest bidder. No loyalty...business is business.

    The case, Nancy Crozier and judge Rod worked my nerves. It did prove how good Cary and Alicia work togeter

    Peter was all kinds of shady in this episode. I'm glad Owen called him on his shyt. Owen, Owen, Owen what happened to the TEAMWILL pom-poms...reverse psychology maybe? I won't put you in the doghouse yet, (not like Grace) you are concern for your Sis happiness. Besides Veronica hates Peter enough for the family! :) Veronica and Will "go get your woman, man" Peter (vonTrapp) is getting ready to lock her down! Veronica and DavdLee...eeek, eewww that's all kinds of nasty!

    Alicia telling Owen she didn't see anything long-term with Will, WTF! You were the one constantly SHUTING HIM DOWN, "can I meet the kids"...NO. "I'm not interested in anyone else"....NOTHING! The man has LOVED you since college. Got you a job in his law firm and had your vindictive husband try to ruin him.

    I'm on full blown alert, sitting on the edge of my sit waiting for Sunday night. I have to admit I have watch that promo about 15 times too! :) Why is Alicia laid all back in Will's car like she is on a psychiatrist couch, "I can't figure my way out of this"....WTF!

    That kiss is more epic than the one on the elevator.

    I feel like the extended scene in this clip of Will and Alicia holding each other tells you how deep their feelings for each other go. I've never seen this level of emotion with Peter and her, evah!

    Diane knocking on the hood of the car...OMG. (So funny...hahaha) Why did you NOT drive to a more secluded location to talk/smooch DAMN Will...he can not catch a break!

    I didn't mean to go on and on and on! But I'm pretty hyped for this finale. Mostly I tired of Alicia playing with Will's heart. He deserves better.

    Enjoy you UK trip! And THANKS AGAIN for all your great insight to our favorite show!

    Pam in Dallas

  6. Hi Pink,

    I do feel as though this period of indecision as to whether Alicia will choose Will or Peter cannot be dragged out any longer, it's becoming torturous.
    Alicia needs to make a decision and I hope she chooses with her heart rather than her sense of obligation.
    Although it seems that Peter is truly remorseful, and I can't see Peter hurting Alicia again, she will never be happy with him while she is still thinking of Will.
    I've been watching over all of our favourite Will and Alicia scenes lately and I think it would be very disappointing if in the end it all came to nothing.
    I hope Will takes Veronica's advice and stops 'being polite about it'. He's very assertive in the courtroom but when it comes to Alicia he's always at her mercy. He needs to assert himself, tell her that he loves her and demand that she make a decision.
    Haha, I've clearly got too much emotionally invested in two fictional characters, but a little escapism doesn't hurt.
    Can't wait for the finale!


  7. Does anyone see Peter losing & Bloomberg offers him something 'Big' in NYC? It will be close to Zach
    who will be in college, east coast maybe even Georgetown? Peter expects Alicia to drop everything & move because she said yes to vow renewal & she's incredulous that really....it's still all about him?
    This opens up possibly exploring the Wilicia thing if only one season. Doesn't have to work out but at least try the what if....? Grace is ok with it. It would be interesting to see the 'player' (Will) actually work on a relationship to see what it can bring & what he's missed? Alicia to be truly appreciated or a true partner and see how much fun that is & again what she's missed. They're both in their 40s right?
    Lots of habits to break?! Opening scene Fall 2013.... Would love to see the firm having the company picnic @ Wrigley & Will throwing out the first pitch (He bought that chance at a silent auction) The only one actually paying attention to the the pitch.....Alicia.....


  8. Does anyone see Peter losing & Bloomberg offers him something 'Big' in NYC? It will be close to Zach
    who will be in college, east coast maybe even Georgetown? Peter expects Alicia to drop everything & move because she said yes to vow renewal & she's incredulous that really....it's still all about him?
    This opens up possibly exploring the Wilicia thing if only one season. Doesn't have to work out but at least try the what if....? Grace is ok with it. It would be interesting to see the 'player' (Will) actually work on a relationship to see what it can bring & what he's missed? Alicia to be truly appreciated or a true partner and see how much fun that is & again what she's missed. They're both in their 40s right?
    Lots of habits to break?! Opening scene Fall 2013.... Would love to see the firm having the company picnic @ Wrigley & Will throwing out the first pitch (He bought that chance at a silent auction) The only one actually paying attention to the the pitch.....Alicia.....


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