Given I’ve just realised that this is the final season of The Good Wife, it’s probably not worth a whole load of speculation about the one irksome thing about this otherwise fine programme. Why would Alicia remain ‘the good wife’ to cheating politician Peter Florrick this long after they separated?
Plot device, you all cry, and rightly so. As Winnicott would say, good enough.
I like the fact that it’s called The Good Wife, when actually, nobody in this show is ever simply good (or bad). Lots of shades of grey here, characters are complicated, greedy, scheming and utterly splendid, often all at once.
So, we’re a few episodes into the final series being shown on More 4. And it looks like it’s going to be FUN.
I’ve never been a huge fan of Peter (Big in SATC) Florrick, but someone I’ve always had a great deal of time for is his campaign manager Eli Gold, played by the glorious Alan Cumming.
But there’s a nasty surprise for Gold in this series. Peter wants to run as Hillary Clinton’s VP – so he recruits a new campaign manager, Ruth Eastman (played by the superb and terrifying Margot Martindale – who you’ll know from various things, including Dexter and Mercy).
Naturally, Eli’s marvellous nose is put out of joint and this puts him on the warpath. He becomes Alicia Florrick’s Chief of Staff, which is an excellent place from which he can seek revenge. As the Jacobeans knew very well, there’s nothing finer in a drama than a seething cauldron of jealousy, rage and rancour. You can all but hear the knives being sharpened and the evil plots being brewed. I can’t wait for this to unfold.
This series does lack my other favourite Good Wife character, kick-ass investigator Kalinda Sharma, played by Archie (Bend it Like Beckham) Panjabi. She left at the end of the last series, and her appearances in series 6 were occasionally a bit odd. If you believe internet tittle-tattle, Panjabi and Margulies didn’t get on, and the entire series was filmed with them never in the same room on-set – even when they apparently ‘shared a drink’ at a bar in the last episode. One thing I love about The Good Wife is that there are lots of strong women characters – Diane Lockhart is one of my all-time favourites – so I’m not sure what to make of this. Is it one of those things where strong women/actors are purported to be bitchy towards each other in a way men never are?
Anyhoo – there are lots of excellent male characters too – and the reappearance of the cunning, untrustworthy but still wonderful Michael J Fox is always an utter joy.
It’s my view that The Good Wife is one of the very best, and most underrated, TV dramas going. Why it’s not being shown on a main channel at peak viewing time is beyond me. It’s bloody marvellous.
Posted by Emma Chaplin