Season premiere review: ‘The Good Wife’ – ‘The Line’

Senior Television Writer
09.21.14 19 Comments

CBS

A quick review of “The Good Wife” season premiere coming up just as soon as we have a general conversation about my business holdings…

Last season, Robert and Michelle King achieved peak “Good Wife,” but not all the way through the year. Lockhart Gardner vs. Florrick Agos was perhaps an ideal status quo for a series that prided itself on complicated narratives and tons of moral ambiguity, but Josh Charles' desire to leave meant the Kings couldn't stick with it, and the show probably overcompensated in the wake of Will's death with too many twists (and too many people saying the name “Finn Polmar” as often as they could) until we closed with Diane on the verge of leaving her now purely evil law firm to team up with Alicia and Cary, even as Eli decided that Alicia was the ideal candidate to run for state's attorney.

It was just too much, in too short a period of time, and “The Line” is another installment that's trying to stuff 10 pounds of plot into a 5-pound bag, with Cary's arrest layered onto everything else the Kings set up last year. I appreciate the desire to showcase Matt Czuchry, long one of the series' more underutilized resources, and anything that forces Alicia to confront the implications of representing Lemond Bishop is a good thing. But so much whizzes by in the episode that it's not even clear if Diane has joined Florrick/Agos, even if everyone's carrying on like she has.

The story pile-on works better on the comedic end of things, particularly Eli and his daughter dealing with the intern's panties (or the lack thereof), Alicia trying to juggle all these crises at once, and, especially, Mr. Roja nervously handing Alicia a gym bag full of Lemond Bishop's money.

On the other hand, if I never see Cary 2 and the rest of the sniveling junior non-name partners at Florrick/Agos, it'll be too soon, and without Diane, the old firm has turned into pure evil, which makes the conflict a lot less entertaining.

As happens every year, I'll be checking in on the season periodically, but not writing weekly.

What did everybody else think?

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