Monday, November 7, 2011

GIVEN THIS SEASON'S PLOTS, DO THEY NEED TO CHANGE THE TITLE? The Good Wife has seemed a little off to me this season. With the new time slot, the writers were clearly given a commandment to up the sexiness (even though the show now airs an hour earlier than it used to) and decrease the serialization (airing after football on the East Coast creates some problems), and they've clearly delivered on both points, but a few questions from last night:
  • Is Diane so oblivious that she was unable to recognize Grace's voice on Alicia's ringtone in the background? Obviously, she's had inklings that there's some sort of relationship between Alicia and Will for quite a while, and seems like she's finally put the pieces together, and is responding in an interestingly passive-aggressive way (the sexual harassment video at the end of the episode was hysterical).
  • Josh Charles is a devout Baltimore sports fan, and I suspect the writers were having more than a little fun tweaking him for that with the plotline about Will's (prior?) gambling problem. (Also, credit to the writers for working in continuity--Scott Porter is off wooing Rachel Bilson and Jaime King on Hart of Dixie, so we can't see Blake, but we at least get a reference.) Charles has had a pretty good season this year, with him getting to play off not just Marguiles, but Lisa Edelstein, and to do something other than bark orders.
  • With respect to the "secret" deposition transcripts, even assuming that such depositions would be allowed, anyone think that the government would allow such videotapes to be recorded, much less released to opposing counsel in a subsequent case? Even if the videotapes were released, wouldn't the lips be blurred as well to avoid using a lip reader to circumvent confidentiality? I'm willing to cut some slack in the name of good television--people sitting reading deposition transcripts doesn't make for good entertainment--but given how generally good the show has been about keeping it somewhat plausible, it annoys.


  1. 3. I don't think the government actually released the videos -- I think that was just showing us what the attorneys imagined was happening.

    2. Where was Cuddy this week? Eli? Kalinda? Zack?

    1. I assumed that she figured it out from the ringtone. 

    0. I've seen that video.  Spot on.  Also, yay for Bob Balaban, who is always pitch-perfect in everything.

  2. I agree that the video tapes were not released and that it was a filmic technique to show you the absurdity of redacting so much information.  Also, Diane has had her suspicions for a while; the ringtone was her confirmation, paired with Grace's line, "Isn't it a bit late for lunch?"  That was clever writing, having both parties on the phone simultaneously with the conversations allowing the audience to make connections with separate information.

    This season has also seemed off to me.  Does it seem to be more about case-of-the-week than character development, which was so heavy last season?

  3. Yup.  Diane has suspected for some time, but now she knows.  And I also don't think that there were videotapes of the arguments---that was just for television purposes.  And, yes, that video seemed very, very right to me.

    I actually loved this week's episode.  I adored Alicia's attorney.  That was masterful.  Diane's gambit with the insurer and the sexual harassment tape.  More Peter/Will fun.  Every time that they used the "redacted" video, I laughed.  And I like Cary with his new partner, even if the stare that she did into Will's eyes was a bit over the top.

  4. Marsha10:27 AM

    Ditto - the "videos" were dramatization, not taped depos. (Kinda like when they show you what's going on inside the blood on House.) And the ringtone was what confirmed it for Diane.

    This season hasn't seemed off to me - I actually think it's been very, very good. But I do think there's a lot of moving-the-pieces-into place. We're starting to see where Cary's plot is going this year, as well as how Peter will fit in. (I will admit to still being confused by Grace's bible study plot. Is this just to have her be the one who brings up the divorce? Or are we going to see more of her playing her parents off each other?)

    And how have we not mentioned the delights that are the returns of both Peter's not-so-ditzy lawyer and Peter's Mom? (Ditto the love for Balaban.)

  5. Jenn.1:01 PM

    I tend to think that we're going to find Zack taking Alicia's side and Grace taking Peter's side.  Zack knows about the multiple affairs, feels like Peter did wrong by his mom, and is worried about his mom being on her own.  Grace, on the other hand, has shown signs that she thinks that Alicia is wrong to have kicked out Peter, and this is another one on the pile.

  6. I feel like there was a scene we were missing which would explain why the bible study thing was such an issue. Was the "it's in a nightclub" thing enough?

  7. Jenn.1:57 PM

    Bible study came up in a previous season, and the mother-in-law didn't like it then, either.

  8. Paul Tabachneck1:59 PM

    3. Agreed.  Hence the aspect ratio change to 2.35:1 -- if it had been a videotape the general practice would have been to either show it on a screen or switch the aspect ratio to 1.33:1.

    2. When she is opposite Knox Overstreet, the proper name for that actress is Bobbie Bernstein.  Get it together, man!  Kalinda was in one shot -- had I known that, I would have paused it.  ROWR!

    1. Also agreed.  That gun has needed a third act for some time.

    0. I love how much fun their music production people have with their jobs.

  9. Paul Tabachneck1:59 PM

    Oh, and also yes, Bob Balaban FTW.

  10. StvMg3:28 PM

    I assumed Diane figured it out from the ringtone as well.

  11. Marsha4:02 PM

    Well, and I couldn't figure out if Alicia ever said yes, or if she was lying to her grandmother and Peter and playing them off each other. I seem to remember that the last we heard of it was Alicia saying "I'll think about it."

    Jenn, what you're saying is very logical to me - Zack and Grace do have different information, so that divergence would make a lot of sense.

  12. Emily5:29 PM

    I hope that Alicia's comment that she wants to learn from Elsbeth Tascioni means that Carrie Preston will be around a few more times this season. Her scenes with Bob Balaban were especially entertaining.