Killer Episode: ‘The Good Wife’ Recap

Can’t believe the all time I wasted reading Camille Paglia’s take on Elizabeth Taylor, when a new episode of The Good Wife was up.

It was gripping, as always. Archie Panjabi (Kalinda) is such an expressive actor; those kohl-rimmed eyes alone can convey so much emotion.  I suspect she’ll get another Emmy nomination come Emmy season.

Other highlights:

Eli Gold’s (Alan Cumming) witty repartee with his daughter. Sarah Steele is a refreshing change of pace as the wise-cracking, sardonic daughter. I’m normally rather skeptical of such relationships–the whole divorced dad/sarcastic daughter thing is such a cliche, but with  actors like Cummings and Steele doing the jibing, it really works. I totally buy their relationship.

Not sure, that I necessarily buy America Ferrera though. As much as I admire the idea of her–pretty, successful, Hispanic, not-skinny, leading lady– I’ve never liked any of the roles she’s played. On Ugly Betty, I found her character insufferable, too good to be true. Carmen was my least favorite character in Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants. And unfortunately, Ferrera’s voice has a whiny timbre to it that is very grating, and so each character she plays is infused with an irritating kind of earnestness. I don’t go for earnest people.

This is all applicable to her character, Natalie Flores, on The Good Wife. Yes, it’s very nice to see how the writers went out of their way to avoid stereotyping completely (she’s undocumented and a nanny and hey, she does daytrading too), but she strikes me as incredibly bland, not at all interesting. Gold’s crush on her feels manufactured–and kind of gross. And actually kind of insulting, at least for Ferrera. You’ve got this gorgeous girl on the show and you pair her up with Alan Cumming? Not at all an Alan Cumming hater, but come on now, America Ferrera vs. Alan Cumming? And yet chronic-side-smile-inflicter  Elizabeth Reaser gets Josh Charles? Well, actually, that makes sense. Apparently, I’m the only person in the world that likes the Reaser-Charles coupling, but it would have been really interesting to see America Ferrera play a darker, more cynical role on the show.

On the Cary front, he was looking extra, extra fine especially in those intimate bits with Kalinda, his voice all whispery with concern. I love him! He is my ultimate TV crush! Mmmm.

As for the ostensible case of the week–wasn’t really digging it. The Good Wife’s use of social media and technology always comes across as a dignified, yet stodgy attempt to show their hipness. For that reason, scenes with the Florrick children are almost always a fail, and in this week’s episode, the hit song about a murder and playing it ad nauseam on fake iTunes, was all really forced and contrived.

But all in all it was a good episode. It will be very interesting to see how the ‘I-slept-with-your-husband’ confession will go, if that information does (and I’m sure it will, come season finale) actually get disseminated.  Oh, and I’m glad someone finally addressed, even if it was off-handedly, Kalinda’s obviously English-inflected accent.

P.S. Can someone pleeeeze tell me why everyone says ‘phone’ instead of ‘call’? Are Robert and Michelle King closet anglophiles or something? Do they seriously think anyone under the age of 40 and over the age of 50 says ‘phone’? (And yes if you do the math, I’m talking about everyone.) Maybe I’ll start keeping a tally…

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