"The Good Wife" Returns in Overdrive

The Good Wife returned for a new season Sunday night. I really didn't care for last season but tuned in anyway, expecting to be bored. I'm glad I did. Someone must have slipped some steroids into the writers' morning Wheaties. [More...]

Carey gets arrested on a charge of helping long time client and drug baron Lemond Bishop's minions pull off a $1.3 million heroin deal.

The scenes in the holding lockup and at the jail make the overbearing, abusive, unconstitutional police practices as indelible as watching the nights of unrest in Ferguson. The arbitrary and excessive power of prosecutors, and the judges who take their word as gospel, are on full display. The personal indignities inflicted by jailers who treat the inmates as lower than chattel, and the risks of ratting to make a deal are dramatically brought home. Carey narrowly escapes being punched by a guard who thinks he almost strayed over a painted red line while walking down a hallway from the holding cell to court. At the jail, a fellow inmate, on instructions from Bishop, pulls out a big knife and tells Carey he has to cut off his finger to make sure he knows to keep his mouth shut. (He settles for a deep cut.)

Carey's bail is set at an excessive $1.3 million, cash (no surety or bail agent allowed) which the judge refuses to reduce. Lemond, now being satisfied Carey won't rat him out after the cutting incident, gets a legitimate business owner to make the bail. But the prosecutor asks for a hearing on the source of funds, which the judge sets in a week -- during which Carey has to stay in jail.

In short, in the space of one hour, the show brought out all the ways the system screws defendants from the moment they are arrested. It didn't glamorize the drug dealer or the inmates, it just humanized them.

I hope they keep it up for the rest of the season, and keep the law firm backstabbing and politics on the back burner. That won't happen of course, as they still had time for a sub-plot tonight: Eli trying to convince Alicia to run for state's attorney.

The show wasn't perfect. They also ought to lose the trite and overworked schlock about whether or not a female staffer of Peter's is wearing underwear. I'd like the 3 minutes back I wasted watching it. It was reminiscent of one of the worst story lines of last season -- the histrionics of a pregnant state ethics examiner. Also, Eli's eyeliner was too noticeable and distracting. He looked like his character in Cabaret.

Still, overall, the show is off to a promising start. I hope Lemond is in a lot of episodes and Lockhart Gardner (including Michael Fox) quickly join Will in TV heaven.

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