The Reddick v. Boseman plot brings back memories of The Good Wife, which featured a similar story between Will and Jonas Stern. The feels!
Much like its predecessor, The Good Fight examines the impact of a rapidly evolving digital world. FitBit for the win!
Lucca and Colin finally seem to have purpose. Is she really just an accessory?
Bernadette Peters finally gets to acting. After disliking her in previous episodes, this is a breath of fresh air!
The Rindell scandal no longers seems to play a large part in the overall storyline. Can we get back on track?
After paying her capital contribution, Diane’s financial issues seem completely resolved. Didn’t she lose everything?
Julius Caine – enough said.
Power politics & pragmatism: The Good Fight prioritizes head over heart as it stages a battle from within.
With the attacks on Reddick, Boseman & Kolstad finally behind us, this week’s episode of The Good Fight exposes the tensions rising from within. Unhappy with the firm’s current direction, Carl Reddick (Louis Gossett Jr.) – one of the founding fathers – unexpectedly decides to visit RBK. After butting heads with Adrian (Delroy Lindo) over a case, Reddick invokes article 4 – allowing him to oust the current name partner to take his place. The catch? He has to earn a majority vote from the partners – Game on.
After a strenuous campaign, early results point to a Reddick-win – with Julius Caine (Michael Boatman) passionately opposing Boseman. It isn’t until Barbara casts her vote that the referendum ends up in deadlock. Now what?
In a blast from the past, The Good Fight brings back Peter Florrick’s Pastor Jeremiah Easton (Frankie Faison) in a slightly less respectable way. As a favor to the pastor, both Diane (Christine Baranski) and Marissa (Sarah Steele) head out to serve Paul Johnson (Chris Myers) with an eviction notice. Instead of packing his bags, Johnson claims Easton sexually assaulted him at the age of seventeen – pressing the firm for a cash settlement. Just as the evidence against Pastor Jeremiah seems unsurmountable, Jay (Nyambi Nyambi) and Marissa step in to save the day. Turns out that FitBits are great investigative tools.
While working on the case, Maia (Rose Leslie) bumps into her father (Paul Guilfoyle) who seems to be saying his final goodbyes. Urged by girlfriend Amy (Helene Yorke), the couples rushes home to find Henry – unconscious. Visiting her husband at the ICU, Lenore (Bernadette Peters) finally realizes it might be time to break off her affair with uncle Jax. Good call – great timing.
While everyone is working hard to get Pastor Jeremiah acquitted, Lucca (Cush Jumbo) is forced to meet Colin’s (Justin Bartha) parents at a cocktail party. Let’s just say she’d be having more fun in the office as she ends up heartbroken and crying – all by herself.
To be continued.
Reddick v. Boseman: a Good Fight reminiscent of the past.
When The Good Wife first graced our screens in 2009, we were introduced to Alicia’s (Julianna Margulies) new firm – Stern, Lockhart & Gardner. Relegated to the honorary status of ‘emeritus’, founding partner Jonas Stern (Kevin Conway) often butted heads with Will Gardner (Josh Charles) about the firm’s newfound direction.
Ultimately, these internal battles always served a larger purpose: whether they set in motion a character arc or further developed a specific case, the fight itself merely served as a foil to the characters. In this season’s spin-off, the writers (Robert & Michelle King) stray from their previous path by emphasizing the battles from within – providing context and purpose to show’s moral attitude.
This week, Adrian (Delroy Lindo) takes on RBK’s founding partner Carl Reddick (Louis Gossett Jr.) in an ideological crusade – finally disavowing the firm’s unbreakable partnership. Unlike its predecessor, The Good Fight utilizes these battles to explore the show’s main premise – what it means to be on the right side of things. While this particular storyline makes for a thrilling stand-off, it also delves deeper by contrasting two former partners who have drifted apart beyond compromise.
“To idealism!” – Adrian Boseman
“And to pragmatism.” – Barbara Kolstad.
The struggle between Adrian and Carl is ultimately one of good intentions. While both players seem to be worthy adversaries, their sole intent is to keep their firm on the right track. This week’s episode of The Good Fight successfully examines a generational and ideological rift: while Reddick’s past experiences can help the firm in the future, they might no longer be relevant as the world has so obviously evolved beyond comprehension. Their solution? A firm-wide campaign to gain a majority vote. A good idea on paper – crippled by a less-than-stellar execution.
In order to retain power as RBK’s managing partner, Adrian has to retain the trust of his employees. While the past episodes have done nothing but praise Boseman’s candid leadership style, this week’s story paints a different picture: as half the firm opts to vote him out, it is Julius Caine (Michael Boatman) who tips the result in Reddick’s favor. After abstaining for the first round, Barbara (Erica Tazel) – the show’s most underdeveloped character yet – finally casts her ballot. The result? A tie.
It’s obvious the show is struggling for more plot after prematurely terminating its most compelling storylines last week. Having this deadlock is the ultimate way to ride out the season without having to worry about a theme holding the separate cases together. Good thinking, poor execution.
Struggling for purpose, the Rindell scandal no longer makes an impact.
A pilot episode is often an inaccurate representation of the show it sets in motion. While the first hour of a television series can be compelling and different, it often lacks perspective. By focusing on a single event, the writers are able to introduce characters and storylines in a short period of time. In this particular case, the Rindell Ponzi scheme helps transition The Good Wife into The Good Fight – shedding any excess baggage it carried from previous seasons.
The problem is that first impressions don’t last – and good storytelling needs to be nurtured. When a catastrophic event takes place in the universe of a show, it should come with ample repercussions. Because The Good Fight opened with Diane’s legacy at stake, we expected this to be a central theme throughout the season – nurturing that pivotal moment to a satisfying conclusion. But that’s not what happened.
“It is I who’s cheated my wife – out of what it feels like to be loved by someone you love in return.” – Henry Rindell
After just a few episodes, Diane had resolved most of her financial issues and the writers quickly shifted focus to a new law firm. While this spin-off was originally announced to revolve around Christine Baranski’s character, CBS provided us with another version of The Good Wife instead. The first episodes were promising – the ones that followed failed to deliver.
After prematurely wrapping up Mike Kresteva’s (Matthew Perry) arc, the writers (lead by Keith Josef Adkins) seem lost. With no clear sense of direction, the entire Rindell-clan seems disconnected from the main story – an interesting observation given the show maintained their importance throughout the pilot.
After consistently pushing Maia (Rose Leslie) and Henry (Paul Guilfoyle) to the periphery of the series, a failed suicide attempt seems like an overly harsh move. Instead of gently easing the audience back into the characters, the writers overstepped – big time. An emotional moment simply fell flat because the show failed to nurture our affinity to its most compelling characters.
Desperate for relief, Lucca’s walls finally break down – welcome back.
With the Rindell scandal pushed firmly to the background, this show was desperate for some more drama. After playing nice on The Good Wife, Lucca Quinn (Cush Jumbo) seemed rebooted as much as the show itself – Remember, first impressions don’t last. Now portraying the character without a hint of emotion, it is obvious that something happened to Lucca after escaping her former friend Alicia (Julianna Margulies). While we haven’t discovered what made Lucca lose her soul, we’re sure that we’ll find out sometime soon – thanks to a torrid love affair with a certain Assistant Attorney General.
In the past couple of episodes, it has become clear that only one person knows how to push Lucca’s buttons. While beau Colin Morello (Justin Bartha) has tried to keep a low profile, he failed to deceive his mother (Andrea Martin) – bumping into her at an art fair. With their their love affair catapulted center stage, the couple faces their biggest challenge yet as Lucca meets Colin’s parent and friends – and let’s just say we feel sorry for her.
“Colin’s 32 years old – like Jesus was one year away from death!” – Colin’s mother
As Lucca is invited to Colin’s birthday party, we are treated to what is perhaps the most emotionally complex narrative of the season. Instead of ambitiously taking on racism by tackling the alt-right, the show finally succeeds in exposing white privilege on a more personal level.
One by one, rich white people tokenize Lucca by bringing up Trump’s latest acts of horror – and asking her if “she knows Jay-Z”. While the scene verges on the satirical at times, it works out because we live the moment through Lucca’s perception. In her mind, these people are real and she feels nothing but misunderstood.
For the first time in the show, Lucca loses her snark as she tries to keep her poise – awkwardly making her way through the room. It’s a modest scene that proves this show doesn’t have to take on big, ideological issues in order to make a point. We get it – simple as that.
The first episode accurately describing the issue of racism was also the first episode written by an African American. Think about that.
FINAL VERDICT: Forced to deviate from its original path, The Good Fight delivers a compelling analysis of the past while nurturing its future.
This week’s episode of The Good Fight was nothing short of depressing – in terms of dramatics. While the writing (Keith Josef Adkins) was nuanced and the acting refined, the episode revolved mostly around death and sadness – two draining topics.
Once again, the Rindell scandal fell flat but the writers and director (Michael Zinberg) successfully compensated for their miss – developing a complex love affair instead. Finally living up to its potential, the show decisively hit the right note on its racial theme throughout the episode as Lucca’s walls came down. After wondering what happened to her for the past seven episodes, it’s good to finally have her back.
While the show definitely has work to do in some areas, we are finally provided with a sense of direction. Having prematurely wrapped up some interesting storylines, the addition of founding partner Carl Reddick (Louis Gossett Jr.) as a more refined villain allows the writers to ride out the season without much of a problem. Even though that particular storyline has been done before, it’s always nice to reminisce – honoring the show’s extensive legacy.
Questions, Comments & Concerns…
- I feel you, Pastor Jeremiah. I’d much rather pay 9,000 dollars than providing my lawyers with a pic of my private parts. Thanks but no thanks.
- What’s with all the nasty language in this episode? While I love being inappropriate to my friends, it just feels wrong to use those words in front of Diane. But…
- When Kovak was making those perverse gestures, her face was priceless. My only laugh-out-loud moment of the episode!
- Clarence – the hip-hopping lawyer is back. I wish he had done some more quoting, though. While just the sight of him made me chuckle, he should have gotten better lines.
- I felt drained by this episode. It was all about fighting, death and breaking up. Can we move on to something a little more fun?
- Barbara, girl, you don’t have to mention the show’s title in every scene. We get it, you’re fighting “the good fight”. Maybe next time, use air quotes and wink? That’s much more subtle.
- That closing image was beautifully direct. Well done, Michael Zinberg!