Oh, man. I’m rooting so hard for Florrick, Agos & Associates.
My heart bleeds for Alicia and Cary (and even the other Carey, played by Ben Rappaport).
By the end of “The Next Week”, it seems that Florrick/Agos’ underdog status has worsened. Florrick/Agos are in deep financial trouble, working out of Alicia’s apartment, and Alicia could now be getting sued for $6 million thanks to Anthony Wright Edelman and Lockhart/Gardner. Edelman (Bhavesh Patel) – guy was bad news from the very beginning ever since he tried to blackmail Florrick/Agos for their bonuses – just betrayed Alicia and the new firm in exchange for making partner at Lockhart/Gardner and taking all of Florrick/Agos’ secrets and strategies with him.
Alicia starts out the episode strong, confident – we see her walk back into the offices of Lockhart/Gardner a changed woman, her head held high and able to hold her own against David Lee and former mentor Diane. By the end of “The Next Week”, she looks completely worn down; the facade is gone. But Cary is at her side – the relationship those two have been developing reminds me so much of Will and Diane, and it’s awesome. And I like seeing the family-like dynamic of Florrick/Agos, which is especially fitting since they’re parked right in Alicia’s living room, infiltrating her family space. It’s so different from the ever-bickering, oversized Lockhart/Gardner.
There’s a silver lining in all of this, thanks to the return of Nathan Lane as Clarke Hayden. He helped Lockhart/Gardner out of their financial woes last season, and he’s asked to do the same for Florrick/Agos in this episode. After Edelman’s betrayal, he offers to work for free for Florrick/Agos just until they get back on their feet, which he’ll help them do with his business expertise. I always liked Hayden – he’s genuine and straightforward – and I’m glad to see that he’s joining forces with Florrick/Agos. Better him than Edelman.
While it’s kind of devastating to watch Florrick/Agos struggle, it’s also provided so many new conflicts, tensions, and relationship dynamics. It’s definitely the best part of this season – and perhaps, the entire show.
Meanwhile, Will takes on the case-of-the-week, which involves a college student – formerly Alicia’s client – whose DNA is found on a dead classmate’s body. The storyline is weak (which is why I’m forced to give this episode a B+ rather than an A), but it does lead to Will running into Alicia’s brother, Owen. He tells Will that he suspects the reason Alicia left Lockhart/Gardner was because she was afraid to fall in love with him. In Alicia’s mind, it was easier for Will and Alicia to hate each other than to face the prospect of loving each other. Except they do hate each other (at the moment) and Will tells Owen that it’s over.
Hopefully, there’s nowhere else for Florrick/Agos to go than up. This new partnership with Clarke Hayden seems promising, and next week the firm finally moves out of Alicia’s living room and into real office space. Looking forward to that!