02 December, 2012

The Good Wife: "Battle of the Proxies"

Episode Title: "Battle of the Proxies” aka The Sweet Smell of Disaster
Season 4, Episode 10 | Original Air Date: Sunday, December 2, 2012

There’s no time to bury the lead this week.  “Battle of the Proxies” caused me to gasp, cover my face, laugh, scream and add to my ‘I didn't see that coming list.’  In fact, I’m almost at a loss for words with this episode.  Almost.

Let’s cut to the chase: The Florrick campaign office was raided, Will duked it out with Laura in court (and then went drinking with her…), Alicia was having sex talks with her kids and Kalinda found out Nick really was smuggling heroin under the guise of a tow-truck business.  Oh.  And then she may have killed him.  Soooo, there’s that.

This week I’m going back to one of my favourite ways to relive an episode: The reaction round-up.  Jump in on the comments below, because, if you’re anything like me, you've got some thoughts!

Battle of the Proxies: Reaction Round-Up

Hot Sauce, Hot Mess
Eli’s eating in a diner, listening to classical music, reviewing campaign stats and playing the air piano.  It’s less glamorous than then air guitar, but we’ll forgive him that because he’s brilliant… and also because we can’t picture him playing the guitar.  In the midst of a concerto, Eli is interrupted by a man looking for hot sauce.  The man, David, seems harmless at first – he likes spicy food and enjoys chatting about accordions – and then he drops a bomb.  Wostergraph Industries.  We don’t know why, but Eli starts to sweat.  David knows something and he is also working at the Department of Justice, so things are beginning to look a lot like disaster. 

Eli’s first call is to Diane from a campaign worker’s phone.  After finding out his lines had been tapped in season two, he’s taking no chances this time around.  Up next?  Showing Diane the picture Kalinda had given him that Nick had stolen from Lana’s apartment.  Looking for a flow chart?  Me too.  Did I mention Eli doesn't want Alicia or Will to know about David and the question of Wostergraph Industries?  

Reaction:  My first ‘I didn't see that coming’ moment of the night, just three minutes in.  Could Eli be the next scandal on the Florrick campaign?  Why did Diane feel the need to wear her sunglasses to the meeting with David in the diner (see below)?  Was she trying to conceal her identity or does she not want to be seen at a place that serves eggs after 1pm?  How does the photo of Eli and Kalinda tie into what David is after?  I have so many questions about this story line.  

Thankfully, we were given a little more to go on.  Apparently, Eli’s association with Wostergraph Industries ties back to his ex, Vanessa (remember, she’s the one who slept with the Bin Laden) and the question of campaign financing.  I love how even though we haven’t seen Vanessa in what seems like a year, she has come back to haunt.  I also love that Eli seems panic stricken.  David is definitely on to something and it looks as though it could be seriously damaging to Peter’s campaign.  The icing on the cake is that since David works for the Department of Justice, apparently he can issue warrants.  So, he does.  He has confiscated the entire Florrick campaign office.  Okay, I really didn’t see that coming.  Phone taps are the least of Eli’s worries now.  Do I smell a third ham sandwich?

The Condom Conundrum
Alicia is busy researching clay loam (for a case, not for apartment balcony landscaping) when she discovers a recent internet search for types of condoms.  Thrown off, she decides to head to the source: her kids.  First up: Zach.  Is he dating Neesa still?  Yes.  Okay, good.  We actually had no idea what was happening with their budding romance, so it’s nice we’re back in the loop.  Are they sleeping together?  Zach says no and I tend to believe him.  Next up: Grace.  Generally, I trust her less, but the look of horror on her face when Alicia asked her about Conner was genuinely priceless.  Also, apparently Conner wants to live in Thailand and play with water balloons after graduation.  Alicia now has multiple things to worry about: sex and Thailand. Okay, make that one thing.  After picking up a stuffed horse from Grace’s floor and petting its mane to remind Grace she’s still “good,” Alicia isn't sure what to think. 

Thankfully, she has Zach, the computer genius, close at hand.  He’s as intrigued as anyone to find out who has been using the Florrick home computer for condom searches, so he decides to clean their cache.  The result?  It all comes back to Thanksgiving and Grandma.  But not Veronica, oh no.  Jackie.  Hello ‘things I didn't see coming.’

The best part?  The following exchange:

Alicia (in one of her most stunning blazers to date): “Zach… we’ll never speak of this again.” 
Zach: “I’m good with that.”

Reaction:  Oh. My. Goodness.  These scenes were a smooth blend of hilarious and horrifying and I loved every minute!  First off: Jackie?!?!??!  I have no words.  This is me.  NO WORDS!  I do, however, have two questions: 1) Will Alicia tell Peter about Jackie’s internet searches? 2) Am I the only one to be delighted by the irony that Jackie tried to spy on Alicia’s computer last year and now she’s been found out because she can’t clear her search history?  Oh sweet justice.   Next: How is Neesa only 15?  Why is she Zach’s study partner… isn’t he preparing to head to college soon?  Color me confused.  Also, why does Grace have a movement lamp (I’m sure that’s not the technical term) above her bed?  Is she three?  I’m not saying I don’t want one – I mean, she really was sleeping like a baby – but still.

One Man and his Swivel Chair
For all of you who are upset about Cary’s lack of screen time, this episode was unlikely to help the situation one bit.  That said, I like to take what I can get, so I’m choosing to focus on how much I love that Cary can swivel around in his chair and talk to Alicia whenever he wants.  I adore these two hashing out cases together – I just wish we got more of it.  On the upside of Cary’s lack of story again this week, he wasn’t replaced or upstaged by Alicia’s new giant giraffe.  Also, his name was dropped and resulted in the beginning of the end of Nick, so, things are coming up roses in the land of Agos.  Well, ish.

Goodbye Nick Savarese
Nick wants Cary off his case.  Alicia wants Nick out of the office.  Cary wants a love interest, a story line and maybe a law firm with Alicia. But back to Nick.  Apparently he didn’t like Cary coming to his tow yard and dropping words like ‘smuggling’ and ‘heroin.’  It’s too bad for Nick that Alicia has Cary’s back on this and doesn’t want him for a client.  After saying Lockhart Gardner will no longer represent him, things get personal.  Nick threatens Alicia and tells her not to go to the State’s Attorney’s Office with anything she’s been told.

Flash forward – Alicia and Kalinda:

Alicia: “Am I not in danger?” 
Kalinda: “You won’t be.”

This kind of statement can only mean one thing: Badass Kalinda time.

With Audra Mae’s ‘Jebidiah Moonshine’s Friday Night’ playing in the background, Kalinda hops in her car and heads to the industrial park where Nick, henchman Bill and a few other random people work.  Gunning it, she drives her car and t-bones a vehicle and nearly some guy.  He ends up on the ground, so she takes him out, grabs his gun and shoots open the truck of another car.  Inside?  Bundles (bricks?) of heroin.  I’m not up to speed on the lingo, but I can tell you it’s a lot of drugs.

Now K knows Nick is the shady dealer he’s been suspected of being, she takes matters into her own hands.  Let’s face it: She can’t have people threatening Alicia.   When it comes to Kalinda, that’s the worst possible thing Nick could have done.  She’ll put up with abuse, theft and drug trafficking, but she won’t stand for threats directed at Alicia.  Everyone has a line – this is Kalinda’s.

The next thing we know, Kalinda is standing face-to-face with Nick.  She tells him to go and gives him a map as well as a key to a locker filled with $10,000.  He basically says, ‘meh’ when it comes to getting out of Chicago and challenges her by asking what she’ll do if he doesn't go. 

Flash forward: Alicia is sipping tequila by herself, waiting for Kalinda while the song, ‘Where is my Mind’ plays in the background.  Kalinda surfaces.

Kalinda: What did I miss? 
Alicia: Not much, where were you? 
Kalinda: Out. 
Alicia: You look relieved. 
Kalinda: I am. 
Alicia: And you’re safe? 
Kalinda: Ya. You are, too. 
Alicia: Good.  What if he comes back? 
Kalinda: He’s not coming back. 
Alicia: You’re sure? 
Kalinda: Ya.

Reaction: I’m sorry, what?  Did Kalinda just kill Nick?!?!  I’ve thought about this scene a million times already and it’s the only possible way I can calculate his guaranteed disappearance.  But how?  She was in Lockhart Gardner’s offices.  Also, her vehicle has to be damaged after using it as a weapon.  We’ve seen the size of hole in her apartment wall and there’s no way a body is fitting in there.  Plus, hiding a body in your apartment seems like a bad idea.  Could she have killed him, taken him back to the tow yard and torched everything?  She has escaped him with fire before, could she do it again?  Would she actually kill someone?  WHAT’S HAPPENING?!?!?  Am I a little impressed that she got rid of Nick and was only a few minutes late for drinks with Alicia?  Yes.  I’m also thrilled that in one foul swoop, Kalinda is back to being deliciously mysterious.    

Two Verdicts: Guilty
Will is in court against Laura, who is turning out to be a formidable opponent.  The case?  A young woman was murdered at a music festival and her body was dumped 50 miles away.  What’s fascinating here is that the case was being tried in Chicago and Minooka County, which means two potential murderers were on trial.  While Alicia was monitoring things in Minooka, Will was holding his own in Chicago. 

The best part about this case was not that Will told Alicia to drive safe and she smiled (the smallest of Team Gardner moments, but I’ll take it!) and not even that Maton Brody was back (I was beginning to think he and Julius had made good their escape), but that we had a meticulously scripted dance between two courtrooms and two cases, both which led to the same questions.  How do you represent someone when you know they’re guilty?  Where is the line between truth and justice?  As Alicia continues to struggle with these moral dilemmas, Will has no trouble drawing a line in the sand: He was hired to do a job.  Guilty or not guilty, he’s there to do the best he can for his client. 

This week, it was an uphill battle that saw Lockhart Gardner lose to the State.  With their client off to jail, Will headed to the bar, where he found Laura.  They had a drinking buying bet going this week, so Will made good on his debt.  He signaled for two drinks (which, by the way, I never understand.  If I were to go into a bar and give the infamous Will point, I’m pretty sure I wouldn't end up with two shots of tequila) and started chatting.

Will: ‘Till the next one. 
Laura: I can’t wait. 

Sure, I play it cool pretend to play it cool, when it comes to Team Gardner, but these two actually seem to have some chemistry.  This is a horrifying development!  Team Gardner can’t become Team Gardner Hellinger.  Terrific double name aside, I’m seriously upset about where things are going here.   I had liked Laura, but now I might be forced to vote her off the island.  What’s more, I can foresee a scene where Laura goes for drinks with Alicia and says something like, ‘So, I’m dating this guy… and you know him.’  The only saving grace here is that Amanda Peet isn't slated to be around forever (which does make me sad and yet...).  

Why must the writers do this?  Oh drama.  It’s good when it’s happening to Jackie, not so much when it’s happening to me.  And by me I mean Alicia and Will.  Oh for the love of Team Gardner.

What were your reactions to this week's episode?  Love it?  Hate it?  What happened to Nick?  Where are things going with Laura and Will?  

Related to this Post:


  1. I don't know what to say anymore about Cary. It's like they don't give a damn about the character, the actor and fans. I have given the Kings and the writers every benefit of the doubt for years but they continue to do the same things they profess to be correcting. I'm fed up.

    1. Every time they don't use Cary that much, I think of you. I definitely hear what you're saying about this character, but what's interesting is that people are beginning to say the same thing about Diane. The first half of the season was more focused on Kalinda, while the last half of season three was more focused on Will. While I'm not sure if they'll ever really focus on Cary, he is a supporting actor. I've always adored him, too, but I'm not sure he'll ever be the main event. That is, until I get my dream spin off when Alicia and Cary open a firm together...

    2. Pink, Matt Czuchry is listed as main character like everyone else. I know that now that he's at L&G it's not so easy to excuse writers and producers anymore for what they've done with him but the "he's a supporting character" excuse doesn't work. Josh Charles and Archie Panjabi ARE supporting actors like him so I don't see whay they can't do with him what they've done with them when it's clear that he also has a fandom who love him. And that season I feel a lot of love from the fandom for Cary's character so it would have being good for the show to work more on this. But when you realize that a recurring character like Laura, who was introduced mainly to give Will's a love interest, got more screentime than a MAIN character is not matter of what they can do. It's just matter of what they WANT to do.
      If they're not able to give him anything better than this they better free Matt Czuchry and let him do something worth his talent. Now he's completely wasted.

  2. I must say I totally kill it and got it right with Jackie being the person who search for C...... I knew Zach and Grace would probably be too IT smart to leave any trace of evidence. Laura and Will do have Chemistry but as you mentioned, you do not have to worry unless the writers decide to make Amanda Peet a regular. I cannot remember the last time I saw Amanda this good!

    I think we might never know if Kalinda did kill the husband, we can only be sure this story line has finally ended.

    Lastly, does every parent-teenager sex talk have to be this awkward?

    1. I've learned an important lesson this week: Whenever there's a mess in chateau Florrick, it probably leads back to Jackie. I found a great recap today you might also like (just based on your astute 'it was Jackie' thought process) - http://www.afterelton.com/2012/12/good-wife-recap-410 (sorry I can't hyperlink in the comments section!).

      Oh Laura Hellinger. Why must she be so likable? Urgh. The Good Wife rarely creates a character that seems so intrinsically, well, good. While I can't help but ship Team Gardner, I am intrigued as to where they are going with all of this. My question: Why couldn't they have had her like Cary? He's single and unabashedly handsome. They would be adorable together!

      As for the sex talk - I'm not sure it has to be that awkward, but at the end of the day, have you met her children? Oy vey. We're probably lucky it wasn't worse.

  3. First of all: auf Wiedersehen, Nick. He's finally gone and I really hope Kalinda did kill him. I'd love to see Will, Alicia and Cary having to team up to defend her in court.
    I wished she would have found out about Cary's beating and taken some action because of that too, not only Alicia.
    The thig is, I don't think Alicia was the only reason Kalinda did whatever she did. Alicia had already asked Kalinda three or four times if her husband was dangerous and she did nothing about it. Alicia had told her she had been "threatened" over the phone (end of season 3) and, sure, Kalinda stayed in Chicago and waited with a gun at the door, but that was it. I think the final drop was that she discovered about the drugs, that he was really still the same man.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm still Team Gardner (as much as I try to get over it, I just can't), but I really like Will and Laura together. They have enough chemistry and their teasing is fun to watch. I also think that as long as Alicia keeps hurting Will, he needs someone else. Like you said about Tammy, Laura wouldn't be a threat either(and a lot better than Callie). I like this if only to see Alicia's reaction to Will and Laura dating.
    I loved the "Drive safe"-phone-talk (like I said, I can't let go), because even if it was short (too short), it showed the best of their relationship: true caring.

    1. Jule - you're blowing my mind over here. Alicia, Will and Cary teaming up in court to defend Kalinda. I'm ridiculously excited at this prospect. Can you even imagine?!?! The love I would have for that storyline would be through the roof.

      You bring up some very interesting points when it comes to Kalinda and her defense of Alicia. It's like the build-up of threats is what finally pushed her to figure out if the heroin smuggling was real. After that, she knew he was dangerous and could do real damage to her life - more than he had already done. I guess this is one of those things we'll never know more about - what pushed her to that point and why now?

      Now, this whole Will and Laura thing - we have to talk. You like them together?!?!? I always thought you were my partner in Team Gardner shipping! I'm kidding of course. It's impossible not to see their chemistry. She is fun and adorable and could be a very serious love interest for Will. Of course, I'll ship Team Gardner until the end of time, but she could be an interesting addition... for awhile. Now, when it comes to Alicia's reaction to Will dating Laura, that could be fascinating. There will be jealously. And then there will be shots of tequila with Kalinda to talk it through. Of course, K will encourage A to pursue happiness and therefore Will.


      Shut the front door.

      I have it. We need Laura to get Team Gardner back together!

      Now that I'm worked up about K on trial and Team Gardner back in the mix, I'm officially going to have to watch the 'drive safe' .5 second clip to ground myself back to where we are today. Friendship and caring - the best foundation of a life-long love :)

      Thanks for writing such great notes this week, Jule - you've totally inspired me! Side note: Are you on Twitter?

    2. I agree that we will probably never know the whole story (unfortunately). But maybe if this goes to court, Kalinda will talk about it with Alicia.

      Of course, I'm still Team Gardner UNTIL THE END, despite how much they hurt me. I just want Will not to be alone until Alicia has things sort out. I accept Laura for now, because she is no threat since whenever Alicia is ready, he'll tell Laura goodbye without a second thought - he has done it to Giada (end of season 1) and to Tammy (end of season 2). And I prefer her other than anyone else, like, Callie for example (I really didn't like her).

      Yes, I am on Twitter! =)

    3. Even a few days later, I'm still all over this 'Kalinda going to court' story line. Sheer brilliance on your part. I hope The Good Wife writers are reading this (I mean, we *did* get a Thanksgiving, which I had been hoping for since day one!).

      I completely understand your position with Team Gardner. I'm liking the idea that Will and Laura could lead back to Will and Alicia. It's a roundabout way of shipping Team Gardner, but I'm willing to be optimistic about the whole situation. As long as they don't sign Amanda Peet permanently, I think we're fine. Right?

      Whoop - Twitter! Love it! Not sure if you're following me (could we know each other in a different online way?), but if you're interested, you can find me @Glitterkorn. I feel like we could be Twitter friends :)

    4. Thank you. I just hope they don't take 4 seasons to do it, like they did with Thanksgiving. No, I'm kidding.

      Well, I think even if they sign her permanently we would be fine, because what better drama than a bitter ex-girlfriend, who was also a friend, who works as opposing counselor, whose boss is your ex-husband? Doesn't get more awkward than that and The Good Wife is all about awkward situations these days.

      I am not following you on twitter, yet, because I am new to it and don't follow a lot o people, again, yet. I do follow you on tumblr, though.
      Yes, we should be twitter friends! :) I'm @Jule7434

  4. Hi, Pink!

    Been a fan of TGW since the beginning and I must say your blog's really like a candy shop! Recently I started rewatching TGW and had been feeling great about it up until I reached S03E10... Maybe parenting was made easy but witnessing Team Gardner breaking up was not easy at all. What a helpless shipper am I!

    On more recent events - I'm not going to complain about obvious things like Cary's lack of screentime or everything-about-Nick. Though, I still cherish hope that more or less all plotlines of TGW would make sence sooner or later. Can you remember, for instance, when was last time we were reminded that Eli's actually "a classicaly trained pianist"? And here we are today - having him plaing his imaginary piano while managing Piter's political campaign. What a fine metaphor by the way!

    Beside that we also got a very good multilayered comparison in Battle of Proxies. First, we have Alicia balancing on what's left of her initial black\white integrity. She has got a question asked. Will got it answered imidiately. No hesitation at all. "We have to zealously represent interests of our client". He repeated this phrase twice. I believe the reason is that he had this question asked and answered within himself sometime after Georgetown while Alicia was nobly changing diapers.

    Second, we have our new star-ASA Laura. Ok, this particular case was ambivalent and it turned out that the guy she prosecuted was a guilty one. But the innocent guy in Miny-somewhere was found guilty too! "By 12 unbiased people" - to almost quote 1 season Kalinda. Which means he did it... My head is going to explode! I really don't understand American legal system, at least TV-and-mouvie one))))

    Anyway, that's not the point. The point is it seemed that Laura didn't really give a damn about moral dilemmas of law. She was just enjoing playing in "big leagues". Well... Will defenetly finds tough-girls-who-likes-sports thing challenging and attractive. (Yes, Tammy was here}.

    What's gonna be the result of all that? I don't have enough intuition and imagination to predict. And then the hiatus....

    Again Pink - huge thanks for this blog))) And sorry for any mistakes I've made. (I'm not a native English speaker).


    1. Thanks for your thoughtful comments and kind words, L - both are beyond appreciated!

      A few quick responses ;)

      1) Parenting Made Easy - My least watched episode of The Good Wife. Ever. I can't do it. That episode breaks my heart in ways I didn't know television could. This week's episode marked the one-year anniversary of the break-up and I'm still not over it. I'm giving myself a solid 5 - 7 years, really. I'm glad I'm not the only one still grieving. I'll join you in a lifetime of endless Team Gardner shipping.

      2) I love your analysis of Laura and how you thought she cared more about playing in the big leagues than she did about the moral dilemmas of the law. I get the impression Laura is guided by a strong moral compass, so I think this will be interesting to watch in the coming weeks. We are intimately acquainted with Alicia's struggles with the law - she's fought the fine line between black and white for four years now, and things only seem to get more complicated with time. This is compounded by her relationship with Peter and his post as State's Attorney.

      As Cary so astutely pointed out this week, they don't teach you these things in law school. That's the one thing I think Will and Diane are so good about though. They don't apologize for doing their jobs - for defending the clients they are paid to defend. I'm not saying that's right, but I respect their commitment. Sure, this hasn't helped them with their finances, so, at the end of the day, who knows if they're making the right choices?

      3) Laura and Will could end up being an inevitable relationship Team Gardner fans must endure. That said, I had a breakthrough earlier in the night that leads me to believe Laura could be the key to Alicia and Will reuniting. Intriguing, no? Check out my note to Jule just above your comment where I lay this out. Let me know what you think!

      4) Thanks for reading and for writing in! Your English was great and I'm so thrilled you think my blog is like a candy shop. You're so sweet!

      Looking forward to hearing more from you throughout the season!

  5. OMG...my DVR did not record the last fifteen minutes, DAMN! That's when all the good stuff happen. Jackie, REALLY...JACKIE really...doing a condom search...WELL I BE DAMN. Didn't think the old girl had it going on like that, still don't believe. She had to be checking of this for her cheating azz son, you KNOW Christmas is coming! :)

    NO...Will and Laura, well I want a woman to treat Will like she wants to be with him and I want Will to be happy, there's that word HAPPY again. I just think he will ONLY truly be HAPPY with Alicia! My Willica LOVE is showing again. Will and Laura ONLY if it makes Alicia remember all those "don't stop" moments she use to get...well it will be worth it!

    Kalinda, Kalinda, Kalinda...what did you do, Kalinda? WHO CARES, NICK IS GONE and hopefully he is gone for good! Now go make up with Lana, you treated her pretty coldly after lying Nick trashed her place and probably lied about her stalking you.

    As always, thanks for the recap! Diane and those big azz hangover shades...cute! Chillin n a diner with nervous Eli! :)

    Pam in Dallas

  6. Neat blog :) I adore all things TGW!! I just wish they would throw in more Alicia/ Will scenes!! Will they ever get back together??


  7. What was the name of the composer and the classical piece of piano music that Eli Gold was listening to?

  8. Hey the good wife crew is in ft greene - brooklyn right now, I saw Allan Cumming earlier today by the house on the corner of Clermont and Lafayette and now they are shooting inside Queen of All Saints, corner of Vanderbilt and Lafayette.

  9. Yes, I would love to know what the piano piece was that Eli was listening to and who the composer is. ANYONE???

    1. bach, english suite no.3 in G minor, though I think I m a bit late...

  10. Bach English Suite No. 3 in G Minor (BWV 808), Gavotte I

    1. Anyone know who recorded the Gavotte I (BWV 808) from the English Suite? It's a wonderful interpretation, and I'd love to have a copy. Any way to find out? Are there extended credits available somewhere for this episode of the show?

    2. Don't think so. Andras Schiff's 1988 recording was certainly my favorite among the 75+ recordings of this piece on iTunes. So I paid my $0.99 for it. But I liked the recording in the TV episode even better, for its exquisite phrasing. So I'm still looking. Maybe Andras Schiff has another recording of it? Or maybe detailed credits are available somewhere for this episode of the show.

    3. Wolfgang Rubsam

  11. does anybody know the name of the classical piece Eli is listening to at the beginning of the episode "battle of the proxies"?

    1. Bach English Suite No. 3 in G Minor (BWV 808), Gavotte I

    2. Maybe Wolfgang Rubsam?


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