'The Good Wife': Alicia's impassioned plea saves a man on death row
Speaking of a lot of stuff, "Nine Hours" was a jam-packed episode of "The Good Wife." So ... here we go.
Case of the Week
Carter Wright is on death row for arson/murder and the firm is appealing, but weirdly Kerrigan, a 7th circuit court clerk, calls Alicia about an addendum to the appeal. The clerk is trying to tell the firm something about their appeal without being able to spell it out. They have nine hours to save their client. Sure, it's gimmicky, but it's a fun basis for a COTW.
The whole firm is on high alert about it, poring over everything they ever wrote and trying to figure out which judge it is. Kalinda reaches out to Cary, who has a lead on clerk Jason Kerrigan from previously working together, while Will and Blake are tracking down Frank Gephart, a bitter ex-business partner of Carter's who could have set the fire. His ex-wife alibis him, though.
Cary ends up getting called by Barry Scheck, a judge and friend of Cary's father, who gets Cary to help the firm with the appeal. Cary leads them to a law school note clerk Kerrigan wrote about flawed courtroom science, which leads Alicia and Kalinda to track down the original arson expert who testified 10 years ago, since arson investigations have advanced considerably in 10 years.
Kalinda tracks him down to a layover at O'Hare on his way to Orlando, gets stopped by TSA (because she's Indian?), but makes it in time to interview arson expert Dr. Grossman. Kalinda is pretty firm with him and he writes an affadavit saying that the fire could have been an accidental fire.
Meanwhile, at the prison Diane is trying to get Carter's daughter Ruby to come visit him -- they're estraged since the fire Carter allegedly started killed her mom and another man. When she speaks to the Warden about extending visiting hours so Ruby can get there in time, she "overhears" the anesthetist tell the warden that the first drug in the three-drug cocktail they use for lethal injection is expired. The drug is the barbituate that puts the inmate to sleep and she thinks their trying to substitute another drug can get them a delay in the execution.
Will argues that they can't play a "shell game" with the drugs and the judge agrees, so unless the prosecution/prison can secure some more, the execution is delayed. The warden finds out that Diane used the overheard drug information and he won't let Ruby see Carter. The warden also gets a warden from another facility to drop off some more of the drug.
A guard lets Ruby get a glimpse of her father as he's led down the hall and they shout to each other as some acoustic music plays. It's pretty sniffly. [ wipes tears]
In the end, clerk Kerrigan calls Alicia again with a question from Judge Glendon about the possibility of accidental fire and the innocence of Carter. Alicia gives an impassioned speech to the judge about needing to be absolutely certain before the state kills someone and he grants a new trial based on the arson expert's affadavit and her innocence argument.
Peter is busy preparing for his debate with Childs and Wendy Scott-Carr, while Grace is making a super-religious new friend and Zach is getting the hots for Kalinda. During the debate, Peter swears on TV when telling the moderator that his marriage is not up for discussion.
Speaking of Kalinda, she calls Alicia on her recent weird behavior and Alicia calls her on her weird relationship with Blake. Kalinda alludes to having been a different person long ago, but that's the only sliver we get on her. And Alicia takes a small step towards Will when she asks him if they "can talk" sometime.
Weird Side Plot
Cary is showing his barely-legal first cousin around Chicago colleges and she keeps hitting on him -- "it's not incest." Hmm.
Thoughts & Tidbits
- Did you notice the prevalence of clocks in the background throughout the episode? That was a neat touch.
- We liked Cary joining up with our Lockhart & Gardner friends. More of that please.
- But speaking of Cary, are we going to revisit his creepy cousin? Here's hoping.
- It was also great to see Roger Rees as Dr. Grossman. To us, he'll always be either Lord John Marbury or Vic Racine.
- We thought Grace's turn to religion was interesting, but were a bit disappointed her viral video defense of her father didn't come up at all.
What did you think, "Good Wife" fans? We think it's one of the best episodes yet.