Skip to main content

The Daily Beast: "The Good Wife: Has Season 4’s Kalinda Storyline Gone too Far?"

Has the legal drama’s steamy Kalinda/Nick plot gone too far? Maria Elena Fernandez and I debate the merits and flaws of this season’s most polarizing storyline on The Good Wife.

At The Daily Beast, you can read my latest feature, "The Good Wife: Has Season 4’s Kalinda Storyline Gone too Far?" in which Maria Elena Fernandez and I offer up a he said/she said-style discussion on the Kalinda/Nick storyline on Season 4 of The Good Wife.

Archie Panjabi’s Emmy-winning turn as Kalinda Sharma has been one of the highlights of CBS’ stellar legal drama, The Good Wife. But something happened on the way to fleshing out the fiercely independent investigator’s storyline—and not everyone is thrilled about it.

Entertainment Weekly’s TV critic Ken Tucker last week criticized the show’s handling of the twisted dynamic between Panjabi’s Kalinda and Marc Warren’s Nick. “The intrusion of Nick, Kalinda’s ex-husband and played by State of Play’s Marc Warren as though he’d wandered in from Trainspotting, has thrown off the balance of the storytelling in the new season’s first two episodes,” wrote Tucker, “… the bickering that followed, along with [Nick] hanging around the law firm to make Kalinda uncomfortable, only served to make the viewer uncomfortable.”

It’s a viewpoint echoed by The A.V. Club’s David Sims, who wrote, “The Good Wife’s writers seem to have introduced her nasty husband Nick just to see how much they can get away with on CBS. The whole thing certainly isn’t dramatically effective, and aside from how gross it can get, it’s not very gripping.”

The Daily Beast’s Jace Lacob and Maria Elena Fernandez are at odds about the storyline and teamed up to discuss the highs and lows of The Good Wife’s Kalinda/Nick plot so far. (WARNING: The conversation below contains plot points from the season’s third episode, “Two Girls, One Code.” If you have yet to watch that episode, read at your own peril.)

He Said: I am taken aback by some of the reactions to this season’s Kalinda storyline, which I’m finding to be really revealing and intriguing. Kalinda has always been a fairly enigmatic, dark character and Season 4 of The Good Wife has begun to strip away the armor she wears in order to reveal why she is so damaged. We’re not meant to like Nick or root for him, but I am utterly captivated by their screwed up dynamic.

She Said: We’ve waited a long time to learn more about Kalinda, why she created another identity, and why she likes to keep a mysterious quality. My main complaint is that there’s no payoff. I don’t buy their relationship or the predicament she finds herself in at all. It has not been set up for us. And while we are not supposed to root for Nick, we are supposed to root for Kalinda. I don’t. I don’t feel anything for her.

He Said: You really don’t feel anything for Kalinda? That surprises me, because I feel a great deal for her during this storyline. The way that she looks at her wrist after her rough sex with Nick speaks volumes about her past as an abused wife who was little more than a possession for her obsessed, Svengali-like husband. The fact that he has tracked her down to Chicago to (A) get her back and reclaim her, and (B) get back the money she stole from him while he was in prison speaks a lot about the relationship here, as does the great skillet scene from last night’s episode. Their struggle—his of proto-traditional husband/wife dominance and submission and hers of freedom and independence—are at cross-purposes. He wants to own her and Kalinda wants to remind him that she can’t be owned. That it plays out in such a domestic setting, in a kitchen and he demands that she make him an omelet, is telling as well. There is real darkness in him and within her: he’s the source of her angst and why she can’t get close to anybody.

She Said: First of all, there’s nothing traditional going on here. This is a completely sadomasochistic, sick relationship.

He Said: Yes, but I only meant traditional in the sense of patriarchy: he wants her to fall in line with his whims and appetites, whether it is public sexual contact or, well, eggs.

Continue reading at The Daily Beast...


Popular posts from this blog

Katie Lee Packs Her Knives: Breaking News from Bravo's "Top Chef"

The android has left the building. Or the test kitchen, anyway. Top Chef 's robotic host Katie Lee Joel, the veritable "Uptown Girl" herself (pictured at left), will NOT be sticking around for a second course of Bravo's hit culinary competition. According to a well-placed insider, Joel will "not be returning" to the show. No reason for her departure was cited. Unfortunately, the perfect replacement for Joel, Top Chef judge and professional chef Tom Colicchio, will not be taking over as the reality series' host (damn!). Instead, the show's producers are currently scouring to find a replacement for Joel. Top Chef 's second season was announced by Bravo last month, but no return date has been set for the series' ten-episode sophomore season. Stay tuned as this story develops. UPDATE (6/27): Bravo has now confirmed the above story .

BuzzFeed: Meet The TV Successor To "Serial"

HBO's stranger-than-fiction true crime documentary The Jinx   — about real estate heir Robert Durst — brings the chills and thrills missing since Serial   wrapped up its first season. Serial   obsessives: HBO's latest documentary series is exactly what you've been waiting for.   The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst , like Sarah Koenig's beloved podcast, sifts through old documents, finds new leads from fresh interviews, and seeks to determine just what happened on a fateful day in which the most foul murder was committed. And, also like  Serial  before it,  The Jinx may also hold no ultimate answer to innocence or guilt. But that seems almost beside the point; such investigations often remain murky and unclear, and guilt is not so easy a thing to be judged. Instead, this upcoming six-part tantalizing murder mystery, from director Andrew Jarecki ( Capturing the Friedmans ), is a gripping true crime story that unfolds with all of the speed of a page-turner; it

BuzzFeed: "The Good Wife Is The Best Show On Television Right Now"

The CBS legal drama, now in its sixth season, continually shakes up its narrative foundations and proves itself fearless in the process. Spoilers ahead, if you’re not up to date on the show. At BuzzFeed, you can read my latest feature, " The Good Wife Is The Best Show On Television Right Now," in which I praise CBS' The Good Wife and, well, hail it as the best show currently on television. (Yes, you read that right.) There is no need to be delicate here: If you’re not watching The Good Wife, you are missing out on the best show on television. I won’t qualify that statement in the least — I’m not talking about the best show currently airing on broadcast television or outside of cable or on premium or however you want to sandbox this remarkable show. No, the legal drama is the best thing currently airing on any channel on television. That The Good Wife is this perfect in its sixth season is reason to truly celebrate. Few shows embrace complexity and risk-taking in t