loose ends

9 Questions The Good Wife Still Needs to Answer

Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick and Chris Noth as Peter Florrick. Photo: David M. Russell/CBS

If you’ve been feverishly tearing through the final episodes of The Good Wife (and the 150 episodes that have preceded them), you’ve likely found yourself with questions about how the show will tie up some of its many dangling story lines. The blunt truth, as explained by co-creator Robert King at a panel discussion earlier this spring, is that it might not. “I don’t think the best finales wrap up all the loose ends. They are novelistic. And novels, sometimes there’s a little ambiguity, which is fun,” King explained. Incidentally, we appear to have very different ideas about what is and isn’t fun. Here are nine questions — both big and small — we still have about The Good Wife, and the likelihood of the show actually answering them before it takes its final bow.

What was the deal with Judge Schakowsky?
When the FBI first came knocking on doors this season, Eli immediately went to Judge Schakowsky, thinking the FBI was investigating their “business.”
There was a vague insinuation that Schakowsky and Eli (and probably Peter) had been involved in some sort of dirty business all together, but that fell to the wayside when it turned out the investigation was focused on Peter and the Locke trial. It seems like there has to be more to Schakowsky’s story and his relationship with Peter.
Likelihood of resolution:
7/10. The show laid so much groundwork around Schakowsky, and kept bringing his character back throughout the season, that it seems probable he’ll play a part in the final two episodes.

When did Eli become so singularly obsessed with Alicia?
There was a point in The Good Wife where Eli started making Alicia his primary focus. Over time, it became about more than helping her professionally. By the seventh season, he deeply believed in Alicia’s specialness, even telling Ruth Eastman, “Peter’s not No. 1. Not nationally. She is.” It’s more than a guilty reaction to deleting Will’s voice-mail; that might have made Eli act differently, but it wouldn’t have made him feel differently. I want to know when that switch got flipped and what flipped it.
Likelihood of resolution:
4/10. Just because I think it’s a fascinating question worth examining in-depth, I recognize that the show might not agree with me. And there’s not much time left for in-depth exploration anyway.

Is Grace scarred for life?
The Kings have confirmed there’s no time jump in the final two episodes (and thank God for that), so we won’t really know how or whether Grace’s unusual upbringing will have an impact on who she grows up to be. But I’m hopeful we get a little insight into what she’s truly thought about her life over the past seven years. I’d love to know what’s going on under all of that “It’s fine, Mom!” and “I’ll just pray about it.”
Likelihood of resolution:
3/10. Compared to some of The Good Wife’s other series regulars, Grace has had a fair amount to do in the past couple of seasons. I doubt she’ll get a lot of focus in the final episodes.

Why is Peter being targeted now?
Or, put another way: Is someone intentionally trying to bring Peter down? Yes, as Eli said not long ago, he’s always in trouble, but this resurrection of an incident from years ago feels … coordinated. Call me crazy, but it doesn’t feel like Attorney Bearded Matthew Morrison just woke up one day and decided to take Peter Florrick down. (If that’s the case, the writing certainly hasn’t proven it.) On top of that, the conversation Jason had with the blood tech who seemingly sabotaged some of Peter’s cases years ago suggests there’s some bigger, longer attempt to discredit and depose Peter.
Likelihood of resolution:
9/10. That’s how sure I am that someone beyond Bearded Matthew Morrison is pulling the strings. 

Did Peter tamper with the evidence in the Locke case?
When Eli point-blank asked Peter in last week’s episode whether he tampered with evidence in the Locke murder trial (the charge for which he currently faces three years in prison), Peter had a pretty convincing defense for his actions. But this is Peter Florrick we’re talking about, and he’s been able lie and sweet-talk in extremely plausible ways throughout the course of the series. I’m sure we’ll find out what’s going to happen to Peter, but I want to know what really happened.
Likelihood of resolution:
4/10. The last two episodes will almost definitely focus on this issue closely, but The Good Wife’s fondness for ambiguity means the chances of us knowing what really happened are slim.

Where will Alicia stand romantically?
Alicia’s future with Jason is still up in the air as of last week’s episode — they’ve agreed that they want to be together, but Alicia’s rooted life clashes with Jason’s ability to cut ties and go whenever he wants to. And call me crazy, but it seems like there’s been a certain something that’s reignited between her and Peter ever since they decided to get a divorce. (The Good Wife loves irony!) Perhaps it’s just the familiarity of being in the trenches of another crisis together, but sitting on Alicia’s bed drinking wine last week, they seemed like more of a couple than they have in a long time.
Likelihood of resolution:
8/10. For better or worse, Alicia’s romantic life has been a major focus of season seven, and it would be very surprising for us to not get at least a little closure.

What’s next for Cary?
All we really know about Cary these days is that, according to him, he’s done practicing law. This has led to him taking an interest in activities like looking at his screensaver a lot and eating soup in the middle of the day, but I’d like to know a little bit more than that. Cary is (or used to be) so ambitious and driven and bright, and if he’s not using that sharp brain of his to continue practicing law, I’d like to know what he’d be doing instead. We don’t really even know what his interests are outside of practicing law, other than, like, sex and not going to jail.
Likelihood of resolution:
5/10. Cary might be a main character, but the show’s mishandled him for almost a season and a half. There’s a solid chance he won’t get much resolution beyond, “I’ve left the law.”

Does Alicia really want to partner with Diane?
Speaking of leaving the law, Alicia’s seemed less than enthused about the prospect of ousting David Lee to become one of the firm’s only two named partners, alongside Diane. She hasn’t seemed disinterested, but she’s not as elated as someone hitting a career milestone should be, either. Maybe she’s just less than enthusiastic because she’s been constantly shifting firms and roles for three seasons now, but even by her own standards, Alicia hasn’t seemed particularly gung ho. (And, speaking of Diane, it would be nice if some additional closure for her were incorporated here, too.)
Likelihood of resolution:
8/10. Alicia’s current indifference notwithstanding, her career has always been a key aspect of the show. It won’t fall by the wayside in the coming weeks.

What, exactly, was Julianna Margulies’s beef with Archie Panjabi?
Look, I know it’s beyond impossible that Margulies will explain, once and for all, what kept her from filming with Panjabi for years on end. After all, how would she even do so? PSA style before the episode aired? In text that scrolled after the final end credits rolled? It’s a total pipe dream. And more than that, it’s not really any of our/my business. But it’s nagged at me for years now.
Likelihood of resolution:
-1,000,000/10. But I’m still holding out for someone in the mix to publish a tell-all memoir someday.

9 Questions The Good Wife Still Needs to Answer