Note: Do not read on if you have not yet seen Season 4, Episode 7 of CBS' "The Good Wife," titled "Anatomy of a Joke."
"The Good Wife" introduced the world to Therese Dodd (Christina Ricci), one very obnoxious comedienne in "Anatomy of a Joke." However, the episode should really have been titled "Anatomy of a Filler" because for as many storylines the episode had, not a lot of anything happened.
Christina Ricci turned in a fine performance as Therese -- I was pretty annoyed by her, but came around -- but there was more slight story progress than interesting material.
The main case: Therese went on a late night talk show, took off her top and performed a breast exam. On live TV -- though no actual late night talk shows film live. The network decided to sue her for damages, but agreed to drop the case if she helped sway the FCC. She agrees, but her potty mouth can't be contained and the network doesn't get its way. However, thanks to a sly Alicia, Lockhart/Gardner was able to prove that the network never really suffered damages, it in fact benefited.
Thanks to the storyline, there were jokes about football overrun -- there was a five minute one in New York City during this episode, but I ended up missing at least a minute thanks to the DVR snafu -- and nods to the boundaries "The Good Wife" itself pushes with standards and practices at CBS. There was also even a fictional version of the Parents Television Council. Wonder what they thought about that ...
While in DC to try and sway the FCC, Cary ran into his father. I feel like this little character insight was the main purpose of the episode, which I appreciate because Cary has basically been window dressing for a while now. Ever notice how a lot of character development on "The Good Wife" happens over drinks? Alicia with her lady friends, Alicia and Owen and now Alicia and Cary. The glimpse into why Cary is who is was nice. Not too much; it was just right. Hopefully it continues.
Random fashion thoughts: What did you think of Kalinda's loose ponytail? And Diane's brooch was so fierce when she walked out of her meeting with Clarke ...
Which brings me to Clarke vs. Will and Diane. Clarke tried to sell the firm to Burl Preston, but of course the dynamic duo caught wind and nicely ended Clarke's plan. When Will and Diane are united against a common threat -- especially when it's within their own walls -- it's solid TV. The storyline with Bond was riveting and the slow build with Clarke has been a highlight of the season.
Meanwhile ... Maddie is starting rumors about Peter, which we all saw coming. And now Peter will go after her. It's not as interesting when Maura Tierney is mentioned and not seen.
Alicia really goes to bat for people she's known for about a week, huh? She called Lutz from "30 Rock" to try and convince him to give Laura a job, but when that didn't work out, she had Peter hire her. Having Amanda Peet's character at the State's Attorney office will see criminal cases introduced into the fold. I've missed them, but I'm not buying her friendship with Alicia just yet. It feels slightly off at the moment.
No gasps this week.