SUITS Review: Dear Mike Ross, Please Buy A Mirror

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Oh, SUITS. You were doing so well, what with Harvey Specter’s big breakthrough and all. You really were. Then, it was back to business as usual, which made a certain amount of sense. Not every episode can be so pivotal, after all. But now? Now…SUITS, you’re slipping. We’re circling the wagons, so to speak, and it’s not pretty. “Admission of Guilt” picked up right where “Teeth, Nose, Teeth” left off — with Mike Ross in Harvey Specter’s office, getting ready to do something shady so he could become a real lawyer. Most SUITS 6×14 focused on Mike’s attempt to build a case against Velocity Data, and it highlighted just how self-aware Mike isn’t. Meanwhile, Louis Litt was left to play managing partner by himself; and while he did a beautiful job of things, it just wasn’t enough. Oh, and then there’s still the problematic issue of “The Donna.” Check out our SUITS recap to catch up on all the latest happenings at Pearson Specter Litt.

Mike Ross, Please Buy A Mirror. For someone who lost his parents in a tragic way when he was only 11 years old, Mike Ross has zero understanding of the idea that actions have consequences. Or, rather, he just doesn’t think that consequences are something that he has to face. That, once and for all, is the story that SUITS appears to want to tell; and it’s sad. Mike spent the majority of SUITS 6×14 emotionally manipulating his new pal Oliver into helping him find a case against Velocity Data so that Mr. Ethics himself, Craig Seidel, would get him into the bar. Nothing says “ethics” like breaking the law, after all.

Because Oliver wasn’t great in the courtroom, Mike took advantage of his insecurities — and took him off of a real workers’ compensation case for the clinic — and made him do research to aid in his personal quest. Mike did not, however, give Oliver the real reason for doing said research. What Oliver found was enough for Mike to get what he needed to put the pressure on Velocity Data; but when the company’s CEO, James Palmer, didn’t bow down to the boy wonder on their first meeting, he upped the game and named Harvey Specter as his co-counsel. Granted, Harvey had already told Craig Seidel he couldn’t really be seen with his hands in this case…But what Mike wants, Mike gets, right? He learned that whole, “bring a gun to a knife fight” lesson from Harvey, though, so the blame isn’t just one-sided.

Cue Harvey being pulled away from very important Pearson Specter Litt business, with Louis and Donna left to come up with a Plan B. We’ll talk about that a bit more later.

Mike and Harvey repeatedly poked the bear, so to speak, as they built their case against Velocity and tried to come up with a way to break their new clients’ non-disclosure agreements. What’s more important, though, was that Mike lied to everyone around him. Repeatedly. Was he truthful about really caring about the clinic’s cases and his lack of desire to go back to corporate law? Possibly. Did he have a shred of honesty the multiple times that Oliver asked him why he was looking for a case against this big company in the first place? Absolutely not. The first time Oliver asked, in fact, he might have told the biggest lie he’s ever told: “I just don’t like it when people think they can get away with anything just because nobody’s watching.”

Mike Ross, please buy a mirror. Take a good, long look in it…because, like, you love to think you can get away with anything. And Harvey’s your enabler.

By the end of the episode, Mike had created major tensions with his new boss, so I’m guessing that he’s going to lose that job. He has always gotten away with creating trouble behind Harvey’s back, as long as it led to a win, but Nathan made it clear that he doesn’t operate that way. And Mike did what he wanted, anyway. Furthermore, when this thing blows up in Mike’s face, there’s a risk of him bringing the entire clinic down with him. That’s going to have horrible consequences for the people that Mike supposedly wants to help. But please, Mike, tell me how much you care. Then again, this is SUITS, so maybe there will be no consequences…as usual.

Also by the end of the episode, Harvey Specter made the mistake of being far too transparent when confronted by Velocity Data’s CEO. Palmer figured out, based on Harvey’s steady demand for $500,000 as a settlement, that Harvey was trying to do just enough to force the company’s stocks to drop. From there, it was a matter of connecting the very obvious dots to see that he was working for Craig Seidel. Worse yet, though? Palmer knew more about what Seidel was after than Harvey did; and, as it turned out, the man’s ideas hadn’t been stolen at all. He was in on it. Imagine that: A man who manipulated Harvey into doing something dishonest was also dishonest with Harvey!

Mr. Specter, you’re usually way smarter than this.

The latest episode of SUITS closed out with Harvey making all sorts of threats to Seidel about just how much he was going to do for Mike if he didn’t want to be exposed. Harvey probably thought he’d finally found a path to victory; but by that point, there was already so much damage done that there can be no winners here. The firm took a hit because Harvey focused on Mike instead of a big client; oh, and he emotionally manipulated Louis in the process. There was also damage done to Harvey and Mike’s credibility with Rachel. She was the only person with any sense in this scenario, and she asked for Harvey’s word that he’d pull the plug if things got out of hand. Well, they did — several times, as they do on SUITS — and he just…kept the scheme going. Also, with Palmer knowing what Harvey’s up to, anything that involves Mike Ross suddenly getting a character and fitness interview could lead to him being buried, should Palmer wish to strike back.

Honestly, though, the most upsetting part of this whole storyline was just how much Harvey Specter’s otherwise beautiful character growth was smashed in SUITS 6×14. If you take Mike Ross out of the picture, Harvey has grown immensely over the course of time — especially when he went to settle things with Lily. But in his quest to get Mike back, when Mike doesn’t even seem to have any intention of fully coming “back,” Harvey did nothing but behave as he might have in first season of SUITS, not the sixth. He encouraged Mike to do whatever was necessary for a win during the split second of Mike actually have a conscience in this whole thing; and Harvey, of all people, should have known about consequences by now.

…he didn’t. What a waste.

A beacon of hope…steeped in failure. While Harvey was busy ruining everything, his co-managing partner was left to handle one of the firm’s biggest clients by himself. Every year, Louis and Jessica had met with Carly Donahue of Couture Apparel to show her how special she was. This year, though, Harvey was too busy selfishly trying to bring his child back home to keep a major client. Louis was able, with Donna’s help, to bring in the superstar team of Rachel and Katrina to help him with a new kind of presentation; and watching these two up-and-coming female power lawyers work together was the one strong point of SUITS 6×14. 

Donna Paulsen’s best advice for Louis and everyone else: Need something done? Consult with some awesome ladies.

Of course, the ladies’ success would be the firm’s failure. (Really, SUITS?) So, to be clear: The consequences of Harvey’s actions are that Louis gets to lose a major client because the hard work of two very capable women wasn’t enough? Is that correct? Louis defended Katrina and Rachel (Katrachel!) when Ms. Donahue called them nobodies, and that cost the firm her account. Louis did his job. Katrachel had a brilliant, personally-tailored plan for the Couture Apparel meeting…And because Harvey Specter wasn’t there, the client was upset.

I’m just…

No?

Because Donna gave Louis the idea to include Katrina and Rachel in his meeting with Carly, she felt responsible for the loss: “I’m Donna. I should have known.” So, now, we’re not only saying that two amazingly capable women weren’t equal to one stubborn, foolish man when it came to keeping a client…And the loss of that client was the firm’s most brilliant woman’s fault? Sure, SUITS. We’ll go with that. If only this Carly Donahue had a clue how many mistakes Harvey was making so that he could get his way, maybe she would realize that she actually did get the firm’s best and brightest at her stupid meeting. Then again, she sounds like the type that would prefer a Mike Ross — kindred spirits and all.

After inexplicably failing to help Louis, Donna did manage at least one supposed victory: The Donna finally learned empathy. As the only Donna we need was beating herself up for not knowing ahead of time that sending Rachel and Katrina in Harvey’s place would backfire, Robodonna actually comforted her. So, I guess we’ve officially proven that a piece of technology can be a substitute for this uniquely strong woman. Forget that Benjamin, The Donna’s creator, thought her advice on empathy was the stupidest thing he’d ever heard. His feedback loop magically picked up on the nuances anyway.

Extra thoughts:

  • “The key to having empathy is making people feel supported in their feelings, not just trying to solve their problems.” Donna Paulsen should be a counselor, not a secretary. She definitely shouldn’t be living in a cheap, gimmicky robot’s shadow. Like, this is seriously her big storyline? Seriously? SUITS, come on.
  • I hate to be Mike Ross when Harvey Specter realizes he’s put himself on the line to…not get his boy back. Then again, with the way this is going, I predict that Mike will become a real boy lawyer, only to be fired when Nathan finds out what he did to become one. In which case, that leaves Pearson Specter Litt as the only place that will take him…And everyone gets what they want. Again. Snooze. It’s as if nobody knows how to keep the dream team together without doing the same thing over and over again, all while expecting different results. That’s called insanity.
  • “Now, put that down, get out of my office, and if I ever catch you touching one of my things again, I’ll shove it up your ass.” See? Season one Harvey. (This was kind of amusing, though.)
  • “No, Harvey. I need you to listen. He just spent the past couple of months in prison, and it was supposed to be years. And I can’t let that happen again.” Harvey, please listen to Rachel. Please. No? Ok. At least you had that nice cardigan on again, so it wasn’t a totally wasted scene, I guess.
  • A concept: Rachel dumps Mike because she’s tired of constantly being afraid of losing him to prison. She elopes with Katrina…because Katrachel is real, y’all.
  • Regardless of how ill-conceived the device for getting them back together was, Mike and Harvey’s banter was on point. This exchange was particularly good: “Come on. I thought I was the most inexperienced lawyer you ever met.” “No, you were the most inexperienced dickhead I ever met. Because that kid may be green, but he’s the only one of you two that actually went to law school.” Meanwhile, I’d say Mike has gained quite a bit of experience in the dickhead department since meeting Harvey…
  • The nods to Amanda Schull’s dance background were A+.
  • Larvey is slipping, but that executive kitchen scene was hilarious all the same. I appreciate that Harvey’s just as snarky about Louis’ relationship with Tara as I would be, if only I had his way with words. “Of course I do! Right after we make friendship bracelets and braid each other’s hair.” Beautiful.
  • “The truth is, I liked getting a chance to work with you again.” Harvey Specter, you poor, broken little boy you. This was kind of an important moment of honesty, and it was just swept under the rug to push more of the crazy. Shame.
  • Louis and Tara: Still not sold. The braces bit was insulting to anyone who’s had adult braces and/or a complicated orthodontics case…But then she was oddly supportive after the big Carly Donahue loss? Too bad it wasn’t earned and kind of out of left field. Also, someone should probably give Tara the pro-tip that rubbing in Louis’ lack of biological connection to her child isn’t the way to go; neither is looking uncomfortable when he mentions that he wants at least one kid of his own.
  • Harvey was adorably perplexed by The Donna. Better yet? Flirting. And what’s this all about: “Do you have your emotional intelligence yet? When it can top that, you might have something.” What is this “something” of which you speak, Mr. Specter, and how will we know when Donna has her emotional intelligence?
  • Ok, but Katrachel is real. Katrina even knows how to woo a girl with daddy issues. “One more thing I learned about him: He doesn’t just love you; he respects you….When he offered you that job, he was beaming He told everyone in the office his brilliant baby girl was going to work for us, and she was going to blow us all to smithereens.”  This was right up there with Harvey’s reconciliation with his mother, and the SUITS team…made it a B story at best? Really?
  • “So, the real question is: Are you ready to take responsibility for what you did or not?” Mike Ross, please buy a mirror. Please. I’m begging at this point.

Will SUITS correct the error of its ways and actually teach Mike Ross about consequences? Will Harvey ever change his mind about going mudding with Louis? Will the women on this show ever get to shine in the way that they deserve? Tune in to the last two episodes of SUITS season 6.5 on Wednesdays at 10:00 EST/PST on the USA Network to find out.

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  • John

    This was a great review. I can’t argue with any point.

    The one thing I worry about that you didn’t mention was The Donna becoming a problem. It has all sorts of overheard conversations. If these came out at the wrong time it cause all sorts of mayhem.

    Thanks for the review.