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THE FLASH Recap: The One With Evil Laurel and Family Tragedies

the flash

I should have known.

THE FLASH has this annoying habit of making you feel safe and hopeful and happy, only to pull the rug from right under your feet when you least expect it. Last night’s “Invincible” did exactly that. Up until the last scene, I was thinking, hey, this is a feel good episode. We got to see Laurel again, Barry is super confident and happy and cheerful and he and Iris are going to give this relationship thing a shot – which I so do not support. But more on that in a minute. Things were great. I remember I even thought, maybe this is the calm before the storm and all that.

But I should have known.

Because that’s just how this show is. Stab us in the back when we’re happy, so we can cry right along with Grant Gustin. Why, why would you kill Henry? Okay, I know why, but Barry had just gotten his dad back. He was happy for once, not worrying about much, and confident that the odds were finally in their favor. And then Zoom just had to come in and ruin everything.

The episode starts out with a super happy Barry. After his experience within the speed force (that still blows my mind), he is super confident that everything is going to work out in the end, because, hey, the universe is on their side. What could possibly go wrong? Things get even better when Caitlin shows up, after Zoom followed up on his promise that he would let her go. So you know, things were rainbows and sunshine. It was such a feel good episode.

Even the meta of the week was awesome. We got to see Katie Cassidy again and oh my god, Laurel should’ve been evil from the start. I wasn’t a Laurel fan up until very close to the end on ARROW, but Earth-2 Laurel, aka Black Siren, is one of the coolest metahumans we have seen so far. Cassidy did such an amazing job with her that I was almost sad when they locked her up in the pipeline in the end. She took the Laurel we all new – prime and proper and boring good Laurel – and threw her out the window, only to be replaced with such a fun evil version of herself that I didn’t even know could exist. Every time she was on my screen, I was like, I want more. So please, TPTB, bring the Black Siren back. Make her escape the pipeline or something, I don’t know. All I know is, I need more Evil!Laurel in my life. Please.

Now that I think about it, we had so many subplots in this episode. Caitlin is obviously going through some major PTSD and she keeps seeing Zoom everywhere she looks. That gave us so many awesome scenes between Caitlin and Barry and Cisco, and I just love their friendship. That group hug towards the end made me smile so big. Also, Cisco and Caitlin posing as Reverb and Killer Frost? Fantastically hilarious.

Elsewhere, Wally is trying to be a hero. He feels guilty for making the Flash lose his powers, so he needs to atone for his sins. Joe is super concerned and asks Barry to go and talk to him as the Flash. Barry tries, Wally doesn’t listen and ends up saving him from the Black Siren. I wonder if Wally is going to develop powers at all. Jessie  is already suspiscious that something may have changed, but Wally is completely in the dark.

While all this was going on and Barry was super confident – particularly after they took down every metahuman in the city – Zoom was busy planning how to make Barry suffer the most. That scene where he summons Barry to CCPD was a huge warning flag that he would definitely try to do something to someone Barry loved. But taking his father to his childhood home and killing him right before his very eyes was a little too much. Poor Barry just can’t catch a break.

Also, I take back everything I ever said about Jay Garrick being a waste of screen time. Teddy Sears is doing such an amazing job at being super evil, that I couldn’t be happier about their casting choice. While he was pretty boring as Jay – because, you know, Jay was just there doing nothing – he is fantastic as Zoom.

Now Barry has lost his father and Zoom just better watch his back. I’m willing to bet money that our Scarlet Speedster will stop at nothing to get his revenge.

The season finale of THE FLASH airs on May 24 at 8/7c on The CW.

CHICAGO FIRE Season Finale Recap: Dealing with Death and Finding Family

chicago fire

Last night was an endearing season finale of CHICAGO FIRE, complete with heartbreak (as Jimmy deals with the loss of his brother) and love (as Gabby brings her new foster son, Louie, home).

The episode focused on Jimmy’s days following the tragedy of his brother’s death on the job last week. On his first call back he becomes very aggressive in his resuscitation of the victim and it isn’t until Brett calls him off and initiates defibrillator techniques that they are able to save the man. This behavior forces Boyden to call Jimmy into his office, where Jimmy takes out some of his frustrations about the role Boyden played in his brother’s death. The Chief is the one who made the call to send Jimmy’s brother back in, and though it was the right call, it did carry deep consequences. In the end, however, even after visiting his brother’s firehouse and seeing his wife saying that Boyden made the right call and his brother died a hero, Jimmy doesn’t show up to receive his brother’s badge and, in turn, may go after Boyden’s job for his mistake.

Back at the firehouse, Gabby is searching for an apartment in the two days she has before the window to foster Louie closes. When the apartment she was bidding on falls through, Gabby declines Casey’s offer to move back in with him (because she knows he doesn’t want a kid right now) and accepts Herman’s offer to move into the extra apartment above his garage. In four hours, Gabby and Herman (with help from a lot of the squad) manage to make the cluttered, dirty space beautiful and home-y. But unfortunately, the inspection doesn’t go well, and Gabby is forced to make a heartfelt speech about how much love was put into the apartment and how much love she would have for the young boy.

In the end it worked out, because after a near-fatal accident on the job where she was left dangling on the side of the building, she got to bring Louie home with her. This heartfelt reunion was complete with the reading of her letter — one Chief Boyden made everyone write in case any of them died in the line of duty. They were meant to be written to loved ones and Gabby’s was addressed to Louie, explaining how much she loves him and how the sacrifice of the job is important and worth it to save those they love.

In a scary turn of events, we also see Stella’s ex found overdosed and lying face-down in a public square. When she visits him in the hospital after the fact — imploring him to seek help — he screams in her face to get out. One of the doctors informs her that rock bottom looks bad, but you can only go up from there. Unfortunately, it doesn’t end there, because when Stella and Severide get hot and heavy in her apartment, viewers can see her ex waiting in the shadows (unbeknownst to the couple) with a knife.

Finally, Casey spent the episode on Alderman duty, as he took a weekend retreat that was full of politicians to canoodle and schmooze. He was a charmer as usual and instigated a new 9-1-1 operating system that is apparently going to help the system become more efficient. But that wasn’t all he did on the trip, because when his political adviser kissed him over dinner and left her room number. But, this was a moment of realization for Casey and, when he knocks on a door that night, it is not his advisor’s door, it’s Dawson’s. In the “will they, won’t they?” of this season, it looks like they have settled on the happy family model for these two.

CHICAGO FIRE has already been renewed for another season and will return in the fall.

SPEECHLESS Preview: First Look at ABC’s New Family Comedy


At the heart of SPEECHLESS is the DiMeo family and matriarch Maya, who will do anything for her family, particularly for her special needs son JJ.

The show begins as the family tours a run-down shack that will be their new home. They learn that this move is another in a long list of attempts to create the “perfect” situation for JJ. JJ will be assigned a full time aide, giving him independence and a spot in a mainstream class for the first time. While everyone seems happy about the possibilities of their new town, young Ray thinks that the newest move will be a disappointment, just like all the others.

And it turns out Ray is quickly proven right. Maya is horrified to learn that the “perfect” school has no wheelchair access. JJ doesn’t like his aide or the classroom full of students who want to “celebrate” him.  While everyone is soon ready to bail, Ray is drawn to the school’s astronomy club and the girl-of-his-dreams, Jillian.

Read The TV Addict’s Full 2016 Upfronts Coverage

The cast includes Minnie Driver as Maya DiMeo, John Ross Bowie (“The Big Bang Theory”) as Jimmy DiMeo, Mason Cook as Ray DiMeo, Micah Fowler as JJ DiMeo, Kyla Kennedy as Dylan DiMeo and Cedric Yarbrough as Kenneth. Scott Silveri (FRIENDS) Jake Kasdan and Melvin Mar serve as executive producers.

SPEECHLESS will air this fall on Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m. ET/PT on ABC (see ABC’s full fall schedule).

THE MICK Preview: First Look at Fox’s New Dysfunctional Family Comedy

the mick

Mackenzie (a.k.a. Mickey) is a two-bit hustler from Rhode Island when THE MICK begins. And she’s spent her life avoiding any kind of responsibility. To do that, she’s always on the lookout for the next easy payday.

Looking for a handout, Mickey visits her estranged sister and billionaire brother-in-law in Greenwich, CT. But when the couple flees the country to escape federal fraud charges, Mickey is the one assuming guardianship of their three high maintenance children: 18 year old Sabrina (who proves a worthy adversary to Mickey), 13 year old Chip (an arrogant teen) and 7 year old Ben (a fragile nerd). The rich life Mickey always wanted is well within her reach, but now she has to transform these spoiled children into decent members of society. “And as irresponsible as Mickey has been her entire life, she may discover that responsibility and motherhood aren’t the buzzkill she always thought they would be.”

Read The TV Addict’s Full 2016 Upfronts Coverage

The cast includes Kaitlin Olson as Mackenzie, Sofia Black-D’Elia as Sabrina, Thomas Barbusca as Chip, Jack Stanton as Ben, Carla Jimenez as Alba and Susan Park as Liz. John Chernin (IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA), Dave Chernin, Nick Frenkel, Oly Obst and Randall Einhorn will serve as executive producers.

THE MICK will air midseason on Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m. ET/PT on Fox (see Fox’s full fall and midseason schedule).



There’s good news and bad news coming out of ABC today: freshman comedy series THE REAL O’NEALS has been renewed, but drama show NASHVILLE has been cancelled. The midseason drama THE FAMILY has also been cancelled.


For more on which shows are getting picked-up, renewed and cancelled, click here.

CHICAGO MED Sneak Peek: Family Drama

chicago med

Everyone’s dealing with family issues in one way or another on this week’s CHICAGO MED as some are confronted with them and others are trying to avoid them.

Manning and Charles are faced with a strong-willed a teenage patient who comes in with abdominal pain and refuses treatment. The doctors soon learn that she refuses any medication out of fear of turning into her drug-addicted father. Choi is also confronted with a patient’s family issues but for different reasons as he encourages his patient to deliver her child at 32 weeks. She adamantly refuses to deliver and the reasoning behind her refusal seems to frustrate the doctors.

Elsewhere on CHICAGO MED, the Halstead brothers get a bit of a blast from the past as Dr. Halstead discovers that one of his patients went to high school with him and it’s not such a sunny walk down memory lane for the trio.

April continues to deal with her brother’s antics but this time, she finds that it involves her new boyfriend, Tate. Meanwhile, Rhodes makes every attempt to avoid meeting up with his sister and the family issues that come along with the invitation.

Watch an all a new CHICAGO MED  tonight (April 26) at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.

THE GRINDER Sneak Peeks: The Sanderson Family and their Web of Lies

the grinder

Deb and Stew both forgot their anniversary on this week’s episode of THE GRINDER, but Dean didn’t. And when he congratulates them on the occasion, they both lie. Stewart tells the family that he made a reservation at a fancy restaurant with a two-month long waiting list, while Deb claims that she bought Stewart the most amazing gift.

Meanwhile, Dean and Stewart’s mother, Lenore, drops by unexpectedly and it turns out that she doesn’t approve of Dean’s lifestyle at all. In order to garner some points with her, Dean announces that he’s engaged….to Claire. When Dean figures out that both Stew and Deb lied about remembering their anniversary, he blackmails both of them into helping him use Claire for his web of lies.

Finally, Dean Sr. decides to re-enter the dating scene with a little bit of help from his grandchildren. He accidentally gets set up with a much younger woman and eventually he and his date, and the rest of the Sanderson family, end up at the fancy restaurant for a night of misunderstandings and hijinks.

Don’t miss an all new episode of THE GRINDER tonight (April 19) at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT on Fox.

Secrets & Lies: Floriana Lima Introduces Us to ABC’s Sudsy New Series THE FAMILY


Tonight at 9:00 the highly anticipated ABC series, THE FAMILY premieres. The show centers on the Warren family, whose youngest son, Adam mysteriously disappears and is presumed dead. After a decade of unanswered questions, he reappears and turns the town and the Warren family’s lives upside down. Determined journalist, Bridey is eager to learn more about the mysterious reappearance of Adam and is willing to go to great lengths to find out the truth. I caught up with Floriana Lima who portrays the driven reporter about how her character will interact with Adam this season, what drew her to Bridey as a character, and what we can look forward to in tonight’s premiere.

What can you tell us about your new show, THE FAMILY?
Floriana Lima: It’s a drama full of twists and turns, secrets and deceit, following the return of a politician’s son who was presumed dead after being kidnapped 10 years earlier.  Things get pretty crazy and we see that the family knows more than they’re letting on.

Your character Bridey is a reporter who is trying to find out what happened to Adam (Liam James).  What drew you to Bridey as a character?  How will we get to know her this season? 
I was drawn to Bridey because she’s such a ballsy, career driven, go-getter, who wants to be seen as a legitimate journalist. She is willing to do literally anything to get a lead on the Adam Warren story, and that to me, seemed like a really fun role to get to play with. You’ll see her use her resources to draw out some of the dark secrets the family is keeping, and it gets rather interesting and twisted. You’ll also come to realize that she has a few moral dilemmas of her own along the way.

How will we see Bridey interact with Adam this season?  How will she get involved with his case? 
Bridey is studying Adam on the periphery through her resources.  She’s looking at everything from a different perspective and stumbles upon some important things that get her closer and closer to piecing together the truth.

Aside from Bridey, what character are you most excited to learn more about this season? 
Willa Warren played by Alison Pill, she’s definitely weird and hiding some things.  There is more there, for sure.

Are there any scenes or episodes you’re really excited for people to see this season? Anything with Bridey that you can tease from future episodes? 
Every episode has something new that will keep you wanting to get more of the story.  Without giving away too much, I would say episode 4 “Feathers or Steel” is where things get crazy, my character gets really involved, and things start to come to light.

What shows are you loving on TV right now? 
I just got caught up with MR. ROBOT, which I love, and also, VEEP, BROAD CITY, and THE WALKING DEAD, which are all so good.

You can watch the series premiere of THE FAMILY tonight at 9:00 on ABC. You can also follow Floriana on Twitter at @florianalima

Photo Credit: Rowan Daly

SUITS Season 5 Finale Recap: He’s Family And We Had To Try


SUITS has never been “just” a legal drama. If there was ever any doubt, the season 5 finale, “25th Hour,” has more than proven that. In an episode that focused more on the emotional impact of the end of Mike Ross’ fraud trial than on the legal process itself, the entire Pearson Specter Litt family faced the consequences of that moment when Harvey Specter decided to hire a brilliant young man who had never been to law school.

Mike Ross’ deal with the devil. The SUITS season season 5 finale picked up where the penultimate episode left off, with Mike Ross in the office of U.S. Attorney Anita Gibbs, ready to seal his fate. As expected, Mike chose the deal that would keep Harvey Specter and the rest of the firm safe, landing himself in prison for two years. Say what you will about Mike Ross, but he’s not the type of guy to turn on the people he loves.

Although it was obvious that Gibbs wanted Harvey’s head on a silver platter from the start, she was content to go with whatever she could get and signed off on Mike’s deal, only offering minimal disagreement when he told her he wanted to make sure the official documents specified that Harvey couldn’t renegotiate. Mike thought of everything. Not only would this stipulation provide extra protection for the firm when it came to any future ambitions of Gibbs’, but it would also be a major roadblock should Harvey try to take the fall himself.

As Mike was leaving the U.S. Attorney’s office, Harvey came running around the corner, coming to a stop when he realized he was too late. I believe the only other time that Harvey Specter has looked that devastated was when Donna walked away from him at the end of last season. Our boy doesn’t have a good track record with season finales here.

Rachel ever the supportive fiancee, arrived just behind Harvey…and proceeded to make the whole situation about her. “Blah, blah. He promised me he wouldn’t do this. Oh no, what about me?!” I may be paraphrasing here, but that’s what I heard. I think that’s what Mike heard, too, because he actually had to explain to Rachel that he hadn’t turned himself in to hurt her but because he had to live with himself and his decisions. Again, Mike Ross isn’t the type to turn on the people he loves, so there’s no way he could have lived with himself if he’d let Harvey — or anyone else from the firm, for that matter — be penalized for what he’d done in practicing law without a degree.

Mike just wanted to spend the last of his time as a free man with the woman he loved, “I made a decision. I can’t go back in time and change it. We are right here. We have three days left,” but Rachel was too mad about not getting her way to allow that. She needed a day to herself.

So, while Rachel was storming off and refusing to listen to even Donna’s advice about being there for Mike through this tough time — because, seriously, refusing to listen to Donna has worked out when? — Harvey was bursting into the courtroom, insisting that Mike’s finalized deal was anything but. Mike, however, had made his choice and was standing by it; so, there was nothing to be done: “Because it’s not up to him. It’s up to me, and I’ve made my decision.”

Exactly, Mike…but you know he’s going to try anyway.

Harvey Specter’s reaction. Harvey Specter has never been good at losing — he hasn’t exactly done a lot of it — and seeing Mike take the fall for their shared fraud was probably his biggest loss yet. Unwilling to accept that Mike was really going to prison, Harvey spent the SUITS finale working through the five stages of grief. He started with denial: Harvey’s courtroom antics were nothing more than the frantic actions of a man who knew the writing was on the wall but refused to accept it.

And then he suffered the anger, bargaining, and depression stages in a non-linear, repetitive, and outright devastating succession. It was the type of emotional journey that most series can only accomplish with the death of a major character, but SUITS isn’t like other series.

Harvey had to know what the jury’s verdict would have been; and his trip to visit the jury’s foreman resulted in nothing more than the additional painful knowledge that, had he and Mike simply had faith in the legal system, they would have been awarded with a verdict of not guilty. In order to protect his friend, partner, and pseudo-brother, though, Harvey went back into the denial phase when Mike came to Harvey’s office, begging to be told he’d made the right choice. He lied, saying Mike would have been found guilty — anything to keep his family from suffering even more.

While Mike was busy trying to find some peace and acceptance during his remaining seventy-two hours of freedom, Harvey was battling through his anger and depression whilst trying to do what he does best: bargaining. He demanded that Donna bring him everything they had on Mike’s trial so they could invalidate his deal. When there was nothing that he could use, he lashed out. Anger, anyone?

Donna did some bargaining of her own, offering to let Gibbs have her because of the fraud she’d committed in the whole Liberty Rail fiasco last year. But while Harvey was willing to sacrifice himself for Mike, he outright refused to put Donna on the line. Be still my heart. Harvey has learned that sacrificing one innocent person for another — especially when when he cares about both of those innocent people — is never the right choice.

In a last ditch effort to get Mike off the hook, Harvey took Liberty Rail themselves to Gibbs, claiming that what they had done as fraudulent murderers was far more harmful than Mike practicing law without a degree. Somehow, that turned into Gibbs admitting that she hated the way Harvey always bent the rules, and that’s why she was so intent on coming at him…and I scratched my head because, lady, all you’ve done is play dirty. Also, really? That’s a reason to want to destroy so many lives? You don’t like that someone breaks the rules? Gibbs made the distinction that what she did was “justice,” so Harvey again pointed out that taking down Liberty Rail was exactly that, but she wasn’t budging.

Earth to Anita Gibbs: Harvey Specter wasn’t born breaking the rules. He was born into a crappy family with a cheating mother and a mess of a brother.

So, when Mike came to visit Harvey to ask him to be his best man, Harvey snapped right back into anger mode. He lashed out at the man he’d been trying so desperately to save, telling him he was a fool for thinking about wedding preparations when he was headed to prison. And then what followed was a scotch-glass-throwing, face-destroying argument about who should take the blame. Both Mike and Harvey finally let all of their anger pour out, right on to each other. It wasn’t about (literally) hitting each other where it hurt; it was about sharing that hurt in the only way they knew how.

Mike blamed himself. Harvey blamed himself…and I blamed myself for not keeping something nearby to throw so that I, too, had a way to let out my emotions.

In the end, though, it didn’t matter. Mike still refused to let Harvey go to Gibbs. Harvey still felt guilty for ever having started this process, even if it took both men to make the decision for Mike to become Harvey’s associate. Trading apologies and a few half-hearted jokes, the boys of SUITS made whatever kind of small peace they could with the consequences of their actions. And when it came time for Mike to walk out on his shotgun wedding and head off to face his sentence, Harvey was the one right there by his side to take him to the end of the road. Because that’s what brothers do.

“Even knowing how it all turned out, I’d do it again.” Same, Mike. I’d still watch you take this journey and build this brotherhood with the guy next to you, even knowing how much it rained on my face when you two fought, when you apologized, and when you said goodbye.

Whether it was Harvey’s fault that Mike wound up in jail or not, he definitely played a role in shaping the boy with all the wasted potential into the man who was willing to spend time behind bars to prevent his family from falling suffering for him. And whether Mike was to blame for the firm coming under fire or not, we still have him to thank for helping to turn the seemingly emotionless lawyer dubbed “the best closer in the city” into a man who spent days barely holding back tears as he tried destroying everything in his path to save one of the very few people in his life about whom he’d allowed himself to openly care.

That’s just what family does.

The impact on the firm. While it was seemingly Harvey against the world, Jessica Pearson and Louis Litt were busy trying to save the firm from the fallout of Mike’s deal. As part of the bargain he’d struck with Gibbs, Mike had to admit that he was never really a lawyer, which meant every single case he’d touched would be subject to suit. It also meant every single client Pearson Specter Litt had was going to want to leave.

The biggest blow came from Robert Zane, who found a way to bypass the Pearson Specter Litt non-compete clause with the help of Louis’ former associate, Katrina. I’d started liking Katrina after originally not being able to stand her, all because of the great relationship she’d developed with Louis. That relationship, however, has been tossed out with yesterday’s garbage, all because Louis failed to get her rehired after he became name partner. Louis apologized and said it was all about keeping her safe from Mike’s secret…and she recorded the entire conversation, betraying Louis a second time.

Yep. If we’re still keeping the Harvey/Louis score here, Louis got the short end of the stick again. Katrina was willing to stab him in the back to get herself ahead at Zane’s firm, whereas Harvey’s protege wouldn’t even turn on him to avoid jail time.

Katrina’s underhanded actions ensured that, when Jessica came to Robert Zane, threatening to sue him for inducement, he had enough leverage to keep her from turning her threats into actions. Oh, and the whole reason Zane was even in attack mode? He didn’t care that Jessica had hired a fraud; he just resented her for not warning him when his daughter started dating said fraud. Because everything’s about Rachel Zane.

A note to Mr. Zane? Your daughter’s technically an adult now, even if she doesn’t always act like it. Her boss doesn’t need to inform you of her poor dating choices because they’re not really your business. I guess, to be fair, this is another example of family protecting family. I just don’t like the way it manifested itself. Not only was Zane playing dirty in business in order to get back at someone for what he thought was a personal slight, but he was also being the sort of grossly overprotective father that just irks me. I’m all for the independent adult thing, not the let Daddy protect me thing.


What’s actually important here is that, even in the midst of both clients and employees jumping ship, Jessica and Louis still tried to help Harvey make his deal with Gibbs: “Mike’s family. Even if we lose half the firm, if we don’t try to save him, who are we?” Bless you, Louis Litt.

Later, Louis would bring Jessica the bad news that they’d failed to save Mike. It was a beautiful, quiet moment where so much more was communicated than just the fact that it was all over. Jessica was watching the associates busy at work, knowing everything was bound to change before she even had the confirmation from Louis. It was impossible not to see how much this firm meant to her and how much she cared about every single part of it — not just the partners but even those lowly newcomers. For Jessica, the loss was a great one; but even then, she knew it wasn’t just about business. It was also about something more: “Louis, you were right: He’s family, and we had to try. And whoever’s left, we’ll be stronger. Even if we’re smaller.”

And smaller they were.

In what was perhaps one of the most devastating shots yet, Jessica and Louis returned to the firm’s offices at the end of SUITS’ season finale, only to find the place completely empty. The only souls left were those members of the immediate family who’d been fiercely protecting Mike Ross and his secret: Donna Paulsen, Jessica Pearson, and Louis Litt. That’s it. Those three, plus a totally wrecked Harvey Specter — who was busy watching the friend he couldn’t protect go off to spend two years behind bars — were all that was left.

Additional musings:

  • I’m not sure what bothers me more: that Mike Ross thought he had to apologize to Rachel Zane for doing the right thing and confessing to a crime…or that we needed sexposition to confirm that the couple was back on solid ground. Hot copy room sex to make the relationship official a few seasons back? Sign me up. Tonight’s hook up? Meh.
  • “Mike just threw his whole life away, and there’s nothing I can do about it. And the only way I can accept it is if I find out what that verdict is going to be.” Oh, Harvey…There’s nothing quite like seeing this usually strong character utterly broken down and even admitting it to someone else. Just one of the many beautiful ways Harvey has grown as a character and one of many, many beautifully heartbreaking moments in tonight’s episodes.
  • “I guess it’s time to get busy living or get busy dying.” Mike Ross with the quote from The Shawhank Redemption, just to prove that he and Harvey are still them. I don’t know how Harvey’s going to spend two years without being able to trade film quotes with his little brother every day, to be honest.
  • I think I’m just going to steal from the great Sarah Rafferty here and say Gabriel Macht put on a “#MasterClass in acting” tonight. Because he did (and then their banter following the episode was a master class in how to be awesome on social media).
  • Speaking of phenomenal acting, Patrick J. Adams. Enough said.
  • I’m going to say two very contradictory things here: First, “25th Hour” could easily have been a fantastic series finale, given the masterful way it portrayed the ultimate outcome of the accidental job interview that started it all. But. But. Second, I really can’t wait for season six. Part two of this family’s story can start now that the first bit has wrapped. How can Pearson Specter Litt come back from this? How is prison going to change Mike? Will Rachel still be waiting around when he comes back? Can Harvey and Donna just make out already? Maybe these questions can be answered in SUITS season six. I know I’ll be tuning in.

SUITS Recap: On Faith, Family, and Deals With The Devil


The latest episode of SUITS focused on the end of Mike Ross’ trial. Once the concluding statements were delivered, waiting for the final outcome should have been a matter of just that — waiting — but with this particular family of characters and their deeply felt loyalty for one another, the real fight began the minute their time in court ended. “Tick Tock” was more about the race to find some sort of small victory in the face of losing a war than it was ever about simply watching the clock and waiting for twelve jurors to come and hand down a verdict that, depending on its outcome, might condemn everyone.

Have a little faith. “Tick Tock” opened with brothers-in-arms, Mike Ross and Harvey Specter, discussing case strategy now that Mike had taken over as first chair. Mike’s plan was to call Clifford Danner, an innocent man he’d freed from wrongful imprisonment, but Harvey thought it was a bad idea because Clifford knew the truth about Mike.

Mike’s argument for using Clifford as a witness was that the innocent person he’d kept out of prison would be a great way to gain sympathy with the jury, and he believed Clifford would never sell him out anyway. As Harvey continued to disagree, Mike asked just one question: “Do you have faith in me or not?”

And it was a question that was of the utmost importance as SUITS followed Mike and his Pearson Specter Litt partners (in crime) down the long, hard road to a final outcome.

Louis Litt spent most of the episode showing his lack of faith in Harvey and Mike’s ability to bring home a win. Convinced that Harvey only let Mike take the reins in some last-ditch effort to keep his own winning streak intact, he took his concerns to fellow name partner Jessica Pearson. But Jessica realized that Harvey didn’t care about his win-loss record at a time like this. Rather than seeing the change in representation as a sign of defeat, Jessica believed that Harvey was growing up, not giving up.

In some sense, Jessica was right about Harvey. He’s done nothing but mature, both professionally and emotionally, from day one. Particularly in SUITS’ fifth season, he’s been a rare gem of character growth in a television landscape that seems to like character regression as a device for producing easy “drama.” (I’m looking at you, ARROW and CASTLE, as the top offenders on my ever-growing list.)

What Jessica didn’t see, however, was that Harvey struggled enough with his belief in his own ability to keep one of the people closest to him safe that he was willing to stoop to some pretty low levels in order to prevent Mike from being found guilty. In an effort to force a mistrial, which Jessica and Harvey realized must be something that Gibbs feared, Harvey looked a lot like the cocky, borderline villainous man he used to be.

After an intense conversation with Donna where he confirmed that stepping down was about his faith in Mike’s ability to tell his own story, Harvey asked her to put a friend in a dangerous position by helping them to tamper with the jury. But Donna being Donna, she refused. She’d put herself on the line, but she’d never do that to someone else, even if it meant winning. It didn’t matter that it was for Mike and Harvey; she just wasn’t going to hurt innocent people.

When that didn’t work out, Harvey decided he’d simply blackmail someone who wasn’t an innocent bystander. Off he went to ask David Green to stir up some jury drama if he didn’t want his past mistakes reported. When David do what he’d all but demanded, Harvey went to see him again, earning himself the label of a bully who uses others’ fears to get what he wants.

After verbally being punched in the gut by David Green, though, Harvey went right back to showing how much he’d matured by going to Donna and admitting that he needed to see her. The Harvey of old would never have admitted to needing anyone, especially at a time when he was already feeling so powerless.

More to the point, Harvey took a huge step in proving his ability to put others first by deciding to turn himself in as the ultimate effort to do the right thing. He blamed himself for everything and saw no other way out, and when confronted with this, he turned to the one person with whom he knew he could safely share it. Because regardless of what they may or may not be to one another, Harvey Specter and Donna Paulsen have always been family. Theirs may be one of the most lightly sketched, often redrawn, and flat out unclear branches of the Pearson Specter Litt family tree, but Harvey and Donna’s relationship is arguably still one of the strongest on SUITS.

Again, though, the real subject of Harvey’s visit to Donna was not that he was willing to destroy himself in order to save those at risk thanks to his decision to hire Mike as a fraud. It was about whether or not he had faith. This time the entire decision, which Donna aptly saw as something Harvey had visited her (rather than his doctor) to discuss, was based in Harvey’s lack of faith in himself.

But, my God, did Donna restore that faith in the most gut-wrenching way possible. Emotions were flying high for both characters as Harvey repeatedly blamed himself for everyone being in danger. Donna fought back tooth and nail, telling Harvey he didn’t have to be the hero. She wanted Harvey to see that both he and Mike were worthy of an innocent verdict because she knew that they were. As he was about to storm out of her apartment after what I can only describe as their most passionate back-and-forth yet, Donna stopped Harvey, giving him one final bit of advice: “Harvey, go to the courthouse in the morning, sit with Mike until that verdict comes in, and show him that you have faith in him. Like I have faith in you.”

Both of Donna and Harvey’s big discussions in this episode were highlights, but this last one was so unfathomably good that it’s impossible to find a way to describe it. Harvey Specter’s guilt over the whole situation, battling against Donna Paulsen’s unwavering belief in him, was the type of television drama that takes true talent to bring to life. It’s a real understanding of what these two characters have been and how they have grown in the series’ run, mixed naturally with the real human emotion involved in a situation where everything is at stake.

Bravo, SUITS. I have faith that you’re worthy of being viewed as one of the very best.

Fighting for family. Harvey wasn’t the only one willing to make difficult decisions if it meant saving the firm; but each person’s interpretation of what that really meant, as well as how far he or she was actually willing to go, was wildly different.

Mike’s commitment to the firm’s name partners was the only reason he was on trial in the first place; had he turned Harvey in several episodes ago, he’d be safe by now. The entire back end of SUITS season five has been about the consequences of his refusal to turn on Harvey — or anyone else, for that matter. Arguably, the series’ two leading men are the ones that have the strongest grasp on what it means to risk everything for the ones you care about.

Jessica, on the other hand, has her limits.

She was content to let Mike and Harvey do whatever they needed to do, but when it looked like winning might be difficult, she hatched that mistrial plan with Harvey. Confronted by Donna, who saw the move as proof that Jessica didn’t have faith in Harvey (there’s that word again), Jessica admitted she knew there was a chance Mike could be put on trial again in the future. Because she thought it would be easier to get a mistrial granted than for Mike’s innocence to be proven, she was willing to go that route instead of gambling for the big win. Jessica’s peace of mind today was more important than Mike’s down the road.

That might sound like Jessica didn’t care about Mike at all, but she spent the majority of the episode arguing with Louis Litt about whether or not they should sell Harvey and Mike out to protect themselves. She categorically refused to consider any kind of deal that involved placing the blame on Harvey, saying that it would make both she and Louis no better than people like Daniel Hardman and Charles Forstman, whom they loathed. Jessica knew Harvey would be the first person to act in the interest of others if things went south: “Did it ever occur to you that if Mike gets found guilty, the first thing Harvey is going to do is walk in there and take a bullet for you and me?”

Jessica Pearson might have been willing to risk future trouble for Mike in order to keep herself safe for the time being, but she would never go so far as to overtly turn on a member of her Pearson Specter Litt family. She might not have been willing to go to extremes, but she wasn’t going to throw anyone under the bus, either.

But what about Louis? He toyed with the idea of stabbing the other lawyers, especially longtime rival Harvey, in the back. Litt visited Gibbs and asked if he’d be given immunity if he turned Harvey in, but he was deemed useless without proof. Confronting Harvey in the lobby, Louis admitted that he’d wanted to make a deal with Gibbs and demanded that Harvey turn himself in so he didn’t have to. When Harvey refused, Louis pushed him (literally…because it’s not SUITS without these guys getting physical) in the middle of their intense argument about where the blame really belonged. Louis told Harvey that everyone could go to jail because of what he’d done, but Harvey reminded Louis that he, too, was far from blameless since he’d used Mike’s secret to get what he’d always wanted.

…and Louis recorded the whole thing on his infamous dictaphone. Oh, Louis. No. Please. No.

No? Oh, thank the tv gods.

After a lot of soul searching, Louis finally did the right thing. When Gretchen came to deliver the ADA’s coded message regarding turning over her required proof, he said she should never ask him about it again. Before actually delivering Louis’ message, Gretchen admitted she knew what the call was really about and said she was happy with Louis’ choice because she had “been wanting to tell Anita Gibbs to go to hell since this whole thing started.”

Same, Gretchen. Same.

Selling souls to the devil. Mike wanted to turn himself in, but he wanted a guarantee from Gibbs that she wouldn’t go after anyone else at the firm if he did. Initially, though, Gibbs was unwilling to strike up any bargain that didn’t involve dragging Harvey Specter down. (I still have no idea why that is, but we’ll go with it.)

Later, however, Gibbs came to Mike’s home — because I guess that’s a thing that U.S. attorneys do in the middle of major cases like this — to offer him two options: He could spend two years in prison for a guilty plea with the guaranteed safety of his Pearson Specter Litt family, or he could be a free man if he delivered at least one partner to her on a silver platter.

It seemed as if Mike had changed his mind about pleading guilty…right up until the Diaz case came to its less-than-fortunate conclusion. The man Mike had chosen to defend was more than willing to sell his friends out for his own safety, and the more Mike tried to talk his client out of making a decision that he’d later regret, the more Diaz pushed back. Finally, Diaz pointed out that Mike was missing the obvious: If he was found guilty, all of his friends were going to jail anyway. There wasn’t going to be any protecting anybody, so he might as well keep himself out of jail.

Big moment of recognition.

With precious little time to take Gibbs up on her offer, Mike made the slo-mo run out of the judge’s chambers to go accept Gibbs’ terms. Harvey had his own moment of recognition when Mike wasn’t present for the jury’s decision and took off on his own action hero running sequence…But he was too late. As SUITS ended its latest episode, Mike Ross was in Anita Gibbs’ office, ready to choose a deal. Which one? No idea, but I’m hoping it probably involved jail time — not becoming a dirty traitor.

Additional ramblings.

  • The music choices on SUITS are always completely unexpected, yet perfect for the occasion. I’m pretty sure Stealth’s “Judgement Day” is going to haunt my nightmares for the next…ever.
  • That’s two weeks in a row that a performance from Sarah Rafferty has wrecked me…Oh, who am I kidding? That’s every episode. It’s when Rafferty’s paired with Gabriel Macht that both actors deliver their best performances, though, and the scene in Donna’s apartment was their best work yet — by far.
  • I don’t even want to deal with Rachel right now, but…Well. I think her whole, “what about me” line is just about all I need to say on the matter.
  • “I’m on trial for fraud for acting as a lawyer, when I’ve never been to law school. I don’t want to leave this courtroom until the verdict comes in — not for my buddy Harvey and not to go spend the last of Rachel’s precious time with her. Oh! Someone needs my help getting out of an unethical deal? I’ll leave my seat to go pretend to be a lawyer for him.” Oh, Mike. Really?
  • Mike’s closing statement was beautiful. The words, the acting…everything. Beautiful. But it was also beautifully flawed. There’s no way what he had to say could have been viewed by a competent jury as anything but an outright admission of guilt. It was so much like a goodbye that I was sure the whole thing must be a dream. Somehow, it wasn’t. If Mike was written to essentially tell the jury he was a big, fat fraud, then what was the whole point in asking anyone to have faith that he had a snowball’s chance in hell of being found innocent?

Don’t miss the season finale of SUITS on March 2 on USA Network.