The Good Fight season one, episode one (Inauguration): parallel lives

the good fight 1Fucking hell. There’s a lot more effing and jeffing in this one episode than I remember in all seven series of The Good Wife – but the language wasn’t gratuitous given the scale of Diane’s riches-to-rags downfall.

It was clear well before the first ad break that she was about to fall victim to a Madoff-style investment scam – much as I’d love to watch her swanning around the south of France in fabulous statement jacket/necklace combos, I reckon that show would need a different title. However, the depth of her involvement took a bit longer to reveal. She hadn’t just invested her entire retirement fund – she’d encouraged half of Chicago to do the same.

Half of the white population of Chicago, that is.

I confess I’d forgotten about her betrayal by Kurt, and the humiliating way it was revealed in court, so initially figured her remark about being deceived was a reference to “Saint Alicia”. The pair have been living apart since then but Kurt doesn’t want a divorce, even if it means going down with a sinking ship financially. Will she forgive him? What he did certainly wasn’t great, but he’s no Peter Florrick…

Diane’s always at her most watchable when her lawyering and her personal principles collide, so it was a canny move to have her defending a clear-cut case of white police brutality against a black petty thief (with her goddaughter and new mentee Maia looking on in horror). She may have switched sides after being blacklisted by her white pals, but we shouldn’t expect week after week of straightforward goodies vs baddies showdowns. Where would be the drama in that? Speaking of moral ambiguity, did Louis Canning die? I really need to refresh my memory.

This time around we have two characters looking to rebuild their lives and navigate new identities. In one stark contrast between the two, Diane’s husband wants to stick around but Maia’s girlfriend is outta there. I’m surprised it was the fake sex tape that did it, rather than the whole assistant-state-attorney-dating-potential-criminal-mastermind thing. I do hope she pops up again for a few showdowns in court.

As for Diane, it’s a tough break indeed. Pushed out of the door of Lockhart, Lee, Tom, Dick and Harry, officially declared poison by her formerly well-heeled pals and implicated in the closure of the women’s charities closest to her heart.  All this plus Trump too – though I could have lived without the very obviously tacked-on reference to his election. “How is my life so fucking meaningless?” she asks, as almost everyone turns their backs. and she has good reason to feel aggrieved. I just hope she doesn’t have to resort to pawning that fabulous necklace collection.

Published by Shona Craven

Writer, editor, talking head

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