The Emmy-nominated second season of The Good Wife
presents powerful drama that interweaves passion, politics, family turmoil, and courtroom action and features a talented cast that's bound together by an absolutely thrilling chemistry. Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies) has survived the political sex scandal and incarceration of her state's attorney husband Peter (Chris Noth), picked up her career as a lawyer after many years away, and somehow still managed to take an active role in raising her two teenage children. In a situation in which the personal and professional are intimately entangled, Alicia has taken control of her life and blossomed into a strong, confident woman whom others respect. But Alicia's life is complicated. Peter is back home and running for office again, and Alicia is continually butting heads with campaign manager Eli (Alan Cumming) while struggling to figure out just what her relationship with Peter will look like going forward. There's an undeniable attraction between Alicia and her former classmate and current boss Will (Josh Charles), and the law firm they work for is in financial trouble. Alicia's deepening friendship with Kalinda (Archie Panjabi) seems like the one relationship that Alicia can depend on, but Kalinda is an incredibly complex woman with a whole lot of secrets. When Lockhart Gardner merges with another firm, Kalinda acquires a new and worthy adversary in rival investigator Blake (Scott Porter), who quickly teams up with now-prosecutor Cary (Matt Czuchry) to uncover and publicize the dirty details of Kalinda's past. What the two men unearth threatens to irrevocably damage, or perhaps even destroy, the friendship between Alicia and Kalinda. The powerful performances of the cast and the intensity of their emotional connection with one another on screen cannot be overstated--every character, from Alicia to Peter, Kalinda, Will, and Eli, is completely believable and their interactions with one another are simply electric. This season features a host of talented guest stars, including Michael J. Fox, Gary Cole, Rita Wilson, Jerry Stiller, America Ferrera, and Anika Noni Rose. They appear as attorneys, judges, and plaintiffs in a docket of intriguingly complicated legal cases that among them involve a drug kingpin, an alderman, a Nobel prizewinner, a pharmaceutical company, an Internet mogul, a disabled attorney, and a narcoleptic judge. While all of these guest stars give solid performances that really add something to the series, Fox deserves special recognition for the three episodes in which he plays the disabled attorney Louis Canning. Fox's performances feature physical comedy and a simultaneous intelligence that rings true, and the interaction between Canning and Alicia reveals a new and fascinating side to Alicia's character.
There are quite a few bonus features sprinkled throughout this six-disc set, the most notable being the three "Real Deal Inside the Episode" segments. These extras examine how hard the talented writers work to create characters that are passionate and continually growing; the demanding process of writing and producing a weekly TV show; and how the creators use music, sound, and visual effects almost impressionistically to create meaningful, memorable moments within each episode. The fairly brief "Conversation with the Kings" is an interesting discussion with co-creators and executive producers Michelle and Robert King about how carefully they craft each episode to advance that week's plot while simultaneously developing each of the characters. There are also a handful of deleted scenes, a 20-minute discussion with the cast and creators that's moderated by Dalton Ross, a glimpse of the season-one DVD release party, some silly behind-the-scenes videos by Alan Cumming, and three campaign music videos that were used in the show. --Tami Horiuchi