The CBS hit show “The Good Wife” is ending in May and while the news that CBS cancelled the show is shocking some fans, others are not that surprised. After the death of Will Gardner (played by Josh Charles), nothing was the same anymore – not just for Julianna Margulies’ character Alicia Florrick.
CBS announced the ending of “The Good Wife” in a promo during Sunday’s Super Bowl 50, and according to a February 8 The Washington Post report, even the show’s creators, Robert King and Michelle King, had just learned of CBS’s decision to cancel the show last week.
According to Michelle King, the creators of “The Good Wife” had been planning on leaving the show as its executive producers after the seventh season, but until last week it was uncertain whether CBS would continue the show with a different producer or end it. “We felt very fortunate and flattered that we’re being allowed to end the show …. the way we hoped it would end,” Michelle King said.
In regard to why “The Good Wife” is ending rather than going on with a different producer, Glenn Geller (president of CBS Entertainment) and David Stapf (president of CBS Television Studios) said the following in a joint statement:
“It’s never easy to say goodbye to one of the crown jewels of your network and studio, much less to a show that is among the best on television. But it also feels very right to end with the seven-year story its creators envisioned, and to celebrate the show’s final run while at the top of its creative game. It has been CBS’s sincere privilege to broadcast and produce The Good Wife for seven extraordinary seasons. We thank and applaud the outstanding cast, led by the impeccable Julianna Margulies, and the consummate writing and producing team, headed by the brilliant Robert and Michelle King, who brought to life a smart, sophisticated series that has delivered audiences so many memorable characters and unforgettable moments. It is a series that will only grow in prestige as its episodes are watched again or discovered by new viewers for many years to come.”
As to how “The Good Wife” will end, Julianna Margulies gave some indications in a speech when she was honoring Robert and Michelle King at the beginning of January at the Casting Society of America’s Artios Awards:
“I surprised Robert and Michelle tonight. They didn’t know I was going to be here. They think I’m here for them, but I’m unemployed come April, and I think you haven’t seen me in a while, at least not in person, so I thought I should show up.”
Margulies has always emphasized that her performance as Alicia Florrick in “The Good Wife” was tightly connected to the show’s creators, and before season five began, she made the following statement:
“As long as the writing stays like this, I can keep going. [Robert King] told me a while ago … he said, ‘I know I have seven in me. I’m not sure if I have more, but I definitely have seven.’ If they’ll have us, I think seven is a great number.”
Looking at seven years of “The Good Wife,” episode 15 of season five became the turning point when Will Gardner was shot and killed in the courtroom. The on-screen chemistry between actors Julianna Margulies and Josh Charles came to a shocking end, and despite some guest appearances by Gardner in future seasons, the show already appeared to be heading towards its final episodes.
Season seven revived the theme of Will Gardner’s death when Alicia is finally told the truth that Will’s message that he loved her had been deleted by Peter Florrick’s campaign strategist and crisis manager Eli Gold (played by Alan Cumming). Alicia’s difficulty of dealing with Eli’s deception and the overwhelming financial demands of keeping her own firm afloat seem to be taking its toll on the good wife. Will Alicia accept the offer by Cary Agos (played by Matt Czuchry) to return to her old firm where she will be dealing once again with memories of Will Gardner?
The series finale is scheduled for Sunday, May 8 at 9 p.m. The ending of “The Good Wife” will be one with “some resonance,” said creator Robert King with Michelle King adding that “what I admire — an ending that feels inevitable and surprising.”