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The eighth episode opens with Will and Captain Hallinger on opposite sides in court. At first Hallinger stumbles but Alicia gives her some advice and then she dominates. Their case is about a cheating wife who hired her pilates instructor to murder her husband so they could split his wealth.
After court, Will and Kalinda get drinks. Will sees Judge Creary, who’s overseeing their bench trial, and pretends like he’s going to the bathroom so he can stage a run-in with the judge to see how their case is going. Creary is having drinks with the DePaul University law student who got Will kicked out of that moot court 2 seasons ago.
It’s obvious the judge is drunk. Creary talks about how he thinks Will should never be able to practice law again and also that he thinks Will’s client is guilty. This then leads to Will and Diane talking strategy about if they could get the Judge to recuse himself based on bias. If they can win this suit, Lockhart Gardner would be able to pay off their debt and subsequently kiss Clark Hayden goodbye.
Alicia is sent to court to make the motion. She tries to do it privately in chambers, but Creary doesn’t let her. She makes a motion for him to recuse himself, which he refuses, and then she makes a motion to start a substitution hearing. Creary has to submit to this, which makes him very incensed.
Meanwhile there’s a side plot going on about a girl at Grace’s school killing herself. This is just a device to make it so Grace befriends the school bad boy Connor, which leads to her cutting class. On the other hand Zach is secretly doing IT work for his father’s campaign under assumed name. He’s so good at it that his direct supervisor gets a promotion.
Judge Dunaway returns to preside over the trial within a trial which doesn’t go Lockhart Gardner’s way as Captain Hellinger really hits her stride and demolishes their defense. Will gets slammed when he takes the stand because of his suspension and the common knowledge that he stole money from a client.
Unfortunately Nick is back. He sees Cary and Kalinda laughing together from afar and gets jealous. As Cary preps Nick for a potential deposition, Nick awkwardly interrupts to ask Cary what kind of suit he’s wearing and if he dresses in suits all the time. “People might think you’re gay or something,” he says in a supremely uncomfortable moment. Cary sends Nick away on the flimsy excuse that because Alicia’s not here to help they should just have this meeting tomorrow.
For some reason, Mike Kresteva or Maddie Hayward tape Grace cutting class. This obviously causes Eli some distress, along with the fact that IT is losing money because Zach has stopped volunteering. When Eli discovers the reason IT is doing so well, he gives Zach advice on how to ask Alicia for permission to help out on the campaign.
We have another scene of Kalinda and Nick in bed, Alicia calls to ask Kalinda to investigate Judge Creary. Kalinda tells Alicia that if she wants to hang out just to call her. Nick thinks that she was talking to Cary and doesn’t believe her when Kalinda says she wasn’t. So when Kalinda goes into the bathroom, Nick calls the last number in Kalinda’s call log. But because Alicia and Cary share an office, Cary picks up because Alicia’s not there.
This leads to Nick hiring someone to beat Cary up at the end of the episode. Fortunately Will and Diane win their motion to get a substitute judge but at the expense of losing their original trial.
Overall this episode was a transitional one, which made it a little boring. It’s clear that they’re trying to wrap up the Nick story line as cleanly as possible, which included a lot of great friendship moments between Will and Kalinda in bars. But to do that they had to bruise Cary. It also seems like they’re getting ready for Kalinda to confess her love for Alicia, which would certainly be great television.