Alicia Florrick is about to start all over. Again. The Good Wife's sixth season finale is on the horizon and there's a lot of loose ends to tie up—*cough*Alicia-Kalinda*cough*—but new beginnings are taking shape for the heroine. Julianna Margulies' character has been at the center of two very public scandals, the latest finds her at the epicenter and has nothing to do with a philandering husband. She's been cast out from both public office and her own firm. Where does she go from here?
"I think this will test Alicia as much as she's been tested since the very beginning of the series," series co-creator Michelle King told E! News. "How difficult it was with Peter's scandal, I think she's in a place now that is going to test her virtually as much as that."
"We've been playing into a lot of repeating—some of the beats from the very beginning of the series and wanting to see how this new Alicia is different, for the better and the worse," Robert King, The Good Wife's other co-creator, said.
"Exactly. It's what has she learned in the last six years? What skills has she acquired and how will that help her."
What has Alicia learned? Where does she stand with her various relationships and what's ahead? Read on!
What's going on with Peter and Alicia? Is there hope for them to try again? Is the book closed? "Just the reality of their relationship, I don't think we can ever close the book on them," Michelle said. "Regardless of where they're living, whether it's apart or together, even in the same city, I think there is a tie between the two of them. Whether it's love or hate or something familial in between, the Florricks are bound."
Chalk up that bond to the chemistry between Chris Noth and Julianna Margulies, Robert described it as "odd," but it's something the writers love playing with. "It does enter into the realm of caring, I don't know if you want to go as far as love, but it's almost like they're living out their marriage vows and they're just not sleeping with each other and they're not kind of physically sharing space or anything," he said.
Should viewers be reading into the doorbell tease from the promo? "Only in that—I think the door knock suggests what next season will be about," Robert said, noting how season four ended with Alicia opening the door to Cary instead of Will. "I think that's the only reason [CBS] put a lot of emphasis on it. I don't know if we planned it out as a surprise—I guess we did. There are other surprises in the episode that are even better."
The rumored Kalinda and Alicia scene: was it fan service or did it felt naturally into the story? "I think it fits into the story. I always say I think because you obviously have to have humility of the writer," Robert said. "We crafted their story to kind of help finish the arc of the Kalinda-Alicia friendship that took such a major hit in the second season...but it felt like it would be a disservice not to the fans, but to the story if you didn't kind of follow through on that. Look, we understood that fans were disappointed the episode where it looked like Kalinda was leaving for good, the 20th episode, but even that was slightly intentional just to this a sense of it almost being an encore with Kalinda. I think that's the only way you could surprise the fans by having them know since the beginning of the year that Archie Panjabi is leaving the show now."
Assuming Kalinda survives the finale...is the door open for Archie/Kalinda to return or is the book closed? "It is always open. Are you kidding? Archie Panjabi is one of the most talented actresses we've worked with. She's so good. We would love to have her back. I think we have to see what Fox wanted to do with her," Robert said. There are always flashbacks if Kalinda does kick the bucket...
If Alicia starts her own firm, what happens to Diane and Cary? It's a challenge the Kings are working on now. "We're in our third week in the writers room for season seven. I would say it's not as big a challenge as when there were two firms kind of opposing each other after the breakup in season five, but it seems—One reason it's not as much of a challenge is it's not as much based on hate this time. That was really interesting because it was based on hate," Robert said. But the characters will be in the same orbit as Alicia strikes out by herself. "I think you'll see after this next episode on Sunday how Eli will fit into that stratosphere, too. The good thing—Alan Cumming we only had up ‘til now, I think 15 out of 22 episodes. This coming season we have him for all episodes," Robert said.
What about the rest of the cast? Is everybody coming back? "That's a little bit up in the air because contracts are being negotiated even now. I think we'll have to wait until we cross every T," Robert said.
Where does The Good Wife go from here? "You know what? It's all about Alicia rebuilding her reputation and trying to find now that both kids are on the brink of leaving home, what does she want to be? There's very few people that get a second act, I have a feeling Alicia's getting a third act," Robert said. "Her second act probably started the series, so does she get the chance to repeat things and repeat things well?"
The Good Wife airs Sundays, 9 p.m. on CBS.