Thursday, October 27, 2022

REVIEW: 'The Good Fight' - Liz and Ri'Chard Build Their Ambitions as Diane Searches for Peace in 'The End of Playing Games'

Paramount+'s The Good Fight - Episode 6.08 "The End of Playing Games"

While STR Laurie is investigated by the FBI, Liz and Ri'Chard attempt to take their clients. As they fight to extricate themselves, Ri'Chard and Liz must decide who is head of the firm. Meanwhile, Diane is forced to expose her PT-108 treatment.

"The End of Playing Games" was written by Jonathan Tolins & Anju Andre-Bergmann and directed by Robert King

Liz and Ri'Chard envision leading the largest Black-owned law firm in the entire world. It wasn't good enough to separate their firm from STR Laurie. They had to absorb the multinational conglomerate that provided them with financial prosperity previously. It requires some legal maneuvering to pull off. It once again depends on Liz and Ri'Chard arguing over what they can feasibly do. Of course, part of it is an act. They have to perform around the office in order to lower the guards of the people listening in. That's how they strike. They are aware of this surveillance. They use it to their benefit. They work incredibly well as a team. They both deserve having their names on this business. And yet, they aren't given a moment to celebrate. They share a drink in the office. And then, they instinctively drop to the ground once they come under fire. The world remains absolutely crazy around them. They believe they have put everything in place to keep their business safe. Jay noticed the bullet holes in Diane's office. The police were alerted. The firm is taking every precaution as a result of the protests on the streets below. Disaster still creeps in. That has been true all season long. But now, it's disrupting the vision these characters have for their lives. They have such large aspirations. It's thrilling when they achieve their goals. It's then equally depressing when the world refuses to let them celebrate. The firm is targeted because its Black-owned. Local militias are targeting Black institutions throughout the city. Everyone knows they are planning something big. They already have a date picked out. Plenty of dangerous things happen before then too. It leaves Liz and Ri'Chard vulnerable. They have remained focused on their aspirations. They believe they have a team working towards the same goal. And yet, so many of the people who work for them are questioning their purpose in life. Diane desperately wants inner peace. She also feels it would be hypocritical if she ever found it. She can't be happy if the world remains messed up. She has been targeted throughout all of this as well. She too has been traumatized. The consequences are Ri'Chard looking into her casework to see if her judgment has been compromised at all due to the PT-108 treatments. That could make the firm liable for any number of things. Diane isn't focused on the solvency of the firm. That's no longer what matters to her. She enjoys flirting with someone who has a similar perspective to hers. That's freeing. She asks questions in search of understanding how others cope with the world around them. Nothing truly gives her peace. Instead, it only leaves her in hiding because she's not entirely sure what she wants. Her actions aren't as consequential as they once were. However, her absence from that proximity to power and purpose is noticeable. It's not what inherently provides her with meaning. It's simply a change-of-pace that hasn't exactly produced something equally as desirable.

Elsewhere, Jay knows exactly how committed he wants to be to the resistance group. Renetta's sister started a courtroom in her house to provide greater accountability in her community. She is currently in prison. Renetta believes she was thinking too small. She has drastically increased the scale of this operation. She has the resources to surveil threats to their community. She has surrounded herself with people who want to fight back. They see the growing fascism in this country. They recognize the warning signs. They can't allow it to grow any stronger. Real lives are on the line. Law enforcement doesn't seem to be doing anything to stop it. The police offer no support when Jay notifies them about the gunshots in Diane's office. Jay can make a difference in preventing the next attack. It simply comes at the expense of his job with the firm. Liz and Ri'Chard spend the day trying to get into contact with him. They make no progress in addressing their concerns at the firm because they are without their investigator. Jay set up a camera to alert him should the shooter target the firm once more. It's unclear whether he actually got that alert. An attack still happened. He was distracted by seeing all that Renetta had built. She has an entire jail set up. She has Frank Landau's killer in custody. Her organization caught him shortly after the murder. They accomplished what the police couldn't. They are holding him responsible. They knew an attack was coming. They gathered that intelligence. Jay even has a solid lead as to who is targeting the firm. He still gets lost along the way. He wants to fight back. He doesn't allow himself to remain available to those who need him the most. He knows Marissa can protect herself. She knows exactly what happened when the firm wants to blame her for the guy slipping off the roof. It was actually Carmen's girlfriend who stole the key card. That provided access to the building. That was fairly obvious. It still created a moment where Marissa saw how little the firm actually valued her. She has changed professions over the course of her employment. She finds fun elements within being both an investigator and lawyer. She misses aspects of one when she focuses on the other. She's still trying to find her place in the world. That uncertainty is palpable. She's still always aware of the anti-Semitic rhetoric around her. She doesn't need to argue with her coworkers over which community is more marginalized and targeted. They are in this fight together. It remains an ongoing battle because people refuse to allow others to prosper. Everyone deserves the opportunity to thrive under an equal system that delivers consequences proportionally. That just isn't the reality they are living in. And so, everyone is trying to find their place in this changing world where the stakes show just how tedious their past choices may have been. Those identity crises simply leave others vulnerable because they aren't dealing with the problems in the same way. Liz and Ri'Chard have clarity and trust others to remain professional and engaged. That's no longer a guarantee given all that is happening throughout this workplace.