7:09pm PT by Kate Stanhope
Archie Panjabi Exits 'The Good Wife': Co-Stars Share Their Favorite Scenes
[Warning: Spoilers ahead for The Good Wife's season six finale, "Wanna Partner?"]
Kalinda's boots of justice were made for walking, and that's exactly what they did on Sunday's season six finale. After leaving town in the middle of the night to avoid the reach of drug kingpin Lemond Bishop (Mike Colter), Kalinda (Archie Panjabi) resurfaced for a final face-to-face with her former BFF Alicia (Julianna Margulies).
For fans of the series, their meet-up was a long time coming. With the exception of flashbacks from season one that were featured in the penultimate hour of the season, the duo hadn't shared screen time in 50 episodes.
Although their last encounter was brief, it was a very appropriate goodbye. Stressed by a new client and Peter's decision about running for President – a means to become Vice President – Alicia was suddenly joined by Kalinda at a local bar. Alicia, like viewers, were surprised to see Kalinda in such a public place when she was supposed to be in hiding from Bishop. Kalinda asked why Alicia hadn't given Bishop's attorney the note Kalinda left for her – in which she confessed to her actions against him – but Alicia simply shrugged.
The beauty of losing the State's Attorney election, Alicia explained, was that she no longer cared so much. She had let go of her anger, jealousy, everything, so she and her former friend were able to share multiple rounds of tequila shots just like they used to before Alicia learned Kalinda had slept with Peter way back when.
"My time with you as your friend was the best I ever had and I'm sorry," Kalinda told Alicia in a rare emotional moment for the normally stoic investigator. "I'm really sorry that things got messed up."
Added Alicia, "I wish we had the chance to do it over again."
Alicia asked if that would be the last time she would see Kalinda and Kalinda answered as much. "That's too bad," Alicia said and the moment was over just as quickly as it began.
But that wasn't Kalinda's curtain call. After Alicia – unknowingly to Kalinda – burnt Kalinda's confession letter in front of Bishop's attorney, Lester (Wallace Shawn), Kalinda resurfaced to return Lester's phone to him. She had purposefully skipped her planned meeting with Bishop and Lester, but explained just why when she told Lester she had found incriminating evidence on Bishop's home computer that detailed Lester's not-so-kosher working arrangement with the former drug kingpin. It was a nice return to the crafty and creative Kalinda fans had come to love. Lester was only briefly defeated before asking Kalinda if she would be interested in going into business with him. She simply, replied "I'm good," put her sunglasses on and walked out on her old life as Kalinda once and for all.
With the leather-clad Kalinda firmly in The Good Wife's rearview mirror, her longtime co-stars shared their favorite scenes with Panjabi over the past six seasons:
Christine Baranski (Diane): "It was the end of last year. It was the last episode, and it was when I realized I was really going to lose my firm to Louis Canning, who was dying, but he didn't care [about the impact on Diane] -- he was so diabolical, he'd do it. I leave the office, I go down the elevator, exit the building, and Kalinda's there, and I basically say, 'I don't have any more fight left in me after Will died.' And she says, 'I'm here for you.' It was a beautiful moment between two actresses, because I'm very fond of her, and I always wanted to work with her whenever I could. Maybe an audience wouldn't notice it, but it was a very special scene between the two of us. She became my girl. She used to be Will's girl, but she became my girl and helped me through a tough time."
Matt Czuchry (Cary): "Certainly that whole relationship and storyline for Cary has been an important one throughout all six seasons. I think of it in broad terms with all the work I've gotten to do with Archie, and learn from her as an actor. I'm sad to see her go. … One scene I really loved was in the beginning of this season in episode one when Cary's in prison and he sees who's behind the window [to visit him]; he knows somebody is there to see him, and it's her. That scene said a lot about their relationship. In the tough times, regardless of what they've been through, she's been there, and he's been there for her, too."
Margulies: "It would be the bar stuff, when they would have after work drinks. It always felt like it was a Cheers moment. That's why everyone loved that show."
What did you think about Kalinda's final farewell? What are you looking forward to next season?
Additional reporting by Marisa Roffman