On “The Good Fight,” the legal drama from CBS’s All Access streaming service, Christine Baranski plays Diane Lockhart, the well-coiffed litigator swimming in Chicago’s underbelly … without staining her Chanel suits. Diane suffered the fate of a Bernie Madoff-type swindler four years ago, delaying her plan of a retirement in Tuscany and leading her to the law firm Reddick, Boseman, & Kolstad, where she works with cases involving police brutality and other hot button cases that arise in the Windy City.
The series, which was recently renewed for a fourth season, marked a bold move by CBS: premiering a much-buzzed about spin-off not on its network airwaves but its streaming platform, which had just launched (the network also used the Star Trek franchise, long the cash cow in its library, to lure more viewers with a new incarnation called “Discover”). But earning the majority of buzz is “The Good Fight,” which fans will admit is a long way off from its genesis: “The Good Wife,” a bold, very off-brand drama series CBS took a gamble on 10 years ago.
Starring Julianna Margulies as the wife of a disgraced Chicago politician caught in an Eliot Spitzer-type scandal, the series earned acclaim and a loyal viewership for its well-written dialogue, stellar cast and soapy twists and turns. And its ending after seven years didn’t disappoint: to save her husband, Margulies’ long suffering Alicia Florrick throws Diane under the bus. In the last scene, the two women confront each other and Diane ends the series much like it started: with a slap in the face. It’s a fitting finale, given the series began with a bitch slap of its own — Margulies hitting her cheating husband, played by Mr. Big himself, Chris Noth. Fortunately, “The Good Fight” has just as good of bite.