Or maybe it's about Alicia and Eli, maybe that's the question she needed Diane to answer. If it were me, I'd be doing everything I could to get close with Will and Eli, separately, just to triangulate Alicia as swiftly as possible. I guess it hinges on whether she actually believes that she can't get Alicia back. All her protestations of refusing to feel feelings or let people in ever again seems to suggest that she might have given up. Or maybe it's simpler even than that, and she's just responding naturally to the fact that Alicia is no longer as relevant to her life as her job is, and this case is juicier. Hanging around in a hotel knowing you'll bump into Alicia, or get a cool guided tour of an industrial dairy?
The first guy doubts the conventional wisdom around the plant -- that one of the vats was poorly cleaned -- because he cleans them himself. Out to the refrigerated trucks, which similarly check out. So then what is it? What's the either/or, easy answer that will solve the case like every week?
"I think it used to be an easy job, to find the source. Now you got some of these cheeses, they're a blend of three or four lines from three or four companies. So all I can say is, good luck."
Suitably complex idea for this episode, and it introduces another gravity conversation on the way to clarifying Kalinda's journey this year as Eli's investigator: Stop thinking about the reality, the guilt or innocence, and start thinking about the images. I love the idea that there are places Kalinda's pragmatism still has yet to go; I hate it because it means she's trading Jiminy Cricket for a fixer. Alicia needed Kalinda, in part, to keep her hands clean; what does that say about Kalinda's need for her in return? Does that mean that, with Eli, she's turning into something? Regressing past Alicia's influence? All she wants is to be a robot.
Kalinda: "Eli, you know this is a good thing, right? It looks like your client isn't responsible for the listeria..."
Eli: "Kalinda, this is not the law. I'm not looking for innocence, I'm looking for certainty. The whole point is to bury this story with an apology, then move on."
Kalinda: "So you want our guy to be guilty?"
Eli: "No, I want it to be over. I don't want to train another CEO, from some other company, tomorrow, to take the blame."
Eli's Take: "I offer my deepest, sincerest sympathies to the families... I'm doing everything I can to trace the source of our missteps."
Diane's Take: "I offer my deepest, sincerest sympathies to the families... I'm doing everything I can to trace the source of the outbreak."