Those ads weren't jerking us around: There really was a fair amount of AWOLNATION's "Sail" in this episode. In this awesome, awesome episode.
So the Special Prosecutor that Peter decided on -- after taking himself out of the Gardner investigation -- is Wendy Scott-Carr. As usual, she treads the line between poise, self-righteous and no blinking (I call her "Weaponized Alicia"), but here's the kicker: She's more interested in going after Will directly than the Peter/Dana/Cary team ever seemed. Like, "I don't even care about Bishop anymore" interested. WSC visits Diane for a little facetime, trying to turn her, for which reason Diane becomes this terrifying angel of righteousness who spends the rest of the episode having fucking had it, straightening out life's messes, giving people what for.
Such as Will, who is no longer allowed to sleep with Alicia, and Eli, whom -- after a brutal cheese-related smackdown by fruit lobbyist Amy Sedaris -- gets called a big old baby and then served a bunch of scotch to help with his big baby man-feelings. I guess since she's getting hardcore with Will for the moment, she's got to shore up support elsewhere, but since she's right about absolutely everything this week it's not as precarious as last year's whole Bond-related "mommy and daddy are fighting" vibe. Still, interesting to think Diane might end up emotionally ganging up on Will with Eli, considering Will's never really seemed too partial to the little elf.
Over on the SA side, nothing really of note happens beyond various luuuuuv triangle stuff, such as: Dana bought a jacket similar to the ones Kalinda wears, possibly to make Cary want her more; Dana loves flirting with flirting with Kalinda almost as much as Kalinda seems to find it hilarious; and Kalinda manages to talk about lesbianing just hot enough that it finally drives Dana right into bed... With Cary.
So if you've ever lived in an apartment complex, now you know the next thing that will happen, which is that Dana ends up super gay.
Will doesn't tell Alicia about Diane's decree, which should be weird, because he's too busy dealing with their case: Riding high on a premature report from Kalinda that the SA was going to leave him alone, he agrees to help that awesome military attorney from last year with a murder case in JAG. It's the same amazing judge, also, so you get to have fun with returning recurrings.
The case isn't so fun -- it involves drone errors and little dead kids -- but continuing the theme Diane started back at L/G, the Judge lady drops some major reality science on Alicia after the fact, which seems to settle her head on straighter than it has been for awhile.
Which girlfriend is going to need. In all her fumbling, Jackie Florrick managed to turn on Alicia's webcam last week. Alicia tries, not very hard, to keep the actual spying part away from Grace and Zach, but they figure out that Jackie's crossed the line pretty easily and give tacit approval to their mom's declaration of war. Jackie's stunned to find Alicia has changed the locks, but after a few heated words Alicia tells her to eat a bag of infinite dicks and then offers Zach that car so Jackie doesn't ever have to pick up the kids again.
It is incredibly satisfying.
In two weeks: Grace is brutally murdered, from what I can tell. Happy Thanksgiving!
AWOLNation's "Sail" plays while Sergeant Gina Elkins sits in a truck in Nevada trying to figure out whether she's allowed to fire on a target in Waziristan. Over at the DOD, a bunch of old white dudes try to do the math: There are, at first blush, four non-combatant adults and one child nearby, and a mosque 110 feet away from the truck she's aiming at. There's a buzzing noise back from the kill algorithm that I think means a giant NO, because the collateral damage is too great for the person in the truck: Their deaths outweigh his. Anyway, she fires.
You can't really tell if she heard back and ignored it, or whether she jumped the gun or what, but from our perspective it seems obvious that she shouldn't fire the two Hellfires, and the truck shouldn't be exploding, and there shouldn't be a man running around on fire, falling to his knees, but either way, that's what happened next.
Sometimes you can get so tied up in your goal that you forget how you're going to get there -- what the damage will be, what variables and factors you're leaving out because there's nobody watching. Ursula K. LeGuin said, "The ends are the means." A helpful rule of thumb. Guards against creepiness, guards against mission creep.
Captain Hicks (!) comes running to Lockhart, Gardner, once Gina Elkins requests extra civilian defense. He's working against mission creep, too: Spreading out the damage so it stops being damage. He's chosen Will and Alicia because they've already done part of the work of breaking into the insanity of military justice, on that cuckold case last year; they're the worst of a bad lot and he's all alone.
Hicks: "12 counts of murder."
L/G: "What did your client do, shoot up the base?"
Hicks: "Sergeant Elkins works in the UAS division. Unmanned Aerial Systems. Drones. Sergeant Elkins is charged with disobeying orders and firing two Hellfire missiles on 12 unarmed citizens in Waziristan, Afghanistan."
Alicia: "And you're defending him?"
It's important that Alicia be the first to make that mistake. Gina is a woman. A woman with a background, a woman who can pay for L/G defense. Alicia, of course, is in from the jump -- she likes Elkins, she defends women -- but Will isn't so sure yet. Not quite yet. He has to take a call first.
The thing about war is that it's all murder, so the words don't mean what we usually think they do. What makes soldiers heroes is that they're willing to take on the burden of state-sanctioned murder; to pay the price so we don't have to pay others. You think combat pay is about the hazard to the soldier, but it's not: It's about being a person who kills. But succumb to mission creep; kill the wrong person, in the wrong way; kill twelve people forty yards from a mosque; watch a man burning on his knees, and suddenly you are a murderer.