Feb 22, 2017

[TV] Suits: Season 5

The end of Suits' fourth season represented a significant shake-up in the power dynamic of things. While the prior season ended with playing with the relationship between Mike and Harvey, the fifth season decided to really strike us at the knees in order to create a new situation to explore.

But as is the nature of the show, more and more of the drama has shifted from the courtroom to the offices of Pearson-Specter-Litt instead. And I can't really complain since that is where most of the action is and the courtroom stuff is just good for accent or moving the story forward somewhat.

I am getting a little tired of internal threats within the firm being the big driver of conflict in the show, especially in this season. Sure, they're generally awesome and I guess it make sense that the only ones who could really stand up to their firm are members of their own team. But five seasons into the show it is starting to feel a little tiring.

Synopsis: Suits is a legal drama series created by Aaron Korsh for the USA network. It's actually billed as a drama-comedy / dramedy but I think I take the show too seriously for that.

Big shocker from the last season: Donna (Sarah Rafferty) decides to leave Harvey (Gabriel Macht) and chooses to work for Louis (Rick Hoffman) instead. So now Harvey is scrambling to keep things together and starts to have panic attacks after Donna leaves him. He starts to see a therapist in secret and naturally she has a lot more to unearth beyond the relationship between a boss and a secretary.

This season also brings Jack Soloff (John Pyper-Ferguson) to the forefront. He's a senior partner at the firm who begins to make noise about Harvey's position of favor at the company while also trying to maneuver against Jessica (Gina Torres). Then there's the whole engagement between Mike (Patrick J. Adams) and Rachel (Meghan Markle) and the bigger question of how Rachel will handle things. And given the status of her family, more and more it seems the wedding may become much bigger than they had planned, thus increasing possible risk of exposure for Mike and his big secret.

What I Liked: The change in the Harvey-Donna dynamic was a very big deal, quite frankly. And to see how all this affected Harvey made for an interesting progression of events. I knew it would shake up his work life, but the fact that things had Harvey having panic attacks did make for an interesting aspect of vulnerability for him. Donna is always Donna and she remains quite awesome, regardless of who she works for directly.

The big lead up to the end of the season makes for a masterful plot line that tugs at connections from all prior seasons of the show and finally addressing the core premise of the show - that Mike is getting away with pretending to be a lawyer. The fact that this is finally addressed ad the fate of the firm being tied to the ruling as well makes for quite the stocking turn of events.

What Could Have Been Better: The Jack Soloff story and the old story angle of someone trying to turn the partners against Jessica is really getting tiring at this point and one can't help but wonder if the rest of the partners have any real backbone given all the silly meetings they get pulled into. Yeah not everyone can be like Harvey but man you'd think that Jessica would have directed hiring standards to maintain some sort of a consistent standard of quality.

I'm really not that big a fan of the Mike and Rachel story and the decision to make it a threat to Mike's secret was probably the only way to make it relevant but I really could have done without it. And Rachel being emotional is really what drags me down I guess. Then she inspires Mike to do some pretty stupid things. Wash, rinse, repeat.

TL;DR: The fifth season of Suits decided to follow the pattern of the prior season by shaking up the status quo. Despite my complaints about the story, on the whole the flow of the season is quite brilliant and the end result is a lot of great acting moments for everyone. Thus the season gets 4 moments of tension and drama out of a possible 5.

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