The Good Wife

Has Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies) found her groove? When we left Alicia at the end of Season 1, her financially distraught firm had found a life preserver in attorney Derrick Bond (Michael Ealy), and her husband, Peter (Chris Noth), had been acquitted and released from jail.

But things won't stay peaceful for long, executive producer David W. Zucker tells TVGuide.com. Alicia's confidence continues to grow, "but she's going to be confronted with a whole new intensity of challenges" when The Good Wife returns next month, he says. One of her bigger hurdles will be her newfound partnership with Derrick's firm, which will bring many road bumps to the new Lockhart, Gardner and Bond.

 Michael Ealy joins the cast of The Good Wife

 "It's first perceived as a relief," Zucker says, but each firm brings a very different agenda and different intentions to the table. Zucker reveals that the merger will be the most unsettling for Diane and Will, and even while Alicia may have a new ally in Derrick, doesn't mean she'll be immune to this tumultuous getting-to-know-you period.

"The ink isn't dry on the contract. They've come together out of dual necessity, but they're assessing one another in terms of what the expectations are and orienting to the politics of the office," Zucker continues. "As soon as [Alicia] feels she may have gotten herself on a secure track, suddenly everything gets shifted, which is how things started last year when she discovered the competition."

The Good Wife casts role that "immediately impacts" Alicia, executive producer says

Alicia's home life will also change dramatically following Peter's re-entrance into the political arena.

 "His new campaign is going to expose [the Florrick family] to the public in regular intervals," Zucker says. Being married to a former state's attorney helped Alicia at work last year, but her ties to Peter will start to work against her and her burgeoning legal career.

She will also have to figure out what their future is as a couple.

"What is the next manifestation of that relationship? He's out of jail, he's going to be setting upon what his next professional track will be," Zucker says. "They are not at all the same people they were before this whole maelstrom began. ... Suddenly they're different people. How does the relationship accommodate that and what does it transform into?"

The Good Wife returns on Tuesday, Sept. 28 at 10/9c.