Merritt Wever and Josh Charles
After 15 or so years of practicing law, The Good Wife's Will Gardner is about to face his toughest jury yet: his sisters.
"Will is an alpha male, and he loves to be the one questioning," Josh Charles tells TVGuide.com "To see a character that has a lot of strength in the office being put back against the wall while his sisters harass him and question him about his personal life — that was fun to play. I haven't been able to do anything like in the last couple of years with this character."
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Chicago's 16th most eligible bachelor will roll out the welcome wagon — and a guitar! — on Sunday's episode (9/8c, CBS) when his sisters Aubrey and Sara (played by Nurse Jackie's Merritt Wever and The Big C's Nadia Dajani, respectively) come to town. "When you meet someone's family... [there are] different ways to experience a character, and to learn more about a character that you've known for a while," Charles says. "Will and his sister play guitar. You'll see some different, fun sides of Will."
Those fun sides are surfacing now that Will has a lot of free time on his hands. In the most recent episode, he was suspended from practicing law for six months. The surprise move sent fans into panic mode about Will's — and Charles' — fate on the show. "People really think I'm taking a break off the show and it's kind of great," he says. "Honestly, I think that makes [co-creators and executive producers] Robert and Michelle King smile."
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However, that assumption couldn't be further from the truth. "It is going to reveal a lot more about the character, so I am looking forward to it," Charles says. "This year, I've worked really hard. The character has done a lot and I love where they've gone with Will."
The question of Will's fate is a change of pace from the omnipresent will-they-won't-they tension between Will and Alicia (Julianna Margulies) — an plot that burned bright for two seasons before the twosome got together only to break up 10 episodes later. "The important thing is that the two characters are still very connected and bonded and that will continue to increase, regardless of what happens in that relationship," Charles says. "It is there, but I enjoy getting to play other scenes."
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So, how will Will stay involved in the story? He may try to help the firm from afar, but Will is equally eager to show Diane (Christine Baranski) and company that six months away from the courtroom won't destroy him. "There's some very clear and then some not-so-clear rules as to what one can and can't do under this sort of 'suspension,'" Charles says. "The competitive nature [in] him comes up and he wants to prove them wrong. Also, it makes him reflect a little bit."
In fact, this time away might even make him a better man. "He knew that he had done wrong and wanted to own up to that and there is something very grown up about that," Charles says. "It says a lot about how the character is growing."
Just don't expect to see Will return to work a completely new person."It's less about particularly changing him and more about the overreaching arc of the story of the show and how he fits into the rest of the series," Charles says. "[Will's] a character that needed to have to face the consequences of his actions. ... Will is just a morally ambiguous, ethical tight rope-walker and that makes him neither bad nor good, nor slimy, nor squeaky clean."
The Good Wife airs Sundays at 9/8c on CBS.