Turns out Jessica holds "morning meetings" too.
On Suits' season premiere last week (watch it here), Jessica (Gina Torres) was revealed to be in a secret relationship with SEC prosecutor-turned-Pearson Specter employee Jeff Malone (D.B. Woodside). And if you ask Torres, it's been a long time coming.
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"It's about time!" she tells TVGuide.com. "I've been waiting patiently for four seasons. [Creator Aaron Korsh and I] had been talking about a love interest for Jessica for a couple of seasons. It was really important that when that happened that it be the right guy, a guy who's worthy of Jessica. You wait so long to see something happen. Whenever I did an interview, every time I discussed her life, people who had been watching — so little was known about Jessica, but they did know that whoever steps to her has definitely got to be a formidable person."
Malone is definitely that. Assigned to investigate Pearson Specter on behalf of U.S. Attorney Eric Woodall, Malone leveraged it into a gig at Pearson Specter to spend more time with Jessica. She agreed, but only if they stop seeing each other.
Folding Malone into the firm was the only logical way to approach this love affair, according to Korsh. "It wouldn't work as well for us if he wasn't part of our world," he says. "This way, like we have with all our characters, we'll see her personal life through her professional life."
With Mike (Patrick J. Adams) gone from the firm, Louis (Rick Hoffman) and Sheila (Rachael Harris) broken up, Donna (Sarah Rafferty) still single, and Harvey (Gabriel Macht) letting Scottie (Abigail Spencer) go last season, Jessica and Malone will be the sole intra-firm couple. It's also one that, Torres believes, has yet to be portrayed on the show.
"It's also exciting because it's not a story line we've seen yet. With Mike and Rachel [Meghan Markle], it's a young, hot puppy love," she says. "With Sheila and Louis, it was an adult love, but there was so much humor and quirkiness. With Harvey and Scottie, he was figuring out how to be in a relationship. Here's an opportunity to see a different kind of love story that is very much planted in an adult world. What is it going to be like for them to work together? I'm very curious to see that myself. We are just finishing up our fifth episode and he's still around."
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Suffice it to say, Jessica's wish not to mix business with pleasure will be easier said than done. She has, after all, been divorced, which will have her second-guessing herself. "She doesn't want to make that mistake again. I don't think the audience is the only one who's been waiting for her to date," Torres says. "The insight that you do get into her, you realize that she has sacrificed a lot of things for her career. All these things have fallen to the wayside because of her commitment to her job. There's always an opportunity to reshuffle the deck and see, 'Where am I now? Are the choices I made 10 years ago true?' Here's an opportunity to explore that."
Things will only be more complicated, though, once Woodall inevitably replaces Malone to go after the firm again, which will put a strain on the duo — and perhaps even Pearson Specter.
"They are also working on repairing and protecting their firm, not just what their relationship is, so it's, what's more important?" Torres says. "We know the firm is important to Jessica, but now is she willing to put something else before it? And if she does, what will that mean for the firm? The first three seasons, we saw her do things to survive. I want to say that she has a different approach."
But no matter what happens work-wise, the actress hopes that the couple is built to last.
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"I hope they last! Maybe that's just me, Gina Torres, talking because I love a good love story. It's time she got a love story," she says. "That doesn't mean we won't have conflict. We're not afraid of this love story. It's also 'be careful what you ask for.' I think he's gonna see a side of her that he wasn't expecting and they're going to have to figure out what that means. I think, quite frankly, Jessica is an expert at relationships. If she can put up with Harvey and Louis and find places in her heart for Mike Ross, why wouldn't she find room in her life for Jeff if this is the type of thing that she wants and believes in?"
Suits airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on USA.