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March 24, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

In response to an avalanche of shocked audience comments about the murder of Will Gardner, a principal character, played by Josh Charles, on CBS’s The Good Wife Sunday night, the creators/producers of the series have issued a statement explaining why they decided to kill him off. Robert and Michelle King said that when Charles informed them a year ago that he wanted to leave (his decision and the death of his character, the Associated Press reported, “had been well-guarded secrets”), they were faced with several choices, much of them having to do with the character’s relationship with the main female character, Alicia Florrick, played by Julianna Margulies. Death, they decided, would propel Alicia into a new “incarnation.” Moreover, they said, it would create “a new dramatic ‘hub’ for the show.” In past seasons, they observed, they have tried to create an even around the midway point that would “spin everybody’s lives in new directions. “These turning points keep the show from slipping into a numbing sameness, and keep the characters fresh: because you see how they react to a completely new status quo.” Finally, the Kings thanked the audience for “inspiring us to rise to the level of your passion and intelligence.” They noted that seven more episodes will compete the season and that Josh Charles will be directing one of them. It remains to be seen how the plot twist will play out in the ratings. On Twitter some fans of the series reacted angrily. Tim Molloy of TheWrap.com commented that the death of a major character “usurps the traditional broadcast TV model, in which shows try to keep shows from changing too much, for the sake of stability and syndication.” But Brian Lowry observed in Variety that the surprise episode “reinforced the sense of The Good Wife as an outlier on CBS — a series so niftily written and acted, and so deftly mixing comedy with its drama, as to avoid all the procedural cliches that characterize most of the network’s drama lineup.”