The past season has been a rocky one for Will Gardner, the ambitious lawyer and chronic ladies’ man played by Josh Charles on “The Good Wife.” After years of sexual tension, he and longtime friend Alicia (Julianna Margulies) embarked on a steamy romance that quickly flamed out. Then, to make matters worse, Will was subjected to a grand jury investigation for bribery and was eventually forced to accept a six-month suspension. Now, as the series enters its summer hiatus, the firm has lost its biggest client, Alicia looks poised to reconcile with her husband and Will is just barely holding on to his partnership. As he put it in Sunday night’s season finale, “Things fall apart.” Indeed they do. We talked to Charles about Will’s rather tumultuous year, and what the future might hold for his character.
You’ve really gotten to explore your character more this season. Has that been enjoyable for you as an actor?
Any time you get to dig deeper into your character, you welcome it, especially on a TV show. It’s fun to play a character who lives on the edge, who is an ethical and moral mess, and is paying the price for some of his actions. I really thought it was a big year to learn a lot about him. I’m looking forward to him practicing law next year to see how the experience of the past year affects him.
So is Will a changed man?
Knowing [executive producers] Robert and Michelle [King] the way I do, I don’t think anything’s going to be a complete 180 [-degree turn]. I don’t think he’s going to come out a born-again, but I do think that there are elements of him that have changed. It’s difficult for someone like him who’s such a competitive animal, and you get into the world of law, the game of it really taps into his addictive personality. He has learned some things, he has been humbled, but it will be interesting to see how that plays out once he’s returned to the law.