How The Good Wife Was Supposed To End, According To The Showrunners

the good wife finale

For several years, The Good Wife was one of the most creative and well-written programs on television. Then, last spring it went out with more of a whimper than a bang. Well, more accurately, it went out on the slap heard 'round the world, leading to dissenting opinions on the show's ending. However, this week, The Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King actually revealed that the ending we got was not the original ending to the series. In fact, it's The Walking Dead's fault that The Good Wife ended the way it did. Inadvertently, of course.

At a Q&A in New York this week, showrunner Robert King revealed that originally The Good Wife was not supposed to end with Diane Lockheart slapping Alicia Florrick in the face. Instead, Alicia Florrick was supposed to get her happy ending, an ending that was supposed to come thanks to Jason Crouse, who just so happened to be played by Walking Dead actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan. However, by the time the team had crafted the preferred Good Wife ending, Jeffrey Dean Morgan was already contracted by and filming on The Walking Dead. Since The Walking Dead films in Atlanta and is a long process, he was unable to make it back to shoot a happy ending for the character. So, the show pivoted.

Honestly, Alicia had a revolving door of suitors following Will Gardner's death on The Good Wife. If one of those had stuck around for a few seasons, perhaps we could have bought into the love affair as deeply as we bought into the one between Alicia and Will through its ups and downs... and there were definitely downs, considering Alicia's frequent choice to reunite with Peter, etc. But Josh Charles opted to leave the series, and when that happened, even guest stints from major names Matthew Goode, Steven Pasquale and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who all acted as potential suitors or actual suitors for Alicia, never stuck quite as well.

Because of this, Robert King said (via Variety) that having Alicia officially end up with Jason at the end could have been "too much of a cop-out," so maybe it's actually a blessing that Alicia didn't go out that way.

Still, the final row between Alicia and Diane was unexpected, as Diane is not a woman who frequently lets her emotions show. Previously Robert and Michelle King had explained why they ended the show the way they chose to noting:

The ending is supposed to be unsettling. But we don't think characters need to avoid tragedy to be embraced. We were tempted to have Alicia chase after a man in the end --- stop him from getting on a train or an airplane at the last minute, hold him, kiss him. We like those endings. But there was something false about it here.

That's a nice quote, but now it also looks that scheduling may have come into play. If you didn't like the ending, you may get some sort of closure soon. CBS has a Good Wife spinoff called Good Fight currently in the works at CBS All Access that is set to heavily follow Diane Lockhart and other characters from the original series. As for Alicia, maybe we'll hear about what the character is up to in another way? To find out more about Good Fight, head here. To find out more about what TV has coming up, check out our midseason TV premiere schedule.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.