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The Good Wife is starting to lose some of its key players. After Josh Charles left the CBS series in a shocking move towards the end of last season, the show managed to maintain most of the rest of its lineup heading into Season 6. However, on Wednesday, it was revealed Good Wife favorite Archie Panjabi, who plays Kalinda on the hit series, will be leaving at the end of the season.
Panjabi has been with the series since the beginning as Kalinda, a calculated investigator working for law firms to help them get the dirt on important court cases. The character is one of the most interesting on The Good Wife, both for her knack of getting to information and her bravery when dealing with very scary people on the series. She has also had one of the more exciting personal stories on the series, especially when her sexuality and past have been addressed on the drama. She’s a bit of an enigma but a charmer, and her character is so impressive on the small screen that Panjabi has taken home an Emmy for the role.
Unfortunately for fans of The Good Wife, all of the positive buzz surrounding the actress is leading to her success beyond the CBS series. According to THR, Panjabi has signed a development deal with Twentieth Century Fox which will allow her to star in a drama pilot that the studio hopes to get underway when spring rolls around. We don’t know much about the drama, yet, only that it will take Panjabi away from the critically acclaimed The Good Wife on Sunday nights.
A few spoilers come up concerning The Good Wife in the next few paragaphs, so stop reading if you aren’t caught up!
Luckily, the CBS drama has been angling the character for an exit for sometime. Kalinda was bugging Will Gardner (Charles) quite frequently about leaving last season, and now that Diane Lockhart and a few of the other characters have switched from LG to Cary and Alicia’s firm, she and Robyn are competing for screen time again—which is a shame for a character who used to be a lead. I have no doubt the writers on the show will find an easy way to write Kalinda out of the series, and I get the feeling it will have to do with her dissatisfaction with the job, especially regarding the troubling issues she has dealt with recently with Lemond Bishop and the problems she keeps running into with Alicia.
Since Panjabi’s exit has been announced well before the end of the season, it will doubtless be less jarring than the exit of Josh Charles, who was killed off in a horrifying courtroom killing spree during an episode that aired just last spring. While fans will certainly miss the character, the show is chock full of intricate characters and storylines and will probably only miss her a tad once she leaves. May she head off into the sunset with bigger endeavors on the horizon.
While Panjabi's decision to leave is definitely the right move for the actress as well as the series, we should still keep our fingers crossed that some of the show’s other best and brightest don’t sign on for contracts, elsewhere. The Good Wife has continually been renewed thanks to its reputation as one of the finest written and produced programs on network television rather than its high ratings, and I don’t know how long the lawyer drama will be able to maintain that reputation if its biggest names keep leaving.