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Suits - Hard Truths and Bad Man - Double Review: "How You Treated Me"

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Sorry for the delay on these, but you're getting a double review today!

Episode 11 - Hard Truths

Let's jump right in: Harvey is standing in his office, still frozen from Donna's unexpected kiss. As he leaves the office, Louis intercepts him to inform him that Jessica is definitely, 100% getting disbarred, and there's nothing they can do about it. Harvey stares dramatically at him and stalks off. I think the fact that Harvey isn't shouting at everyone around him right now really displays how shaken he is.

His girlfriend Paula - remember, his former therapist? - is waiting for him in his stunningly gorgeous Manhattan high-rise apartment. Every time I watch this show I have to pause and go down a blackhole of fantasy Manhattan apartment internet searches.

Like any man in a TV show who's just been faced with the real possibility of another woman being interested in him, Harvey immediately raises the stakes with his current gal pal: He proposes they move in together. Bad Idea Jeans, right there. Fortunately, Paula hasn't forgotten everything she learned as his therapist and suggests that's a bit too fast.

The next day, Alex gives Mike one of his clients in thanks for getting him out of that whole messy situation a few episodes ago. The client is Quality Foods, a Fortune 500 company that has been having problems with its distributor.

Meanwhile, Harvey's still worked up, so when he arrives in his office to see Donna waiting for him, he jumps on the chance to yell at her. "I don't need an explanation, I just need you to say what you did is never gonna happen again," he demands. She complies and then he essentially kicks her out of the office. He needs to solve the Jessica issue and Donna suggests hiring new senior partner, which Harvey informs her is a "name partner conversation." I cannot stress how absolutely awful he's being to her.

In the filing room, Mike and Rachel mix a little flirting with a little filing, and they bemoan the fact that they're too busy to work together. Something tells me they'll have a case they work together by the end of the episode.

During all of the, Louis is working an angle of saving Jessica, but he must first delay the announcement of her disbarment. His way to do this is to put pressure on someone who could do just that. By inquiring about the man's wife and kids, and threatening that he'll expose his infidelity if he doesn't get what he wants... I swear, these people never learn any lessons, ever. THIS SORT OF THING IS WHY YOU'RE IN TROUBLE IN THE FIRST PLACE.

At the office, Mike discovers that Harvey told Alex to give him the Quality Foods case to distract him from the Jessica problem. "I'm not gonna give you a fairy tale that it wasn't your fault, because it was. But it's also mine." Well, there you go.

Harvey goes to visit former firm owner Stanley - one of the guys Jessica took the firm from - on his boat. His strategy of saving Jessica is to restructure the firm, and he needs Stanley's signature to make that happen. The guy's not about giving favors for nothing, so he tells Harvey a tale about a group who took some money he donated and used it for a different cause. If Harvey can fix the situation, he'll sign the dotted line.

It takes a grand total of 30 seconds for Harvey to meet with the woman who took Stanley's money and lawyer his way into getting her to resolve the grievance. Boom. Lawyered.

In the Quality Food case, Mike discovers there's been a repeated issue with food spoiling during distribution. He wants the distributors to settle for $90 million, but they won't budge over $30 million. "If Alex Williams was here, he'd take the $30 million, because he'd understand that this long term relationship isn't worth shattering," they argue. Time to go to court.

When Alex checks in on Mike regarding the case, he's not thrilled with the way things are progressing, which prompts Mike to accuse Alex of not trusting him. Mike says he didn't accept the $30 million because he thinks something else is going on they don't know yet, so Alex yells that if he could, he would pulls Mike off the case "right the hell now."

I think the reason Suits is relying so heavily on the F word this season is because they've realized they've overused "hell" to the point of absurdity.

Time for Donna to chat up Louis, because she knows of a potential senior partner but Harvey specifically said for her not to go after anyone. Louis thinks that's ridiculous and supports her setting up an interview. I honestly don't know if she went to Louis because she wanted his opinion, or if she just wanted Louis' peromission so when this all goes south.

Which it's going to do in 3...2... Oh, look, there's Harvey! "We need to talk," Donna starts, which is always the opening to a great conversation. She tells him they either discuss senior partner or the kiss, so he picks the former. Turns out, Donna's called her candidate in and, surprise! It's interview time! The pair walk into the interview room, guns blazing, and this is not going to go well.

Harvey uses the interview as an excuse to vaguely insult Donna repeatedly, so she starts responding in kind, and honestly, this is one of the better parts of the episode. This whole conversation is a thinly veiled metaphor for Donna and Harvey's relationship, and it all snowballs, so Harvey kicks the interviewee out. It's a train wreck.

Time to actually talk about that kiss.

Harvey yells at her for being selfish for kissing him, while she yells back that he's selfish because she put him above her for years. (Wasn't that the plot of basically the entirety of two seasons?) He's angry she kissed him while he was with someone because now the lines are all blurred, and she not-so-gently reminds him that their lines have ALWAYS been blurred.

This conversation is really juicy and gets to the heart of the Donna/Harvey relationship.

She needed to know for sure, she says. And now she knows. She feels nothing after all.

Wait. WHAT.

And, she continues, if he felt nothing, then he should have no problem telling his girlfriend. It's not his fault, he did nothing wrong.

Harvey balks at this. Maybe he did feel something, but that's not important now. What's important is that he's never told his girlfriend anything significant about his relationship with Donna... Uh-oh. Donna wisely suggests that instead of being furious at her, maybe he should wonder why he hasn't told Paula anything.

"I'm not interested in your advice," Harvey says. "As far as I can tell, your judgement sucks." Well that's a slap of... what, 15 years? of partnership in the face. That's also probably the meanest thing he's ever said to Donna.

As Donna drinks in her office to sooth the burn, Louis stops by to suggest that she just apologize to Harvey. No matter what other issues they have, she did kiss him, knowing he had a girlfriend. And she needs to own that.

Mike's still worked up about this Quality Foods situation, so he seeks Rachel's advice. She calmly suggests that it's unlikely there's more to this case than meets the eye. This ticks him off, because he came to her to be supported, not second-guessed. I... Mike, buddy, I hate to break it to you, but you're about to marry this woman. She is not going to support you blindly for the rest of your life.

Additionally, I think now is a good time to mention that Rachel is the absolute perfect woman.

Speaking of couples arguing, let's check in on Harvey and Paula, where Harvey is sharing the story of Donna's kissed. Despite dating a former client, Paula's not a complete idiot, as she immediately connects the dots that Harvey asked her to move with him the same night this all happened. He doesn't think it's fair that she's angry at him for something Donna did, but that's not what Paula's mad about. "What's far more important to me is how you treated me after she did it," she says. Ooooh, Harvey. Watch out.

Retreating to the one corner of the world he does understand - the law - Harvey goes back to visit Stanley and tell him he resolved everything. Time to sign that paper and resolve the Jessica problem - oh wait, never mind, Stanley's changed his mind. He wants back in the game, calls Jessica a not-nice word that sends Harvey into overdrive, and demands for his name to be put back up on the wall.

At the same time, Louis' adultering contact can't hold the news of Jessica's disbarment, no matter how much Louis threatens him.

Back to my favorite character - Rachel, whom I mentioned before is absolutely perfect. She interrupts Mike, who has decided to take her advice and give up on his idea that there's something more to the distributor case, to say that he was right after all. She did some digging, and they're definitely dirty. The truckers are destroying 20% of the product in order to fill the empty space with a competitor's product at a premium.

Mike and Rachel resolve the situation pretty quickly once they threaten to call the SEC on the distributors. (The security exchange commission, not the southeastern conference. Just wanted to clarify.) He then showers her with compliments, saying they should work together more. (Is this planting the seeds of how they leave the show?)

During all of this is a fun exchange between the couple in which Mike reminds us that he has a photographic memory by reciting everything in their freezer. Which reminds me of something - I've always said "mint chocolate chip" ice-cream my whole life, yet Felicity Smoak and now Mike Ross say "mint chip." I've noticed several other TV characters say "mint chip" instead of "mint chocolate chip." Is this a regional thing? Please share in the comments your opinion on this very important topic.

Having both struck out with their plans to save Jessica, Louis and Harvey reconvene. Realizing Stanley doesn't want money or power, he just wants to drag Jessica down in revenge for her stealing his firm, he suggests they release a public statement that separates them from Jessica, which would tarnish her name. Unsurprisingly, Harvey doesn't go for this plan.

He goes on the roof to think about things and Donna - of course - knows he's there. She apologizes, but he just wants to be left alone. Turns out, the thing that upset her the most about this whole situation was the fact that he said he didn't trust her judgement. I knew that would sting.

After a while, Harvey seeks Donna out to ask her opinion on making Mike senior partner - and to prove that he trusts her judgement. She appreciates the gesture, but Mike's not ready. While he's there, Harvey has something else to say. A thank you for putting him first for years.

The pair hug it out, and I honestly wonder if the writers will tease us with another "will they/won't they" when these two seem to effectively close the book on the possibilities every few episodes, just to pry it back open.

Harvey eventually agrees to the letter putting down Jessica, but he doesn't like it. During the voiceover of the letter - which completely drags Jessica through the mud, by the way, and refers to her time with the company as a "disgraceful chapter," which I think is a harsh thing to say about the first bajillion seasons of your own show when her character was the lead - we see Harvey heading to see Paula. Where he finally confesses his involvement with Donna 12 years ago.

Episode 12 - Bad Man

Time for another montage of Harvey boxing, this time mixed with his conversation with Paula. Oh, so it didn't go well then. She demands space and he doesn't know how to handle that.

Also having trouble handling things is Louis, who's relaxed in his favorite mud bath, listening to recorded audio of Dr. Lipschitz calming him down. His calm is shattered with Sheila shows up to suggest they continue on with their affair once she's married. Yes, that's right, she'll get married, but she wants to keep seeing him. Louis feels far too guilty already to agree to this, but Sheila hands him a burner phone as a way of communicating. I will not mention what she's doing with her hand beneath the mud's surface in this scene.

Now Harvey's in a suit, but still at the boxing gym... You mean to tell me the locker room at that gym is nice enough for him to get all dolled up like that? Think of the hair products he most tote around in his gym bag! And does he bring an iron with him? Or hang his suits in a locker? So many questions. Anyway, Jessica calls him to forgive him, but asks for a teeny, tiny favor: She needs $2 million of her buyout money deposited into an untraceable account. But not for anything illegal, she promises.


Harvey passes this request on to Louis, who rightfully balks. "The reason you do that is to avoid paying taxes, and I don't want to be a party to it." EXACTLY.

But we're just going to ignore that logic and figure out how to get Jessica her money. It turns out, the solution is to get the money directly from a client who's cool with sending their money directly to an untraceable account, so the firm never technically touches it. Donna overhears this conversation and tells Harvey that it's time for him to go see Vic, who's been handing his dad's music.

Meanwhile, Mike's old buddy Oliver is filing a suit against Mike's client. He represents a food bank that relied on donations from food company Hudson Mills, who jacked up their prices beyond what the food bank can afford. He's claiming breach of contract and wants Hudson Mills to lower the cost, and I'm claiming this is DEFINITELY a conflict of interest for Mike. Oliver says all he needs is for them to lower the cost just a little - every little bit helps.

Turns out, Harvey thinks so too, who still doesn't trust Oliver after their last run-in.

Still upset after his encounter with Sheila, Louis has rushed to see Dr. Lipschitz in person, because an audio tape can't solve his problems. His therapist suggests that something happened in Louis' past that made him feel like he isn't worth love. His secretary thinks something's going on too, as she's read between the lines of all his appointments in the next week and has figured out that he's trying to find dirt on Sheila's fiance. She suggests that Louis just tell Sheila how he feels, and then cancels all his meetings. She knows what's up.

Time for a flashback to 1986?!?! Where we see... A YOUNG LOUIS, OH MY GOSH. He's charming his way to his girlfriend's parents' hearts. He is so ridiculous and over the top, and it's actually really accurate to present-day Louis. Also, the actor playing young Louis looks like the kid from Drake & Josh.

Wait, and now we're getting... Another flashback?? This time to 10 years ago, where Harvey is visiting music producer Vic, who is trying to get his dad's music played on radio stations.

Apparently Vic owes Harvey money, but he doesn't have the money to pay him right now, so he asks the lawyer to open up a private tab, just for him, basically saying that if Harvey doesn't, then no one will ever hear his dad's music again. Well, that's dirty.

But, oh, that will help us now, because a private tab is exactly what Harvey needs! Present day Harvey had the same thought, so he goes to visit Vic... Who again says that he doesn't have Harvey's money. Harvey's fed up from carrying this guy for 10 years, so he throws a couple vague threats around. Vic realizes he owes Harvey, so he agrees to sell.

Mike goes to visit Oliver with the proposed settlement of a lowered cost... But Oliver says it's not good enough. You gotta be kidding me, Oliver. This guy is ridiculous. HE JUST SAID... Never mind. He's ready to take Mike to court for this, and Mike is blindsided.

When Rachel visits Mike that evening, he's up to his elbows in research for this case. While he's angry, he says he's a little proud of Oliver for pulling that stunt - it reminds Mike of himself. Rachel says something about kicking wannabe Mike's - ahem - butt, (I cleaned it up to make it sound slightly more... royal,) then jumps in to help.

Louis meets with Shiela, telling her that there's time to call the wedding off so they can be together. She reminds him that they want different things and remains firm on her decision. "I can't be a bad boy, it's not in my nature," Louis says, and gives the burner phone back.

Flashback time to little Louis in gym class - where he is training on the bottom. His sister comes to tell him that his perfect girlfriend, Misty, is actually also dating another guy... NAMED DRAKE. That's funny. Little Louis goes into a full-on Louis meltdown, yelling at his sister, attacking her for saying that, and starts spouting lawyer words at her.

At the office, Mike is maintaining that there was no official contract between his client and Oliver's. But apparently Rachel's research didn't help much, because both she and Mike are surprised when Oliver reveals during their deposition that Hudson Mills ran an ad touting their charitable donations. Which Oliver maintains makes it an official contract. So he expects the food company to honor their original contract with the food bank or he'll see them in court.

Flashback to a party with Little Louis, and it just makes me wish I once, just once, was cool enough to go to a high school party as they are portrayed in movies and TV. My high school "parties" consisted of ordering pizza and watching Dawson's Creek. No black lights or waiting lines for the bathroom in my high school party memories, no sir. Anyway, Little Louis is there to check in on his girlfriend Mitsy... Who confirms that she is in fact dating Drake. But she keeps dating Louis because he's the one her parents find socially acceptable, and he's a great cover.

Cut to present day Louis confessing all this to Dr. Lipschitz. He says they went out 17 more times after that. The therapist understands - Louis wants what he can't have.

Mike and Rachel are chatting at home about the case, and Rachel tells Mike it's time for him to do what he doesn't want to do. He has to come down hard on Oliver with everything he has and not protect him. So Mike visits Oliver and shows him a bill of sale - proof that the food bank sold the Hudson Mill protein packs to other places, which voids the contract. Oliver bucks at this, saying there wasn't an official contract, but Mike pulls the whole "I though you said there was one?" move. Oliver relents, saying he'll accept the offer, but too late. The second and third offers that Mike had presented are now off the table - Oliver has to accept the original offer or no deal.

Then Mike launches into a very Harvey speech in which he teaches Oliver a hard lesson about being 100% there for the client, no matter what's going on personally. Their whole dynamic is very Harvey/Mike, in fact... Is Oliver going to be the new Mike once he leaves the show?

Back at the office, Harvey is having flashbacks to being a kid (man, this episode is all about flashbacks,) and watching his kid play sax. He's mourning the loss of his dad's musical legacy when Donna joins him. She asks for a drink so they can share in the misery, and after initially saying he doesn't think it's a great idea, Harvey eventually pours her a glass and puts on his dad's record.

Later, Mike stops by Harvey's office to say he was right about everything regarding Oliver's case. Harvey, in a truthful mood, tells Mike they talked about making him senior partner, but don't think he's ready yet. Mike essentially shrugs at this. He and Rachel are trying to spend more time together, so he's certainly not going to lose any sleep - or a friend - over this.

Mike heads home, where he is surprised to find Oliver cooking in his kitchen. Rachel invited him over so the friends could make up. RACHEL IS PERFECT. His friend thanks Mike for teaching him an important lesson. "Today was the first time I felt like your equal and I appreciate that more than you know," Oliver says.

The episode ends with a phone call between Jessica and Donna. They chat about how Harvey got Vic to finally sell and have a cute exchange about missing each other.

Harvey goes to Paula's office, but he's not there to apologize, he's there to explain. Donna is "part of my life, and I like her being part of my life." Gee whiz, thanks for finally acknowledging it! They work through things and stay together, but I think this is a rocky reunion.

Back to Little Louis, who is hiding on the football bleachers and listening to a conversation between Misty and Drake as they talk about him. Mostly says that while Louis may be nice, he's not a bad boy, and she likes bad boys. Well, duh. So do all high school girls. And also, I'm sorry. I know teenage years can be rough, but a girl picking the bad boy over you SHOULD NOT DEFINE YOU AT AGE 45.

Adult Louis visits Sheila, grabs her, and immediately starts making out with her on the street. "I'm ready to be your bad boy," he says. Which is just kind of cringeworthy coming out of, again, the mouth of a 45 YEAR OLD MAN.

Louis doesn't look super proud of this decision, and neither does Sheila. But it's happening.

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