Sushi for Twelve, $482 plus delivery f Suits - Coral Gables - Review: "Using Your Pass the Butter Voice"

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Suits - Coral Gables - Review: "Using Your Pass the Butter Voice"



Mistakes are made. Some of those mistakes are made by characters. Some are made behind the scenes on this episode.


The big mistake of the hour surprisingly comes from Samantha. After Robert and Alex bonded over wine barrels last week, Samantha wants to give Robert a little present to remind him she's still top dog. We now know what kind of gift giver Samantha is. She will track down on Ebay that rare figurine to complete your collection, bid on a hundred listings until she wins one, pay for overnight shipping, and wrap it up with a giant painstakingly handcrafted bow on top. When you gush about the gift, Samantha will just shrug and say she happened upon it at a yard sale and thankfully had just enough spare change in her pocket to buy it. The gift she wants to get Robert is one of their clients they were unable to bring over from their old firm. She informs Eric Kaldor that she is going to sue one of his clients if he doesn't release them from their contract with his firm. This is possible due to handy bit of legislation called the False Claims Act, rooted in legal tradition that dates back to the days of Robert the Bruce.

(Mini Law School 101 excerpt: Under the False Claims Act, better known as "The Lincoln Law", any attorney can bring suit against a company that has defrauded the United States government. The federal government doesn't have the resources to chase down everyone who cheats them out of money, so they permit unaffiliated attorneys to do so. These attorneys get a cut of any damages recovered.)


It's a smart idea. However, Harvey cautions Samantha against drawing first blood in those shark-infested waters. Kaldor is bitter over losing half the firm's clients when Zane and the other attorneys defected to Specter Litt. He decides to put up a fight. And for once Samantha is caught unprepared. Kaldor tells the judge considering the lawsuit that Samantha once worked for the client she's suing, which means she can't bring suit against them. His evidence of this is 2 hours on a billing sheet from 7 years ago that it shows she billed to that client. Samantha is aghast but slightly flustered. She points out that most likely someone just had her make copies for the client or do another trivial task. It doesn't matter, however, because the judge rules she can't file the suit.


Samantha has to admit to Harvey he was right and ask for his help getting the client now. That is a big piece of humble pie. Harvey takes the news well, setting time aside to hash the case out with her over pizza. He jokes that it was her plan all along to recruit him so he would be personally invested in her success. When the details are fine tuned, Harvey strolls into Kaldor's office to lay down some Specter truth. He is going to bring the suit now, and it won't be pretty. So Kaldor better hop on the phone to tell the client they are now represented by Harvey Specter.

Kaldor doesn't yield. In fact, he digs deep into the archives and finds information that could destroy Samantha's career. He calmly reveals his findings, asking only that Samantha give him one of her clients instead and never step foot near any of his again. What is this damning discovery? Samantha once buried evidence in a murder investigation. Remember her line to Alex earlier this season about having to hide a body? It wasn't exactly a figure of speech. She believed her client, a troubled young woman, was innocent. She still does and doesn't regret the risks she took protecting her. The only hitch was that someone else knew what Samantha did. Betty Palmer (such a great snitch name) threatened to reveal the truth back then, so Robert let her go and Samantha got her a new job in Coral Gables, Florida. Well, now years later, Betty hates Florida and is more than willing to help Kaldor if he brings her back. Harvey is not thrilled with this. This could be extremely damaging to the entire firm, not just Robert and Samantha. He gives Samantha an ultimatum.

"Give them your client, do it now, or I will hand you in for burying evidence myself."



Harvey and Samantha's growing friendship has been a highlight of the season so far. It's rare to see a man and woman work together on TV without romantic undertones blaring or flirt guns firing. With Harvey and Samantha, it's a more natural vibe. They bicker like siblings and respect each other's game. And they are embarrassed when they let the other one down. Samantha told Donna in "Pecking Order" that she just wanted everyone to understand she was on their team now and would put the firm's interests first. Samantha has to choose between continuing to fight Kaldor, a fight she could win but could also incur heavy casualties, or giving up one of her biggest clients, a move that will weaken her standing both inside and outside Zane Specter Litt. She chooses to give up the client. But not without a hitch. She gives the client to Betty Palmer and insists that Kaldor make Betty senior partner. Kaldor has already signed Betty back onto the firm, but Betty hasn't completely discarded her old friendship with Samantha.
"You don't know what giving up this client will cost me, but Betty does. And I'm sure she'll have no problem digging around in your archives to find the original billing sheet."

Kaldor would be disbarred if they found proof that he falsified billing records, something he almost certainly did. Samantha's conscience can now rest easy. Harvey expresses his appreciation, empathizing and sharing that he didn't think he could lose until Mike went to prison. The situation, though, has brought them closer. They have more and more in common.

Louis and Sheila's quest to become parents has produced some impactful bittersweet moments this season, with Rick Hoffman and Rachael Harris turning in amazing performances. But this week's twist in that saga was almost laughable. If I hadn't cringed, I would have laughed. The fertility specialist they visited turned out to be Louis's high school bully, prompting stilted flashbacks to the miserable days of yesteryear. Louis wrestled with whether or not he should reveal the backstory to Sheila. He eventually did and made peace with it. It made me wince, because the whole thing was just a bit too much. By the time Louis took a mental trip to reconnect with his teen self for an awkward conversation that had no emotional weight, I was praying for it to be over. It did end eventually, as you can surmise by my still being alive to write this review.



The biggest consequence of Louis's story this week was because he took a day off for an appointment. Alex needed his signature on a deal they were working on between a company and a potential distributor, so Gretchen assured Alex she would get the document to Louis via courier to be signed. She would then send it to its final destination. That was her intention, but it wound up at the bottom of a stack of folders for Donna instead. (A classic twist that is a tiny bit irritating) The distributor said they didn't get it, prompting a frantic investigation by Gretchen. Once she learned that it never got mailed, she tried to make it right by invoking the Secretary Code. This is something I have witnessed firsthand in workplace environments dominated by an older generation. Secretaries have each other's backs. They have their own network, and they trade favors, to be used if someone makes a mistake or needs help. Gretchen tries to cash in a favor she had with the distributor's main secretary. However, that person has retired. The new girl isn't about to honor the system or anything else for that matter.

"Why don't you not screw up in the first place?" She snaps with a sniff.

Gretchen reels as if she's been slapped. She basically has been. There is nothing she can do to fix the situation for Alex or his client. She is devastated, but Donna reassures her that this isn't something that will be held against her. The client tells Alex the person who made the mistake should be fired, but he won't be doing that. The situation is a reminder of the ripple effects that small decisions or mistakes can have on the firm. And a reminder that teamwork and loyalty is the only way to navigate change and the unexpected.

This wasn't the best episode this season or anywhere close to it. It didn't transition as well among different stories as most entries this season have. Katrina was missing again. (Has a series regular ever been more absent?) Donna gave out tidbits of advice and consolation, and that felt disappointing after the wonderfully intense and meaty role she played last week. The same applies to Alex. He was back to being frustrated and frowning at someone. And Louis's story was enough to land me on Dr. Lipschitz's couch clutching a pillow to shield myself. Still, the vast majority of episodes this season have been better than this one. This just might be the inevitable low point.

Side notes: I do want to see Harvey and Samantha in the ring. Also, this episode again hinted at some past event that cemented Samantha's loyalty to Robert. She didn't want to discuss it with Harvey. It may or may not be what she talked to Louis about in the "Mugging Episode The Show and I Are Pretending Didn't Happen". But I'm not sure it's that simple. To be determined.

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