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"Suits" Review/Recap: “Know When To Hold ‘Em”

Marissa Tandon ’17 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Patrick J. Adams and Gabriel Macht in the Suits episode "Know When To Hold 'Em." Photo Credit: Shane Mahood/USA Network.
Patrick J. Adams and Gabriel Macht in the Suits episode “Know When To Hold ‘Em.” Photo Credit: Shane Mahood/USA Network.

The penultimate episode of this season of Suits brought to a head many of the issues that have been bouncing around the firm this season.

Mike Ross’ (Patrick J. Adams) illegitimate and fraudulent beginnings have been a huge point of focus for this episode arc. While the fear of being caught has always been a factor for the show, this season has finally brought to light the fact that it halts Mike’s upward mobility in the firm. Last episode a client offered him a way out: a job as an investment banker. Since this profession doesn’t have the same restrictions as a lawyer, the job offer comes with the opportunity to start fresh and reach the full heights of his career.

We all know Mike isn’t leaving the firm – Suits has already been renewed for a fourth season, and Mike’s departure from Pearson Specter would essentially end the show – but the writers tried valiantly to make viewers believe that he could be in this episode. Using the possible move they delved deeper into the character’s relationships and their fears. Mike’s girlfriend, Rachel Zane (Meghan Markle), spends most of the episode refusing to put in her two cents. One of the biggest hindrances to their relationship actually coming to fruition was Mike’s secret, so understandably Rachel does not want to give her opinion immediately: that Mike should take the job, leaving the firm and his career as a lawyer, because it is the safer option.

Patrick J. Adams in the Suits episode "Know When To Hold 'Em." Photo Credit: Shane Mahood/USA Network.
Patrick J. Adams in the Suits episode “Know When To Hold ‘Em.” Photo Credit: Shane Mahood/USA Network.

The potential move not only highlighted worries for Mike and Rachel, but for Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht) and college-foe-turned-girlfriend Dana Scott (Abigail Spencer). Since the second arc of the season started out with their relationship officially becoming committed, they’ve been nothing but a source of tension for the show. Scottie seems unable to move past her collegiate conceptions of Harvey Specter, playboy extraordinaire, and doesn’t seem to be able to keep work and Harvey’s position as her boss separate from their romantic relationship. She continues to push for answers on every tiny move Harvey makes, and Mike’s secret hangs heavy between them, stirring up arguments and tension at every interaction. When Harvey decides that he wants to tell Scottie the truth–at the tail end of a depressing brooding session in his office–Donna Paulsen (Sarah Rafferty) the biggest (and only) champion for the Harvey/Scottie relationship points out what has been clear the whole time: Scottie is constantly looking for a reason to fight with Harvey, and that doesn’t look like it’s going to change any time soon.

Before we have time to mourn the soon-to-be-over relationship, Mike sweeps into the office, pulling a last minute announcement that he has officially committed more fraud so that he can remain a part of the Pearson Specter firm and the Specter Ross dream team. The decision goes against Harvey’s advice, but clearly not his wishes. The decision to stay will keep the same problems that the show has hinged on since the beginning, but it also stays true to Mike’s character in an interesting way. He is clearly taking a page from his mentor’s book, choosing to gamble when he should know when to fold ‘em, but with the decision we’re reminded that Mike wants to be a lawyer for the moral reasons, not the monetary ones.

While he does have clear desires to move up in rank, Mike is chasing the dream he has had since his parents were killed when he was a kid, and this season really cements that idea. Allowing Mike the chance to take down the lawyer who cheated his grandmother during their grief a few episodes back, and now to consciously make the decision to stay when he has a better offer on the table, not only says a lot about his relationship with Harvey and everyone else at the firm, but cements his own reasons for being a lawyer.

Overall Episode Grade: A-

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