Suits: Sucker Punch
Sucker Punch starts off with a bang, quite literally, when Harvey (Gabriel Macht) throws his fist right into Travis Tanner’s (Eric Close) pretty little face. Discussing the fraud case had somehow turned into Tanner bringing up mommy and daddy issues with Harvey, and obviously, it didn’t go over well for either of them. The only settlement Tanner is willing to offer the firm requires Harvey being disbarred, but Jessica (Gina Torres) won’t let that happen. Looks like the case is going to court.
In order to prepare for the case, Daniel (David Costabile) suggests an office trial, which Harvey insists is a grownup version of a mock trial, but for all intents and purposes, it’s definitely a mock trial. They need someone to play Tanner that hates Harvey as much as Tanner does, so it’s no surprise when Harvey approaches Louis (Rick Hoffman) about the gig. Louis, of course, says yes because even though he insists on hating Harvey, he always does what the man tells him to do.
Everything is falling into place for the mock trial except for one crucial piece in the form of Harvey’s ex-assistant, Donna (Sarah Rafferty.) Even Mike (Patrick J. Adams) is on board to help out Louis, and since they’re on opposite sides for the mock trial, Harvey insists that he and Mike can’t speak to each other right now. Good luck with that, boys.
For the real trial coming up, Harvey enlists the help of an old Pearson Hardman lawyer, Zoe (played by Macht’s real-life wife, Jacinda Barrett.) There’s clearly some playful tension between the two, and it’s revealed that he tried to hook up with her once. He says it was the other way around, but it turns into a game of he said/she said. While Harvey is busy flirting with Zoe, Mike and Louis are working together to prepare the case against him at the mock trial.
Finally, we get the return of Donna. Harvey finds her, but it doesn’t go as well as he probably hoped it would. She’s clearly really hurt by the whole thing. She points out that he fought for Mike when Mike was in hot water, but he didn’t fight for her. Not only did he not fight for her, but he also wasn’t the one to fire her to her face. Can we really blame her for feeling this way? It’s pretty accurate. The surprising part is that she refuses to help him in the trial. She got her own attorney, and she’ll be pleading the fifth for every question asked of her. That means that Harvey is screwed.
The mock trial begins. The teams are Louis and Mike versus Jessica and Harvey. They’re trying to prove two things. One: to see if it’s possible to make a strong case defending Harvey against the fraud allegations. Two: to make the partners of the firm see that Harvey actually has a soul and is worth defending. During a trial break, Mike finds Donna and tries to get her to come in. She still says no, but we all know she’s going to. She’s hurt, but she’s not heartless. Harvey is her friend. Maybe more.
After the mock trial ends for the day, Harvey and Zoe go out to dinner together. More details of their past are shared, and she tells him she broke up with him because she wasn’t sure how he felt about her. She’s right when she tells him he doesn’t show emotion. If he doesn’t show emotion at the trial, the jury and the partners aren’t going to want to protect him.
The next day, the mock trial is back on, and lo and behold, Donna shows up. Everyone is shocked except for Mike. She does exactly what she warned she was going to do by pleading the fifth and refusing to answer the questions Louis is asking her. Louis takes it a step farther and asks her questions she can’t refuse to answer. He badgers her into a corner until he finally asks her if she loves Harvey. Imagine the shock and awe as that question rings through the air. It’s a really sad and humiliating moment for Donna, but Louis keeps it going. He keeps shouting at her, keeps pressing her for an answer. He even brings up an ex-boyfriend that broke up with her because she chose Harvey over him.
This doesn’t sit well with anyone. Donna storms out, and Harvey tries to chase her. The moment slips away because she beats him to the elevator before he can stop her. Harvey’s angry, and he follows Louis to confront him. Louis looks a little worse for wear, and when he finally fights back, it’s powerful. It might even be the most powerful moment in the whole season thus far. For that, here’s the excerpt: “You think this is about beating you? This whole thing is about saving you. Everyone is trying to help you because you screwed up. This is all your fault. And what just happened to that beautiful woman in there… that’s on you. Not me.” Louis Litt has never seemed more human than in this moment. If you don’t watch anything else in this episode, at least go watch that one scene.
Meanwhile, Mike starts digging through old cases involving Tanner so he can find some dirt to use as leverage. Daniel sees what Mike is up to, and he offers to help. Mike is trying to protect Harvey and to make sure he doesn’t get disbarred, but who knows what Daniel wants? Maybe he wants the same thing.
The mock trial continues as Jessica proves to the partners that Harvey really isn’t heartless. He just thinks feelings make you weak, which really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone watching. The last witness called to testify at the mock trial is Louis. He admits that he hates Harvey and resents him, which also shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone watching. However, he also thinks Harvey deserves his senior partner title, and he doesn’t think Harvey committed fraud. Louis can be a pain, but you really have to love him.
After Mike and Daniel do some digging to find something to use against Tanner, it finally happens. Daniel finds something, but he won’t tell anyone what it is. Regardless, Tanner cuts a new deal so Harvey can keep his job. Harvey and Jessica aren’t on board, and they still want to go to trial. This doesn’t fly with Mike, and he essentially tells Harvey that if he doesn’t take the deal, then Mike will no longer look up to him. This has an impact on Harvey because when it comes down to a vote, Harvey goes against Jessica and votes to settle.
All is well. Or so we think. Here’s the kicker. After the partners vote to settle in the fraud case, Daniel brings up a new vote. According to him, Jessica isn’t capable of being the managing partner anymore. Either Jessica can retain her title, or Daniel can assume control. Uh oh. Looks like Harvey and Jessica were right not to trust him.
Next week: It’s the flashback episode set five years prior. See how different things were at the firm and also with Mike’s life of crime.