‘The Good Fight’ Team Talks Roy Cohn Inspiration, Singing Prince in Season 3

Robert King and Michelle KingCBS 'The Good Fight' TV show panel, TCA Winter Press Tour, Los Angeles, USA - 30 Jan 2019
David Buchan/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

The third season of CBS All Access drama “The Good Fight” is set to premiere in March, on the backdrop of a still-fraught and potentially changing political landscape. The show changed course from its original intention after Donald Trump won the election and its lead character Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski) was not able to work in a world where “there were no more glass ceilings,” and those behind it say they can adjust again if the political climate requires it.

“I think everyone will cheerfully rewrite if we’re in a different point,” co-creator Michelle King said at the CBS All Access Television Critics Assn. press tour panel for the drama Wednesday. “The show has become far more political than we anticipated because the world changed.”

Co-creator Robert King added that they do have “a few backup plans” if the world changes drastically between now and when the third season streams, and they do include reshooting a few pivotal scenes, if need be. After all, this season is based on what Donald Trump said at the end of the second season, that it was the “calm before the storm.”

“This season is about finding out what that storm is,” Robert King said. “It involves…the guardrails coming off our institutions and what do you do in those circumstances? … What does a resistance look like given those circumstances?”

Michael Sheen has joined the cast for the third season as Roland Blum, a character who was inspired by the Roy Cohns and Roger Stones of the world, said Robert King.

“He’s a lawyer [for whom] liberal, conservative doesn’t matter. What matters is winning and how you get ahead. He’s a devil, a satan within our law firm…trying to get people to embrace their id,” he said.

The third season will also continue conversations about the racial biases within the fictional law firm that have come up in the first two seasons. A pivotal episode will see a sociologist come into the firm with an exercise designed to show the lawyers how much they may have in common.

Series star Audra McDonald shared that at first in the exercise it’s about taking a step away from each other if you agree with a statement, and the characters are “as far away as can be.” But then she begins to name things that “we might be interested in or could bring us together” and if characters do like it, they take a step closer to each other. Prince comes up, and “Diane steps forward and that shocks the hell out of Liz because Liz thinks, ‘How could Diane possibly be a Prince fan?'” McDonald said.

But it leads to a moment of bonding that includes the two women singing “Raspberry Beret.”

Additionally, Sheen will sing “I’ll Be There” by the Jackson 5 in the third season. The idea was not to go full musical, but to incorporate music more into the show the way people often do in their daily lives. Robert King acknowledged that is not common on television shows, given that every time you use a song “you have to pay something like $25,000,” but they wanted to lean into it a little bit more as a stylized element.

Additionally each episode of the third season will feature character soliloquies “in a Shakespearean fashion talking about what’s in [their] heads,” Robert King revealed, and they will also include cartoons in the “Schoolhouse Rocks” style to explain “something like Russian troll farms or NDAs or Roy Cohn” to a new generation.

Watch the trailer for the third season of “The Good Fight” below:

“The Good Fight” Season 3 premieres Mar. 14 on CBS All Access.