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‘The Good Wife’ Creators: That Wasn’t Will’s Ghost in Series Finale

Who you gonna call? The Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King spoke to Entertainment Weekly in an interview published on Monday, May 9, to dismiss an apparent misconception about Josh Charles‘ shocking appearance in the CBS drama’s May 8 series finale.

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Charles played attorney Will Gardner on the Emmy-winning legal series from the September 2009 pilot until his character was shot and killed by a client in the courtroom in a season 5 episode that aired in March 2014. The death stunned fans, as many had hoped he and Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies) would ultimately end up together, given their chemistry and romantic history.

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In the series finale, Will appeared in multiple scenes, with Alicia even telling him tearfully that she would always love him. Some viewers were confused by these moments, but as Robert and Michelle explained to EW, Will’s presence was not actually an apparition.

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“In our minds, it wasn’t a ghost,” Michelle said. “It was a fantasy in some sequences, and in others, a memory. You weren’t really meant to believe that Will Gardner’s ghost came back.”

Josh Charles as Will Gardner and Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick on The Good Wife
Josh Charles as Will Gardner and Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick on ‘The Good Wife.’

Robert added that the producers had remained in contact with Charles and had always hoped to work with him again. Ultimately, the show’s team decided to make Will one of three guys — along with Jason (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Peter Florrick (Chris Noth) — who Alicia would imagine herself seeing face to face as she tried to envision her future.

“The writers’ room had this idea of Alicia returning home three times to each of the guys — and the last one, which would be a surprise, would be Will Gardner,” Robert said. “It was a very cinematic way to tell a story without any words, and it would all be to music. That was a pitch with Josh — and also that he would help Alicia change her thinking.”

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