Suits "Normandy" Review: Revenge Is the Best Revenge

By MaryAnn Sleasman

Feb 15, 2013

Suits S02E15: “Normandy”

YOU GUYS, I’m not ready for Season 2 to end. I feel like we just got back into the swing of things and now it’s time to pack it all up just as Hardman finally gets the smackdown he so deliciously deserves. It looks like Mike and Rachel are making their way back to Bonerville, though, so maybe this IS a good time to quit. Harvard fizzled out like a failed science project, so Rachel has returned to being sad and unworthy. I know it would have been too happily-ever-after for Rachel to get into her dream school and the logistics of keeping the Rachel character involved with the firm when she’s supposed to be stressing over finals in Boston would probably have stretched the limits of believability, but ugh, now what? More crying. More self-worth issues. More clinging to Mike for validation and probably sexytimes. It would be too much to ask for her to take Louis up on his offer to writer a letter of recommendation, right?

However, Rachel-related headaches aside, I like the position “Normandy” leaves us in as we head into next week’s finale—Hardman is outdone, but Harvey still isn’t slated to make partner. Not really. Not on his terms. Strapped for cash in the middle of Hardman’s onslaught, Pearson-Hardman teamed up with Dana Scott’s firm to bulk up their resources for a final stand. Unbeknownst to Harvey, that temporary pairing stood to become permanent once Hardman’s name had finally been stripped from the lobby, and when Harvey learned the truth, he wasn’t terribly thrilled with the possible arrangement.

Which begs the question: Is anyone, really? Outside of Dana, who was promised her name on the wall by her boss if the merger went through. And her boss, I guess, given his nifty reward for Dana’s role in everything. Harvey’s displeasure was a given, but I’m stuck on Jessica. Last week, it was all about how Pearson-Whatever is HER firm and SHE’S the boss and it’s HER name on the door, etc. and so forth. Teaming up with Darby provided money when it was desperately needed and a convenient way to reveal Hardman’s embezzlement without breaking the confidentiality agreement. I just kind of have a feeling Jessica was using Darby. What do you think?

For all the references to President Eisenhower’s concentrated efforts on Normandy Beach in 1944—the inspiration for Pearson-Blahblah’s attack on Hardman, and the episode’s namesake—“Normandy” had a disjointed feel to the narrative. With 45 cases in need of attention and seven of them demanding immediate acknowledgement, Pearson-(insert name here) was buzzing like a beehive in mid-summer. Harvey took to the skies with Scottie, attempting to outsmart Hardman by focusing on the least obvious case first (and also having giggly Learjet sex, which I imagine is like banging in the penthouse of the Mile High Club). Back in New York, Mike and Katrina vied for Queen Bee Jessica’s favor and things got nasty. OMG HATE U, KATRINA.

I was questioning that a few weeks ago: To hate or not to hate? I’m firmly on Team Hate. Girl was just obnoxious, and for as ham-fisted as her line about Rachel “just” being a paralegal was, it wasn’t exactly out of character. Gross. I would have rather had Louis’s anal-retentive wunderkind from earlier in this season. At least she was amusing in addition to insufferable.

Despite stealing each others’ ideas all night long, Katrina and Mike managed to cobble together a strong case against Folsom Foods. Surprise! They really are gender-discriminating bastards! They lose. Hardman loses. All is well...

...except not really. Harvey is too pissed off about the impending merger to be happy about, you know, not losing his entire firm to the antichrist of law. Rachel isn’t going to Harvard, so she’s back to relying on Mike for purpose. I’m still having a hard time liking Jessica this season, and I don’t know what to make of Scottie and her firm just benevolently sweeping in to throw money around like confetti. Hardman’s story is apparently resolved, but all is far from quiet on the Western front and yes I know that book is about the first World War, not the second one.

At one point in all of this chaos, my fiance asked, “Does anyone still care that Mike never actually went to Harvard?” (He’s been out of the loop this season.)

To which I replied, “Only during finales.”

Mike hasn’t had a lot of action during this second half of the season. I could be wrong, but I’m assuming a merger opens up the possibility to learn all kinds of dirty little secrets about each side of the union. Harvey is out to ruin the new marriage before the paperwork is even drawn up. Common sense tends to take a backseat to OMG PROTECT MIKE’S SECRET. Idk. I’m just spitballin’ here.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Where do you think next week’s finale will leave us?


– Katrina: “I’m a fifth year.” Mike: “Well I work with Harvey.” Me: “OMG hate u both.”

– Is it over? Is it REALLY over? (Meaning Hardman.)

– I really like Louis. He’s so used to taking one for the team that it’s almost instinctual at this point. He didn’t have shoulder the blame for Rachel’s rejection, but it was sweet of him.

– I’m glad that Rachel wasn’t rejected due to some revenge conspiracy concocted by Sheila to get back at Louis, but it kinda bothers me that this show constantly asks us to suspend disbelief to justify Mike’s place at Pearson-Placeholder, accept that Harvey comes with a similar diamond-in-the-rough backstory, that the firm is staffed by all of these amazingly talented, brilliant people... and yet even though Rachel has kept up with them time and time again she’s juuuuust short of being “good enough.” Always. I’m all for realism on TV, but Rachel’s run-of-the-mill rejection just sends a weird (crappy) message about her place on the show.

– That Meghan Markle PSA should have preceded the episode. It would have been hilarious. For the record, I agree with and support EVERYTHING she said. But still, hilarious. Once you deliberately acknowledge the parallels between the PSA and the episode at hand, you’re in “Very Special Episode” territory, my friend.

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  • SoLiOZuZ Feb 21, 2013

    Rachel will more than likely attend law school in the big apple while working as a paralegal, her screen time might be limited (assuming they stick to the actual law being that law school students cannot work more than 18 hours a week). If that happens, her place in the firms future may be too far off to predict. As for Harvey, he might attempt to ruin their new marriage but he's going to have to put up with it or start a new firm.

    As for Jessica, I think she's probably going to be playing the role of the main antagonist for the rest of the series, I hope at the very least. Odds are hopefully, Mike gets fired, Harvey quits and Louis leaves because he realizes his life is an empty box without Harvey and they start a new firm called Spectre-Litt.

    The writers don't have the sack to pull something like this off but they should definitely think about it.

  • Doctor10 Feb 19, 2013

    I love your reviews, MaryAnn! You really do a great job.
    First off, Louis has really grown on me over the course of Season 2, and the final Louis/Rachel scene was really great.
    Also, like most episodes, I wish there were more Donna scenes!
    I can't believe this season is basically over, it feels like we need at least a few more episodes to wrap everything up. I'll miss you, Suits. Come back soon.

  • youngnan Feb 18, 2013

    I'm pro anybody anti-Mike, so I'm firmly on Team Katrina in this arrangement. Rachel and Mike are the most pampered spoiled children in that firm who believe the world should bow down to please them. Mike has no reason to complain about anything or anyone! He's a zero year! Get a law degree if you want to pull rank on a fifth year in a law firm! And boo hoo, Princess puff Rachel couldn't get into Harvard and must alas settle to one of the lowly lesser universities like every body else! The sky is falling!

    I'm also a founding member of Team Jarvey - Harvey had best get his name on that f--king door in this so called "finale" or else I'll be very upset.

    Really liking Louis... Not sure pandering to princes puff was the right call, because I can see her trying to sue him, (hope not, but girl be bitchy sometimes), but his heart was in the right place.

  • kanniballl Feb 18, 2013

    Well, in his defense...

    A) His biggest meltdown was that case a few weeks ago where he became what he despised... that jerk lawyer that played a family to reduce how much the high/drunk driver had to pay for killing their family members. Because at one point, he WAS that family that got screwed. He hasn't had many besides that, save for a few back-and-forths with Harvey.

    B) Katrina was kind of stealing his ideas and work, which would be bad enough except for then it looked like he didn't DO anything or have anything to SHOW. SO besides profiting from him, HE was getting knocked down by the big-boss. Not cool.

    As for Rachel...

    It is weird. She supposedly nailed the test recently, had good academics, and had an awesome work history at a great firm. And that wasn't enough to get her in... when looking at some of the schmucks that work(ed) at her firm (who were ALL Harvard) it kinds of stinks.

    It reminds me of my friend in High School. I had a higher GPA AND I was taking courses that went towards my future Major (Comp Sci) courses while HE took 3 years of Woodworking to boost (to still below my GPA). He got accepted into a college that I wanted, while I got wait-listed. I was quite "WTF" and wondered what the difference was.

    I later found out that OOPs, my senior advisor forgot to send my application in until way after everyone else's. He was quite apologetic. In any case, I got into a similar school with a full-ride scholarship so I was happy enough and kept THAT one even when I finally got accepted. Still, between points A and B I was upset.

  • youngnan Feb 18, 2013

    I'm kind of on the flipside to that because I got into med without having to even write the essay. Lost a couple of friends because of that, but I earned my spot, just a little differently. In general I like to think that everybody earns their spot one way or the other. But things can be unfair I guess.

    In Rachel's case, I'm really just not all that convinced that she'd get into Havard without her dad calling in a couple favours. I mean, she failed the lsats a couple times, right? And she doesn't have that much experience, she looks quite young at least, so I assume that even if they do take paralegals into havard law, they'd probably take the paralegal who aced the lsats on their first try or the one with serious. You're case is way different to Rachel's. You got screwed and you came back with a scholarship, to me, Louis taking the brunt of it is probably going to be bad for everybody involved, because it'll ruin how she thinks of him and instead of trying to improve herself academically, I think she's just going to blame it wholly on Louis.

    From what I've seen of her, she's the type to dwell on things and blow things out of context and proportion. Everybody's out to get her and Mike. What about Katrina? She's the one who without a hotshot dad got herself into Harvard. Still she only got hired because of Mike who went to NO school at all and is in fact a drug dealer.

    Rachel doesn't even need the paralegal money, she's loaded. Her number one reason to go to Havard is that her dad went there and she wants to share in the precious Havard prestige to prove it to the world that going to Havard is hereditary? Not to discredit anybody's motivations but what I think Suits tried to get across was that ALL things considered, they had better options to go with, fair and square.

    Not to judge anybody, but when I look at her, all I see is Mike's girl, or the Daddy's girl trying to rebel. I don't take her serious at all, and I can't even imagine her working alongside Harvey and Jessica. Yeah, Katrina comes off as bitchy but she comes across as dilligent, more diligent than Mike at least.

  • kanniballl Feb 18, 2013

    This comment has been removed.

  • bleumystique Feb 17, 2013

    -Ugh. I too, detest Katrina. Absolutely loathe her. There was nothing remotely likable about this broad whatsoever. I didn't like that she got the position to begin with. I would have rather watched Louis' choice be there, and I said that back then. But I really wish it now. Katrina just sucks. Unnecessarily obnoxious and bitchy, rubbing everyone the wrong way just because she can. She made me side with Rachel for crying out loud, and I'm not even a Rachel fan.
    -LOVED Louis in this. He was in total Uncle Louis mode, and I was happy to see him interact with Rachel more, because surprisingly enough, he makes her likable. That final scene was fantastic, and I just loved how protective he was. It's the thing that he has in common with the other characters on this show (Harvey, Mike, Jessica, Donna) he's loyal to the firm and protective of his people. Plus him and Lady Louis make me laugh. Love them. It's been a great season for Louis.
    -Dear lord, yet again I wanted to just shake Rachel. My problem I have with her all the time is how she can't separate her personal life from her professional life. She gets too emotional...all the time. Not doing her work because she's too busy looking for apartments? I mean to me there was nothing cute, endearing, or funny about that scene it was just annoying. So now she's sad because she didn't get into Harvard, and I don't even want to think about just how unproductive she'll be and mopey and everything else as a result. I hate to punish her character for not being one of the emotional distant/ composed characters that I seem to love on this show, but well, I do.
    -Loved the scene between Donna and Scottie. It was catty but cute. Love Donna.
    -It's tough, because even though I can sense that things won't always go over well, I have and probably always will be a Jessica Pearson fan. I can't hate her, even when I don't understand why she does some of the things she does, or I don't necessarily like it. I think I respect the fact that she's business minded. She makes some tough decisions but she's always thinking about doing what's best for the firm, even when it isn't pretty. I am however, worried about the finale, because I love my Mike and Harvey bromance, and I love my Harvey and, those are my two favorite dynamics on the show (also Donna and Harvey but when it's platonic) and from the looks of the previews both those dynamics look as though they may be in jeopardy.
    - So is that really it for Hardman? I don't know, it seemed to be wrapped up too quickly, but then again the last half of the season went by entirely way too fast for my liking. I can't wait until summer for one of my fave shows to return. ugh. I'm going to miss Hardman a little though. He's so deliciously smarmy and he knows what buttons to press and just how to get under everyone's skin.

  • KayWatkins Feb 17, 2013

    Yes, Katrina is definitly in the HATE column! I thought she would be likeable after the Louis battle but I guess not. And of course Mike's SECRET will come into play as it always does at some point and she'll probably come close to exposing it or something IDK we'll see.

    I felt bad for Rachel and I'm glad that Louis convinced her it was his fault and not that she wasn't "good enough". That should help a little. Hopefully she'll be open minded about attending elsewhere and maybe with this merger with Varys (Hi Varys!) will open their view about taking in Associates from other law schools. If nothing else, they should make an exception for her specifically since she already has a history and has proven to be valuable.

    Regarding that merger, since it seems that Jessica was willing to merge with Zane it wasn't too far fetched that she'd be willing to merge with Darby. They kind of need to merge with someone at this point although I wouldn't put it past her to use Darby for the money and for helping rid them of Hardman. Jessica is pretty bad azz.

    Glad there wasn't a love interest for Mike in the second half of the season. His love interests only take away from the show and I REALLY don't want Rachel to hook up with him anytime soon. That would just be too pathetic after what he did to her sleeping with that married woman. Ugh! I was SO peeved at him for that! I digress! On to the finale!

  • Mcarson09 Feb 17, 2013

    I like what Louis did for Rachel. He definitely has his moments!

  • SokkaAppa Feb 17, 2013

    Finale?!! dang I hate USA's split seasons!

  • JustinJohnson9 Feb 17, 2013

    I have enjoyed every bit of season 2, especially with the appearances of Hardman and Katrina. Yeah, I like the drama Katrina, as a savior for Mike, brings to this show. I truly feel that her and Louis Litt would make a good team, lawyer-wise, not between the sheets lol!!! Ewww!!! Whatever hate there is for her, I simply don't get it. She's simply asserting herself and reason for being here.

    While I would love for Harvey's name to be on the door, I can't see it happening. Jessica is definitely keeping that idea in check, as she should. Harvey is a great closer, but one hell of a wild card. His best work is done behind the scenes of owner to me. Basically the position he's in now is right where he should be. Don't get me wrong, he's earned his name on that wall, but I just don't see it happening.

  • bleumystique Feb 17, 2013

    Exactly. I think Jessica has always planned for Harvey to be partner. I mean she invested so much in him, she groomed him, he's her right hand man. I just think that she knows that making him partner now isn't realistic because it doesn't take care of their problems, and she also knows that he just isn't ready for it yet. He's too impulsive, too much of a wild card, he can be irrational, and incapable of seeing the bigger picture at time, and his competitiveness gets the better of him sometimes, to the point where he isn't necessarily pragmatic. He'll be a great one, just not now. He's good at what he does now, and she still needs him in the capacity that he is in now.

  • Mcarson09 Feb 17, 2013

    Hardman is just one of those bad guys to love to hate... I've really enjoyed the character.

  • JT_Kirk Feb 17, 2013

    I couldn't agree more that season 2 feels like it just got back on track and it's too damned soon to be over.

    Mike and Rachel in Bonerville, priceless. Yeah, they need to piss off with that storyline, Rachel is such a lesser-than when she is written as an investment in Mike's happiness or sex life. I am utterly sick of this show deifying Harvard and Pearson-Someguy through it, Harvard is great but really, you'd turn down a top notch education on the route to an amazing career because you don't get to play with your buddies anymore?!? What the hell is so great about Pearson-Someguy that Rachel acts like her world is going to end? It's certainly not her daddy issues, they are working past that as of last episode, remember? It's shallow and it lessens Rachel as a person. But forget Rachel, this wasn't a Rachel episode anyway, she was just a roadbump.

    Jessica and Harvey were barely characters in this episode. I enjoyed the episode quite a bit actually, but they both felt like they were just behaving in a way that served the plot, rather than the plot being guided by their actual characters, like you said, it felt inconsistent.

    The Katrina storyline is a big disappointment, only because Harvey has let that fire burn too hot too fast, and she's making big plays too soon. Unlikability is written all over this version of the character now, she's awful, and the show doesn't care about the gray area she was in from previous episodes, she's just the worst now.

    So I'm not entirely sure why I liked this episode, I didn't like the characters' actions here, and now that you're pointing out more issues like Mike being a pesticle and not terribly well-used, I see even more that was clumsy. Yet it was still a fun ride, there was still the big play and the early failures and the 'stache-twirling villain and such, and I guess that sated my Suits needs.

    I hadn't seen that Meghan Markle PSA... and I still haven't seen most of it, because *yawn* sorry, preaching to the choir and just taking too long to get to the meat of it. Racism sucks, yeah, especially when it's personal and you're not white enough that it doesn't matter (I've never seen anybody called honky, cracker, or ofay and care at all unless they were suuuuuper poor as well), but I just don't want to take the time to sift through all 3 minutes to find what plugs into this episode.

  • n_amososeta Feb 16, 2013

    First of all, damn you for making us wait what felt like an eternity just to air five stinking episodes and now rushing us to get ready for a season finale.
    I believe Jessica followed her purpose to the end..and quite egotistically, I may say. She has no intention of making Harvey partner and now that Scotty came in with the same promise from her boss..well, on this level, the storyline of next week's finale pretty much writes itself.
    I have a small feeling that at some point, Louis will end up saving someone's ass, just to make up for all the bad things from the past.
    As for Mike's exposure regarding Harvard, it has become rather predictable, but the suspense is killing most of us, so I hope that ends along with this season.

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