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Josh Charles on the week's sports highlights and what's next

Josh Charles Jokes About Being Killed Off Of

'Good Wife' leaves viewers shocked, bereaved

NEW YORK (AP) -- The shocking death of dashing attorney Will Gardner on "The Good Wife" on Sunday's episode was driven by actor Josh Charles' desire to leave the CBS drama in its fifth season.

Charles had told the show's producers that "I was ready for the next chapter of my life, both creatively and personally," in an interview excerpt provided by CBS on Monday.

In a true surprise for viewers of the show, Gardner was gunned down in a Chicago courtroom by his unhinged client. Gardner was one of the show's central characters as the former colleague and lover of Alicia Florrick, the "wife" played by series star Julianna Margulies.

The twist will force Margulies' character to examine all aspects of her life, producers said.

"She's going to miss the existence of Will," Margulies said of her character. "He was a powerful aphrodisiac in her life."

Once the episode had aired, Twitter lit up with astonished, sorrowful and even irate posts.

One viewer called for a group hug, while another issued a plea for a counselor to treat jolted fans. Yet another viewer expressed hope that, as with "Dallas" long ago in revealing Bobby Ewing's death to be only a dream, "The Good Wife" would find Gardner stepping out of his shower next week, alive and well.

Other viewers vowed never to watch the show again, as payback.

Charles said he appreciated the support of fans, but urged those who are upset to take a step back.

"I understand that there will be audience members who will be upset," Charles said. "I would just tell them that I guarantee it will continue to be an excellent show. I know I'm going to keep watching it."

His death and Charles' decision to exit the show had been well-guarded secrets. Charles, who entered the series with a four-year contract, opted not to re-up when it expired after last season, according to his publicist.

Charles' past TV work includes the ABC dramedy series "SportsNight" and a season playing a client of therapist Gabriel Byrne on the HBO drama "In Treatment."


Associated Press Television Writer David Bauder contributed to this report.

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shar March 29 2014 at 4:28 PM

Some of my favorite characters have been killed off in shows like Downton Abby, The Good Wife, NCIS, CIS, and more... NO big deal. Sometimes it helps to open up a new plot..take the show in a different direction. Will had become too vindictive and mean spirited for my taste.. And he really wasn't all that good looking. SO..now Alicia can move forward and ditch her two timing, not to be trusted "Hubby"

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1 reply
Bill shar March 30 2014 at 4:41 AM

I agree that Will had become much too vindictive. He only seemed to be interested in clients associated with Florrick/Agos. It also explains why the storyline went so inextricably to either Will testfying against the Governor or being disbarred. The writers knew Will would die so it didn't matter if he painted himself into a corner.

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mickioltarsh March 29 2014 at 5:44 PM

fans may not have noticed but a new character has been introduced last week. the british actor
MATTHEW GOODE. I have been watching his films for many years and enjoy him. I hope he is the replacement for will. hold on fans!!!

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Chip's Haven March 29 2014 at 6:04 PM

Love it!

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oldcat March 29 2014 at 6:10 PM

Just when it looked like Kalinda was leaving it turned out Will left. Hope they neve rget rid of Kalinda, Archie is fabulous.

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1 reply
ohgal oldcat March 29 2014 at 7:28 PM

i agree

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makohachiska March 29 2014 at 6:22 PM

The show has facinating people/incidents. Intriguing. I'm devastated that Will will no longer be on. However, the scripts are good, other actors are strong, its a pretty sophisticated 1 hour show. I try to see it whenever I can. Its a heavy compitation with Sunday's PBS programs for me.
I'm looking forward to tomorrow's show.
I have only basic/extended programs. When will you do re-runs for me to catch up?

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vvirginiagibso1 March 29 2014 at 9:11 PM

sorry to see him go,i had just got my friend hooked on him,

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kimstrezz March 30 2014 at 12:26 AM

Oh Sports Night! How I have missed you! For four brief shining minutes Danny was back. :)

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EDMAN March 30 2014 at 12:00 AM

I remember Josh from ABC's Sports Night and I still wonder to this day why that show was cancelled after such a short run. It was funny,sensitive and heartwarming. Remember the Station Manager
Felicity Hoffman who then went on a long run in "Desperate Housewives"? To this day I still miss that show and wonder what happened to that show and shows like them (Men of a Certain Age).
That's why I choose Showtime or Starz for all of my series viewing instead of the garbage the networks show and continue to cancel week after week.

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Bill March 30 2014 at 4:15 AM

The headline said Charlea was divulging his future plans. No future plans were divulged. Instead all we got was a reprinting of the article that ran last Monday.

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collectorlen March 29 2014 at 11:14 PM

I would have rather seen the ending with him being shot and killed in bed with Alicia, and you didn't see who the shooter was.

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