‘Suits’: Lessons in Respect and Harvey’s Big Declaration to Donna (RECAP)

Suits - Season 9
Spoiler Alert
Christos Kalohoridis/USA Network

[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 9, Episode 4 of Suits, “Cairo.”]

Darvey fans had to love the final scene of Wednesday’s episode of Suits.

With her father in town, Donna’s (Sarah Rafferty) hoping that the two most important men in her life can find a way to get along. But that’s not the only source of conflict for her in “Cairo,” as Faye (Denise Crosby) decides that Donna and Harvey’s (Gabriel Macht) personal relationship can have a negative effect on the firm — and Donna’s the one who has to give something up.

Meanwhile, Alex’s (Dulé Hill) past comes back to haunt him when Craig tries to blackmail him to get Samantha to accept a deal, and Katrina (Amanda Schull) is tasked with creating the firm’s code of conduct by Faye.

Harvey’s grand gestures to the Paulsens

Donna’s father doesn’t like Harvey, but she’s hoping if she’s happy, Jim will be happy for her. But Jim’s reaction to the news of her new relationship isn’t what she’d hoped. Her father thinks that his daughter deserves someone who puts her needs in front of his own, and what do you know? An issues arises in which Harvey faces just that — once Donna fills him in, that is.

What she does tell him is that she wants him to fix his relationship with her father to show he’s willing to put her first. Before he does, Harvey calls his mother and not only tells her about his new relationship, but also reveals, “She’s the one.” And as he learns, his mother and brother have been rooting for them for years. She suggests he make a gesture to win over Jim.

It’s just too bad that’s the wrong move, at least the way Harvey goes about doing it. Donna’s father isn’t happy with the business help he offers and thinks he’s trying to buy his approval.

(Christos Kalohoridis/USA Network)

“You showed him that you don’t respect him, that you think you’re better than him,” Donna explains, finally getting through to Harvey.

With that in mind, Harvey makes things right. “I like to think I’m a smart guy, but sometimes I don’t see what’s right in front of my face,” he admits to her father. (Case in point: Donna.) And he does respect Jim, especially since he has an amazing marriage, raised a wonderful daughter, and has had love in his life all this time. In return, Jim admits he needs Harvey’s help with his deal.

And Harvey continues to stay on the right track of grand gestures, even if it’s not how Donna would have planned it. But he still leaves her speechless.

“Donna, you know we’re going to be together forever, right?” Harvey asks. He knows that no matter how he asks, it won’t be how she instructs him, so he’s asking however he wants. Does that mean they’re engaged? That leaves him stumbling for words — and fortunately saved by a call from his mother. And with that, Donna and his mother meet.

The partners fight back

Faye turns to Katrina to adapt the code of conduct for the firm, knowing the partners won’t agree if it doesn’t come from one of their own. Katrina agrees, but only if she can write it as she sees fit and Faye accepts all or none of it. Louis (Rick Hoffman) tries to use the code to get Gretchen back from Faye, but Katrina refuses to violate the spirit of what she’s doing with it.

(Christos Kalohoridis/USA Network)

That’s not the only move Faye makes. Upon learning that Donna and Harvey are together, the special master decides that Donna must give up her vote because it’s a conflict of interest. And since he’s senior partner and a former managing partner, Faye sees Harvey’s vote as more important. “You keep trying to diminish my role here,” Donna accuses her, but Faye insists she’s just trying to preserve the interest of the firm. If Harvey is willing to give up his vote, she’ll accept it.

Donna eventually fills Harvey in, just as Louis wants to go to Faye about Gretchen. But Harvey thinks they should pick their battles and fight for Donna first. The two men exchange harsh words until Donna steps in, reminding them that their relationships with each other are more important than what Faye’s doing to them.

Harvey realizes he and Louis weren’t treating each other with respect because Faye’s not treating them with respect. And the partners know how to stop it: by going to Faye as a united front.

They all have personal relationships, they tell her. Harvey and Louis came up in the bullpen together. Samantha taught Louis to fight after he was mugged. Samantha had dinner at Alex’s home and that’s going to continue. Louis is asking Donna to be his child’s godmother. They all trust each other and waive conflict. They even added a clause to her code of conduct. If she doesn’t accept it, they’ll all resign and she’ll have to explain it to the Bar.

Faye has no choice but to give in. She even gives Gretchen back to Louis.

They protect each other

In flashbacks to eight years ago, we see how Alex came to gain Masterson Construction as a client over his coworker Craig, simply because he was more vulnerable. Alex even told his wife about his suspicions, only to later lie to her and claim nothing was going on.

(Ian Watson/USA Network)

But now in the present, Craig knows everything about Masterson and threatens to spill the beans if Alex doesn’t get Samantha to accept a bad deal. But Samantha can’t give in because everyone, including Faye, knows it’s a bad offer — and if she takes it, the special master will wonder why and investigate.

After Alex confesses everything to Rosalie, his wife turns to Samantha to dig up dirt on Craig. She refuses to risk Craig following through on his threat. Knowing his wife as well as he does, Alex then goes to Samantha as well.

But Samantha keeps both of them out of it, bringing the dirt she found to Craig — and what she has is so much worse than Masterson. She proposes a new deal: both act like what they have doesn’t exist and take care of their negotiations the old-fashioned way, as lawyers.

The couple was too emotional to go to Craig, Samantha later explains to them. “You welcomed me into your home the other night, and I saw what you had, what you had to lose,” she adds. “I’ve never had that. I wanted to protect it.” All that’s left for Alex and Rosalie to do is have a night of good family fun — and that includes Samantha.

What did you think of Harvey’s non-proposal?

Suits, Wednesdays, 9/8c, USA Network