EXCLUSIVE: 'Suits' Star Gabriel Macht on Harvey and Donna's Big Finale Moment: 'They're in Denial'
By Philiana Ng
Shane Mahood/ USA Network
Warning: Do not proceed if you haven’t watched Wednesday’s midseason finale of Suits! Everyone else, you may proceed…
Is “Darvey” finally on?
On Wednesday’s midseason finale of Suits, titled “Donna,” it was the episode-ending moment between Harvey and Donna that had us desperately pressing the rewind button.
After grappling with the Pearson Specter Litt COO’s newly resurfaced feelings for her longtime partner-in-crime (with an unintentional nudging by Louis), Donna kissed Harvey “because she just had to know,” leaving his stunned reaction as the last image until the show’s return.
ET jumped on the phone with Suits star Gabriel Macht to discuss the aftermath of the finale-ending kiss, Jessica’s eyebrow-raising demands and whether the end date for the show is near.
ET: Do you like where Harvey is at the end of the midseason finale?
Gabriel Macht: Yeah. What started out as this uber-confident, hyper-focused risk-taker hothead who liked to live large, we’ve seen the irresponsibility of his nature and the demons that he holds and the mismanagement of his emotions and we’ve seen him grow. We’ve seen his panic attacks. We’ve seen him in therapy trying to work his mother issues out. We’ve seen him try to balance his life out by getting a serious adult relationship and now, with Jessica having left the firm, we’ve now seen him grow up and step up to become the managing partner of a firm that has had its major challenges along the way. To see that paternal figure has been enlightening for me and also, loyalty is his big thing. He’s willing to stand up for the people around him that he owes favors to -- not just for favors, but for their own livelihood. I have been really deepened in so many ways.
Speaking of loyalty, we have to talk about the kiss between Harvey and Donna in the midseason finale, and Harvey’s stunned reaction afterward. What did you make of that moment?
For as many Darvey fans that are out there, there are probably just as many who don’t want them to get together, and I think that’s how and why the show works. Whether they’re true to themselves or deeply understanding in their soul of knowing if the relationship is real or not, Harvey and Donna are both in denial in many ways. They don’t know what they really want and that’s what that moment was. She’s trying to figure out if there’s something there and we left it on a very neutral, sort of shock moment of like, “What is gonna happen?” It really is going to make people want to throw their devices at the television screen, ‘cause you have to wait to find out what happens. The power of perception is real right in that moment. People will be like, “Oh my god, he loves her! We’re gonna see Darvey happen!” And then there are people who will go, “He’s shocked she just did that. Why did she put him in that position?”He’s dating [Paula]. He’s just been made into everything he doesn’t want to be, as far as what his mother did. It’s come to a point, I guess, where [the Harvey and Donna kiss] was bound to happen.
Donna apologizes and says “I just had to know,” and there is no clear indication as to whether the kiss cemented that she was in love with Harvey or that she wasn’t. So you are right to say that it’s left unclear as to where things stand…
And that’s when art is at its best. The viewer can take away what they want to take away. To be able to do that in television is a huge challenge, and we were able to pull that off.
How do you foresee this affecting Harvey and Donna’s interoffice dynamics in the aftermath of their kiss?
There is the potential of Harvey saying, “You know what, I want to drop everything for her and be with her and have a go at it," and, unfortunately, have to break up with Paula. But I think it’s also very complicated. It might be a knee-jerk reaction for Harvey where he says, “You know what, I want to spend my life with Paula.” Those are two options, [but] I have no idea where it’s going to go.
Jessica returns to Pearson Specter Litt after getting disbarred from practicing law and officially hands over the reins of the firm to Harvey in a professional rite of passage, telling him that she wants her name off the wall. What challenges face Harvey now that he’s the guy at the firm and he doesn’t have a fallback to go to anymore?
This whole season we’ve been able to drop Jessica in throughout to step this up, in the idea that she’s been able to challenge him as managing partner, and she’s also gifted him with her advice of how to run things. In some ways, Harvey has used her as a crutch to be able to pull it all off. With having to take her name off the door, it’s going to be this next level situation for him where he’s gotta fully step up and be the responsible managing partner that the firm needs -- maybe to take less risks, maybe to be a little more conservative in his direction of where he wants the firm to go. Being that it’s a television show, he’ll probably f**k up a few times, but there is some growth to be had for him now and willing to take responsibility. We’ll see what happens.
How do you think Jessica no longer being a practicing lawyer and dipping her toe in the political world in Chicago for the potential spinoff changes her friendship with Harvey?
I think it will, no matter what. A change in someone’s life changes the course of other people’s lives when the connection is so real. She’s been his mentor along the way and he found comfort in going to her. They do have this real bond and with most mentor-mentee relationships, there’s always that looking up for advice here or there that doesn’t end. Hopefully that will continue. How they take her name off the door could potentially bruise the relationship and how that manifests is a huge guess right now. I look forward to seeing how we navigate that area.
What are you looking forward to exploring in the back half of the season for Harvey and Mike?
I’m always into the quick repartee and the teasing each other and, at times, the growing up and fulfilling one’s duty and standing up to each other. I really like those moments. The Batman and Robin element of that, where they work together to win and use each other to their aid, I find to be playful and fun. We’ll see what kind of mess Mike gets into, because he usually makes decisions that go against the grain. With Harvey being the more responsible one right now, as far as having to take control of the firm, that’s probably going to put a wrench in that idea of that playful element.
Looking ahead to the final six episodes of the season, are there any specific questions you have that you hope will be answered?
In prior seasons, I was very interested in seeing what happens, and I’d call up [creator] Aaron [Korsh] and say, “Hey man, what’s happening? Where’s the end point? Where are we going with this?” In the last year and a half, I’ve been more, like, let me be surprised, let me be a viewer and see what happens when the next script comes in and be open to the flow of the show. It’s an easier process for me, and I don’t put any eggs in any basket. Obviously, I’d like to see how the story is going to end, but I’m patiently waiting week to week to see how [that will unfold].
You mentioned an end point. Do you see the end date for the show nearing?
I really don’t know what’s going to happen. Right now, we’ve got six more [episodes] to do. If it works out and we do another 16 [for a potential season eight] and we’re able to create more stories and keep it as compelling as it has been, then I’m game. Look, I love my crew up there [in Toronto], and I love the people I work with, and I’m super grateful to the job. To be an actor working on a show that’s made 100 episodes of television, it’s something that not every artist gets the opportunity to do. I’m super, super grateful for having that opportunity, so we’ll see where it goes.
Suits returns for the second half of season seven in 2018 on USA Network.