Suits, the popular legal drama series, had a devoted fan base that followed the show through nine seasons. However, one of the show’s most beloved characters, Mike Ross, left the series after the seventh season. Mike’s departure left fans wondering why he left, what the impact was on the show’s storyline, and why Patrick J. Adams, the actor who played Mike, chose to leave. This article is a comprehensive look at why Mike left Suits, including an analysis of his character arc and the impact of his departure on the show.
II. Chronological Account of Events Leading Up to Mike Ross Leaving Suits
In the early seasons, Mike Ross was a pivotal character in the show’s plotline, even as he hid his secret of not being a licensed lawyer. In season seven, multiple storylines collided that led to Mike’s departure.
One factor that contributed to Mike’s exit was his relationship with Rachel Zane, played by Meghan Markle. Mike and Rachel had become a fan-favorite couple and, by season seven, they had become engaged. However, Markle had announced that she would not be returning to the show after season seven, which created uncertainty around the future of Mike and Rachel’s characters.
Mike also faced legal troubles that impacted the firm’s clients and reputation. He had taken a deal to avoid jail time for his fraudulent law degree, but this deal prohibited him from practicing law again. However, he went against this and worked as a consultant on cases, which was eventually made public, leading to him being banned from the bar.
Along with Mike’s legal troubles, his conflicts with other characters added fuel to the fire. His relationship with Harvey Specter, a senior partner, had become strained, and the two had not worked together since season six. This tension came to a head when Harvey fired Mike in episode 10 of season seven, setting the stage for Mike’s exit from the show.
III. Analyzing the Character Arc of Mike Ross
Mike Ross was a fan favorite from the beginning of the series. He was witty, charming, and had a keen intelligence, which made him an excellent lawyer despite lacking a law degree. Over the course of the series, Mike’s character went through significant changes.
Mike had a complex backstory that included his involvement in illegal activities before becoming a lawyer. As the series progressed, he faced the repercussions of his past, which influenced his work as a lawyer. For example, he sometimes struggled with ethical dilemmas and struggled with lying or hiding the truth, which were themes that were explored in his character arc.
Mike’s relationships with other characters also evolved throughout the show. In particular, his friendship with Harvey Specter underwent several shifts, from a mentor-mentee relationship to one of equals, to a strained partnership, and eventually to friendship again. His romantic relationship with Rachel Zane also had its ups and downs.
Mike’s exit from the series was shaped by his character development. He had matured significantly from the character introduced in season one, and it made sense for the character to move on from the law firm and pursue new challenges.
IV. Exploring the Impact of Mike’s Departure on the Storyline
Mike’s exit from the series had a significant impact on the show’s narrative. The writers had to craft a storyline that would allow Mike to leave in a way that made sense for the character while also addressing the exit of Rachel Zane, who was also leaving the show.
The show’s sixth season finale set the stage for Mike’s departure, with Mike and Rachel’s wedding and Mike’s acceptance of the bar ban. The show’s writers had to navigate writing Mike off the show while also providing a satisfying character arc that would honor the character’s storyline. The result was Mike being offered a job in Seattle, which he ultimately accepted, and moving on from his life as a lawyer in New York City.
The departure of Mike and Rachel also had repercussions for the other characters, particularly where it concerned the law firm. Donna Paulsen stepped up to become the new COO, and Samantha Wheeler was added to balance out the firm’s top billing as a partner. The Seventh and Eighth seasons saw the show’s core cast largely shift, which had long-term ramifications for the show’s plot and themes.
V. Examining the Real-Life Reasons Behind the Actor’s Decision to Leave the Show
Patrick J. Adams’ decision to leave the show was not a surprise to those who knew him. The actor had expressed interest in exploring other opportunities and had cited a desire to spend more time with his family in California.
Adams had also explored other avenues in the entertainment industry, including directing and producing. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Adams said, “I came off a plane, and they immediately put me on set. I directed my first episode of Suits, having never directed anything before in my life.” It is clear that Adams had aspirations beyond being a character actor and was eager to take the next step in his career.
Adams had also hinted that he had explored the character of Mike Ross fully. He stated that he had “enjoyed playing Mike Ross, but it felt like a complete journey” and that he was ready to move on to new challenges.
VI. Comparing Mike’s Departure to Other Main Characters That Left the Show
Suits had several main characters that left the show during its nine-season run, and comparing these departures highlights the impact of these departures on the show.
Jessica Pearson, played by Gina Torres, left the series after season six. The primary reason for her departure was that Torres wanted to spend more time with her family on the West Coast. However, the show’s writers had her character move to Chicago to open her law firm, allowing for a potential spinoff series.
Harvey Specter and Donna Paulsen left the show together in the final season, with the two characters finally getting together. Their departure was handled well, with their characters ending up together and the law firm left in the capable hands of Louis Litt. Their exit marked the end of the show and was seen as a fitting conclusion to the show’s story.
Mike Ross’s departure from Suits had a profound impact on both the show’s narrative and its loyal fanbase. His complex character arc, with its highs and lows, ensured that his departure was a satisfying and fitting conclusion, even though he was a beloved character. The show’s writers skillfully navigated his exit, leaving the firm intact, but with new faces. The departure of other main characters also marked significant turning points in the show, but Mike’s departure remains one of the most iconic moments of the series.