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Your Honor Season 1 Recap: All You Need to Know!

Your Honor, a Showtime smash, is starting a second season that wasn’t planned. The first season was a flawed but riveting potboiler about a New Orleans judge who risks his job and soul to defend his adolescent son after a hit-and-run accident. Despite Michael Desiato (Bryan Cranstonscheming )’s and selling out to keep criminals from killing his son Adam, the young guy was killed by a stray bullet. Fate is cruelly ironic.

After all that’s transpired, what’s Your Honor about? That title had meaning. It was about a former judge who betrayed his ethics and was punished by the universe. The show’s first season was captivating because it placed us in Michael’s shoes for every gut-wrenching decision, so when he rigs a trial to get the crazy son of a gangster off an open-and-shut murder rap, we can understand.

He becomes irredeemably dishonorable after repeatedly choosing the least bad of dreadful possibilities. Tragedies like these end with nothing. Your Honor, which set up this second and, according to Cranston, the final season, was a hit.

The next season picks up the pieces after season one writer Joey Hartstone replaced Peter Moffat as showrunner. Hartstone’s show starts strong. “Part Eleven” brings back all the major characters (excluding Adam) and their lingering portions of beef and traumas nearly immediately after the first season ended, or as soon as Cranston grew the scraggly beard he wore toward the conclusion of Breaking Bad. Adam’s death ended Michael’s story but messed up everyone else’s.

Your Honor Season 1 Recap

To recap, Adam was shot by Eugene (Benjamin Flores Jr.), who wanted revenge on the Baxters, led by kingpin Jimmy (Michael Stuhlbarg), for killing his entire family—first his older brother Kofi, who the hot-tempered Carlo Baxter (Jimi Stanton) murdered in prison after Kofi took the fall for Adam’s hit-and-run, and then his mother and other siblings, who died in a gas explosion.

Eugene missing the target doesn’t make the Baxters happy, and the Desire gang of the Lower Ninth Ward, lead by “Big Mo” (Andrene Ward-Hammond), aren’t thrilled either because it stokes preexisting tensions between Desire and the Baxters. Big Mo protected Eugene, but now things are more tricky.

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Michael’s life is pointless. Son died. He was jailed and disbarred. Even when force-fed a nutritious supplement, he refuses to eat. He volunteers to play “convict poker” in a prison rodeo, where a bull tries to knock them out of their chairs. The last inmate not gored or run away earns a few hundred dollars, but Michael isn’t there. Horns. The Angela Prison Rodeo in Louisiana holds this brutal spectacle.

Michael may never find peace, but redemption is possible. Olivia Delmont, played by Rosie Perez, is a U.S. Attorney who will delete Michael’s taped confession if he cooperates with her inquiry. That’s enough to convince him to attempt life outside, but it will put him back in the crossfire and possibly endanger his deceived friends.

Friends include Mayor Charlie Figaro (Isiah Whitlock Jr.), who did Michael the “favor” of impeding justice, and Nancy Costello (Amy Landecker), a police investigator still reeling from everything under her nose. Season one’s repercussions may occupy 10 episodes, especially if Your Honor stops there.

This first hour focuses on Eugene, suggesting that Your Honor has become a more equitable ensemble work than a thriller with Michael at the center. The Baxters want Eugene dead, especially Gina (Hope Davis), who amps up her Lady Macbeth inclinations to goad Carlo into an ill-advised murder attempt on Desire’s soil and chastises her husband for not caring enough.

Your Honor Season 1 Recap

Big Mo isn’t pleased that Eugene has drawn Desire into this feud, but she won’t allow Carlo to invade her domain without a fight. Mo agrees to spare Carlo if Jimmy leaves Eugene alone. A fragile truce. Michael is a grandfather—the most exciting development so far.

Adam got Sofia (Lilli Kay), Baxter’s daughter, pregnant before he died. She’s now asking family questions she previously avoided. Jimmy and Gina have tried to hide Fia from Baxter’s genuine business, like Sofia Coppola’s character in The Godfather Part III.

Her brother Carlo is a gangster. Why “Sofia”? She visits Michael in prison to inquire if he loves her. A shared grandchild and Sofia’s growing awareness of her gangster background transform Michael and the Baxters’ relationship. This drama won’t be as thematically meaningful as the first season, but it’ll be fun.


The “Previously On” segment before this second season reminds us how crazy the previous season was. The moral issue of a judge assisting his son escape a hit-and-run would have ended many shows. Your Honor was just coughing.

Impulsive young males Big Mo says that about Eugene and Carlo. The two young males, who both perpetrate violence without consulting adults, have many similarities. Kids, let adults murder. Hope Davis serves Gina, whose Oedipal relationship with Carlo seems more intimate than her marriage to Jimmy, a five-course supper.

This fresh violence threatens Charlie’s mayoral reelection, but his “favor” for Michael still haunts him. If someone important discovers that he arranged for Kofi Jones to take care of Adam’s automobile, a cover-up that caused several fatalities, including Kofi’s, his job and freedom are at stake.

 Peter Sollett directed this episode of Evil, having previously directed Raising Victor Vargas and Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist.  From that Guardian article on the Angola Prison Rodeo: “Convict poker” winners receive $250, but “guts and glory” winners must pluck a poker chip from a charging bull’s horn. Inmates willing to risk their lives for this pittance are supposedly on a waiting list.

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