Suits (season 1)

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Suits (season 1)
SuitsSeasn1DVDCover.jpg
Region 1 DVD cover
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 12
Release
Original channel USA Network
Original release June 23, 2011 (2011-06-23) – September 8, 2011 (2011-09-08)
Season chronology
Next →
Season 2
List of Suits episodes

The first season of the American legal comedy-drama Suits originally aired on USA Network in the United States between June 23, 2011 and September 8, 2011. The season was produced by Hypnotic Films & Television and Universal Cable Productions, and the executive producers were Doug Liman, David Bartis and series creator Aaron Korsh. The series revolves around corporate lawyer Harvey Specter and his associate attorney Mike Ross who, between the two of them, have only one law degree. The season had six series regulars playing employees at the fictional Pearson Hardman law firm in Manhattan: Gabriel Macht, Patrick J. Adams, Rick Hoffman, Sarah Rafferty, and Gina Torres.

Production[edit]

On April 5, 2010, USA announced that it was developing seven new pilots for its 2010-2011 television season, including A Legal Mind, which would later become Suits.[1][2] The premiere was written by Aaron Korsh, and David Bartis and Gene Klein served as executive producers.[2][3] It was later announced on May 17, 2010 that USA ordered a ninety-minute cast-contingent pilot for the series.[4] The network later picked up A Legal Mind on January 19, 2011 and ordered eleven one-hour episodes in addition to the 90-minute pilot.[5][6]

Creator Aaron Korsh, whose Notes from the Underbelly sitcom was canceled during the 2007-2008 Writers' Strike, wrote a spec script intended to be a "half-hour Entourage-type based on my experiences working on Wall Street." He later realized that the project should have hour-long episodes. Korsh and his agent took the script to several production companies and wanted to give the script to Universal Media Studios. However, Korsh found it odd that the studio did not want to sell the script to NBC, the network the studio typically worked with. Korsh's agent convinced USA Network executive Alex Sepiol that although the series was neither a procedural nor what the network typically did, he would like the characters. Sepiol approved of the script, and by then, Hypnotic Films & Television signed on to the project. The team pitched the script to USA, which bought the script after the pitch. Korsh did not pitch it to anyone else. When rewriting the script, Korsh made only small changes to the first half-hour, up to when Mike is hired. Originally, Mike did not take LSATs for others and only pretends to have attended Harvard, as opposed to pretending he attended Harvard and has a law degree. Korsh noted that there is no degree or test needed to work on Wall Street and be a mathematical genius, unlike the bar examination in law. He decided to "embrace" this difference and change the premise.[7]

The pilot episode was filmed in New York City, where the series is set.[8] The rest of the series is filmed in Toronto, where the sets are built to be identical to the New York law offices seen in the pilot.[9]

To promote the series debut, USA had an advance screening of the pilot on June 2, 2011 at the Hudson River Park and distributed free Häagen-Dazs Sundaes cones at the viewing.[10][11] The network also had branded ice cream carts, bikes, and scooters give away the Sundaes and USA/Entertainment Weekly 2011 promotion summer guides on June 22 and June 23 in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, and Boston to promote the pilot.[10][12]

Crew[edit]

The season was created by Aaron Korsh and was aired on USA Network in the United States. The season was produced by Hypnotic Films & Television and Universal Cable Productions. The executive producers were Korsh, Doug Liman, and David Bartis. The staff writers were: Korsh with three writing credits; Sean Jablonski, Jon Cowan, Ethan Drogin, and Rick Muirragui with two each; and Erica Lipez with one. The directors throughout the season were Kevin Bray, John Scott, Dennie Gordon, Kate Woods, Terry McDonough, Tim Matheson, Norberto Barba, Felix Alcala, Jennifer Getzinger, and Mike Smith.

Cast[edit]

Six actors received star billing in the show's first season. Each character works at the fictional Pearson Hardman law firm in Manhattan. Gabriel Macht plays corporate lawyer Harvey Specter, who is promoted to senior partner and is forced to hire an associate attorney.[13][14] Patrick J. Adams plays college dropout Mike Ross, who wins the associate position with his eidetic memory and genuine desire to be a good lawyer.[15][16] Rick Hoffman plays Louis Litt, Harvey's jealous rival and the direct supervisor of the firm's first-year associates.[17][18] Meghan Markle plays Rachel Zane, a paralegal who aspires to be an attorney but her test anxiety prevents her from attending Harvard Law School.[19] Sarah Rafferty plays Donna Paulsen, Harvey's long-time legal secretary, confidant, and the only one at the firm who knows Mike never attended law school.[20] Rafferty was recommended for the role by Macht, who had been friends with Rafferty for twenty years at the time of production. When she auditioned for the role, Korsh felt she was best actress for the part.[21] Gina Torres plays Jessica Pearson, the co-founder and managing partner of the firm.[19]

The season also featured several recurring guest stars. Tom Lipinski appeared in four episodes as Mike's drug-dealing best friend Trevor Evans, whose friendship with Mike deteriorates throughout the season. Vanessa Ray plays Trevor's girlfriend Jenny Griffith in seven episodes. Rebecca Schull plays Edith Ross, Mike's grandmother and caretaker after his parents' deaths, in two episodes. Ben Hollingsworth appears in two episodes as Kyle Durant, Mike's rival and fellow associate, and Max Topplin appears in four episodes as Harold Jakowski, another associate.

Episodes[edit]

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
code
U.S. viewers
(millions)
1 1 "Pilot" Kevin Bray Aaron Korsh June 23, 2011 (2011-06-23) S101-75 4.64[22]
After Harvey Specter, New York City's best closer, finally achieves his goal of becoming a senior partner at Pearson Hardman, he discovers he must hire a new associate from Harvard Law School. Mike stumbles into the interviews when he discovers his drug delivery is a sting operation. Even though Mike never attended law school, Harvey hires him. To keep his promotion, Harvey must personally handle a pro bono case, in which a woman (Dagmara Dominczyk) claims her boss sexually harassed her. Instead, he assigns it to Mike.
2 2 "Errors and Omissions" John Scott Sean Jablonski June 30, 2011 (2011-06-30) S102 3.89[23]
A judge (Currie Graham) insists that Harvey had an affair with his wife (Nazanin Boniadi) and refuses fairly judge Harvey's case. Meanwhile, Louis reveals that Mike failed his drug test and blackmails him into smoking marijuana to win over a prestigious client.
3 3 "Inside Track" Kevin Bray Aaron Korsh July 7, 2011 (2011-07-07) S103 4.53[24]
When the new CEO of a motor company wants to move production overseas, Harvey and Mike try to find a loophole to oust him and persuade one of the company's most loyal employees (Titus Welliver) to take the job of CEO. Meanwhile, Mike makes preparations for the Rookie Dinner and tries to convince his friend Trevor (Tom Lipinski) to stop dealing marijuana.
4 4 "Dirty Little Secrets" Dennie Gordon Jon Cowan July 14, 2011 (2011-07-14) S104 4.38[25]
Harvey defends Jessica's ex-husband (Russell Hornsby) from allegations that his ALS medication is shortening lives as opposed to lengthening them. Meanwhile, Mike is assigned his first solo case, and his secret is almost discovered.
5 5 "Bail Out" Kate Woods Ethan Drogin July 21, 2011 (2011-07-21) S105 4.38[26]
Harvey must choose between closing a lucrative deal and helping his trusted driver (Anand Rajaram) defend against a lawsuit. Meanwhile, Trevor has given up dealing drugs and needs Mike to help him restart his life and escape his past.
6 6 "Tricks of the Trade" Terry McDonough Rick Muirragui July 28, 2011 (2011-07-28) S106 4.44[27]
Mike and Harvey work together to defend a woman (Jenny Mollen), who they believe has been falsely accused of insider trading. Mike helps Rachel study for the LSAT, but he struggles to hide the fact that he used to take the LSAT for others.
7 7 "Play the Man" Tim Matheson Erica Lipez August 4, 2011 (2011-08-04) S107 4.03[28]
Mike is pitted against one of Louis' protégés (Ben Hollingsworth) in a mock trial. Harvey takes on an old rival and romantic interest (Abigail Spencer).
8 8 "Identity Crisis" Norberto Barba Ethan Drogin August 11, 2011 (2011-08-11) S108 3.96[29]
The daughter (Amanda Crew) of a businessman (James Morrison) threatens to reveal Mike's secret unless he and the firm drop the case they have against her while Harvey tries to fix problems Louis has made for the firm.
9 9 "Undefeated" Felix Alcala Rick Muirragui August 18, 2011 (2011-08-18) S109 4.45[30]
Harvey must decide if he can break his ethical code in order to defeat shady lawyer Travis Tanner (Eric Close). Meanwhile, Rachel is accused of treason against Pearson Hardman and is defended by Mike.
10 10 "Shelf Life" Jennifer Getzinger Sean Jablonski August 25, 2011 (2011-08-25) S110 3.82[31]
Mike and Harvey have to fire a man (John Billingsley) who has been working for nine years with a fake diploma. Mike identifies with this man and defends him, revealing a conspiracy. Mike and Rachel struggle with their feelings for each other while Louis creates a rift in Mike's relationship with Jenny Griffith (Vanessa Ray).
11 11 "Rules of the Game" Mike Smith Jon Cowan September 1, 2011 (2011-09-01) S111 3.96[32]
The district attorney and Harvey's former mentor (Gary Cole) turns to his protégé when his office is being investigated for burying evidence. Meanwhile, Mike and Louis try to settle a mogul's estate in the midst of family clashes, and Jenny worries that Mike is hiding something.
12 12 "Dog Fight" Kevin Bray Aaron Korsh September 8, 2011 (2011-09-08) S112 3.47[33]
Harvey tries to correct a past mistake by freeing an innocent man. However, the new district attorney (Chi McBride) seems more focused on preserving the system than seeking justice. Elsewhere, Trevor returns and seeks help from Mike.

Ratings[edit]

The pilot episode gained a 1.6 ratings share among adults aged 18–49 and garnered an estimated 4.6 million viewers, making the episode the ninth most watched basic cable show for the week.[22][34] The episode was watched 2 million in people aged 18–49 and 2.1 million in people aged 24–54, a double-digit increase over the January premiere of the network's other legal drama Fairly Legal.[35] The second episode, which aired June 30, experienced a four-tenths ratings drop, which was attributed to the holiday weekend.[23] However, the episode's ratings were bolstered by a high DVR viewings.[36] The ratings rose the next week garnering 4.5 millions views with a 1.3 ratings share among adults aged 18–49.[24] The premiere of Jersey Shore, which shares the Thursday 10pm timeslot with Suits, caused a decrease in ratings, a trend that continued for the rest of the season.[25][26][27][28][29][30][31][32][33] Together, Burn Notice and Suits were the top scripted shows in primetime television, and no other network aired scripted series that garnered over four million total viewers, one million viewers aged 25–54, or one million viewers aged 18–49. Suits was ranked third in males aged 18–49 and males aged 25–54.[37] The series made USA Network the most watched network in the Thursday 10pm timeslot and gained more total viewers and households than any other scripted series in the timeslot.[37] The series has the network's third best performing premiere season in viewers aged 18–49, in viewers aged 18–34, and in total viewers.[38]

No. Title Air date 18–49 rating Viewers
(millions)
Weekly rank
1 "Pilot" June 23, 2011 (2011-06-23) 1.6[22] 4.64[22] #9[34]
2 "Errors and Omissions" June 30, 2011 (2011-06-30) 1.2[23] 3.89[23] #19[39]
3 "Inside Track" July 7, 2011 (2011-07-07) 1.3[24] 4.53[24] #10[40]
4 "Dirty Little Secrets" July 14, 2011 (2011-07-14) 1.3[25] 4.38[25] #17[41]
5 "Bail Out" July 21, 2011 (2011-07-21) 1.5[26] 4.38[26] #16[42]
6 "Tricks of the Trade" July 28, 2011 (2011-07-28) 1.5[27] 4.44[27] #14[43]
7 "Play the Man" August 4, 2011 (2011-08-04) 1.3[28] 4.03[28] N/A[44]
8 "Identity Crisis" August 11, 2011 (2011-08-11) 1.2[29] 3.96[29] #23[45]
9 "Undefeated" August 18, 2011 (2011-08-18) 1.5[30] 4.46[30] #15[46]
10 "Shelf Life" August 25, 2011 (2011-08-25) 1.2[31] 3.82[31] #22[47]
11 "Rules of the Game" September 1, 2011 (2011-09-01) 1.2[32] 3.96[32] #11[48]
12 "Dog Fight" September 8, 2011 (2011-09-08) 1.3[33] 3.47[33] N/A[49]

Home media release[edit]

Suits: Season One
Set details Special features
  • Audio Commentaries
    • "Pilot" by Aaron Korsh, David Bartis, Gabriel Macht and Patrick J. Adams
    • "Dog Fight" by Korsh, Bartis, Macht and Adams
  • Extended Pilot
  • Deleted scenes
  • Bloopers
  • "Cross Examination: Fan Q&A"
  • UltraViolet access
Release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
May 1, 2012 April 30, 2012 July 6, 2012

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Exclusive: More USA Summer Premieres: "Burn Notice," "Suits" on Thursday, June 23; "Royal Pains," "Necessary Roughness" on Wednesday, June 29". The Futon Critic. April 8, 2011. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "USA Network Announces Slate of "Character" Driven Projects for 2010-2011". The Futon Critic. April 5, 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2012. 
  3. ^ Abrams, Natalie (April 5, 2010). "USA Network's Fall Slate Includes Modern-Day Robin Hood, Steve Carell-Produced Dramedy". TV Guide. Retrieved August 7, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Development Update: Monday, May 17". The Futon Critic. March 17, 2010. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  5. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (January 19, 2011). "USA Network Picks Up Two New Series". Deadline.com. Retrieved August 7, 2012. 
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  7. ^ Ng, Philiana (June 23, 2011). "'Suits' Originally Set on Wall Street Before Getting Retooled for USA, Says Creator". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
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  10. ^ a b "USA Network Kicks Off Sizzling Summer With Entertainment Weekly and the Haagen-Dazs(R) Brand". The Futon Critic. May 27, 2011. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  11. ^ Sellitti, Renata (June 5, 2011). "USA Network’s Summer of Originals Screenings: Pier Perfection". Poptimal. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  12. ^ Wagner, Curt (June 20, 2011). "USA promotes new shows in Chicago with free ice cream". RedEye. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  13. ^ "Development Update: Monday, July 26". The Futon Crtic. July 26, 2010. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  14. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (July 26, 2010). "Gabriel Macht To Star In USA’s ‘Legal Mind’". Deadline.com. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  15. ^ "Development Update: Wednesday, July 7". The Futon Critic. July 7, 2010. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
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  17. ^ "Development Update: Tuesday, August 10". The Futon Critic. August 10, 2010. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
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External links[edit]