Eight Things to Know About Ray Donovan

Season 2 picks up where season 1 left off—the middle of a big ol' mess. Here's what you need to know.

ray donovan cast showtime

The cast of Ray Donovan. / Photo via Showtime

Note: The following includes spoilers from Season 1.


Synopsis: Ray Donovan is a Hollywood fixer with a whole lot of personal baggage. Think: Showtime’s version of Scandal that wants to be the next Sopranos, but isn’t. Not even close. Not yet, anyway.


Synopsis with Boston spin: This is what happens when Southie goes Cali.


Ray Donovan is not a sympathetic character. He cheats on his wife, has a violent streak, and by the time we find out late in season 1 that Ray was molested as a child by a priest, he’s already too despicable for audiences to pity him. This is not to say that Ray doesn’t have redeeming qualities, but they flicker like dying candles against his reprehensible behavior. The only person more contemptible than Ray is…


… Mickey Donovan, Ray’s Whitey-esque father who brings trouble wherever he goes. Fun fact: actor Jon Voight, who was nominated for an Emmy last week for the role, sounded off on Fox News this past weekend with numerous grievances against the Obama administration. Look, if you want to go full Clint Eastwood, that’s fine, but maybe don’t do it the same weekend your character goes swimming in Mexico with talking dolphins?


Ray’s wife Abby Donovan has the thickest accent—and the worst one. Abby does her best to play housewife in her and Ray’s big house in Calabasas, Calif., but deep down she has the edge of a tough chick from Southie.


Ray’s brothers, Terry, Bunchy, and Daryll, operate the Donovan family boxing club à la The Fighter. Here, they engage in wholesome activities like Fight Night, as well as kidnapping and killing the priest who molested them when they were kids. Half-brother Daryll is played by Brockton native Pooch Hall.


The little girl from Moneyball is all grown up. Ray and Abby’s older child, Bridget, played by Kerris Dorsey, gets into all sorts of trouble on the show, including but not limited to piercings, bad boys, and other standard-issue daddy issues. At the start of season 2, she’s still mostly Ray’s little girl, but trouble is clearly on the horizon.


Hank Azaria plays an important part in season 2. And if the season 2 promo is any indication, he delivers some pretty good dramatic acting too. Known for his many, many voices on The Simpsons, Azaria plays a new fed trying to take down a Donovan. Any Donovan. It doesn’t matter. He just wants a promotion to run the FBI.