‘Lucky Hank’ Episode 1: Recap & Ending, Explained – Does Hank Get Retained As The Chair Of The English Dept.?


Based on a novel named “Straight Man,” AMC’s series “Lucky Hank” takes us inside the life of a troubled professor, played by the brilliant Bob Odenkirk, who is dealing with a lot of issues on the professional and personal fronts. The situations he lands up in are quite absurd and funny, to say the least, and he has a hard time navigating his way through life and dealing with all the baggage from his past that he has been carrying over his shoulders for quite some time.

Spoilers Ahead

Hank Lands Up In Trouble 

William Henry Devereaux Jr., aka Hank, hated to be called “Jr.” for some reason he didn’t like discussing. William was a professor at Railton College, and in addition to that, he was also the chair of the English department. William knew that he enjoyed a lot of perks because of his administrative position, and he didn’t mind taking advantage of them once in a while. It was one of those unusual days when William wasn’t in the best of moods. Something was eating him up, and it felt like he was running away from facing some issues that had been piling up for quite some time. Bartow Williams-Stevens, one of the students in Hank’s class, was reading out something and Hank paid no attention to it at all. Hank was feeling very distracted that day, and he probably lost Bartow in the first few sentences only.

After Bartow was done reading his passage, Hank asked if anybody had any constructive criticism or any other remark that they would like to make, and when nobody had anything more to add, Hank decided to move on. Bartow interrupted his teacher and asked him what he thought about his story, but Hank tried to avoid the question and told him that he had already made some remarks in his earlier story that he could refer to. Hank said that the aim of the workshop was that a person’s writing could get reviewed by his peers, but Bartow became persistent, and that’s when all hell broke loose. Hank said that Bartow himself didn’t know what he wanted to address in his story and that he had a wandering point of view. He called his sentences structureless and told him that if he wrote like that, he would be at risk of alienating the reader.

Bartow defended his point of view and said that he did it on purpose and it was not a mistake as his professor was pointing it out to be. The argument became quite heated, and Hank ended up saying that Railton College was mediocrity’s capital, and the fact that Bartow was there said a lot about his potential. It was an unsavory comment, and Hank knew that he would have to face the consequences of it the moment he uttered those words. But the damage had already been done, and Hank made his case even worse by going a notch ahead and telling Bartow that he was not the genius that he presumed himself to be and that even if he tried working on himself, he could never achieve what he wanted to. The class got dismissed, and somewhere Hank also knew that he had dug his own grave, but he didn’t feel apologetic about it and was ready to stand by what he had said.

‘Lucky Hank’ Episode 1: Ending Explained – How Does Hank Get Retained As The Chair?

The next day, an article was published in the Railton College Student Newspaper, which talked about how Hank had defamed the entire college fraternity. Hank’s inbox was pouring with messages as a lot of his colleagues were hurling abuses at him because they took the insult personally. But it felt like there was some other thing that was bothering Hank quite a bit. In the morning, he was reading a newspaper that his wife, Lily, had disposed of a few days earlier. The newspaper had published an article about his father’s retirement, and Hank couldn’t seem to get over the fact that he had to learn about it through the papers. Hank and his father weren’t exactly on speaking terms, and he thought that the retirement was going to disrupt the delicate balance that they had been able to achieve. Hank received a lot of backlash from the teachers, who had made up their minds to remove him from the position of English department chair and conduct a re-election. Hank still showed that he wasn’t affected by any of it, and in fact, he made it look like the administration would do him a big favor by firing him from his job. He told Lily that they could go to New York, and she could look for a job there. He raised Lily’s hopes, as for the longest time, she had wanted to escape from the city and settle somewhere else. She had gotten an offer in the past from a school in New York, but she declined it because Hank never wanted to move out of the city.

Bartow’s parents had come to meet Dean Jacob Rose and express their concerns over what had happened to their child. They wanted a written apology from Hank, and the Dean was just trying to mitigate the situation. Jacob was trying to cover up by saying that Hank was suffering from a lot of ailments, and that is why he had ended up being rude to their kid, but obviously, the parents were in no mood for reconciliation. Jacob told Hank to just apologize to them and put an end to the matter, but Hank was also very stubborn, and he said that he had no regrets about what he had done.

In “Lucky Hank” Episode 1, our annoyed professor got an unexpected call from Marnie Cole, who worked at his father’s office. Marnie told him that Stephanie, his father’s third wife, had left him, and she wanted him to know about it. Marnie asked Hank if he could come over and be there for his father, as he was having a hard time coping. Hank told her that if his father wanted him to be there, he should have directly called him and not asked his assistant to do so. Hank had a lot of unresolved issues with his father, and no matter how unaffected he pretended to be, it really bothered him that Devereaux Sr. had never tried contacting him for the past 15 years.

After the call for votes, Hank was removed as the chair, but the problem was that the teachers hadn’t decided who would replace him. Once again, the quorum sat down together to select their new chair, and due to some confusion, Hank was the only person who got more than one vote. The teachers didn’t understand what had happened, as all their attempts had turned futile, and Hank was reinstated in his position for a fresh term of three years. Hank wanted to make up with his wife, as she was angry with him for being so indecisive and for his inability to leave the city, and for finding random excuses to stay there. Lily used to go for runs whenever she wanted to clear her head, and Hank caught up with her and told her that he had been made the chair again.

Professor Devereaux Jr. had a knack for landing in trouble, and in the upcoming episodes of “Lucky Hank,” we will witness how he tackles those unresolved issues that had been bothering him for quite some time and how he deals with the absurdities of his own existence.

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Sushrut Gopesh
Sushrut Gopesh
I came to Mumbai to bring characters to life. I like to dwell in the cinematic world and ponder over philosophical thoughts. I believe in the kind of cinema that not necessarily makes you laugh or cry but moves something inside you.

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