Christos Kalohoridis/USA Network
June 13, 2012 at 09:24 PM EDT

On Thursday, USA’s Suits returns for its second season (10 p.m. ET). Whether you’re already a fan of the show looking for a refresher and scoop, or someone who’s never seen an episode but wants to jump in (you should), our Who’s Who gallery is for you. We get you caught up, and let the stars tell you where their characters are headed.

Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams, pictured left)

His Past: He’s a brilliant ex-stoner who got kicked out of college for selling an exam and thought he’d never achieve his dream of being a lawyer. He went on to use his photographic memory, which allows him to consume knowledge and retain it like no one else, to earn cash by taking the LSAT and bar exam for people. Needing a quick $25,000 to keep his grandmother in a good nursing home, he agreed to help his pot-dealing best friend Trevor on a hotel room delivery. Figuring out the police were waiting for him, he ran and stumbled into a suite where New York City’s top legal closer, Harvey Specter, was holding interviews for a new associate. Bored with the usual applicant pool and impressed with Mike’s story and unique skill set, Harvey hired him — despite the fact that the firm Pearson Hardman only employs Harvard Law alums. So they’ve got to keep his secret, or they’ll both be out of a job.

His Future: In the season 1 finale, Trevor found out Mike was now seeing his ex, Jenny, and to get revenge, Trevor showed up at the firm and told managing partner Jessica Pearson that he had something to tell her. “People were worried that we would somehow cheat them out of it, that there would be an earthquake and Trevor never gets to talk to her, and then it’s over. It won’t be that. We’re not walking away from the real stakes that we set up,” Adams says. “But it’s also not as black and white as ‘This is what it is, therefore you’re fired.’ It’s gonna get more complicated.”

NEXT: Harvey Specter

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