Accused – Season 1 Episode 15 “Billy’s Story” Recap & Review

Billy’s Story

Episode 15 of Accused starts in Lansing, Michigan with Billy Carlson, a singer and celebrity, arriving for a court hearing with his wife. His fans are outside the premises cheering for him.

The scene then shifts to Billy’s personal recording studio at home, where he records a song with his son, Leo, and a friend, Bergs. Leo is living with his daughter Jo Jo in Billy’s house. After the song is recorded, there is a disagreement between the father and son about an old song that Billy was to record. He did not record it because he didn’t see the potential of it becoming a hit. Later, when Billy’s wife, Anne is going to see off Bergs, we observe Leo rehearsing the identical song on a guitar.

Later, Billy and Anne are sitting together. They discuss their son, Leo living with them at this age. Leo enters the room and tells them he must meet with Dana, his estranged wife. Billy and Anne attempt to persuade him against leaving but agree due to his stubbornness. Anne discovers that Billy has a medical scan scheduled for the next month. Billy is suffering from cancer which apparently is progressing at a faster rate now. Suddenly, they hear the fire alarm go off indicating a fire in the guesthouse.

Leo and Jo Jo are staying there, so Billy and Anne rush in as they call 911 for help. They find Leo in an unconscious state, with Jo Jo attempting to revive her father. Anne administers an injection to Leo, which successfully rouses him from his unconscious state.

The setting then shifts to the courtroom, where the prosecutor urges the judge to refrain from granting Billy preferential treatment due to his celebrity status, and instead impose the harshest sentence possible for the charge of manslaughter.

We go into the past, to the day when Leo is returning home from rehab. Jo Jo, along with her grandmother and Aunt Ramona are in the garden picking zucchini. Before Leo arrives home, Billy visits Dana, who is an addict, and bribes her to break contact with Leo and not meet either him or Jo Jo. She reluctantly agrees. 

Anne goes to pick up Leo at the rehab and is excited to see him. He tells her that he doesn’t want to be a burden on his parents but she consoles him and reminds him that he’s their son and can live with them. Anne and Leo arrive home where Jo Jo and Ramona welcome them. Later, Leo tries calling Dana but to no avail. Billy arrives and meets Leo, whom he informs about the album that he completed a couple of weeks ago. Leo mentions a song that Billy had once sung when Leo was ten years old, and he hums the song, suggesting that he could sing it. As a result, they include it in the album as a bonus track. 

As the day passes, Leo meets his cousins, who have come to visit. His younger brother, Tommy, still seems angry at him for his drug-fueled past and reminds him of an incident where Leo and Dana got high and left Ramona’s son, Jake, in the park. It is revealed that Leo is addicted to oxytocin. They have lunch when Tommy again brings up Leo’s past with drugs and tells how Dana is the worst thing to happen to the family. Billy has an appointment scheduled with his doctor, Dr. Nan. She informs him and Anne that his cancer is advancing rapidly and he needs to undergo surgery.

In the recording studio, Billy is singing the song Leo had requested earlier. After the recording, Bergs suggests that they drop this song as it doesn’t fit well with the album. It is later revealed that Billy had asked him to reject the song as he could not have done it himself. Leo identifies this fact and is unhappy about it. Later, Billy and Anne have a fight over the same thing. Leo has overheard them talk as he is waiting for Jo Jo to get ready for a boat ride. Before going out with Jo Jo, he finds oxytocin and gets high. While driving the boat, he dozes off and they narrowly avoid an accident. Jo Jo gets scared.

Dana arrives at home with Pete, his roommate in need of money. She is confronted by Anne who tells her to go away. Anne informs Billy about it when Jo Jo enters the room, crying and whimpering. She tells them about the incident in the boat. Billy confronts Leo about the incident. Leo admits to it and says that he won’t be able to overcome his addiction. Billy assures him that they will get whatever help is required. Billy visits Ramona. He informs her that he and Anne want to take custody of Jo Jo given the current circumstances. Dana would be required to sign the papers, so Billy asks Ramona to give him the gun that is with her husband for his own safety when he visits Dana.

At the court, Pete recounts the events of the night Billy visits Dana to get the custody signed. He informs the court that Billy took out the gun when he and Dana were having an argument and he threatened her to sign the papers. At home, Leo arrives and asks Billy and Anne the whereabouts of Jo Jo. They tell him that she is with Ramona and he cannot be a parent to her in this state. They ask him to sign the custody papers. He observes the papers and sees Dana’s signature on them. He asks them how they could get her signature when she was nowhere to be seen.

He loses his cool and runs away. They think that he might have gone to Ramona’s whom they ask to go somewhere safe. Just after, Billy observes that the recording studio is locked and Leo has consumed drugs trying to kill himself. As Anne is about to inject the medication, she realizes that Leo wanted to die and breaks the needle of the syringe. Just as the police arrive and observe the broken syringe, Billy confesses Anne’s crime to him as he explains to her that he wouldn’t be around for long due to his health but she needed to take care of Jo Jo.

Later, at the court, the jury finds Billy guilty of preventing Anne from saving Leo’s life and gives him four years in jail. The episode ends with Jo Jo picking fruits in the garden with Anne.

The Episode Review

The episode was nicely crafted and revolved around drug addiction. By not revealing who the victim was till the very end, Billy’s Story excels in building suspense. The makers did not choose the easy way out and characterized the ending as the lesser of the two possibilities. Billy asking for the gun proved to be the pivotal point in the story.

Anne’s crime was not actually a crime in her eyes as she was helping her son get relief from his lifelong struggle with drugs. Themes of sacrifice and familial love were prominent in Billy’s character, and his selfless decision-making will emotionally reverberate with all the viewers who make a part of themselves unhappy every day to make the people they care about happy.

The Breaking Bad allegory was visible in Anne’s actions not to save her own child. Such moral complexities were optimized well in episode 15. This episode brings Season 1 of Accused to a close and even though the first half produced more compelling drama and moral dilemmas, it is safe to say Accused really found its voice as an American offering in the second half.

Previous Episode

Expect A Full Season Write-Up When This Season Concludes!


  • Episode Rating

Leave a comment