Judge Milton "Hardcase" Hardcastle - retired. After years of working for a judicial system that put guilty criminals back on the streets due to technicalities, he takes the law into his own hands by searching them out. Aiding him is a one time car thief now professional driver Mark "Skid" McCormick. McCormick, brought before the judge's final case, is arrested for an "honest steal." Hardcastle gives him the choice of prison or helping him with the 200 plus cold cases. Relunctanly choosing to aid the judge, Hardcastle and McCormick start a loose friendship of justice and con in order to finally those who deserved it in prison.
Hardcastle is quite upset when he is criticized in Without Sin, the autobiography of retired mobster Joseph Cadillac. Figuring that the mob, also the subject of Cadillac's criticism, will be angered as well, Hardcastle has Mark follow the author. Mark's surveillance turns into a full blown car chase after Cadillac realizes that he is being tailed. Based on his driver's reckless driving, Cadillac is pulled over by the police and his car is impounded. Later, Hardcastle is surprised when Cadillac comes to him for help. Upon learning that the mob has kidnapped Cadillac's innocent son (a priest) in order to get the evidence the mobster used to write the book, Hardcastle agrees to help. One complication: The evidence is in the car that the police impounded (pending a judge's ruling regarding the legality of a search). Deciding that a life is more important than the letter of the law, Hardcastle breaks into the impound yard and retrieves the evidence. With evidence in hand, Hardcastle and Cad
Boxer Kid Calico is told to throw a fight in order to keep his kidnapped father alive.
A group of retired judges decide to take the law into their own hands by delivering their own verdicts to criminals who slipped through the system or were given lesser sentences based on technicalities or lack of evidence.
A gang member is remanded into the judge's custody only to stay in the guest house with Mark, while the judge and Mark go after a psychiatrist who has been taping private sessions with clients revealing vital damaging information.
Mark and Hardcastle take a group of misfit kids to a local prison in order to scare them straight; but while they are there, they are taken hostages by prisoners who are frustrated because of the repeated abuse from the guards and the warden.
After finding his sister-in-law missing and her apartment ransacked, Hardcastle discovers that she had been secretly following her professor in hopes of earning extra credit in a police procedures course.
Hardcastle wants to investigate a woman named Tina Grey. It seems that a lot men die whom she was ""with"". When Hardcastle goes to the police for info, a Captain Filapiano, who doesn't like Hardcastle asks him to leave. Hardcastle then tells McCormick to get close to her. As they get closer, a gangster named Joe Beiber, whom she has been seeing, and who is insanely jealous abducts them. When Hardcastle goes to Filapiano to find out what's going, he discovers that she is The Black Widow, a former prostitute turned police informant. She works for Filapiano, and part of their arrangement is that in exchange for getting info on certain criminals, she frames someone close to the criminal she is working on, or someone who had access to the info she was going to get. Beiber was her latest target but her fall guy was killed by Beiber before she could get what she was suppose to. So Filapiano suggest that they use McCormick. Hardcastle saves McCormick and Tina's implicating Filapiano and Hardcas
Mark attends the funeral of an old friend, only to be surprised later to receive a message from her on his answering machine. After searching for evidence to her supposed "death," Mark and the judge find political reasons may be to blame for her disappearance.
Hardcastle & McCormick go undercover at a computerized dating service in order to find out why wealthy clients are turning up dead.
While driving through Arizona on his way home from Las Vegas, Mark is surprised to hear the voice of Nick Damion, a rock deejay he idolized in his youth, on local radio station KKSB. Back in California, Hardcastle is working on a dedication for the Pioneers of Music Hall of Fame Museum. Hearing that the Museum needs a master of ceremonies, Mark suggests Nick Damion. Returning to Arizona, Hardcastle and McCormick try to learn something from Jeannine Alexander, KKSB's manager. After helping Damion, who has been using the alias of Joe Cross, out of a fake drug charge, Mark convinces the deejay to return with him to California. Trying to find out why someone tried to frame Damion (as well as why the deejay originally went into hiding), Hardcastle begins to investigate Kello Records, a company that had received a great deal of air time in the deejay's old radio show. At the same time, Damion, who had gone into hiding after discovering that music executive Joe Kello had killed a singer named Danny Phillips to cover up a payola scheme, realizes that he needs to go public with the story. Hardcastle's investigation proves partially unnecessary for the case is resolved when Damion publicly accuses Kello at the Museum dedication. Afterwards, Damion is shocked to discover that Hardcastle has uncovered proof that Jeannine is working with Kello. As the series' penultimate episode ends, Damion gets a new deejay job at a Los Angeles station.
Hardcastle & McCormick set out to assist a woman lawyer who is an old friend of Hardcastle's convict a mobster who is running stolen property in semi trucks.
Hardcastle & McCormick travel to Rio to track down a drug runner.
As the series begins, ex-race car driver Mark McCormick accepts a job driving the Coyote X, an experimental car designed by a friend of his named Flip Johnson. Mark loses his job, however, after Flip is killed in a car accident and ownership of the car is granted to industrialist Martin Cody. Barbara Johnson, Flip's daughter, refuses to accept her father's death as an accident and, believing that Cody murdered Flip in order to get the Coyote, asks Mark to steal the experimental car. Agreeing, Mark sneaks into Cody's compound and steals the car. The next morning, the police, who identified Mark when he stopped to save a police officer's life, move in and arrest the ex-race car driver. To Cody's regret, the police are unable to locate the Coyote. Brought before Hardcastle, who is presiding over his last case, Mark is given a choice: help the judge round-up two hundred men who walked out of the judge's courtroom on technicalities or go back to prison.
Hardcastle persuades an old friend, Buddy Ebsen to obtain a role in a movie in which the movie producer is using his films to cover up his drug smuggling operation.
A critically-wounded criminal admits to being paid to frame a former baseball player, Duke McGuire, for murder. Feeling responsible for his false incarceration since he was the presiding judge, Hardcastle tries to help McGuire become a baseball player once again. But his attempt at a comeback is threatened when drugs are found in his locker.
Innocently given a friendly kiss by a woman named Aleeya "Ali" Casir, Mark unwittingly falls into the middle of a major international incident: Assuming that Mark is the American his daughter has been living with, Sheik Abdullah Casir, Ali's father and the leader of an oil rich mid-eastern country, decides to take whatever steps are necessary to protect his son's honor. As a result, Casir orders his Americanized daughter to marry Mark. Meanwhile, Hassan and Rabin, Casir's sons, begin to set up a drug dealing operation. Hoping to maintain friendly relations with Casir, the State department approaches Mark and "requests" that he marry Ali. Although Hardcastle tries to explain to Casir that Biff Anderson, Ali's real boyfriend, would be more than willing to take Mark's place, Casir, having already made an official announcement, is unwilling to change his plans. Forced to follow through with the wedding, Hardcastle, having learned about Casir's drug dealing sons, decides to use the ceremony as an opportunity to expose Hassan and Rabin. Confronted with his sons' guilt, an angered Casir vows to spare himself grief by staying out of his children's lives. As such, the wedding is canceled. Later, Mark is amused to hear that Ali has left Biff to marry a 35 year old television executive.
Cleaning out his shed, Hardcastle comes across an old trophy belonging to Teddy Hendrix, his college roommate. Deciding to visit Teddy, who is now a basketball coach, Hardcastle walks into an attempted kidnapping. Since Teddy flees the scene before he has a chance to confront him, the judge visits his old friend's wife. Thanks to Fran Hendrix, Hardcastle discovers that Teddy has been having a disagreement with a man named Roy Barlow. Realizing that his best chance of solving his problems lays with the judge, Teddy decides to tell Hardcastle about how he has been fixing basketball games. Agreeing to help his friend come clean, Hardcastle arranges a meeting between Teddy and the district attorney's office. Before Teddy can testify, Fran, who has secretly joined forces with Barlow, lures her husband into a trap. Meanwhile, Fran also helps Barlow capture Hardcastle. Thanks to Mark and their old basketball team buddies, Hardcastle and Teddy are rescued. Additionally, Mark and the former team members capture Fran and Barlow.
Mark is thrilled when he gets a shot at racing in big leagues only to learn that his sponsor's auto parts business gets their inventory from stolen cars.
A law student at a local college claims that her brother, who was sent to prison for 20 years by Judge Hardcastle, was framed for murder. He ignores her, but when someone tries to kidnap her, he reviews the case and sends Mark on an undercover investigation to the school as a football player.
Teddy, McCormick's cellmate in prison, is out on parole. He has been staying with Mark in the guesthouse, without Hardcastle's knowledge or permission. Now, his parole officer, Quinlan, informs him that due to a minor infraction, he has the power to send him back to prison, unless he pays him a thousand dollars a week. While at the guest house, he overheard Hardcastle telling McCormick that they are going to play cards with some other judges. While they are playing, someone breaks in a robs them, and he is wearing the watch that McCormick lent to Teddy. When Hardcastle and McCormick go home McCormick tells Hardcastle that Teddy's the robber and he has been staying with McCormick in the guest house, they also discover that the guest house has been robbed also. One of the judges discovers that the robber is Teddy and learning that he McCormick were cellmates, suspects that McCormick was in on the robbery, and has him arrested. Teddy returns and is caught by Hardcastle, who in turn gets M
Hardcastle is up for a spot on the Supreme Court bench but some people don't want him to be chosen.
Keenan Wynn guest stars as an old bank robber who was recently released from prison who attempts to locate the armored car that he had robbed in the '40s.
On vacation, Hardcastle travels down to Canary Creek, California to participate in an annual fishing contest. To Hardcastle's surprise, Tina Cutter, the local sheriff's sixteen year old daughter, accuses him of rape. While transporting the judge to jail, Sheriff Dale Cutler tries to kill him. Thanks to Mark's timely arrival, the sheriff is forced to postpone his assassination. Realizing that the judge is in mortal danger, Mark, posing as a drunk, breaks his friend out of jail. Once free, Hardcastle begins to question why Tina framed him. Recalling an earlier meeting with the sheriff, Hardcastle, who has concluded that Tina's own father set up the false rape, realizes that he had mentioned a plane he came across while fishing. Returning to the fishing site, Hardcastle seeing the sheriff and some of the local residents dismantling the plane, ascertains that the sheriff had discovered a downed drug transport. Following the sheriff, Hardcastle and McCormick watch as the residents try to sell the drugs to a major dealer. With the help of a conveniently located forklift, Hardcastle and McCormick manage to capture the sheriff and the dealers. Later, once the sheriff's plans have been exposed, Hardcastle is cleared of the rape charges.
Hardcastle returns to his hometown in Arkansas for a high school reunion, only to learn from an old friend that people are being swindled out of their farms. After the friend is murdered, and his daughter asks the judge for help, Hardcastle enlists McCormick to burglarize the local land office.