Abby’s Episode 1 (Pilot)
Setting the Scene:
What may have started out as a few neighbors having a few drinks after work to blow off some steam – Turns into a full blown bar in the backyard of Abby’s home (see name of show). But this isn’t your average bar in San Diego, it is unlicensed and it’s not for everyone. There is a vetting process and there are rules. We will get to those later. I’m also going to add this disclaimer…I wish I would have thought of this myself. Bucket List Item #5: Own a bar. This would have been a sweet way to do so. Abby I am taking notes.
We start with episode with Abby (Natalie Morales) serving a drink to Fred (Neil Flynn), a regular and by regular I mean he’s been at his stool every day for 3 years, in his words he hasn’t missed a single day. When it came time for Fred to pay for his drink, he decided his long time commitment to Abby’s bar and his stool he deserves free drinks. He in return received an eye roll and paid up for his drink.
Beth (Jessica Chaffin) another regular joins Fred with a dart board a gift she bought for her boys and quickly regretted. From across the bar we are introduced to James (Leonard Ouzts) asking if they can keep the dart board and volunteers to figure out how the scoring works. From there Abby requests a pros and cons list for why they should or shouldn’t keep the dart board. Our three regulars dive in. “Con drunk people throwing pointy things” Rosie (Kimia Behpoornia) fellow bartender with Abby chimes in. Now we have met the “staff” at Abby’s and the regulars. So where will the rest of the episode take us…?
The Fact Check:
Every bar has it’s “thing” some roll dice for shots, Abby’s has the fact check. In the pros/cons over the dart board Abby adds a con that “darts feels kind of British” to which Fred questions her. Abby pulls out a bell and with peer pressure the challenge is placed. From there James heads to “the books” and finds the origin of darts. Abby wins the fact check challenge. As with any challenge there has to be a punishment. Abby pulls out a old red cooler with punishment written on a piece of ducting. Pulling out a silo lime green can of something “not beer” to which Fred must consume. BEST GAME EVER!
The New Guy:
A somewhat “nerdy” looking gent comes in looking for Abby. To his surprise the regulars jump down his throat and informs him of the vetting process of being a patron at Abby’s. A process that unfortunately involves drinking whatever Abby says you’ll drink and working your way up the hierarchy to get yourself a seat at the bar. New Guy is super confused by said rules; he is looking for Abby because he’s her landlord. In walks Abby with a jar of pickles, she’s confused since her landlord is an old lady. James as the bouncer is told to kick him out. We now learn New Guy’s name is Bill and he’s the nephew of the previous landlord and the house was left to him. He wants to know why there is a bar set up in the backyard. A bit risky setting up a bar in the backyard of a house you don’t own but hey why not. Take a few risks in life.
You need to shut this down:
Bill is not here for what Abby’s is all about. It’s illegal and he wants it shut down. As Abby isn’t going to let this go she’s going to fight for her bar. So she takes Bill on a tour of the backyard bar and at some point has to put her foot in her mouth. Bill isn’t going to be an easy guy to crack. Since Bill learned of the vetting process he tries to use it against Abby convincing a newbie they can sit anywhere. Doesn’t go according to plan they are content where they are.
This bar is my livelihood:
Abby tries to share with Bill exactly what this bar means to her. She’s spent years getting it to the way that works for her and she doesn’t want this to go anywhere. (i.e she doesn’t want to find a new job) Bill isn’t for it his life has been falling apart this last year and he just wants some stability.
That’s my stool:
Bill joined the regulars at the bar mistakenly sitting on Beth’s stool. After being asked to move down a stool Fred, Bill, and Beth begin to chat. Bill wants to know more about Abby and how the bar became what it is. The regulars take turns sharing bits of Abby’s past. She was a marine having done 2 tours when she returned she didn’t like how she was treated at various jobs so she started Abby’s. Growing up in bars because her dad was an alcoholic she knows how to run a good bar. This turns into the regular’s sharing stories of how even though Abby may seem rough but she also cares.
We learn there are 162 different rules for Abby’s including “all tacos are group tacos” Fred’s pride and joy.
You need a glass:
In hopes to make Bill feel like he is one of the regulars James hands him his own glass. All the regulars with a stool at the bar have their own glass. James gives him a Norwegian Beer Stein for his glass, Bill doesn’t object he takes it and Rosie fills it up.
On my knees begging:
I didn’t mention earlier but for the last bit Abby was retrieving Bill’s phone she had kicked from his hands. She returned to the bar willing to beg Bill to allow him to keep the bar open. “Let me keep the bar open” is Abby’s version of on her knees begging. Bill is willing to make it it work but he has stipulations. Basically Bill wants Abby to make this a legit business so he isn’t liable. Why should he be concerned about liability well a guy may have just started his shorts on fire. So I mean it’s warranted. Abby is not onboard with the new stipulations she doesn’t want this to turn into a chain establishment. She yells last drink and storms off into her house.
Beth knows they need to do something and go inside and talk to Abby in hopes to convince her to make some adjustments and not let her pride get the best of her. “It’s rule number 2 we don’t go inside” Rosie reminds Beth but they still go inside. They try to appeal to Abby’s caring side on the reasons they need Abby’s to stay open, they are family and don’t want to go back to their regular life. They all need the bar and they know she does too.
We return to the dartboard Bill and James are trying to figure out where the best place to hang the dartboard. Abby comes out to try and come to a compromise with Bill’s requests. Abby admits she needs the people at the bar and the people at the bar need it the way it is. Bill comes around with the requests but wanting to know this is a real partnership he needs Abby to make him…
As his final request Bill needs Abby to make him his “beloved” drink the Mai Tai. We close out the episode with Abby painfully making Bill his Mai Tai proving the regulars wrong. She even garnishes it with a cherry and well Bill likes “extra cherries” she adds in a handful. “You can toss this” Bill replies to which everyone’s jaws hit the floor. He only asked Abby to make him a Mai Tai to see how far she would go for the bar. “Well played.”
Well there you have it readers. The guts of the Abby’s pilot, this recap is a bit long, but it’s the first episode and it sets us up for what we will see in the following weeks as the series takes hold. We don’t want to leave anything out. Watching Abby’s I grow to want to knock that number 5 off my bucket list and open my own bar. Many viewers may see this as the modern day Cheers I’m not old enough to had been a faithful viewer, but I’ve seen a few episodes as reruns. I see the connections: bar owner, a faithful group of regulars, and new patrons coming in to shake things up.
I’ve never been one to sit down for a 30 minute comedy, but 2019 has turned over a new side of me. There are so many good comedies hitting network television and I AM HERE FOR IT!! Did you watch the Pilot of Abby’s? What did you think? Next week’s episode titled Rule Change means Bill’s presence at Abby’s isn’t going to be as smooth as everyone hopes.
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