The Baker and the Beauty Pilot Review
Dean Georgaris (Bluff City Law, The Brave) has done it again! In a world where stress and anxiousness feel like the new norm for some, this show is a breath of fresh air. It’ll make you laugh, give you the warm and fuzzies, and make you blush (sometimes all at the same time). The Baker and the Beauty is ABC’s newest show, based on the Israeli show of the same name. It follows a man named Daniel, who works in his family bakery and is all around your everyday guy. His life changes completely when he meets Noa Hamilton (Nathalie Kelley), a world-famous superstar in a hectic situation.
Can you imagine meeting one of the most famous people in the world and watching your life change before your eyes? Let’s talk about it.
The show opens with America’s new favorite family: the Garcia’s! We’re introduced to our main protagonist, Daniel (Victor Rasuk), his brother, Mateo, and his father, Carlos, while they work in the family bakery. Mateo teases Daniel about his anniversary dinner with long time girlfriend, Vanessa. She has them set to eat at one of the fancier restaurants in town, despite it being a little out of budget. As the teasing continues, we meet his mother, Mari, and his little sister, Natalie, all equally curious to when Daniel will get married. He does not seem too thrilled about the idea, nor does the family care too much for Vanessa.
A Dinner Date
At dinner, Vanessa seems nice enough. She is chatty and knows what she wants. Her matter-of-fact ways seem to make Daniel more nervous, and he excuses himself to the bathroom to calm down. Giving himself a pep talk about his future, someone exits the stall… none other than Noa Hamilton! We first saw her on the TV at the bakery; she recently broke up with her boyfriend (guest star Noah Mills) and is in Miami. He seems unaware of who she is, but he listens to her advice. The bathroom scene is one of my favorites of the episode; its a raw and honest look at how Daniel feels when he thinks he’s alone. Unbeknownst to him, Noa has heard it all.
Its Not a Love Story, Baby Said NO
Back at the dinner table, Vanessa seems up to something. She gets up in front of all the restaurant-goers and begins to sing “Love Story” by Taylor Swift. Oh man, you know what’s about to happen. She proposes to Daniel, with a ring she bought herself. He sits uncomfortably as she waits for his response and everyone films on their phones. Noa especially seems interested at her dinner table. Much to the shock of everyone, Daniel says no. Vanessa, furious, tosses the soup on Daniel and storms out.
Ride of his Life
The next part of the episode follows Daniel’s adventures with Noa. He is walking down the streets of Miami, trying to get home, yet no one can pick him up. Up pulls an SUV, and Noa’s head pops out. She invites him in, and reluctantly, he agrees. We meet Noa’s best friend and her manager, Lewis, who seems less than thrilled about Noa’s decisions. Yet, together they deface a billboard with her face on it, bake together in a kitchen (and how cute is that scene), and end the night in a night club, dancing while many look on. The ride does not last, however, as Lewis, tells Daniel that every time Noa gets her heartbroken, she does this. She takes in an “ordinary” person to live their life and then drops them when she’s done. Hurt, Daniel leaves before Noa even knows he’s gone.
The family is going nuts as the details unfold. Mateo and Natalie are at a party when Mateo finds out about Daniel and Vanessa. When Vanessa calls the house looking for Daniel, his family rallies to find out his location. They soon discover that he’s with Noa Hamilton, and hilarity ensues. Seriously, this family is a riot. They’re loving but insane, and I love every scene they have together. Once Daniel comes home, the bakery is swamped. Daniel does not understand why, but Natalie soon tells him his girlfriend is the reason for it. She posted about his bakery on social media.
Vanessa, who previously decided that she would give Daniel a second chance following the night previous’s actions, tries to come into the bakery. She soon discovers what happened the night before. She’s furious, of course, and storms away a second time. Daniel wakes up, and the viewers are lead to believe she’s waiting for him outside. He gets up and goes out the back door to find none other than… Noa! The first episode ends with our two protagonists smiling at each other.
The Vibe: Scenery and Music
I admit I had my fears about this show, not because I ever expected bad TV from someone like Dean Georgaris, but because this is not a show I’d typically watch. Perhaps its a mix of being a fan of Georgaris’ and the current climate we live in, but I absolutely loved this pilot. The scenery of Miami was stunning–from the nightlife to the bakery, to each specific set. When you tie in the music (which was perfect), you genuinely have a beautiful dynamic. One of my favorite parts of a show, other than the obvious areas, is the background and how it is set up. I truly believe it makes a scene.
Characters, and Chemistry for Days
Sometimes in a pilot, the characters can be choppy or seem forced. That is not the case with any role in this show. First, the mother of the family, Mari (Lisa Vidal), is absolutely hilarious (loved the line about “the mother that smothers), and if you turned the TV on in the middle of the episode, you would think this was a real family. And Noa and Daniel? Oh my gosh, it’s SO good. Nathalie can say so much with a tiny smile and her eyes. I feel she could make anyone fall for her. Daniel is so lovable as a character, and I love how authentic he feels.
Even our supporting characters are multi-dimensional. Lewis, who seems cruel in the scene with Daniel in the club, cares deeply for Noa and has her best interests at heart. What about Vanessa? She might seem crazy to the average viewer, but she is a woman who knows what she wants and has been successful in life without the assistance of a man. Any woman who strives for that in life can appreciate that. Finally, I love the little sister, Natalie, and her unique story as well. She’s got the pressure of her parents to get into an ivy league school, all while coming of age as a teenager. We all know how stressful that can be.
And for my own selfish reasoning, I was thrilled to see Noah Mills make a cameo, even if he played a jerk!
What We Need Right Now
Overall, this show is full of heart and excitement. Perhaps right now, we live through Daniel and Noa as we social distance and watch their love blossom. As one would expect, this will not be an easy journey for either of them, but I’m excited to see where it goes. I personally did not watch the Israeli version, so I am truly watching this with a clean slate and open mindset. For anyone who needs a break from the crazy, and wants to go on a ride with these characters, this is a show you do not want to miss.
Tune in to The Baker and the Beauty Monday nights, 10 pm eastern on ABC.