We open on the wood paneled Williamsburg Diner, complete with beanie-adorning, flannel-loving guys that America would collectively recognize as hipsters. Bustling around in a uniform modeled after the Golden Arches, is Max (Kat Dennings). It is in the next minute and a half that we learn we love her.
Two hipster dudes in a booth snap at her for some horseradish their Russian waitress, Paulina, hasn’t brought them. Snapping is a real nasty thing to do. The only times you should ever snap at someone is if you are attending a beat poetry reading or shutting down your best friend’s latest attempt to make Lady GaGa ready-to-wear. You’re also allowed to positively snap-point at someone and do that squinty thing with your eyes that says “You’ve got it!” That’s okay, but never snap at someone to get something for you, especially not a sassy waitress like Max. She will get all up in your grill with some harder snaps and then give a big “Awwww snap!” when she tells you your snapping dries up her vagina.
I love a no-nonsense woman that can shut it down!
Of course, the hipster dudes sheepishly take off their beanies because they rightfully feel like idiots.
Max goes to get the horseradish out of the walk-in when we hear the mysterious Paulina that has been tripping up Max’s game out in the dining room. Apparently, she has very little to few moral fibers since she is definitely copulating amongst the sauce shelves and boxes of produce. This is the end of her existence. It’s okay. The only reason she was even in this episode was to exemplify that Max’s boss is terrible at hiring people.
Aside from Paulina– the assumed sexual deviant– Max’s boss has also previously hired a meth addict. Obviously his judgement is right onnn.
Max comes in the next day with a tray of cupcakes because we find out that’s what she’s awesome at: making red velvet delights. Shortly after, Max’s boss Bryce Lee (who is definitely not trying to cop any of Bruce’s steeze, he definitely heard the name on One Tree Hill and loved it) comes in and tells Max he has fired Paulina. Being a smart and industrious young woman, Max decides to tell Bryce that she needs the hours and he shouldn’t hire anyone, but it’s too late! Bryce has used his incredible hiring incompetence to bring on Caroline (Beth Behrs) as a waitress.
Caroline has supposedly worked for all sorts of to-do restaurants in Manhattan. Although she looks the part of posh hostess in her Chanel, we know right off the bat this girl has never waited a day in her life. This is demonstrated by how she “marries” and then “divorces” the ketchup. Max is stuck training her and immediately is like, “heeellll-to-the-no”.
Max eventually finds out that Caroline is actually Caroline Channing, daughter of was-bajillionaire Martin Channing who had some sort of gnarly ponzi scheme that affected all of New York City. All of her assets have been frozen and Max couldn’t be less sympathetic.
At the end of the night, Caroline starts talking about how dumb the baker of the cupcakes is because they’re only selling them for $1.50, when in real life on the Upper East Side, people are paying $7 a cupcake. Max defensively reveals she makes the cupcakes and Caroline reveals she’s already started selling the cupcakes for $7. Max does not trust Caroline for a second now. She’s proven to be a liar with her resume and now she is kind of a thief. I wouldn’t trust her either.
Max and Caroline part ways, with Caroline saying she is staying with friends in the city. Max doesn’t care because she’s “dead inside”. Max goes home and the show solidifies its hip Brooklyn location with a living room full of dudes that look like they fell out of a 2007 Urban Outfitters catalog. Apparently her boyfriend, Robbie, is having “band practice” which is just a couch of weirdos listening to other people’s music and then “playing it in their heads”.
We know Robbie sucks. Robbie is obnoxious and instead of formulating sentences, he takes off his shirt. I immediately was like, “Ew, what is this strong woman doing with this GQ puff piece?” The answer is the abs, as she gives him one minute of bedroom time for each of them (eight, to be precise, because six packs are sooo 2010).
I couldn’t find a photo of Noah Mills as Robbie, so here is a photo of just Noah Mills to show you what we’re up against here. It’s going to be hard, I realize, but I promise you, Robbie is the worst.
The next day, Max gets on the subway to hilariously kiss a woman on accident (my favorite part, LOL) and then find Caroline snoozing on the bench. She goes to wake her up and Caroline tazes her because she felt like she was “being raped”. Could Caroline Channing be any more clueless? No, but it works. Her ridiculous naivete and optimistic spunk make her the perfect foil to Max’s cynicism.
At this point, Max can’t help but feel a tiny bit sorry for the poor high-society soul and takes her to her apartment before going to her other job. Caroline lets out the hilarious, “Oh my god, you’ve been robbed!” line and you’re like, “Aww. You are totally related to Cher Horowitz in my mind and I love you for it.”
Max’s other job is working for another socialite, an insufferable woman named Peach who has the audacity to not only name her twins Brad and Angelina, but also makes Max open bottles of water for her and all the other things assistants have nightmares about. Peach tells Max that yes, Caronline is broke as fuuuhhhhh and that she tried to stay with six friends who all pretended they weren’t home! #DEVASTATING
While Max is starting to feel pangs of sympathy on the Upper East Side, Caroline is washing her disgusting uniform at Max’s. Of course, Buns Of Steel comes in and hits on her. Of course. He gets all up in her personal space and I was really happy that Caroline shut that dowwwn. Sure, he’s hot but he sucks! He sucks! I hate Robbie and there is nothing you can do to stop me!
Max and Caronline meet at the diner for work. Max tries to talk to her about how she has no friends, but Caroline thinks she’s going to talk about how Robbie hit on her. She flubs and says, “What? Did he say I came on to him?” She doesn’t go into detail, but tells Max she deserves better, as all future best friends should say when they’re dating jerks. Max retorts by saying she couldn’t believe she started to feel sorry for Caroline and walks out of the diner, leaving Caroline to deal with a a crowd of Arcade Fire concert patrons. That’s not even a joke I made up, that is what happens.
Max goes home and catches Robbie, that old beefcake in the grass, cheating on her. I knew I hated him, and this helps Max realize that maybe Caroline isn’t such a bad person.
Back at the diner, Caroline is busting her butt. There is a great little emotional moment between the two as Max helps Caroline serve. “She may have gotten your order wrong, but she gets some things right,” Max says to the customers, smiling at Caroline with a wonderful, grateful little look in her eyes. I love this because yes, Max will cut a bitch, but she can also see the errors of her ways and resolve herself.
Max asks Caroline to be her new roommate (since she is kicking old Abs out) and after a biting remark about the condition of Max’s couch, she accepts.
The episode ends with Caroline and Max hanging out on Caroline’s horse that they’ve managed to get into the small backyard of the apartment building. Did I mention that is all basically Caroline has left? Yep. That’s it, a horse and memories of Switzerland.
Caroline pitches a plan to Max: they should open a cupcake business. Caroline has figured it all out. All it will take is $250,000, which they could make in a year if they each worked two jobs (wouldn’t be a stretch for Max). It ends with the perfect picture of our protagonists, one’s confidence starkly contrasted against the other’s skepticism. At the end of each episode, they calculate how much they have earned towards their business. The pilot episode’s total: $387.25.
Will Max’s baking expertise and Caroline’s business savvy work its way to their goal? I hope so, but not too quickly. Not that I’m a sadist or anything, but I’d love to see Caroline struggle a little more and I’d love to see Max having to deal with it. I know, that’s terrible, but this is television! And nothing makes for better entertainment than a dynamic odd-coupled total-babe-duo having to hash it out in the world.