Younger Recap: S1.E1-2 "Pilot" and "Liza Sows Her Oates"

Hilary Duff, Sutton Foster and Debi Mazar are starring in a show together, Younger, based on the book by the same name. There are so many things that we love in that sentence, you guys. To the tape!

We open on New Yawk City. Sutton aka Liza is unsuccessfully interviewing, after staying home to raise her daughter for 15 years. She offers to be an assistant, but they imply she’s too old, without actually saying it.

Liza returns home to Jersey, walking in on the realtor showing her house — and gossiping that Liza’s husband David left her for a blackjack dealer in Atlantic City. The house is hers, only David took out four additional mortgages. As a Suze Orman devotee I can tell you — that is not good. 

Chad Michael Murray will be joining us for our recaps today!
As soon as he’s fully awake.
In this picture, I like to think he’s saying,
“Wait, wait. What happened to my career?”


Liza video calls her daughter Caitlyn, who’s studying abroad in India for her senior year. She asks Caitlyn to come home early because she’s selling the house. Like any self-absorbed teenager, Kaitlyn demurs and tells her mother she’s just feeling worthless because David left — why doesn’t Liza just go back to work? Liza downs some wine. With ya, girl.

Now Liza’s in the city, boozing with Debi Mazar. I would really like to do this. Call me, Debi! Liza’s bemoaning that she’s been on dozens of interviews and no one will hire her because she’s old. Girl, please. People can tell how old you are from your resume and work experience. If ageism really is the problem, you wouldn’t even be getting interviews. But fine. I was just recapping The Royals, aka Plot Holes with Elizabeth Hurley. I’ll give you this one. Liza tells Debi she was smart to keep working and living in Brooklyn. Debi points out that Brooklyn is really expensive now. Preach, Debi.

The bartender ignores Liza, because she’s old, you see.

Chad is sad.
Poor Chad. 

A cute guy comes over to help her. He’s a tattoo artist. She has no idea who Lena Dunham is — but she’s looking for a job in publishing. Liza, c’mon. He asks her out. He thinks she’s 26, just like him.

This gives Debi an idea. She delivers an epic pep talk and convinces Liza to lie about her age. This proves it: all bad ideas are started by Skinnygirl margaritas, the ladies’ drink of choice. (And that I love myself. Thanks, Bethenny Frankel!)

OMG Makeover montage. I am so happy. They get rid of Liza’s AOL email (ha), and snag her a fake ID. Debi deems her ready, though, real talk: Sutton Foster looks amazing. She does not look 26. But sure!  

“Young” Liza goes on an interview and gets a job with a poor man’s Miranda Priestly — Diana Trout, head of marketing. And … we have our first Hilary Duff sighting! She’s just been promoted to junior editor. She warns Liza about how crazy her new boss is, but in a nice and supportive way. Also you want to talk about someone who hasn’t aged? That person is Hilary Duff. Girl looks great. LOVE YOU FOREVER, LIZZIE MCGUIRE.

Chad and Lizzie kiss

Liza’s bustling around work and Debi has done her job styling her as a twentysomething, because this thirtysomething recapper wants her clothes. I too have always been young for my age. Liza is tasked with setting up a social network profile for Jane Austen. This is a totally ridiculous task that I could actually see happening! Liza goes to Bing and types “how to set up a twitter account” — LOLs forever.

Liza joins Hilary and another buddy at krav maga. There’s waxing joke that I feel is beneath all of us.

Liza heads out for drinks with Hilary and her jerky, perfectly named boyfriend Thad. He probes Liza’s story and while she embraces righteous outrage as a cover (not a bad plan!), Thad looks suspicious.

Liza’s Jane Austen Twitter account is doing great, but her boss Diana shoots down her other ideas. Hilary assures Liza Diana is on her way out — she’s 43. The horror.

In the staff meeting, Diana predictably steals Liza’s idea, but improves upon it. Liza’s phone goes off during the meeting, reminding her of her date with Josh. Hilary will help Liza with her makeup.

Caitlyn calls as Liza’s about to meet Josh. She wants to come home. Liza doesn’t tell her to man up, but instead assures her it’s okay to quit. She goes to blow off her date, but Josh sees her and calls her inside. Liza smiles.

Onto episode two!

Debi and Liza are working on Liza’s twentysomething backstory. They erase her Internet presence.

Chad is suspicious.
It’s so true, CM2. So true.

Caitlyn calls, she loves India now, she met a boy and is staying. Teenagers, amirite?

Liza passes by Josh on her way to work, his tattoo studio is right by Debi’s apartment, where Liza is now staying. They agree to go on a walk later on.

At work, Joyce Carol Oates’s upcoming novel is being upstaged because Sue Grafton’s new mystery changed its release date. Liza is tasked with marketing the book to ‘her peers.’ Liza has a lot of real work to do for an assistant, but sure!

Hilary has a meeting with the newest hot author, “like Stieg Larsson but alive,” who’s shopping for a publisher. She asks for Liza’s help at lunch with her friend Lauren so she can read. Why not just cancel? So that Lauren can drop lots of buzz words like viral and #toplesstuesday, where she takes off her shirt to tweet pictures of her boobs to her 35,000 followers. Liza’s interest is piqued. In the numbers of followers, not the boobs. Hilary Duff continues to be charming.

Chad anad Lizzie flirt.
Seriously, you look great, Hilary!

Liza is no dummy, so she tells Diane they should release Joyce’s book on Tuesday to coincide with #toplesstuesday and invent the hashtag: #showusyouroates. IDK, you guys. This show is very endearing, so let’s just go with it. We’ll also ignore the fact that nearly all books come out on Tuesdays.

On her walk with Josh, they bond. Except it’s hard because she’s lying about everything. Sutton Foster can act, so we see how she’s charmed in spite of herself. While Josh is off getting food truck meatballs (that is such a Brooklyn phrase I am giggling, good job, show!) she runs into some friends from Jersey. She manages to shoo them off before Josh gets back. He walks her home and they kiss. Then she tells him she has to focus on work. They shake hands. It is awkward and sweet. Fine, I am starting to like this show and its ridiculous pretense.

Chad is sad.
Don’t worry, Chad. This is only episode two!
(Ugh, One Tree Hill was so good. Miss you, Peyton!)

Hilary’s still reading while jerky Thad tries for some loving. She makes him wait 400 pages.

Diane has taken Liza’s “Show us your Oates,” idea and they’re doing a topless photo shoot with older ladies. I am giggling. Is my coffee too strong? I don’t care! Liza’s friend she ran into calls to try and harangue her into going on a date with a friend, also recently divorced. For some reason, she says yes.

She posts the topless pic to Twitter, but forgot the hash tag. #LIZA! Hilary helps her out, while Liza encourages her to go after the hot author, even though word is he’s signing elsewhere.

#showusyouroates is trending — and Liza sees Caitlyn participating in the hashtag with her cute new boyfriend. Ha ha ha forever. She scolds Caitlyn via text.

Liza’s dressed up to go out with Richard, at an Italian restaurant in Paramus. Debi is appropriately excited, as in, not. But she’s supportive, anyway. Richard is kind of a dud, but he’s nice. Richard emails during dinner, which is mega rude, but okay because Liza gets a text from Josh. She stop on her way home, grabs him and kisses him.

Chad says goodbye.
I know, Chad. But the recap’s over, buddy.

The end!

Header photo courtesy of TV Land. 

Are you as charmed as me? Let me know! As we wait for next week’s episode, why not check out some of our other recaps here?

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