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Ally McBeal

Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Unknown Sep 08, 1997 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
107 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Ally McBeal, 28, and a recent graduate of Harvard Law School, is harassed on the job by a senior associate. When she confronts the partners, it backfires and she loses her job. On the street, she literally bumps into an old classmate, Richard Fish, who offers her a position working for his new firm. She accepts, despite her misgivings about his ethical standards. While being introduced to her new fellow associates, she receives the shock of her career.moreless

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  • This was good, at times a bit soppy but I love the idea.

    I liked this pilot, as I said sometimes it was a bit soppy. Like in the opening scene with the kiss and everything but the good stuff outshined the bad. I really like the idea of going into Ally's imagination, like Elaine's heads getting bigger ... being shot with arrows, very funny and entertaining. The whole thing of Ally suddenly being asked into the new firm by Richard was a bit sudden and weird, especially how things are all of a sudden set up (Unless they skip a few days and I just misunderstood).

    Ally being horrified by Billy's presence was done well. I liked how his wife came to see her about her feelings, Ally's friend Renne is a great character. Loved when she barged into Ally's office and gave out to Georgia. Elaine, very funny character. Also liked how they caught the guy who grabbed Ally's ass, by pretending to give him a job. This was good, hopefully will get better. I will continue to watch.moreless
  • Sets the tone for this quirky series

    The pilot of Ally Mcbeal is a strong start to this fun and quirky series. The first episode introduces Ally, an intelligent, imaginative, overly-analytical newbie lawyer who is struggling to find her place professionally and personally. We meet Billy, Ally's childhood sweetheart turned co-worker, and we can feel the history and painful lack of closure between them. Ally and Billy work at a new Boston law firm where their colleagues are equally unique (read: strange) and engaging, and we see great examples of their oddness in this episode. This pilot ropes the viewer into caring about Ally's future... what will happen with Billy? What kinds of crazy antics will ensue at her workplace? We will have to stay tuned to find out...moreless
  • A great start to a great series.

    I recently rewatched this episode and loved it. Ally decided to leave the firm where she works and decides to go to work with an old friend named Richard who has just opened up his own practice. So upon arrival Ally bumps into her old boyfriend Billy who is also working at the firm and later his wife. Ally is really upset when she learns he is married but decided to stay because she likes the job. Anyway she looses her first case but later wins another and everyone is happy especally Richard who loves money. We also meet Allys room mate and her assitant. This episode is a promising start to a promising series. I really love this show and i really think this is a wonderful episode to start the series with.moreless
Jeffrey Kramer

Jeffrey Kramer


Guest Star

Larry Brandenburg

Larry Brandenburg

Judge Raynsford Hopkins

Guest Star

Richard Riehle

Richard Riehle

Jack Billings

Guest Star

Vonda Shepard

Vonda Shepard


Recurring Role

Eric Cohen

Eric Cohen

The Dancing Twin

Recurring Role

Steven Cohen

Steven Cohen

The Dancing Twin

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (19)

    • Ally: Today's gonna be a, a less bad day, I can feel it. Sometimes I wake up and I just know everything's gonna be... less bad.

    • Ally: You... you loved me.
      Billy: Yeah, that's the truth. So much that sometimes when we were apart we used to keep an open phone line at night so while sleeping I could listen to you breathe. Is that what I should have told Georgia?

    • Georgia: I'm... I'm sorry but.... I, I really hate you. I'm ashamed to admit it...
      Ally: No. No... it's OK because I, em, I really hate you, too.
      Georgia: Really?
      Ally: Yeah.
      Georgia: You're not just saying it?
      Ally: No.

    • (Talking to Ally)
      Richard: It's important they come out of that meeting believing they'll be paying less taxes. Less taxes, reduced, not as much, diminished, abated, less, less than lower. I'm nothing if not redundant. I, I also like to repeat myself.

    • Ally (V/O): I do wish my breasts were bigger. Not huge, but... less small. They... they could... I'd look good less small.

    • Renée: It'll kill you, getting up early.
      Ally: I don't have to get up earlier.
      Renée: Working with your ex-boyfriend, hair and makeup alone is an extra half hour.
      Ally: Renee, I stopped caring 3 years ago.
      Renée: That's why you're in here changing lip liner and wishing your breasts were bigger.

    • Ally: Great. Great. So, uh who's your best litigator?
      Richard: That would be Billy.
      Ally: Oh that would figure. Who's your second best?
      Richard: Ally, this lawsuit, is it more about accounting for yourself or do you want to give it to Billings ? I sense that you'd like to grind up this guy's head and feed it through his intestines.
      Ally: Something like that.

    • Ally: Rich... Richard, Richard I'm in the bathroom.
      Richard: Oh well unisex. Studies show it helps employees breed familiarity. So long as they don't come in to just breed.

    • Richard: John Cage is my co-founder, you'll love him. He's out today getting his frown lines bo-toxed. Makes rain in his sleep. Look at this office avant-rich. It stinks of money.

    • Ally (V/O): I don't understand. I go to law school 'cause I was so in love with a guy. He leaves me to make law review and now I'm singing up with somebody who... who... who... who started his own firm for the piles ?

    • Richard: I can't believe, I haven't seen you forever.
      Ally: Richard, how are you?
      Richard: I'm outstanding, you look fabulous.
      Ally: I know, I just got fired for it.

    • Ally (V/O): They got their wish. I remembered that "fool for a client" rule so I retained independent counsel, filed a claim and planned to go public. But he didn't care about it being public. In fact, to help bolster his O.C.D. defense, he started squeezing butts all over, as strategy. To do it in the open, he must have O.C.D. That was the thinking anyway.

    • Ally (V/O): He claimed O.C.D. – obsessive compulsive disorder, the sickness being to squeeze butts.

    • Ally (V/O): When I told Mr. Lyne the story he got fired.
      Ralph: What?
      Ally: The guy grabbed my buttocks.

    • Ally: Love and low are the same, romantic in concept but the actual practice can give you a yeast infection.

    • Ally (V/O): I'm not sure how it all started. Oh it was 'cause I smelled his bottom. It wasn't that stupid. We saw dogs do it. That's how they knew for sure so... No we didn't even smell anything. Oh... it was the kiss. It was too... so... Oh I actually felt my whole body tingle. Or maybe it was when our tongues touched or... No, no it was that first kiss... which was so soft... his lower lip barely touching my top lip. That was magic. The first time wasn't... I pinched a nerve in my neck. If we could have just stayed broken up... but I just had to follow him to law school. I didn't even want to be a lawyer. I... I just, hum... maybe I studied to hard. No. No it wasn't me. It was him. He's the one who had to transfer to Michigan.

    • Ally (V/O): I actually like the quest, the search. That's the fun. The more lost you are, the more you have to look forward to. What do you know? I'm having a great time and I don't even know it.

    • Renée: (to Ally) That's why you're in here changing lip liner, wishing your breasts were bigger

    • Ally (V/O): So here I am, the victim of my own choices. And I'm just starting.

  • NOTES (4)