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Home Improvement

Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Unknown Sep 17, 1991 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
92 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

After Jill explicitly tells Tim not to touch the dishwasher, he breaks it in an attempt to make it more powerful; more of a "man's" dishwasher. Jill has a job interview, but she doesn't get it and when Tim tries to comfort her, he only makes matters worse. After talking to Wilson, Tim tries again and succeeds.moreless

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  • A great start to a hilarious series.

    I thought this episode was very hilarious when I first saw it. Jill tells time to wash the dishes and then put them in the dishwasher, but he thinks that the dishwasher is broken since Jill wants to wash the dishes first. But Jill tells him nothing is wrong with it and not to touch it. With the help of Mark, Tim tries to fix the dishwasher, but explodes it. My favorite parts of the episode was when Tim got the electrical burn, when the dishwasher exploded, and when Wilson said "No, I think she's made at you because you blew up the **** dishwasher!" ROTFL!!! This was a great start to the series and I'm glad to see it worked out at the end, although I didn't like how Tim seemed like a novice at home improvement in this episode. It was still pretty good though, too bad there wasn't much of Brad and Randy.

    FINAL GRADE: A-moreless
  • The Trend setter of what was to come

    Instant hit, right out of the gate. Loved his standup, was excited to see it hit as a Hit on TV. Did a nice job in getting us into the whole concept of the show. Unlike many pilots, it didn't look like they were painfully taking it over the limit to get laughs. It's amazing to think that some of the characters we loved were only guest stars of this pilot as they went on to be so much more. What a fun place it must have been to see this getting its start. You here rumors of it coming back, but nothing ever comes of them.moreless
  • He shoud've fixed the furnace. (Because a Furnace has a pilot light. Get it?)

    This is the first episode of Home Improvement. It features Tim Allen as Tim the Tool Man Taylor. He watches his own show and then Jill tells Tim to wash off the egg yolk before putting it in the dishwasher. Since he thought that was stupid, he goes out and buys a jet blaster for the dishwasher. Jill toild Tim not to do that because she didn't want another **bleep**-ed up appliance. Well, Tim thought otherwise so he and Mark fix the dishwasher while Brad and Randy run away. (They got scared of sitting around the campfire telling stories naked.) Jill saw what Tim did and she was furious. She got even angrier when she didn't get the job that she wanted after having a long interview. Well, as usual Tim apologizes and have your Fuse Box labeled in ink! RRR-RRR-RRR!moreless
  • Instant classic.

    This is a very classical episode that started the Home Improvement trend. I liked this episode very much and I have seen it multiple times and enjoyed each one. Many of the episodes in this series are very well done, and this episode is funny from the start. Having a great episode like this, as a pilot must of attracted many fans to this show.
  • A great start to a series that is an instant classic and one of my favourites.

    This episode is funny and Tim decides that he wants to improve or 'tweak' the dishwasher, against the wishes of his wife Jill. Tim wants to improve the dishwasher, as he does not see why he has to rinse plates before he puts them in the dishwasher. So he decides to give it 'more power' and as a result ends up blowing up the dishwasher.

    This is a very funny moment when he tries putting on the dishwasher and nothing happens, until the diswasher blows up and the dish Tim put inside blows out the back of it.

    Tim goes to Wilson for advice, which does help him smooth things over with Jill. When Jill orders a new dishwasher she makes sure Tim is locked outside in the yard, when someone comes to fit it in, so that Tim would not stop him.

    All in all a good start to the series and very funny.moreless
John Cothran Jr.

John Cothran Jr.

Phil the Handyman

Guest Star

Pamela Anderson

Pamela Anderson

Lisa (as Pamela Denise Anderson)

Recurring Role

Richard Karn

Richard Karn


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • Randy asks to go over to his friend Tommy's house, but when Tim tries to get the dishwasher installed he is still there, so he either never went, or spent very little time there.

    • A few times during this episode, someone uses a long word (like "autonomy" and "asymmetrical") while talking to Tim, and he responds, "How do you spell that?" This became a running joke throughout the series.

    • The order in which Brad, Randy, and Mark were born is Brad first, Randy second, and Mark third, but if the brothers were placed in the order in which the people who played them were born, the order would be Randy first, Brad second, and Mark third.

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Tim: So, Jill's mad at me because I didn't listen to her.
      Wilson: No, I think she's mad at you because you blew up the damn dishwasher.

    • Jill (about the dishwasher): You will not screw it up like you did the blender. End of discussion.
      Tim: What's wrong with the blender? It's the only blender on the block that can puree a brick.

    • (Tim wants to go to Sears)
      Jill: You'll be down there drooling, fondling all the tools, eyes bugging out . . . you don't even look at ME like that.
      Tim: I would if you were two speeds and reversible.

    • Tim: (about the dishwasher) That's because it's the lady lux decor series model, with buttons so small no man can use them.

    • Jill: While Ms. Binford Tool Girl flashes her big headlights!
      Tim: Lisa?
      Jill: (sarcastically) No, Al.
      Tim: What does Lisa have to do with this? She didn't take your job. She's got a job.

    • Jill: Tim, do you ever listen to me? It was the last thing that I said in bed to you last night.
      Tim: No, I believe, if you recall, the last thing you said to me in bed last night was "no!"
      Jill: You're thinking of tonight.

  • NOTES (17)

    • International Episode Titles:
      Czech Republic: Debut

    • Actress Frances Fisher, who was dating Clint Eastwood at the time, was originally hired to play Jill Taylor. They even shot the pilot episode and took all the cast publicity photos with her, but soon thereafter, she was replaced because she didn't have the necessary chemistry with Tim Allen. It's been said that when the pilot episode was first shot, and they did the scene where Jill orders Tim not to touch the dishwasher, that's when they knew that Fisher was not the right person for the part. According to the director, she seemed more timid around Tim than assertive, so they decided to go with Patricia Richardson, who had a stronger personality.

    • For the first season the text color in the credits is light blue.

    • The order of the cast credited in the opening credits for season one is:
      Tim Allen (Tim)
      Patricia Richardson (Jill)
      Earl Hindman (Wilson)
      Taran Noah Smith (Mark)
      Jonathan Taylor Thomas (Randy)
      Zachery Ty Bryan (Brad)

    • The first season opening credits lasted 1:07, but this episode uses a shortened version lasting 46 seconds.

    • Tim's dad on the show died the way Tim Allen's father died in real life.

    • The part when Tim comes back around in just his toolbelt to get back into the house has been cut out in all syndication episodes.

    • Jonathan Taylor Thomas was the first of the three sons to audition.

    • All the Tool Time scenes were filmed all at once before the filming of Home Improvement began, and the audience didn't know if the show was about a tool show or a family.

    • It was the idea of the actor who plays Mark to mimick Tim when he gets an electrical burn.

    • The info Wilson gives is from research from the producers

    • The Producers considered having just a 13 old son but instead went with 3 boys close in age.

    • Tim wanted the character Wilson to not be shown at all and have the fence cover his whole face, but after a compromise, they had it cover everything below his nose.

    • Richard Karn, who plays Al, wasn't originally in the pilot. They had another person (Stephen Tobolowsky) ready to play Al, but when he couldn't show up for the pilot, they hired Karn, who was a friend of the producer, to take his place for one episode, then look for a new actor. But after 8 seasons they never replaced him.

    • There were two more endings to the episode in which one, Jill tricks Tim to get undressed in the garage and locks him in so he can't interfere in the installing of the new dishwasher.

    • Pat, who plays Jill, just had twins three months before the filming of this episode, and so she could bring her twins to the set, they built a nursery for her.

    • The producers thought of having a daughter but decided it would be better if Jill was the only female in the house.