The Hellcats season premiere came to CW on Wednesday night. This is a recap of Hellcats season 1 episode 1, and it attempts to break down what is going on so far in the show. The first episode served as an introduction to the characters, working hard to get them into their roles as the season progresses.
Alyson Michalka plays Marti Perkins, who is basically the main character of the show. At the beginning of the first episode, she faces the risk of having to drop out of college due to expenses her mother has racked up. Marti has no way to pay for college, and grasps at the only opportunity that she can find; auditioning for a spot on the competitive cheerleading team.
Marti shows up at an intense audition to try and grab an open scholarship that becomes available due to an injury to one of the “flyers”, and she joins a huge group of girls competing for the spot. Three judges are determining the fate of the girl, consisting of Savannah Munroe (Ashley Tisdale), Alice Verdura (Heather Hemmens), and coach Vanessa Hodge (Sharon Leal). It is clear that Marti doesn’t have the cheer training necessary to keep up with all the steps, but she flashes some great acrobatic skills and gymnastic jumps that catch the eye of the coach.
The odds seem stacked against Marti, as she had a run-in with the cheerleaders on her first day, getting into an argument with Savannah. When Alice states that she is voting against Marti joining the team, that leaves it up to Savannah to break the tie (the coach wanted Marti). Savannah surprises everyone by voting to bring Marti on to the team, and then actually becomes her roommate in the house where the whole cheer team stays.
Marti becomes friends with Lewis Flynn (Robbie Jones from One Tree Hill), when he first recognizes her skill, and then saves her from embarrassment in the team locker room. It turns out that the team shares a locker room with guys and girls in the same area, and Alice steals Marti’s towel and robe as she steps into the shower. That leaves Marti scrambling around the locker room nude until Lewis comes to her rescue. It was a really funny moment, but also showed how far Alice was willing to go to bend the rules.
Towards the end of the episode, Marti takes to the practice floor with the other girls for the first time, and actually seems really good on the front line with Savannah. She moves better than Savannah, who the coach pulls aside briefly to give some personal instruction. The two actresses should be pretty fun to watch if they continue to perform at the front like this. Her quick success also really frustrated who was probably worried she might get replaced.
In the last segment of the episode, we find out that Marti used to be a gymnast in high school, but she was distracted by her drinking mother in the stands and missed a jump. Her mother came out on the floor, and then proceeded to throw up on her. She kept up with the team, but her mother in the audience at every practice took her out of her element, eventually causing her to stop trying altogether. Telling Savannah the story brought them closer together.
Overhearing the story (more like eavesdropping), Alice learns about Marti’s mother, and goes to the bar to try and convince her that she should show up at the first competition where Marti will be performing. Alice was obviously trying to sabotage Marti, and this was the quickest way to do it. It was also shortsighted though, because the cheerleading team needed to place at state, or they were going to have the squad cut from the school budget in order to pay for a new football coach. A new football coach that played there at the same time that the cheerleading coach was a cheerleader.
The episode ends with all of the team walking into the gym in front of thousands of cheering spectators.The next episode of Hellcats will be on Wednesday, September 15 at 9 p.m. on CW.