Episode 1 is a satisfactory, heartwarming start — very predictable and slightly schmoozy but it gets its concept across.
This recap of Apple TV+ series Little Voice season 1, episode 1, “I Don’t Know” contains spoilers.
How does Little Voice season 1, episode 1, “I Don’t Know” open?
Episode 1 begins with the series giving the audience an insight into Bess’s life; walking the dogs, giving piano lessons, and writing song lyrics on the back of her hand. At night she ponders over her songwriting and sings. The story is a little dreamy but the idea of the plot is attractive. Suddenly while singing her song “I Don’t Know”, a man named Ethan interrupts her session while singing in a garage, scaring her to death and asking for an extension cord — he calls her music beautiful. When she calms down, Bess introduces herself and passes an extension cord. Clearly this is a potential romance to look out for.
Getting to know each other
Bess tells Ethan she doesn’t like other people hearing her songs and Ethan is understanding. She sits next to him while he edits a dancing video. Ethan keeps trying to give Bess confidence about her singing. It’s all predictably romantic with the subplots.
The pair continue to spend the night with each other, getting to know each other, drinking, and playing board games. Suddenly, Bess gets a call and has to leave — she meets Louie who has broken his curfew and warns him that he will get kicked out of his new home — he wanted to get a celebrity’s autograph. Louie is given a warning about the curfew. It’s evident that Louie is mentally incapacitated and he’s in a community with similar young adults.
Get over it
At the halfway point of Little Voice season 1, episode 1, “I Don’t Know”, we learn that Bess lives with Prisha who is under slight pressure to date men that her parents arrange. Prisha invites her to her band so that she could try out her new songs — Bess hesitates answering and Prisha states that she has PTSD after one night a few drunks heckled her while singing. The friends argue and Prisha tells Bess she needs to get over it. This is all designed to build up for Bess to overcome her fears.
Getting through the day
The next day, Bess gets on with her dog walking, teaching children music, and entertaining an elderly home. She continues to write her song. While working behind a music bar in the evening, her friend Benny also claims that Bess is not overcoming her fears. Ethan shows up to listen to some music and he asks Bess when she will be singing.
All of a sudden, Bess has her moment as the singer of the next band drops out. The spotlight is on her and she keeps talking and making awkward jokes. Before she starts singing, she gets a call from her brother but she doesn’t answer and starts playing the piano. While singing, she’s distracted by the crowd and has to start over. When Bess starts over, she becomes distracted again by the odd laugh and chatter — she is embarrassed and stops.
How does Little Voice season 1, episode 1, “I Don’t Know” end?
When Bess returns to the bar, Ethan introduces her to his partner Laila. Bess’s confidence is knocked. On her way home, she sings with a group of singers on the subway. The lead singer tells Bess that she had “balls” by getting up on the stage and calls her a work in progress. She calls the man “Pop” so it’s her father. He believes in his daughter and states that she will make that “great song” one day.
Bess sings and writes into the night. Episode 1 is a satisfactory, heartwarming start — very predictable and slightly schmoozy but it gets its concept across.
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Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.