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Pilot is the first episode of Season One and the overall first episode of the series Pose. It premiered on June 3, 2018, on FX.


Blanca pursues her dream of becoming a house mother after receiving a devastating medical diagnosis, and Damon moves to New York City with aspirations of joining a dance company.


The children of House Abundance prepare for the upcoming ball event, Elektra asking for suggestions for how they wish to walk; after rejecting Angel's proposal and Blanca's idea, she suggests that they walk as the Royal House of Abundance. A brief flare of insults, Blanca returns to cooking.

Elektra informs the children to hide in the Museum.

As the evening grew, the children visited the Museum, taking a liking to the exhibits inside and reaching the exhib filled with royal cloths. With the prompted announcement that the museum would be closing, Elektra commanded everyone hide from the sight of guards. With the exhibits darkened, the children emerged and collected the wardrobe pieces and cloths on the mannequins, Elektra instructing them to take everything. Reaching the doors, Blanca informed her Mother that the doors were locked, prompting them to use a bench to escape through a nearby window, shattering the glass that set off the alarm and carting the bags down to the Ballroom.

While quickly dressing for the event with police on their tail, Pray Tell annouces to the floor that the category was Royalty, critiquing many houses that walked in their costumes. Soon, eyes were on the Royal House of Abundance: Cubby, Lemar, Candy, Lulu, Angel, Blanca, and, lastly, Elektra all presented to the crowds, bearing the clothes that were stolen from the Museum. With the arrival of the police, Elektra and her children willingly accepted the handcuffs, as they were brought to jail.

The next day, in Allentown, Damon Richards attended his class as a ballet dancer. Taking a city bus closer to home, he returned to his house, retreating into his bedroom, where he played a cassette in his stereo and danced. However, he was abruptly interrupted by the arrival of his father who turned the music off and began questioning Damon about his whereabouts; following a rumor from a co-worker, Mr. Richards presented a gay magazine from underneath Damon's bed, demanding he explain himself. In a low tone, Damon confessed that he was attending dance classes and that he was gay; he added, taking a slap, that he wished to move away and build a name for himself, which enraged his father further into beating him.

Damon speaks with his mother outside the house.

Damon's mother, carrying a bag of groceries, hurried inside the house to stop her husband, who demanded and pulled his son out of the house onto the lawn. Mrs. Richards stood before Damon with his belongings, slapping him and proclaimed that while she supported his creativity, she did not want him to become a sinner. When he stayed silent to asking for forgiveness for his homosexuality, she disowned him.

Waiting at a clinic in New York City, Blanca witnessed as two lovers embraced before she was called into the doctor's office. She requested the physician informed her of her status, to which the physician disclosed that Blanca was HIV-positive, assuring her that there were trials and methods of living with the condition. Later, she visited Pray Tell at his home, vocalizing that she was crying from relief with confirmation of her HIV-status; she also expressed not desiring an early death.

The following day, she rented an old, rundown apartment with her funds before returning to House Abundance. Elektra announced loudly to the children of Blanca's plan to leave the house without her blessing, an argument ensued between the two women before Blanca decides to finally leave, Angel hesistant to join her but pulled back by Lemar and Cubby.

Damon sleeps on the park bench.

Elsewhere in the park, Damon is abruptedly awakened to a stranger attempting to steal his backpack from him, managing to wrestle his possession from their clutches. He was tipped by Pito to keep his belongings close and strapped down. After a stroll by his dream dance school, he returned to the park, where he performed dances publicly for money, where a woman, Blanca Rodriguez, compliments his talents and presents him an offer to join her new house. Initially, Damon rejects her invitation, citing that his dreams were bigger than "dancing at balls."

Night falls on New York; Blanca explains the ballroom culture to Damon, bringing him to witness a walk with his own eyes. Afterwards, she treats him a 24-hour diner meal, sharing her earlier days before transitioning in which she and her mother momentarily bonded on a girl sneaking into Blanca's room during the night. Despite a few soft chuckles with the young man, Blanca confesses that she was disowned. Then, she gives Damon her number in case he were to change his mind on joining the house.

Stan Bowes enters Trump Tower, seeking a job for the Trump Organization. Employer Matt Bromley performs an informal interview with Bowes, the two engaged in casual conversations about their upbringing. Having been quickly entered into the occupation, Stan travels through the streets, being approached by Angel. The two chat briefly about the car cycling the block prior, Angel being taken to a motel room for their encounter; though she exposes herself to him, Stan suggested they lie next to each other on the bed and conversed about one another. Eventually, Stan kissed Angel before parting ways, returning to his family in New Jersey, violently brushing his mouth.

Damon is awakened by Pito the next morning and frantically stresses over the lost of his backpack. Though suggested, he pled that he would not enter sex work for pay. With only an address left in his pocket, he sought Blanca to take him under her hospitality.

Outside Trump Tower, Angel smokes a cigarette waiting for Bowes.

Angel travels to Trump Tower for a job application. Once pushed away despite posters of job offerings, she waits outside the building for Bowes. Seeing as he arrived with Bromley, she tries to pull him away for a meal but is informed that he has a family and pushed away.

With a motherly push from Blanca, Damon enters the New School for Dance, requesting an application for enrollment and is informed that the deadline is in a few days.

Nightfall, with the ball category Evening wear, contenders walked and presented themselves to the judges. Angel, with determination, attempts a walk in the category but gradually loses confedence in herself after ridicule from Pray Tell and the uproaring audience. Adrifting out by the noise on the verge of tears, she stands on the crub with a smoke. Blanca trails behind to check on her, being pushed aside by Elektra, with a snide comment about seeking new house members. Blanca and Angel conversed about the walk incident, Rodriguez providing comfort and, in their embrace, Angel suggesting to join her new house instead.

Gathering in the apartment, Blanca establishes her house rules with her children, reviewing Damon's application to join the dance school and warning Angel to leave the white men alone. She lists off that she wants her children to attend school, remain healthy, and be available to walk the balls. After the two accepted to follow the rules, Blanca informs them that they will be walking the upcoming ball on Friday, Angel questioning what they will wear for the occasion.

Pray Tell helps prepare Blanca and her children for their first ball.

The new house visit Pray Tell to have their outfits for the upcoming category fashioned by him. While he worked, he critiqued Damon's physique, Angel commenting on the appearances of people with AIDS. The conversation moves to Damon's enrollment to dance school, to which he confesses that he never returned his application to attend, Blanca upset on him missing the deadline and his opportunity to move forward. Finishing his fashioning, Pray Tell asks to see the dancer twirl.

Following his mother and Pray to the Pier, they watched as two groups of vogue dancers continue to butt heads in a fierce dance-off that forces the emcee to mediate. Damon expresses his anxiety to learn the moves in time for the ball and questions the fate of a house that loses against another house, Pray answering that the house would sit in shame within the community.

Meanwhile, Stan takes his wife Patty to the Rainbow Room, to celebrate their wedding annivesary. Patty expresses to him that, having dreamt of having seafood, she is happiest to have had experienced it with her husband. Afterwards, the couple slow dance to soothing music; as they spun, Stan's mind wanders to Angel and their brief intimacy from weeks ago before wishing his wife a happy anniversary.

The night of the ball arrives, Pray Tell presides over the military realness category. Angel asks once more if it was appropriate for them to perform their challenge that night, to which Blanca replied that it was their time. Approaching Pray on stage, she announces to the room that she leads her new house, in dedication to Linda Evangelista, and challenges Elektra and the House of Abundance. Elektra accepts the challenge, taunting her daughter. As music played and the floor lay clear for the walk, Angel performed against the ladies Lulu and Candy, Damon against Cubby and Lemar, and the mothers against the other. Soon, the walk concludes, leaving the judges to score each side. For the House of Evangelista, they scored 3 10s and a 9, while their challenged house scored perfect 10s, winning grand prize.

The young man introduces himself to the House of Evangelista.

Standing outside the hall, Angel sculks in their defeat, Blanca citing that they were not ready yet to have challenged Elektra and her children. Pray walks to them and mentions their loss before the voice of a young boy calls out to the women in the distance. He requests to join their house, Mother Blanca reminding him that they had lost the category earlier in the evening. He comments that he wishes to join early before the house gained momentum. Moved by his cheery attitude, she asks for his name, the young man answering Lil Papi, adding that he also desires adapting to their style. When asked about being homeless, he admits this as fact, that he works a bodega as a box flattener and being able to offer meals for the family. Before running off to collect his belongings, Papi listens as Angel lists rules for him to follow: no drugs, no gentlemen callers, and all forms of income belongs to the community Kissing her hand, he jogs away. Pray Tell tells Blanca to keep a bright perspective on forming her house, being a new home to the youth who were abandoned. Inspired, she makes a mandatory field trip for the family the next morning.

Despite Damon's protests, Blanca brings everyone to the New School for Dance. Walking inside, the desk lady asks if she had an appointment, Blanca answering back that she indeed did, walking into the adjacent room and asking if the woman inside was Helena St. Rogers. She confirms and says that the deadlines have passed. Sitting down at the table, the two women conversed, Helena stating that she worked strict and hard to maintain the school by its rules, while Blanca professing that her child has been through enough pains to get as far as he has and already set with the skills needed of her students. Moved by her determination, Helena gives Damon a chance to perform to assess if he is to be enrolled.

As a determination to enroll in the New School for Dance, Damon performs in front of Helena and the judges.

Blanca approaches Damon with his dance gear, telling him that he is needed to perform shortly. Nervous at the start, he plays a tape of Whitney Houston on a stereo and begins his dance routine for Helena and two other judges in a studio hall. Gradually, he becomes looser and relaxed. Concluding his performance, his family wait outside the building for the results. He approaches, soft-toned as he informs them that he has been approved to enroll in the New School for Dance as a student. Through hugs and cheers, he tearfully expresses appreciation for Blanca's push to be greater.

Night overlooking the Pier, Angel is picked up by her infatuation Stan. Hopping into his car, the two are driven away to spend time together.


Main Cast

Guest Cast


For all the images from this episode, see Pilot/Gallery.


  • The original script for the episode can be found here.
  • The House of Abundance break into a museum to steal royal clothes; as they run out, however, the outfits later seen worn by Lulu, Candy, and Lemar are still visibly on display.
  • During the ball, an Abundance walker's jacket can be seen buttoned and unbuttoned between shots.


External Links

Season One PilotAccessGiving and ReceivingThe FeverMother's DayLove is the MessagePink SlipMother of the Year
Season Two Acting UpWorth ItButterfly/CocoonNever Knew Love Like This BeforeWhat Would Candy Do?Love's in Need of Love TodayBlowRevelationsLife's a BeachIn My Heels
Season Three On The RunInterventionThe TrunkTake Me To ChurchSomething Borrowed, Something BlueSomething Old, Something NewSeries Finale