The pilot starts off with Betty Suarez going for an interview at Meade publications, but she's turned away as soon as the interviewer comes to get her and sees her. However, Bradford Meade notices her from up above. When Betty gets back home, she tells her family she didn't get the job and her boyfriend, Walter, who she thinks is coming over to propose to her, asks her outside. Inside the house, Justin is watching television and the news reports that Fey Sommers, the editor-in-chief of Mode has died in a car crash. We cut over to Daniel Meade, the new editor-in-chief of Mode busy getting a little under-the-table action from his new assistant when his father Bradford comes in. He clearly sees what's going on and is not happy.
Back at the Suarez household, Walter is dumping Betty because he's in love with another girl, her slutty neighbor Gina! Betty then gets a phone call from Meade Publications... she's got a job working for Mode and she starts tomorrow as the assistant for the Editor in Chief! On her first day, she's meets the beautiful recepionist, Amanda, who when she finds out Betty had no prior work experience is infuriated and she didn't get the job due to a lack of experience. Betty, on her way to the staff meeting, walks into a glass wall before awkwardly sitting in the corner. Daniel is giving an intro when Wilhelmina, the Creative Director who was passed up on being Editor-in-Chief in favor of Daniel, rudely comes in and enters giving him a gift with the wrong spelling of his name. She then takes control of the meeting. At the end, Betty comes up to Daniel and introduces herself as his new assistant.
We cut over to Marc, Wilhelmina's assistant, giving her botox injections. She's complaining that the job should be hers and that she will take down Daniel. Meanwhile, while Daniel is meeting with a photographer, Betty is talking with Amanda. When she finds out who the photographer is and that Daniel slept with his ex-girlfriend, she goes inside to tell Felipe she's a big fan of his work and it reminded her of previous work she's seen. Insulted that she accused him of ripping off the idea and by her appearance, he tries to talk Daniel into firing her. We find out his dad Bradford made him hire her and he can't fire her. But he can make her quit.
Betty goes to the cafeteria for lunch where everyone is giving her funny looks. She meets Christina, a seamstress who works in the closet and the only person friendly to her. Bradford is meeting with some shady guy in the park... it sounds like he had Fey Sommers killed. Back at the office, Daniel is trying to make Betty's life hell. He tells her he likes coleslaw, but hates cabbage, get some and remove the cole slaw. We get a funny montage of terrible things she's stuck doing. Including doing watch for Daniel so he can sleep with one woman without the second one finding out. One of them being Amanda. Also, Betty has been working suhc long hours she misses her father's birthday and when she gets home he's already asleep. It's the first birthday they haven't all been together since her mother's death. She begins jotting down ideas in her notebook.
At work the next day she follow Daniel around being ignored while she tries to present her idea. She's sent to the closet to get clothes when she finds out she was hired so that Daniel had an assistant he woudn't sleep with. She leaves her idea there and goes to the photoshoot where Felipe wants to use Betty as a standin. When they show her the clothes she has to wear they think she'll quit but she comes back wearing the clothes. All the models begin to laugh at her and she starts to cry. Daniel makes him stop and when Betty walks off he follows her. She tells Daniel she knows why she was hired.
Betty is talking to her newphew on the footsteps when she think she hears Gina with Walter. She storms over and walks in and sees it's a different guy. Gina only used him to get a plasma. When she leaves she slams the door and the plasma falls down and breaks. At the office, Daniel shows Fabia the pictures from the shoot which are all about a traffic accident. However, since Fabia recently had an accident which involved her running over twelve people she thinks Daniel is being insensitive. Daniel talks to Bradford while he's doing yoga and tells him he was setup. Bradford doesn't care. Daniel should be working as a team.
Wilhelmina's laying in bed while Daniel keeps trying to reach her. She's sleeping with Felipe and they cheer for revenge. Daniel was setup. Owell. Walter comes over to Betty's to try and get her, when Daniel comes over. She kicks out Walter and Daniel apologizes for what he did and wants her back. He saw her layout for Fabia and wants her to come in and help him pitch it.
The next day in the office, Fabia is there but no sign of Daniel yet. Wilhelmina begins to pitch her idea and Daniel and Betty show up and pitch their ad idea.. mother & daughter. Apparently most of her customers are now mothers. Fabia's back and Betty gives all the credit to Daniel. Wilhelmina then goes to some woman in bandages, apparently the mastermind, and tells her this is all just a minor setback and the magazine will be theirs. The episode ends with Daniel getting into his car and Betty walking off, both very happy.