The premiere begins a few minutes before the end of the world, with Coco getting a haircut when everyone in the salon gets a missile alert.
Coco gets a call from her dad who says she still has a way out if she takes a plan out of Santa Monica, which she does with her assistant and her hairdresser and her grandmother. Her brother doesn't make it in time and they all watch from the sky as a missile hits LA, with other missiles already hitting countries all around the world.
Mallory realizes that no one is actually sitting in the pilot's seats as the plan starts to go down.
Flashback to forty minutes before the bomb when a family finds out what is happening. A car pulls up to their house to take Timothy Campbell to a safe place because of his genetic makeup that promises he is a perfect candidate to survive. He gets locked in with Emily and they get driven to some location in the ruins of the world.
As they are being led to where they will survive, they see two people get executed.
Wilhemina Venable explains that a dozen of the smartest people created this outpost as a new beginning because they realized this would be coming and were prepared. The Outpost is made up of greys who serve and purples who are the elite.
No one can leave the Outpost or else they risk bringing back radiation contamination and will not be allowed in. They are also not allowed to have sex with one another, which is why the two people were killed.
Timothy and Emily meet the other survivors, with Coco and Mr. Gallant and Evie all in purple but Mallory is in grey.
It turns out they will have food for only the next 18 months and had a carrier pigeon that announced that two weeks have passed and everything is gone in the outside world. There is also someone in the room who went outside, and they have to scan everyone to find out that Mr. Gallant and Stu have to be decontaminated.
Stu is killed after he still ends up dirty and a threat to everyone.
That night Wilhemina and Miriam secretly dress in purple and hang out, revealing that they set up the radiation concern. They make up their own rules and torture the guests, which isn't something the Cooperative knows or approves of.
During the next meal, they offer a hot meal to everyone as a treat, but the meat is thought to be Stu.
The music changes after two weeks, and everyone takes it as a sign that they are going to be saved.
Then there is a flashforward eighteen months later, everyone is still in the same place. The nuclear winter came and destroyed everything that could have still survived.
Emily and Timothy start a secret relationship, only kissing but finding in that hope while everyone else suffers. They cut down to one meal a day because they have no choice. Everyone has grown restless when there is an alarm because of a breach.
Michael Landon who is the Cooperative arrives to talk to Wilhemina and tell her that he will evaluate who is deserving to be moved to a sanctuary that has supplies for a decade. He could take everyone but he doesn't have to and if someone isn't a good option, they will get killed just like his horses that he asks Miriam to shoot because they are getting sick from the radiation.