Copyright 2018 Crown Media United States LLC/Photographer: Steven Ackerman
Premieres Saturday, September 15 at 9 PM ET/PT on Hallmark Channel
Hannah (Danica McKellar) is a remodeling expert with a Los Angeles-based show called “Love in Design.” Known for modernizing outdated spaces, she’s in her fifth season but ratings have slipped and the network wants her to host the show from her hometown of Lewisburg, a quaint colonial community Hannah says doesn’t do modern. Given five weeks to remodel the town’s historic manor into a B&B, Hannah is up for the challenge but not quite ready to work with the architect overseeing the renovation on behalf of the Preservation Committee. He’s Hanna’s ex- boyfriend Jeff (Andrew W. Walker), whom she dubs an “old sweater” because he’s so comfortable to be with.
Never one for change, Jeff decided to end the relationship. He’d seen Hannah’s career trajectory taking her out of Lewisburg and didn’t want to hold her back. But now, after laying eyes on her for the first time in three years, Jeff is more smitten with Hannah than ever and it’s clear she feels the same way. In fact, when the cameraman shoots some test footage and catches them in a moment of playful yet feisty banter, Hannah’s boss sees the film and is delighted with their dynamic chemistry, saying it’s just the personal touch the show needs to boost ratings. Hannah’s best friend and producer Julie (Alvina August) agrees and Jeff’s old friend Patrick (Adam Hurtig), who knew Hannah and Jeff when they were high school sweethearts, can see that the two still hold a torch for one another.
But Hannah isn’t so sure having Jeff interact with her on camera is a good idea, and knowing him as well as she does, thinks he won’t like it either. That’s why she’s surprised when Jeff agrees, and when his interjections start throwing Hannah off her game, she feels uncomfortable. She’s never had to work on a building this old and having an opinionated ex on set isn’t helping, especially when they wind up in an all-too-familiar gridlock. Having to get creative during one of their onscreen disagreements, Hannah challenges Jeff to a corn hole toss. If she wins he has to stop his sideline commentary, and if he wins, she’s got to take his opinions into consideration. Luckily, their showdown results in Hannah learning to blend their ideas and Jeff’s traditional approach combined with her modern one begins to work well.
Wanting to see how an audience reacts to the show’s new personal approach, the network screens a rough cut for the town and Jeff escorts Hannah in his old Chevy, which he claims to drive when wanting to impress someone. Dressed to the nines themselves, the handsome couple wows the crowd onscreen and off and Hannah and Jeff sneak off to an old playground where Jeff admits he’s seen all her shows, and is impressed with how the sky’s always the limit for her. If she was able to create a B&B that combines old-world charm and modern appeal, maybe he could go a bit beyond his comfort zone and reach across the distance between them.