Do Noa and Daniel find romance on The Baker and the Beauty Season 1 Episode 2?
Honestly, that's never even been a question. It's the whole premise of the series. You wouldn't be here otherwise.
The question was more about when they would finally kiss, and the episode held out on that until the very last moment.
Unfortunately, the build-up to the moment wasn't as exciting as it should have been.
The morning after their wild meeting, Noa swung by Daniel's place to apologize for the manager's behavior, inform him that she wished he stayed last night, and invite him to her birthday party.
Daniel: It’s always about Mateo.
Mateo: Have you met me?
For someone who is uber-famous, Noa and Daniel sure had a lot of privacy during their beach walk aside from the one kid who awkwardly recognized her, thought it was cool, and ran away without even asking for a photo.
It was a minor moment in the episode, but it rubbed me wrong. If the series wants us to believe the narrative, they have to go all the way and bring out all the stops to convince us.
The scene felt unmotivated and lackluster. And it's that attention to detail that I found missing from much of Noa's party.
In The Baker and the Beauty Season 1 Episode 1 review, I noted that, to succeed, the show needs to veer away from cliches.
Rather than offering us a fresh take on the idea of a girl and boy who want to be together but keep running into roadblocks, the episode was a walking cliche.
The obstacles they ran into at the party were cheesy and predictable. They were similar to the way a broken-down truck or no cell service is too often used as an obstacle.
It felt like the whole birthday party was strung out far too long without much happening to move along the narrative.
Daniel remained intrigued by Noa, but he kept his guard up and told himself that Noa made everyone feel special because that's just what celebrities do.
It made sense for Daniel to take that approach after his snafu with Lewis, who made him feel unworthy. He's the one who said Noa always takes to men as if they were charity cases.
I can’t remember the last time someone didn’t know everything about me. It’s nice.Noa
But the more Daniel got to know the real Noa under all the glitz, glamour, and celebrity, the more he realized there was something there and began to allow himself to fall for her.
The episode succeeded in giving Noa some much-needed depth so that she remained likable and humanized.
Viewers see an accurate portrayal of the ups-and-downs of fame, which is exciting to watch. We all have a celebrity we idolize, so it's nice to see fame from their perspective and that it isn't all that it's cracked out to be.
The backstory with her mother shows a different side to Noa that not many people get to see.
Look, I know I caught you off guard with that proposal, but we can’t let one moment erase everything we have.Vanessa
You can have all the money, fame, and fortune in the world, but that can't help you when disaster strikes. It doesn't get rid of the pain, it cannot bring her mother back, and it can't fix the fact that Noa hates her birthday.
It also emphasizes what drew Noa to a family-man like Daniel; she's in awe of his bond with the Garcias and wants that for herself. She never had it because of her mom's illness and her dad's abandonment and believes finding it will make her whole.
Once Daniel realized that Noa needed him to "turn a horrible night into something she'll never forget," he skipped out on prior commitments to help break the birthday curse.
He was returning the favor of the previous night.
When they finally broke away from the party and spent some time alone, we finally saw what she saw in "that guy," as her manager, Lewis, refers to him.
Daniel is caring and thoughtful, and he's not someone who gets swayed or influenced by the riches and wealth.
He could have looked up everything about Noa, but he chose to get to know her by asking questions instead. It was refreshing for her to talk to someone who didn't know everything about her.
He came to the party and didn't attempt to give her some expensive, glitzy gift. She has enough of those. He gave a gift that mattered -- a rolling pin with a free lesson.
Daniel is a down-to-Earth guy, which is exactly what Noa finds attractive.
Even when they cut away from the party, he didn't take her somewhere fancy but instead embraced the simplicity of an empty beach.
And since Noa has a bit of a break-the-rules, wild streak, skinny dipping was the obvious activity. They're both giving each other new experiences.
Their relationship is based on a connection, which seems to be hard to come by for someone of Noa's caliber.
But while things may seem picture-perfect now, we already got glimpses of potential relationship problems when Noa invited Daniel to Puerto Rico.
Daniel has a life in Miami, and he's helping his family run his business. Noa's request is just a baby step in asking Daniel to give up his life.
While it might be normal for people in Hollywood to just cut away and go on a business trip with a loved one, it's not how normal people operate.
Will the relationship always be on Noa's terms? Who will make the most sacrifices? Will they have to accept that much of their relationship will be long-distance?
Their worlds are already clashing, so how will they find common ground?
Maybe Daniel can become Noa's traveling chef!
There's still the issue of Vanessa, who isn't into the idea of giving up on the relationship.
After the initial shock of Daniel and Noa wore off, Vanessa attempted to clear the air with her ex and win him back.
She told Daniel it would be a waste to throw away four years together after one bad night and suggested that they meet up at their favorite restaurant.
At that moment, Vanessa seemed put together and aware that if Daniel didn't show up, it would mean things are officially over.
However, when Daniel didn't show up, she vowed to prove that she is the "happily ever after," and Noa is just an infatuation.
I see why they gave her the nickname Vanessa Princessa now.
It's one thing to fight for love, but it's another thing to look pathetic when an ex clearly isn't prioritizing you over another love interest just days after a break-up.
Daniel tried to make it to dinner, but when he realized Noa needed him, his feelings for the model trumped his residual feelings for Vanessa.
I think it's pretty obvious who has his heart.
Noa isn't just good for romance; she's also good for business.
I'll be honest that I was far more invested in what was happening at Rafael's Cuban Bakery than Noa's birthday party.
Daniel's family is great, and I'm living to see them embrace this moment of opportunity and success.
Running a small business is difficult, and it can be taken away in the blink of an eye, especially through a bad review.
So, when food critic, Thomas Gold, got wind of their bakery from Noa's Instagram, it was a big deal and one the family did not want to blow.
Speaking of "blow," a fuse blew in the oven that was being used to make the critic's order of 50 pastelito magnificos.
Daniel, the only one capable of fixing the oven, is unreachable. The moment underlines just how vital Daniel is to the family business and how much it'll cost them if they lose him to other priorities.
However, it also allowed Mateo, who seems to be the goofball of the family, to stand up and prove himself.
He successfully fixed the oven before it crapped out again moments later. Hey, it was a solid attempt.
The Garcia family wasn't able to deliver the ordered amount of pastries, but the few they did deliver made a huge impression on the critic who promised a good review.
If they got such a massive uptick in business from Noa's Instagram, imagine how much buzz a positive review from a coveted critic will generate.
Noa: So, I’m not hopeless.
Daniel: You might have potential.
It might not be a good time for Daniel to plan a trip to Puerto Rico after all.
There was also some movement on Natalie's storyline as she went shopping for swimsuits and awkwardly ran into Vanessa, who was trying on lingerie and thought it was a good idea to ask a teenager if her brother would like the "look."
Honestly, Vanessa is a mess.
Natalie bolted out of there as quickly as she could and made a new friend, Amy, whose family gave her a ride when Mateo forgot to pick her up.
She was so infatuated with her new friend that she didn't even blame Mateo.
Her mother thought Natalie was smitten with a boy, of course, and it's only a matter of time before Natalie has to come out and likely break her mother's heart.
The series is driven by a love story, but it's attempting to infuse the narrative with real-life storylines that can bring us all together.
As I mentioned in my premiere review, the show's strength will lie in the supporting cast, and for now, they've all been meeting the challenge and delivering great moments.
I'm hoping the issues I pointed above were just a case of the "second episode slump" and will get resolved now that Daniel and Noa have established their feelings for each other.
The series is a cute escape from reality, so I hope it sticks around for a bit.
What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments and watch The Baker and the Beauty online!