Watch Austin & Ally
It's often said that life imitates art (or vice-versa), and perhaps that's never been more perfectly illustrated than in the Disney Channel's teen sitcom, Austin & Ally. Created by the writing/producing team of Kevin Kopelow and Heath Seifert, Austin & Ally revolves around the unorthodox relationship between two teenagers who, at first glance, appear to be polar opposites. How they deal with and use their differences to form a prolific musical team is both inspiring and entertaining.
Ally Dawson (Laura Marano) is a slightly withdrawn, extremely talented songwriter who prefers to toil in the background and let others bask in the spotlight. Ally is actually a gifted singer/performer, but her innate shyness and lack of self-confidence prevents her from "stepping out front," and performing publicly. When a song she's written is made into an Internet video by Austin (Ross Lynch) and becomes a sensation, both his and Ally's lives change dramatically.
Austin is everything that Ally isn't; outgoing, outspoken and determined to become a star. The unlikely pair discover their differences complement each other perfectly, and along with their respective best friends Trish (Raini Rodriguez) and Dez
(Calum Worthy), they set out to make their mark in the music video universe.
In early episodes, Ally continues to struggle with her reticence and stage fright, but with some behind-the-scenes maneuvering by Austin, finds herself onstage, accompanying Austin on piano. The end result isn't favorable, but the experience helps to solidify the two, and they learn to trust each other.
Ensuing episodes of Austin & Ally find the duo not only increasing their output, but also dealing with the trappings of stardom. When a far-from-flattering video of Austin shows up on an Internet blog, the resulting controversy not only leads to the cancellation of an upcoming gig, but also forces the group to reassess their strategy. An appearance at the Internet Music Awards severely tests the group's friendship, and in perhaps the ultimate test of loyalty, Austin is faced with a dilemma when a noted manager attempts to woo him into a contract. Despite visions of superstardom and promises of unimagined riches, Austin chooses to remain with his friends.
Obviously targeted for the 'tween and teen demographic, Austin & Ally nonetheless is a well-written and well-performed production. The chemistry between cast members appears genuine, and the original music featured is much better than expected. Kopelow and Seifert cut their teeth on other Disney productions such as Sonny With a Chance and Jonas, but they've already shown that they are capable of taking the typical Disney format to a new level.
Watch Full Episodes of Austin & Ally
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Austin & Ally Full Episode Guide
Austin discovers he's a credit short for graduation, throwing off his plans for his senior year.
The gang is on a time crunch to teach first-time music students how to play in a band in preparation for the A&A Music Factory's grand opening.
Austin feels pressured into working at his parents' mattress store. Ally has a hard time keeping up with the influx of music students.
The gang shares an emotional reunion in Miami at Ally's triumphant homecoming gig.