'Downward Dog' details Pittsburghers will crave

Tuesday, 16 May 2017 11:59 PM Written by 

Downward Dog pilot blog

After watching the debut of ABC's "Downward Dog" (9:30 p.m. Wednesday, WTAE), Pittsburgh viewers may have a few questions.

I have a few answers beyond what was in Sunday's history of the series (how two Pittsburgh guys got a show on ABC, where they found the title star, etc.).

Read them after the jump. ...

1. Where is Nan's office?

A building on First Avenue is repeatedly used in establishing shots as the exterior of Clark & Bow Outfitters. A building on the North Shore is used in an upcoming episode as the back of Clark & Bow, what producers called "the Clark & Bow campus."

Interiors were shot at the former Hipwell flashlight factory building in Allegheny West with the exception of scenes in the pilot. Interior Clark & Bow scenes for the pilot were initially shot at Burke and Michael on the North Side but what viewers see in the pilot episode that airs are scenes that were re-shot in a building in Los Angeles.

2. Who is the voice of Pepper, the evil cat who is Martin's nemesis?

That's comic actress Maria Bramford.

3. What happened to the dog and actress who played Nan and Martin in the "Downward Dog" web series that led to the TV comedy?

They have a cameo in ABC's "Downward Dog" pilot (they are circled in red in the photo at the top of this page).

Rachel Vallozzi, who played Nan in the web series, appears with Sadie, who played Martin in the web series, in a dog obedience class scene of the pilot.

Rachel critiques Nan (Allison Tolman), saying, "Maybe she's so focused on her own dog she can't even see how her own dysfunction is affecting the situation." Vallozzi also worked in the wardrobe department on the ABC TV series.

4. This show is great. Why did ABC keep it on the shelf until summer?

As much as I enjoy "Downward Dog," it is a big swing for ABC. It doesn't feel like an ABC show, which is probably why ABC executives were wary of it and opted to schedule the show in summer where, in failure, it would do the least amount of damage to the schedule. Remember, fear is the No. 1 motivator for network executives.

Once the summer premiere was announced in January, there was some talk among the show's greatest defenders/high-power Hollywood executive producers about trying to grab the show back from ABC and sell it to Hulu, which ABC has a stake in, the way NBC shifted its "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" from NBC to Netflix. But nothing ever came of that so now we wait and see how the ratings are for "Downward Dog," not so much in its premiere after "Modern Family" this week but in its regular time slot (8 p.m. Tuesday) beginning next week.

To report inappropriate comments, abuse and/or repeat offenders, please send an email to socialmedia@post-gazette.com and include a link to the article and a copy of the comment. Your report will be reviewed in a timely manner. Thank you.