"Pilot" is the first episode of the series of the CBS drama.2008.
Jake Green returns home to Jericho after a mysterious 5-year absence. He is very evasive about this absence and gives a different answer about it to anyone. It seems that only his mother Gail knows where he was. After the quarrel with his father, Mayor Johnston Green about the inheritance from his grandfather, Jake decides to leave the town and return to San Diego.
As he leaves the town, all communications go out and a Mushroom Cloud appears from the direction of Denver, Colorado. He sees the explosion and his car is hit by another driver, also distracted by the mushroom cloud. He survives and heads back to the town, finding Heather Lisinski who accompanied the school children from Jericho. Jake helps the injured and drives the bus back to the town.
In town, Dale Turner gets the message from his parents who were visiting Atlanta, but the message is interrupted by a strong explosion. The townspeople believe that Denver explosion was an isolated incident until the news about the explosion in Atlanta arrive.
The people in Jericho start collecting supplies when the electrical power fails, leaving people without communications. Without any information about the outside world the people must find the means of survival.
The episode ends with Emily Sullivan, an old friend of Jake who drives to the airport to meet with her fiancé. She feels the bumps on the road and sees the road covered by dead birds.