Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Beating the official start of the 1998-1999 TV season by at least three weeks, That '70s Show debuted on August 23, 1998, with an episode aptly titled "That '70s Pilot." The year is 1976: handing over the keys of the Forman family's Vista Cruiser to his teenage son, Eric (Topher Grace), Wisconsinite Red Forman (Kurtwood Smith) tells Eric that he is welcome to drive the car anywhere -- except out of town. But what with an upcoming Todd Rundgren concert down in Milwaukee, Eric and his pals feel obligated to break the rules. Halfway to Beer City, the car's battery dies. Unable to call his dad for help, Eric must sell two of his concert tickets to get the car moving again. But which of his friends is willing to make the supreme sacrifice? When this episode originally aired, there was a bit of controversy over a brief pot-smoking scene -- which comes off as so hilariously harmless that it is virtually impossible for anyone to be offended.