In this week’s Superstore, Jeff drops by to announce that if the store meets its sales goal, it will be upgraded from a triple-A to a quadruple-A store. Some initial skepticism about the benefits for the workers themselves is allayed when he mentions that the upgrade would mean the store would get a Pizza Hut. The crew decides to go sell the hell out of everything… although Jonah remains suspicious.
Meanwhile, Glenn has to find a surrogate, and accidentally presses Cheyenne into duty.
I loved this episode, and the Glenn plot in particular provided some of the most laugh-out-loud, pause-the-TV moments. Glenn’s diagram of Jerusha’s uterus (“Most women’s are a V, but hers is corkscrew-shaped, like a duck”) would have been enough, and the brief scene with an attempted Craigslist hire is delightful, but after Glenn misinterprets a comment from Cheyenne as her acceptance of the job, Bo enters the picture, and he’s comic gold from beginning (greeting Cheyenne with “Yo yo, what up, spouse?”) to end (“We got twenty thousand dollars now! That’s like, infinite money!”). The Bo-Glenn pairing is just a smash hit, and we need to get those two together as often as possible. I was howling while Glenn was explaining surrogacy to Bo:
BO: It’s like, I wanna be sex positive, but on the other side of the hand, thinking about my wife banging an old couple…
GLENN: No, no, no!
BO: And would I get to go with Jerusha?
GLENN: Almost definitely not.
(Almost?!) And then Bo finds out about the money. “For 20 grand, you can stick whatever you want in either of us!”
This story does end on a couple of sweet notes, as Glenn lets Cheyenne off the hook by mustering up about as much meanness as he’s capable of (with Cheyenne being smart enough to realize what he’s doing), and then with Glenn and Dina coming to an agreement. Dina could use the money (it’s a pretty real reminder of the grim financial outlook of most Americans that she’s second in command at the store and her take-home pay is not much more than $20,000 a year) and wants a “practice baby” before she starts her own family someday.
Back to the AAAA-store plot. Jonah is suspicious of how hard Jeff is selling it, and after a follow-up talk with Jeff, Amy and Dina are just as suspicious, so they go check out the other AAAA store in the area, and discover a place where the workers respond to all questioning with a cult-like “This is the best job I’ve ever had!” but confide on their break how miserable they are now. So our Cloud 9 crew hatches a plan to sabotage the day, after pushing extra-hard to make sales earlier on. The highlights of that first effort include Garrett trying to upsell a kid who’s clearly using his dad’s credit card to buy an Xbox, and Brett in an interstitial marking a batch of pears with an “Improves Sexual Performance” sign (oddly enough, while Usher’s “Yeah!” is playing in the background, which is not a song I would expect to hear at a Walmart or Walmart-analogous store, ever, but maybe I’m getting old).
The team’s efforts to tank the day start with Amy reassigning everyone to things they’re terrible at, followed by a predictable (I think this show has even done it before) slow-motion baller walk to music out of the back section, although that hits another great comic moment when Marcus punts a shopper’s basket across the store. We get some other great moments. Dina tells a shopper “On the one hand, that won’t look good on you. On the other hand, what would?” Brett replaces the “improves sexual performance” sign with “E.Coli.” But the highlight is probably Jonah, who’s been assigned to distract Jeff, first telling him boring stories that go nowhere (one of them seems to be about the American political climate, but I could not discern what Jonah was specifically talking about or what his stance on it was), and then offering to listen to Jeff’s problems. (Of course, Jeff has thrown himself into work after Mateo dumped him to try to distract himself.) This takes an interesting turn when Jeff explodes after Jonah gets the news that the store didn’t meet its sales goals; he seems to have had a lot wrapped up in this personally and professionally. We’ll see if that ends up seeding some future storylines.
Oh, and the store misses its goal in hilarious fashion: Bo pushes them over the line by spending some of his newfound infinite money on a floor-model hot tub, which can’t be returned; but it turns out that Kelly, assigned to the register even though she’s never worked it before, has been allowing a whole lot of counterfeit money to pass through, so those sales don’t count, and for now, our branch of Cloud 9 staves off the increased workload with no added benefits or salary that becoming a 4A store would have made them. (They wouldn’t even have gotten to eat the pizza.)
ATTENTION CLOUD 9 SHOPPERS
- When Bo first shows up, he’s using a store turntable and microphone, and drops a “wagwan rasta” in there. Of course he does.
- Apparently Bo was supposed to be watching Harmonica, but she’s at the zoo, so she’s good.
- Amy’s plan for Marcus: “You just float. I want the customers to feel like you’re everywhere.” Marcus interprets the statement this makes about his personal qualities incorrectly, which is probably for the best anyway.
- And Dina suggests Jonah distract Jeff with “stories that are boring that no one would ever care about,” because “I mean, you’re brutal–” Garrett interrupts: “Dina, he knows what he is.”
- Garrett contributes to the cause by announcing the store has a carbon monoxide leak. “It’s the silent killer, so you’re gonna wanna go.”
- Glenn’s Craigslist “surrogate” can get you a baby for 15k in a week– sooner if you must, although you won’t get to pick the color.
- I’m not so sure the hat is working, Jeff. Even if it was, it’s a pretty obvious response to Mateo’s burn: “Today’s not about me, though. It’s about something big. Bigger than all of us.” “Is it your forehead?”
- Dina on her “practice baby”: “Like, whatever happens to it happens to it, you know?” Glenn is a little disturbed by this.
- What did everyone else think?