Superstore: Wellness Fair – Cat Out of the Bag (Recap/Review)

SUPERSTORE -- "Wellness Fair" 216 -- Pictured: (l-r) Nichole Bloom as Cheyenne, Ben Feldman as Jonah, Mark McKinney as Glenn, America Ferrera as Amy -- (Photo by: Evans Vestal Ward/NBC)

Superstore “Wellness Fair” lets the cat out of the bag on more than one secret being kept by Cloud 9 employees. At long last the truth of whom Jeff is really seeing comes out, as does Jeff, and Glenn goes cold turkey when he learns just how unhealthy fruit juice really is.

This episode saw Amy playing hooky from work to take her daughter to see the The LEGO Batman Movie. She calls in sick and Dina decides immediately that Amy is faking her illness.  The assistant manager makes it her mission to catch Amy out.

Throughout the entire episode she asks her coworkers whether Amy told them where she was the day before or what type of illness she had.  Meanwhile, the store is exploding with the news that Amy saw Jeff and Mateo outside the movie theatre kissing.

She believes that Jeff is cheating on Sandra and as Amy learns the truth, the rest of the store believe that Jeff got Sandra pregnant and then dumped her for Mateo. Later, they learn that she made the whole thing up for attention. (Although initially it was a misunderstanding.)

Cloud 9 are having a wellness fair where customers can have certain things like blood pressure and their vision tested. However, as Garrett tells  the store, they are not offering breast exams. “If we were it would not be done by a teenage  boy,” Garrett says.

Glenn decides that Jonah is being a real “know-it-all” and gets angry when it appears that the Cloud 9 employee is smarter than he is.  Between stressing out at Jonah’s knowledge base and trying to convince Sandra to not abort her, made-up, baby, Glenn’s blood sugar crashes and he gets dizzy.

After the entire store, including customers, watch Glenn and Jonah argue about abortion and feminism, Jeff has to turn up from corporate and talk to the staff about what not to discuss in front of paying customers.

Glenn, who is still suffering from that low blood sugar, confronts Jeff about getting Sandra pregnant and then dumping her. Jeff then reveals that he is gay, Mateo tells everyone that they have been dating for months and Sandra explains that she made the whole thing up.

Garrett and Dina also lift the veil on their sexual relationship. Amy is wildly amused at this turn of events and starts picking on Garrett. He responds by telling Dina that Amy faked being sick to see The LEGO Batman Movie.

Dina confronts Amy, demanding to know what that is…

This episode of Superstore was a brilliant breakdown of just how quickly gossip can spread through the workplace. In seconds the entire store and its staff learned of Sandra’s “pregnancy” and then that she had made the relationship up.

It also pointed out, yet again, just how inept Glenn feels when he is around Jonah.  The cutest part of the entire episode was when the two boyfriends “came out” and Mateo tells the first customer they encounter that they are a couple.

Glenn, as usual, could be the poster child for how not to behave when he accuses Jeff of being too bland to be gay. It was the highlight of the episode. Superstore airs Thursdays on NBC.

Cast:

Superstore: Super Hot Store – Dina, Garrett and Sex (Review)

Superstore - Season 2

After last week’s romantic episode, that ended in a sexual harassment case for Amy and Glenn, Superstore heads straight to the sex part in “Super Hot Store.” Despite the sub-zero temperatures outside the building, the Cloud 9 establishment is sweltering inside.

Glenn calls corporate and complains only to be told that the computer says that things are a cool 64 degrees. Tempers are frayed as the heat increases in the store and as the episode continues a newly promoted Marcus and Amy butt heads.

Glenn puts the air conditioner on in his office and Garrett decides to stay in the room while the manager goes up on the roof to fix the heating problem. Cheyenne accompanies Glenn. He manages to change the setting language but nothing else.

He and the new mother do bond over their mutual love of travel and later, after the problem is sorted by corporate, Cheyenne extricates herself from Glenn with a few white lies.

Dina enters Glenn’s office and finds Garrett camped out there. She stays in the cool room with him and the two share uncomfortable silence until Dina says, “sex?” Garrett responds favorably and they have sex at least three times behind closed doors.

Marcus is asked by Amy to clean up a leaking pallet of yoghurt and he responds vaguely. Later, after she discovers the mess is still in the floor, Amy gets angry. She and Jonah go to confront the new man running the warehouse.

Jonah works to mediate the confrontation but Marcus blows it when he tells Amy to smile. She reacts angrily and fires him. Jonah tries to save to situation but Marcus once again puts his foot in it and Jonah seconds Amy’s firing.

In sympathy the entire warehouse team walks out with Marcus. The rest of Cloud 9 try to unload the latest shipment and apart from Sandra becoming trapped behind boxes and breaking the scanner, Amy takes a fall after scooting down the rollers.

Marcus returns and apologizes to Amy and Jonah and is “re-hired” (it is unclear whether Amy actually had the power to fire anyone) and the temperature is lowered by corporate .

Dina and Garrett agree to dislike each other but still have sex and Jonah praises Amy on her toughness and being able to take a fall.

One of the highlights of the episode was Dina’s impression of Glenn when corporate, who had kept Glenn on hold for the entire episode, got back to the manager to say it was the computer after all.

While Dina’s aping of Glenn was not perfect the voice on the other end of the line never noticed it was not the manger at all. Even funnier was the admission that Glenn was right all along about who’s fault it was but he was not there to hear it.

The awkward pairing of Dina and Garrett continues to be one of the funnier aspects of the show. Both of them swear that they cannot stand the other and yet they are apparently sexually compatible.  This odd couple get together is just brilliant.

Lauren Ash and Colton Dun are running a close second to America Ferrera and Ben Feldman as “couple of the year” but for entirely different reasons. Granted, Amy and Jonah are not a couple yet but we believe it will not be too much longer before cupid strikes hard.

Nichole Bloom and Mark McKinney were spot on together on the Cloud 9 roof. The storyline, where this week Glenn realizes that his ancestors were slave traders, was priceless.

Superstore continues to be one of the funniest things on NBC right now. Tune in and see what you think.

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Superstore: Valentine’s Day – Sexual Harassment (Review)

 Superstore - Season 2

It was all about love on Superstore “Valentine’s Day” episode. Although the journey was not smooth for anyone.  In the end, it was all about harassment in the modern workplace, much to Glenn’s chagrin, and Dina manages to scuttle Jonah’s burgeoning romance with Shannon the shoplifting suspect.

Perhaps the highpoint of this episode was the appearance of Bernie Kopell, better known to millions in his decade long run as Dr. Adam Bricker on “The Love Boat.” Kopell has been working steadily since 1961 and in terms of comic performances from the heart, no one does it better.

The storyline this week has Glenn, and later Amy, playing cupid after two Cloud 9 employees find love on Valentine’s Day. Glenn hired them so he begins matchmaking in earnest. Amy, seeing how much Arthur clearly likes Myrtle, does some matchmaking of her own.

Glenn helps her to set up Myrtle and Arthur and it results in the store, Glenn and Amy being charged with harassment. Arthur, is not the sweet little old man that Amy believed him to be.

The staff have to attend a sexual harassment training session run by Jeff. Glenn tells how he got his wife to marry him and describes how he asked her to go out with him every single day till she said yes. Jeff explains that this is not a good thing.

Glenn then goes on to explain that his father, who they both worked for, told her that if she did not go out with Glenn she would be fired. The Cloud 9 staff are horrified.

Jonah believes he has spied the shoplifter from earlier in the season. He talks Dina into letting him act as the plainclothes floor detective. Jonah flies a drone into the gorgeous young woman’s head and when he goes to apologize, he is instantly smitten.

Dina is furious that instead of concentrating on catching the woman in the act, Jonah is flirting with her. The two make plans for a date when Dina turns up in shorts and a hat accusing Jonah of leaving her and the kids in the car for hours.

Jonah then gets into an argument with his “wife” and Shannon leaves while he is distracted.

Superstore - Season 2

Sondra takes her pretend affair with Jeff to new, and expensive, levels. Giving herself a dozen roses and other extravagant gifts from “The Man.” Mateo gets increasingly jealous and Cheyenne ends up telling Garrett that he and Jeff are dating for real.

The cutest part of the episode has Jeff giving Mateo a small Valentine’s Day gift and topping it off by calling Mateo his boyfriend. All jealousy is forgotten and Mateo’s day is made. He then swans out of the dressing room shutting Jeff in.

Amy and Jonah have a splendid moment breaking up all the Valentine’s Day signage, a move that is slightly reminiscent of the forklift mayhem in Secret Shopper. While not as hysterically funny as the carnage caused by the forklift, there is something about these two gleefully destroying things that counts as a win.

Another highlight in this episode had Cheyenne wowing the staff with her “Catch 22” reference. Jonah congratulates her on this show of knowledge. She responds by saying that she has been studying for her SAT’s. “It’s been an extrapolatory experience,” Cheyenne says while working on her giant lollipop.

As part of the sexual harassment training session it looks like the “in love” couple are breaking up. What Glenn brings together he also breaks apart. The highlights of this episode included Dina and Jonah’s argument, the valentine signage carnage and the Arthur/Myrtle storyline.

Superstore - Season 2

Superstore is still the best thing about Thursday night comedy on NBC. Do not miss this one if you like to laugh.

Cast:

Guest starring Bernie Kopell  as Arthur and Andree Vermeulen as Shannon.

Superstore: Ladies Lunch – Winner Gets Amy (Review)

Superstore - Season 2

Superstore “Ladies Lunch” takes the Amy marriage problem storyline up another notch.  The episode starts with the Cloud 9 morning meeting learning about Amy’s counseling sessions and that Adam is living in the basement.  We learn, along with the staff, that this is “cash day” as the computer systems are down.

Taking only cash keeps the store pretty much deserted for the entire episode. (Apart from one woman who asks where the paper towels are. A distracted Glen tells her they do not carry them…) As a result of the reduced workload the employees basically run amok.

Dina kidnaps (or as she puts it, abducts) Amy “since you’re pushing 40” and takes her out for a ladies lunch. Jonah and Garrett start playing games with a muffin wrapped in clingfilm and before long they have created a male game zone with nearly everyone playing with the muffin.

At Dina’s favorite bar and grill, the ladies start having lunch. What begins as an awkward moment turns into a drunken day out for the women. The luncheon sheds light on a couple of peripheral characters and ends in heartache for Sandra who bumps into her soulmate at the bar.

Carol, a heretofore unseen character, turns out to be the Cloud 9 tramp. She calls Adam’s cell phone repeatedly offering to ease his pain and when Sandra meets the man who clearly is her spiritual mate, reminds her co-worker that she has a boyfriend and moves in on the man.

Back at the store the men, and the games, are getting more competitive. Marcus, getting into the spirit of the games and the idea that Amy is now “available” calls dibs on the supervisor. Jonah is not impressed and he gets quite worked up at Marcus’ “dib” calling.

Glenn is injured with what appears to be a concussion and Jonah loses to Marcus. The women return and all, with the exception of the blonde worker who substituted diet soda for Long Island ice tea, are smashed.

At the end of the episode a drunken Amy cuts her hair off; chin length, as a horrified Cheyenne looks on. Marcus tells Amy he is there for her and Dina manages to hide her insobriety from a concussed Glenn.

Superstore also took the fake relationship story of Sandra a bit deeper. This was comedy with heart and a touch of poignancy. Mateo’s continued jealousy of his co-worker’s fictitious affair was funny. However, meeting the man who would be perfect for her and missing out, because of Carol, and that look on Sandra’s face when she added to the tale was just brilliant.

So too was Jonah’s reaction to Marcus’ schoolboy attitude towards Amy. His discomfort at the idea of the whole thing was at war with his own attraction to his “married with problems” supervisor.

NBC have a real winner in this comic exercise and it is an ensemble piece that delivers each and every week. Superstore airs Thursdays just before the network’s new comedy Powerless.

Cast:

Guest starring Irene White as Carol and Jon Barinholtz as Marcus.

Superstore: Rebranding – Iceman (Review)

 Superstore - Season 2

Things were on a somewhat lighter note after Amy’s confession to Glenn that her home life was dire with Adam living in the basement in the previous episode. However, the overall plot point in Superstore this week moved Jonah one step closer to being on even footing with Amy.

“Rebranding” allowed for some brilliant comic moments and poked even more fun at Jonah, aka Iceman, via the reunion with an old classmate.

Cloud 9 are going through a retail facelift of sorts and changing their image and logo. The Halo is out the door, as is the old murderous and cannibalistic mascot, and all the old products with the halo logo have been massively discounted.

(A great bit of comedy starts at the very beginning when corporate spokesman Jeff reveals the store’s new mascot; a blonde, very white bread female. Cheyenne points out that with the new logo of Super Cloud they could have had a super hero – with a cape – as the mascot who would help customers reap “super” savings. Jeff’s reaction was priceless.)

Jeff brings the Rex the Vice President of Cloud 9 to the store and he is an old classmate of Jonah’s. He calls Jonah Iceman and then shows some video footage of a presentation that Iceman did in college.

Meanwhile, Jeff gets a tad rough with Dina because of the stress of the rebrand. She reacts by picking on a member of staff. Later, after Jeff learns from Mateo that she called him an asshat, the corporate staffer tells her off. Dina’s rage meter reaches Hulk-like proportions and she punches the white bread mascot poster in the face.

Mateo is terrified that Dina will find out so he tells the assistant manager that Sandra ratted her out. He qualifies his accusation by telling Dina that Sandra and Jeff are having an affair. Mateo suggests freezing Sandra out but Dina cannot remain silent and accosts Sandra in the break room.

Sandra confesses and begins spinning a long yarn of all the naughty things that she and Jeff have gotten up to. Mateo is dumbstruck, initially and later gets angry about the whole thing. Dina goes from being angry at Sandra to somewhat, begrudgingly, impressed.

The Cloud 9 VP  (Played brilliantly by Ravi Patel) reminds Jonah that he can still come back and finish his degree. Amy and Garrett poke fun at Jonah and suggest he leave while Glenn tries to get him to stay.

Jonah and Amy get into an argument about how their situations are the same. Jonah maintains that they are in the same boat.  She argues that Jonah can get out anytime he likes. To prove that they are both in the same place he calls the college to cancel his deferment.

He learns that it actually ran out a month previously. Panicking he tries to get it reinstated. Jonah then  tells Amy he was bluffing, he never really meant to cancel it, but now has no choice to return. Jonah is now trapped just like Amy is. Glenn is, needless to say, overjoyed.

Amy and Jonah sit together outside Cloud 9 cold drinking coffee at the end of the episode. Glenn cannot contain his glee and the VP who started it all mentions the deferment and that he and Iceman will have drinks the next time he is in town.

Superstore “Rebranding” gave some of the “other” players a chance to shine. Cheyenne’s jealous hoarding of baby sales items, which were all taken back by another Cloud 9 employee was brilliantly spot on. Just as when she goes to look in the “back” for more sales items for a late customer.

After all her stress and self induced heartache over losing out on the sales items, she finds a warehouse stacked to the ceiling with sales items. Hysterically she returns and triumphantly tells the customer that no, there is nothing left in the back.

Kaliko Kauahi rocks it as Sandra, milking the comedy with delivering outlandish stories of Jeff’s debauchery and her willing responses. “He told me to take out my taters…and I did.” Her storyline was brilliantly funny as was her proving the lie true by touching Jeff’s nose.

“Rebranding” was penned by Superstore creator Justin Spitzer and he proved that there is still plenty of comedy magic in that instrument. It seems fair to say that each episode manages to outdo the one before. This was a sidesplitting installment full stop.

Superstore airs Thursdays on NBC and is one of the best comedy shows the network has to offer.

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