Saturday, September 24, 2016

Superstore 2x01 Recap: “Strike” (Amy and Jonah Fight for Their Rights) [Contributor: Alisa Williams]

Original Airdate: September 22, 2016

In the season opener, Superstore picks up right where it left off last season: Glenn’s been fired for giving Cheyenne paid maternity leave, and the majority of the Cloud 9 employees have walked out in protest. Dina has finally seized the reins of power and fired them all.

Each of the employees is reacting to the protest and subsequent firing in their own way. Glenn can’t help his compulsion to assist customers despite the fact that he’s been fired. Mateo is panicking and regrets his decision to walk out. Amy and Jonah argue over semantics — Jonah says they’re on “strike” but Amy thinks that sounds too official.

Meanwhile, the Cloud 9 District Manager, Jeff Sutton, shows up to negotiate. Before meeting with Jeff, Amy and Jonah ask the other employees what their demands are. This probably wasn’t the greatest idea as most of the demands are obscure and unattainable (allowed to vape in the store, physically move the store to be closer to an elderly employee’s house, etc.). In the end, they decide their only demand will be that Glenn gets his job back.

On the way to the meeting with Jeff, Amy and Jonah walk by Cloud 9’s “Dress for Success” display and decide to up their game with some tasteful professional wear. Unfortunately, the only thing in Amy’s size is a hot pink skirt suit. Meanwhile, Jonah ends up looking like a cheap gangster, complete with fedora. But it’s the best they’ve got.

Dina self-appoints herself to sit in on the negotiation, despite Jeff’s protests. Dina’s not interested in negotiating, but Jeff is happy to give Glenn his job back with one condition: Amy and Jonah must apologize in writing to corporate for the disruption they’ve caused. Amy refuses, reminding Jeff that not only was Glenn fired for treating an employee fairly, but corporate has never done anything for them. They’re denied paid overtime, health insurance, and vaping in the store. As Jonah points out, that last issue is a little lower on their priority list but they’ve made their point. Jeff, however, calls them out for being amateurs with no plan, and tells them to just sign the apology letter and go back to work. Their response is to go on strike — “officially” this time.

The next day the employees reassemble. They have “Boycott Cloud 9” T-shirts and signs now. In addition to the employees, several random people have shown up to help protest, thanks to Jonah’s tweeting about the strike to his 1,506 Twitter followers. One of these new protestors includes a very attractive woman that Garrett has his eye on. He goes over to talk to her and they bond over video games, but unfortunately he soon realizes that she is actually pretty much a bigot. Meanwhile, Mateo sneaks back into the store so that Jeff sees him working like a good employee instead of protesting.

Dina decides to take matters into her own hands to disperse the protestors. She turns a garden hose on them, but this only generates a pleasant mist that cools them off in the hot sun. After this failed attempt, she retreats back inside to strategize.

Meanwhile, a news crew has shown up to interview the protestors. When Amy starts to explain that they’re protesting for fair treatment of employees, a woman commandeers the interview and says they’re protesting against transgender bathroom rights. Then another man jumps in saying they’re protesting to gain statehood for Puerto Rico. Apparently, Jonah’s Twitter proclamations were a little unclear on what the protest was actually about. Things go from bad to worse when the inflatable rat they bought (to signify that Cloud 9 is a “dirty, filthy rat”) turns out to be a giant, adorable teddy bear.

Amidst the chaos, Dina shows up again, this time with a pressure washer. She manages to break several car windows and cause the protestors to scatter. Amy and Jonah aren’t out of ideas yet, though. They decide to reconvene inside the store this time and cause a little pandemonium. Garrett gets on the intercom system to tell customers the store is infested with everything from spiders to raccoons. Another employee opens all the doors in the freezer section, while another pretends to have the plague. Amy gives a semi-inspirational speech to the customers about boycotting Cloud 9, which one customer responds to. But just as it seems they’re starting to shift the protest in their favor, employees from another Cloud 9 branch show up to replace them.

It seems Jeff and Dina have won. Jeff informs everyone that anyone who’s willing to come in and sign the apology letter by the end of the day will get their old job back, including Glenn. But no other demands will be met. Anyone who doesn’t sign will be replaced permanently by the employees from the other branch. Amy and Jonah immediately lose half of the protesting employees back to the store. By the end of the day, Amy and Jonah are the only two left protesting. Finally, they decide to give up — for now. They’ll put their protest on hold and go back to work, but the fight for better rights is not over.

Laughable Lines:
  • “You photograph terribly. Never model.”
  • “Will you please take off that stupid fedora?” “It completes the look!” “You look like Carmen Sandiego.”
  • “We do not negotiate with terrorists!” “Who’s the terrorist in this scenario, Dina?” “That suit you’re wearing.”
  • “Corporate says we’re in over our heads? I think we’re in under our heads!” “Just go with it, guys. She’s goin,’ she’s flowin,’ she’s dressed like Barbara Bush.”
  • “We just want to end this peacefully. We don’t want to trample on anybody’s civil rights.” “Oooh, but that sounds so good to me.”
  • “Attention Cloud 9 shoppers, the spider infestation in produce has been 80% contained, so we will be focusing our attention on the bed bug infestation in the mattress section. Meanwhile, we are down to only one raccoon left in the store. Unfortunately, that raccoon has grown powerful beyond our wildest fears.”


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