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Superstore - Customer Satisfaction - Review: Here Comes the Flood

Store 1217 gets itself into some hot water this week, and with only two episodes left in the series, it seems like the employees might be heading into uncharted seas (okay, you get it, it’s a flood episode. I’ll stop now). Read on for my review of “Customer Satisfaction”:

At the top of the half-hour, the Ozark Highlands staff are shocked (and underwhelmed) to find out that Jeff has, once again, been appointed district manager (this time he’s in charge of two districts!).

Jeff’s return isn’t just to brag about his new job (although that certainly seems like it’s in Jeff’s wheelhouse). No, this visit is because Zephra wants to emphasize the importance of the customer satisfaction surveys found on the bottom of customers’ receipts. The satisfaction score, he says, is crucial, especially because 1217 is known as a problem store (What gave it away? The dead body they found in the walls? Or perhaps the mysterious use of their store as a dumping ground for severed limbs?).

Fearing for their jobs, Dina, Glenn and Cheyenne go all out pushing the customer satisfaction surveys. Cheyenne is put in charge of monitoring the surveys and making sure the employees are getting good scores. Dina and Glenn, meanwhile, get the idea to create “problems” for the customers that the employees can “go above and beyond” pretending to solve.

Mateo has been getting excited because he’s planning his proposal to Eric. When Jeff overhears Mateo telling Garrett about his plan, Mateo, embarrassed, swerves, pretending that they’re planning a proposal for Garrett and his “girlfriend Doreen” instead.

Cheyenne pulls several people with low satisfaction scores off the floor, relegating them to the back of the store to do what essentially turns out to be busywork - moving boxes of Zephra tech from the ground to higher shelves. To his surprise, one of the people she pulls is Jonah, who apparently was accused by customers of “talking too much.” Offended at being hidden away in the backroom (with the rest of the “shadow people,” as Sandra calls them), Jonah convinces the backroom team to revolt, walking out and taking a prolonged break behind the store.

The rest of the employees get to work on Dina and Glenn’s plan, mostly because they don’t want Dina and Glenn to get fired - leaving Jeff to take over as manager. By hiding popular items in the back, they can “search around” and bring out “the last one” when customers ask for it, hopefully boosting their score.

At first, the ploy works and the scores go up, but after Marcus clogs all the toilets in the men’s bathroom (so he can show people to the employee bathroom instead), the toilets begin to overflow and flood the store. Everyone panics as the entire building fills with water - “it’s pee-pee water, we’re gonna get hep!” Cheyenne cries. They try to block the doors with towels (and then, with Glenn), but it’s too late, and the store has to close due to flooding.

Meanwhile, to keep him from finding out about the flood, Mateo had gone to “check in” with Jeff, who reveals he’s dating someone new named Trevor. Mateo, in jealousy, admits that he’s the one getting engaged, not Garrett, and Jeff - also in jealousy - confesses that his relationship with Trevor was made up, embarrassing Mateo and giving Jeff an opportunity to notice the water seeping into the carpet.

To make the situation even worse, because the backroom team walked out, the new Zephra products they were supposed to move onto higher shelves all got damaged by the flood. Dina and Glenn refuse to take accountability for the incident (blaming the clog on a customer), and Jeff leaves irate. Store 1217 is in a lot of trouble, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the resolution of this - combined with Carol’s lawsuit - leads to the closing of the store for good.

This episode was great - the return of Jeff was hilarious, and it was an apt cap to the ongoing saga of mini-natural disasters pummelling Store 1217. Mark McKinney and Nichole Sakura were specifically hilarious in the scenes where Glenn and Cheyenne were trying to block up the flooding.

I also really like the direction this season has taken Jonah’s character. It hasn’t always been perfect beat-for-beat, but at least for the most part, the writers completely fulfilled my wish and used the break-up with Amy to explore the sharper edges of Jonah’s character. This show is extraordinary in that it set itself up to be the typical “white savior” show - where a well-bred white man comes in and saves the lower class from their downtrodden way of living - and has turned that idea completely on its head. I’ll save my full thoughts on this for the finale, but my point is that Jonah is a phenomenally underrated character, writing and acting-wise, and I wish more sitcoms had characters that were both entirely sympathetic and genuinely challenging to like at times, as Jonah was in this episode.

In other news, after weeks of speculation, we found out this week that America Ferrera will, in fact, be returning as Amy for the final two episodes (airing as a 1-hour event on the 25th). What do you think this means for the fate of the store, as well as for the fate of Jonah’s new relationship with Hannah?

Were you satisfied with “Customer Satisfaction?” How do you feel about America Ferrera’s impending return? Sound off in the comments!

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