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'Superstore': Intelligent Discourse on Sexual Harassment in a Network TV Rom-Com? Yup, and It's Funny

 
 
 
'Superstore': Intelligent Discourse on Sexual Harassment in a Network TV Rom-Com? Yup, and It's Funny

When Sam and Diane started their decade-long flirtation on “Cheers,” no one noted their status as employer and employee. The same was true for NBC’s next generation of canoodling coworkers, Jim and Pam on “The Office.” But in 2018, a “love trumps all” argument doesn’t fly, and the savvy minds behind “Superstore” know it.

The long-running platonic pair played by Ben Feldman and America Ferrara finally shared more than a kiss at the end of Season 3, when their backroom hook-up was live-streamed to the big box store’s TVs and beyond. In the Season 4 premiere, the most pertinent question on fans’ minds is, “Are Jonah and Amy together?” Creator Justin Spitzer and episode writer Jonathan Green provide an answer — two, really — but also seize the opportunity to focus on what constitutes consent, double standards about sex, and why the employees were disciplined for getting together at all.

Spending an entire episode educating the audience on #MeToo-inspired conversations is a bold move for a broadcast comedy, but the premiere’s balanced plotting remains a consistent series highlight. The key talking points and sharp comedy are so skillfully blended, there’s never a lag. “Back to School” works because it feels honest, and it’s what distinguishes this network workplace romance.

Jonah and Amy are back to business as usual at Cloud 9, after serving a company suspension for their actions. Amy is initially relieved when her colleagues don’t make fun of her embarrassing sexcapade, but when she finds out why her typically invasive and jocular co-workers are keeping quiet, she’s (rightly) infuriated.

SUPERSTORE --

“What you’re saying is no one is talking to me about the whole sex thing because they think, as a woman, I must be filled with shame about it?” she asks her boss, Glenn (Mark McKinney). Flustered, he says yes, before noting how he hasn’t really caught up with all this “#MeToo stuff.” “All I know is one day Charlie Rose was there, and the next day he wasn’t,” Glenn says.

Tags: Superstore
Source: indiewire.com
 
 
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