Superstore (TV series)

Superstore is an American sitcom television series that ran on NBC from November 30, 2015, until March 25, 2021.[2] The series was created by Justin Spitzer, who served as an executive producer for four seasons.[3][4] Starring America Ferrera (who also serves as an executive producer) and Ben Feldman (who also serves as a producer), Superstore follows a group of employees working at "Cloud 9", store number 1217, a fictional big-box store in St. Louis, Missouri. The ensemble and supporting cast includes Lauren Ash, Colton Dunn, Nico Santos, Nichole Sakura, Mark McKinney, and Kaliko Kauahi. A Spanish-language adaptation, titled Supertitlan, is in development.[5]

Superstore
NBC Superstore.png
GenreSitcom
Created byJustin Spitzer
Starring
Theme music composerJesse Novak
ComposerMateo Messina
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons6
No. of episodes113 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producers
  • Justin Spitzer
  • Ruben Fleischer
  • David Bernad
  • Gabe Miller
  • Jonathan Green
  • Jackie Clarke
  • America Ferrera (2019–20)
Producers
Cinematography
  • Damián Acevedo
  • Jay Hunter
Editors
  • Mark Sadlek
  • Steven Lang
  • James Renfroe
  • Richie Edelson
Camera setupMultiple camera[1]
Running time22 minutes
Production companies
DistributorNBCUniversal Television Distribution
Release
Original networkNBC
Picture format1080i (16:9 HDTV)
Original releaseNovember 30, 2015 (2015-11-30) –
March 25, 2021 (2021-03-25)
External links
Website

Cast and charactersEdit

MainEdit

  • America Ferrera as Amelia "Amy" Sosa,[a] a Honduran American Cloud 9 employee who worked as an associate, floor supervisor, and assistant manager before being promoted to store manager. Amy always wears a different name tag because she does not like strangers using her real name. In the second episode of season 6, Amy leaves the store for a corporate position at Cloud 9, but returns for the final two episodes.[6]
  • Ben Feldman as Jonah Simms, a Cloud 9 sales associate. A college graduate who later dropped out of business school, Jonah has struggled with having a customer service job. He and Mateo were both hired in the series' pilot episode.
  • Lauren Ash as Dina Fox, Cloud 9's intense and no-nonsense assistant store manager. She has worked for Cloud 9 for over 10 years and has a very forthright demeanor. She is a strict vegan and shares her apartment with a large collection of birds.
  • Nico Santos as Mateo Fernando Aquino Liwanag, a Cloud 9 associate. He tries to keep secret that he is an undocumented immigrant, but he is arrested by ICE at the end of season four. Later he is hired as assistant to the manager, the only job he can be hired for without corporate becoming involved.
  • Colton Dunn as Garrett McNeil, a sarcastic and indifferent Cloud 9 associate who is a wheelchair user. He is also the in-store announcer, in which capacity he often offers his acerbic commentary and dry humor.
  • Nichole Sakura[b] as Cheyenne Thompson (née Lee), a Cloud 9 associate later promoted to floor supervisor in the sixth season. She is a pregnant high school student at the start of the series. She gave birth to her daughter, Harmonica, in the store in the first-season finale, and married her boyfriend Derek "Bo" Thompson during the second season.
  • Mark McKinney as Glenn Sturgis, Cloud 9's constantly positive store manager until late in season 4, when he steps down and becomes an associate (and later floor supervisor) because his 16+ hour shifts as manager were preventing him from seeing his newborn child. Glenn is a devout Christian and was previously a foster-father to many children. He was quite an easy going boss but he has a muppet voice that cannot be taken seriously.
  • Kaliko Kauahi as Sandra Kaluiokalani (season 5–6; recurring season 1–4),[7] a meek Hawaiian Cloud 9 employee who has trouble standing up for herself. She has a YouTube channel where she plays ukulele covers of Radiohead songs.

RecurringEdit

  • Johnny Pemberton as Bilbo "Bo" Derek Thompson, Cheyenne's immature, wannabe-rapper husband and father of Harmonica. Worked briefly at Cloud 9.
  • Jon Miyahara as Brett Kobashigawa, a Cloud 9 employee known for his silent demeanor, air of authority and incredible looks. He is presumed to be dead after being caught in a tornado at the end of season 2, but is later revealed to have simply gotten in his car and driven home. He only spoke once, where he curses at the end of Season 2.[7]
  • Sean Whalen as Sal (season 1), a Cloud 9 employee known for being creepily obsessed with both women and children like a pervert. His deceased body is found in the walls of the store early in season 3.
  • Josh Lawson as Tate Staskiewicz (season 1–3), a Cloud 9 pharmacist who is often rude, panicky, sarcastic, and full of himself.
  • Irene White as Carol Malloon (season 2–6; guest season 1), a vindictive Cloud 9 employee who has a rivalry with Sandra, whom she accuses of stealing her boyfriend, Jerry. She hits on Amy's husband moments after hearing the two were separated. Sometime thereafter, she turns to the practice of Buddhism, spending time in meditation.
  • Linda Porter as Myrtle Vartanian (season 1–4; guest season 5), Cloud 9's longest-serving employee (30 years). Her tenure has made her the highest paid sales associate, despite her constant confusion and forgetfulness. She was fired but later returned (in holograph form) as Cloud 9's mascot in a ploy by Jeff to be forgiven by Cloud 9's employees, especially Mateo, after betraying them at the end of season 3. After Amy becomes the store manager, she rehires Myrtle as her assistant. Porter died from cancer on September 25, 2019. Her final television appearance was on the season 5 episode "Curbside Pickup".
  • Isabella Day as Emma Dubanowski (season 2; guest season 1, 3–6), Amy's daughter with her ex-husband Adam. Amy constantly tries to win her affection, giving her and her friends plenty of space to hang out, even becoming upset over her spending time with her father.
  • Ryan Gaul as Adam Dubanowski (season 2; guest season 1, 3 & 4), Amy's estranged husband and Emma's father. Adam and Amy were high school sweethearts, got married at 19 upon learning that Amy was pregnant, and had Emma thereafter. He is an entrepreneur who has had several unsuccessful ventures, and even works at the store as a seasonal employee in season 2. Amy and Adam soon divorce, and Adam moves on. Later, Amy and Adam meet again, sleep together and Amy ends up pregnant with her second child.
  • Jon Barinholtz as Marcus White, a dim-witted, often fired/rehired Cloud 9 employee. Following a mishap with a meat slicer in the Cloud 9 deli, he was promoted (without a pay increase) to warehouse supervisor on the condition that he would not sue the store.
  • Michael Bunin as Jeff Sutton (season 2–6), Originally the district manager who oversaw the St. Louis Cloud 9, among others. He is revealed to be gay and has had a romantic relationship with Mateo. After the secret relationship became public, Jeff resigned to continue dating Mateo. Late in season 3, however, Jeff betrays the St. Louis store employees and is rehired to manage the Chicago district. It was revealed he had been dumped by Mateo again in season 4. In mid-Season 6, he had been rehired as DM.
  • Kelly Schumann as Justine Sikowicz (season 2–6), a Cloud 9 employee. At times she pretends to be an alcoholic or promiscuous in order to seem more interesting. According to Glenn she is 40 years old and lives alone in a studio apartment.
  • Carla Renata as Janet Woods (season 2–6), a floor worker at Cloud 9; a single mother, she struggles with finances.
  • Chris Grace as Jerry (season 2–6), Sandra's boyfriend and then-husband who briefly dated Carol. He was in a coma after the tornado that destroyed Cloud 9 at the end of season 2, but eventually recovered.
  • Steve Agee as Isaac (season 2–6), an overweight, often rude Cloud 9 associate. He first appears as a seasonal worker in season 2, but is later shown to be a full-time employee.
  • Kelly Stables as Kelly Watson (season 3–4; guest season 5–6), a divorcee who begins working at Cloud 9 in season 3, where she eventually starts a relationship with Jonah. After Jonah's love for Amy becomes known, Kelly transfers to the Fenton Cloud 9 store.
  • Kerri Kenney-Silver as Jerusha Sturgis (season 3–6), Glenn's wife. She is mentioned in the first two seasons but does not appear until season 3.
  • Jennifer Irwin as Laurie (season 3; guest season 4), the new district manager who takes over after Jeff resigns in season 3.
  • Baron Vaughn as Ken (season 3, guest season 5–6), the store's security guard.
  • Amir M. Korangy as Sayid (season 4–6), a Cloud 9 employee who is a Syrian refugee.
  • Justina Machado as Maya (season 5), store 1217's new District Manager in who replaced Laurie.
  • Jee Young Han as Kira Moon (season 5–6), Zephra CEO.
  • Rory Scovel as Dr. Brian Patterson (season 5–6), Dina's boyfriend who is a veterinarian.
  • Benjamin Norris as Tony, Sandra's and Jerry's adopted son.
  • Franchesca Ramsey as Nia.
  • Maria Thayer as Hannah (season 6), Carol's lawyer and Jonah's brief love interest.

Notable guest starsEdit

EpisodesEdit

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
111November 30, 2015 (2015-11-30)February 22, 2016 (2016-02-22)
222August 19, 2016 (2016-08-19)May 4, 2017 (2017-05-04)
322September 28, 2017 (2017-09-28)May 3, 2018 (2018-05-03)
422October 4, 2018 (2018-10-04)May 16, 2019 (2019-05-16)
521September 26, 2019 (2019-09-26)April 23, 2020 (2020-04-23)
615October 29, 2020 (2020-10-29)March 25, 2021 (2021-03-25)

ProductionEdit

Development and filmingEdit

 
The series' title card.

The series was one of three pilots picked up by NBC on January 14, 2015.[9] The series was the first project for Ruben Fleischer's newly formed company The District as part of a two-year deal with Universal, as he directed the pilot episode.[10] Superstore was officially picked up as a series on May 7, 2015, by NBC.[11] The first season consisted of eleven episodes, after the episode order was reduced from thirteen on October 19, 2015.[12] NBC announced on November 2, 2015, that the series would premiere on Monday, January 4, 2016, but before the premiere it would air two back-to-back episodes on November 30, 2015, following The Voice.[13]

On February 23, 2016, the series was renewed for a second season by NBC.[14] On May 15, 2016, NBC announced that the series would lead off its Thursday night primetime programming in the 2016–17 season. The second season premiered on September 22, 2016,[15] with a 22-episode order that was announced on September 23, 2016. The season concluded on May 4, 2017.[16] A special Olympics-themed episode aired on August 19, 2016, during the network's coverage of the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics.[17][18] On February 21, 2018, NBC renewed the series for a 22-episode fourth season, which premiered on October 4, 2018.[19][20] On March 4, 2019, NBC renewed the series for a fifth season,[21] which premiered on September 26, 2019.[22] On February 11, 2020, the series was renewed for a sixth season.[23] In March 2020, production on the show was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in the fifth season having 21 episodes instead of the originally-planned 22.[24] The sixth season began filming on September 8, 2020.[25] The season premiered on October 29, 2020.[26] In December 2020, NBC announced that the sixth season would be its last. Production on the final season was completed on February 28, 2021.[27] The series finale aired on March 25, 2021.[28]

CastingEdit

It was announced on February 20, 2015, that Lauren Ash had been cast as a series regular, and would be playing Dina, the store's assistant manager.[29] On March 2, 2015, Deadline reported that Superstore had added three other cast members: Colton Dunn, Mark McKinney and Nico Santos. The website reported that Dunn would be playing Garrett, the often-sarcastic narrator of the piece, McKinney would be playing Glenn, the intense store manager, and Santos would be playing Mateo, another new employee and a brown-noser from an impoverished background.[30] On March 12, 2015, Nichole Sakura was announced to have joined the show as Cheyenne, a pregnant teenage employee.[31][32]

Deadline announced on March 13, 2015, that Ben Feldman had landed the male lead in Superstore, as Jonah, a new employee in the superstore Cloud 9.[33] Three days later, TVLine announced on March 16, 2015, that America Ferrera had landed the female lead as the floor supervisor Amy in the Cloud 9 store. It was also reported that Ferrera was also a producer for the show.[34]

On May 22, 2019, NBC announced that recurring cast member Kaliko Kauahi who portrays Cloud 9 worker Sandra has been upped to a series regular for the fifth season.[7]

America Ferrera's departureEdit

After NBC had initially announced the sixth season renewal of the series, the network revealed on February 28, 2020, that series star America Ferrera, would be departing the series at the end of the fifth season citing a desire to work on new projects and to spend more time with her family.[35]

After production of the fifth season was cut short by one episode due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ferrera noted her departure from the show might be delayed into season 6 in order to give her character's arc a proper closure.[36][37] Ultimately, Ferrera was in the first two episodes of the sixth season as well as the final three episodes.[38][better source needed]

CrossoversEdit

Different stores in the Cloud 9 cluster (i.e. not the same store as portrayed in this show) have appeared in other series produced by NBCUniversal Television, including Hulu's The Mindy Project,[39] NBC's Good Girls[40] and I Feel Bad.[41]

Cloud 9 SuperstoreEdit

 
Cloud 9 Superstore logo

The Cloud 9 Superstore is a fictional hypermarket discount store. In addition to typical American hypermarket products, Cloud 9 also sells guns[42] and liquor,[43] and has a pharmacy.[42] Cloud 9 has its own credit union for its employees.[42] It also had a photo studio.[44] The spokesman for Cloud 9 was Daniel Hertzler (as Kyle the Cloud 9 Cloud), until he was arrested and charged with cannibalism.[45][46]

The corporation, based in Chicago, does not offer paid maternity leave,[47] health insurance or paid overtime to its employees.[48] Under Cloud 9 policy, employees may take one bathroom break per shift, and are allotted 15 minutes for lunch.[49]

In an effort to control what is happening in the individual stores, all locks and lights,[43] as well as temperature control and music,[50] are controlled from the corporate office. In 2017, Cloud 9 changed its store brand from Halo to Super Cloud. Cloud 9 also has its own magazine called Stratus.[51]

The main characters for the show work at store 1217, the "Ozark Highlands" store, which is located in St. Louis, Missouri, on Ozark Highlands Road.[48] The store fell under district manager Jeff Sutin, who was District Manager from 2006 to 2018, and then again from late 2020. [52] (formerly Laurie Neustadt in 2018 and Maya from 2019 – 2020).[48] The store was destroyed by a tornado during the season 2 finale,[53] and reopened during the season 3 premiere.[54] Other area locations include Kirkwood,[48] Fenton, Easton,[55] and Bel-Ridge.[56] Additionally, there are locations mentioned in Austin, Texas,[57][58] and in Detroit, Michigan.[59] Cloud 9 has locations in multiple countries, with stores in Beijing, Mumbai, Paris, Vancouver, Taipei, and Mexico City.[60]

The pilot was shot at a redressed Kmart in Burbank, California[61][62] (with Kmart signage visible throughout the episode,) though the rest of the series has been shot on sets constructed on two soundstages.[63]

ReceptionEdit

RatingsEdit

The series debuted as a "preview" on November 30, 2015, following an episode of The Voice with 7 million viewers, making it the second highest new comedy behind Life in Pieces.[64] The series then moved to its regular Monday at 8:00 pm timeslot on January 4, 2016, with more than 6 million viewers making the highest rated NBC comedy that did not have The Voice as a lead-in since The Michael J. Fox Show back in September 2013.[2][65]

Season Time slot (ET/PT) Episodes Season premiere Season finale TV season Rank Viewers
(in millions)
Date Viewers
(in millions)
Date Viewers
(in millions)
1 Monday 8:00 pm[c] 11 November 30, 2015 7.21[64] February 22, 2016 4.68[66] 2015–16 #66 6.58[67]
2 Thursday 8:00 pm 22 September 22, 2016 5.45[68] May 4, 2017 2.91[69] 2016–17 #91 4.81[70]
3 22 September 28, 2017 4.60[71] May 3, 2018 2.97[72] 2017–18 #102 4.87[73]
4 22 October 4, 2018 3.16[74] May 16, 2019 1.95[75] 2018–19 #113 4.19[76]
5 21 September 26, 2019 2.86[77] April 23, 2020 3.01[78] 2019–20 #87 3.82[79]
6 Thursday 8:00 pm
(1–4, 11, 13–14)
Thursday 8:30 pm
(5–10, 12, 15)
15 October 29, 2020 2.80[80] March 25, 2021 2.41[81] 2020–21 #100 3.05[82]

Critical receptionEdit

Season Rotten Tomatoes[83]
Critical response Audience response
1 64% 78%
2 100% 91%
3 100% 91%
4 100% 82%
5 100% 80%
6 92% 54%
Average 92% 79%

On Metacritic, the first season has a score of 58 out of 100, indicating "mixed or average reviews" based on reviews from 21 critics.[84] On Rotten Tomatoes, the first season has a 64% rating, based on reviews from 33 critics, with an average rating of 5.01/10. The site's consensus is: "Superstore's talented cast and obvious potential are slightly overshadowed by a tonally jumbled presentation and thin, formulaic writing."[85]

As the first season went along, reviews started to become more positive. Following the finale "Labor", the Los Angeles Times called it one of TV's best new comedies."[86] Pilot Viruet of The A.V. Club wrote that the "first season ... got better and more confident as it moved on", and that the first-season finale "is a nice little cap to a nice little sitcom that could’ve used a little more attention."[87] After the series aired its Olympics special, Variety wrote that the show was "a funny, pointed and essential workplace comedy", and that "there are no weak links in [the] ensemble".[88]

The second season was lauded by critics and has a 100% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on reviews from 7 critics.[89] The third season has 100% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on reviews from 11 critics. The site's consensus reads, "Superstore graduates from the clearance section of network comedies to stake its claim as one of the most lovable ensembles on television, fleshing out its charming cast while expertly teasing out its central romance."[90] The fourth season received critical acclaim with critics saying “Superstore remains a furtively fearless riot in its comedic approach to heavy, timely issues.” with a score of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 15 reviews.[91] The fifth season received critical acclaim with a score of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 9 reviews.[92] The sixth season has received positive reviews with a score of 92% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 13 reviews.[93]

AccoladesEdit

Year Award Category Nominee(s) Result Ref.
2016 Imagen Awards Best Actress – Television America Ferrera Nominated [94]
2017 Casting Society of America Outstanding Achievement in Casting – Television Pilot and First Season – Comedy Susie Farris, Collin Daniel, Brett Greenstein, Sherie Hernandez, Melanie Crescenz Nominated
Gracie Awards Actress in a Leading Role – Comedy or Musical America Ferrera Won [95]
Golden Nymph Awards TV Series Comedy Superstore Nominated [96]
Best Actress – Comedy America Ferrera Nominated
Imagen Awards Best Primetime Television Program – Comedy Superstore Nominated [97]
2018 Golden Reel Award Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing – Sound Effects, Foley, Music, Dialogue and ADR for Live Action Broadcast Media Under 30 Minutes Christopher B. Reeves, Gabrielle Gilbert Reeves, David Mann, Jason Tregoe Newman, Bryant J. Fuhrmann, Joseph T. Sabella, Jesi Ruppel and Gary Marullo Won
GLAAD Media Award Outstanding Comedy Series Superstore Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice Comedy TV Actress America Ferrera Nominated [98]
Critics' Choice Television Award Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Nico Santos Nominated [99]
2019 Nominated
2020 GLAAD Media Awards Outstanding Comedy Series Superstore Nominated
2021 Nominated [100]
TCA Awards Outstanding Achievement in Comedy Pending [101]
Hollywood Critics Association TV Awards Best Broadcast Network Series, Comedy Nominated [102][103]
Best Supporting Actor in a Broadcast Network or Cable Series, Comedy Nico Santos Won
Best Supporting Actress in a Broadcast Network or Cable Series, Comedy Lauren Ash Nominated

Cancelled spin-offEdit

In December 2020, it was reported that a spin-off, titled Bo & Cheyenne and starring Johnny Pemberton and Nichole Sakura, was in early development at NBC. The series was to be a co-production between Spitzer Holding Company, The District, and Universal Television, with Bridget Kyle and Vicky Luu as writers.[104] On March 25, 2021, following Superstore's series finale, the showrunners stated that they did not factor the potential spin-off into the episode because its development was still in early stages.[105] The following day Kyle said in an interview that the project appeared dead, stating, "Unfortunately, yesterday, NBC notified us that they're not going forward with the Superstore spin-off."[106]

Spanish-language adaptationEdit

In February 2021, it was reported that a Spanish-language adaptation, titled Supertitlan, is in development.[5]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Credited as a series regular up until episode 2 of the sixth season. Ferrera returned in the last three episodes in a "special guest starring" role.
  2. ^ Credited as “Nichole Bloom” for the first five seasons.
  3. ^ The premiere episode aired outside of its regular time at Monday 10:00 pm. The third episode aired at Monday 9:00 pm.

See alsoEdit

  • Trollied, a similar British series developed and broadcast some years earlier, which may have been an inspiration for the series.
  • Chuck (TV series), a comedy spy series set in a fictional big box appliance store.

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit