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Series / Superstore

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From left to right: Garrett, Mateo, Jonah, Amy, Glenn, Cheyenne and Dina. Not pictured: Sandra.

"Tomorrow is gonna be just like today, and I know that because today is just like yesterday."
Amy, "Pilot"

Superstore is an American Work Com single-camera television sitcom starring America Ferrera (who also serves as a producer) and Ben Feldman. The series was created by Justin Spitzer, who also serves as an executive producer.

It follows a group of employees working at a fictional big-box store and Fictional Counterpart of Walmart called "Cloud 9" set in St. Louis, Missouri, and all the various antics they get up to while evading bizarre customers and demanding upper management. Ferrera plays Amy Dubanowski, the store's weary floor manager, who has to wrangle the various sales associates (a core group comprised of awkward business school dropout Jonah (Feldman), snippy Mateo (Nico Santos), ditzy high schooler Cheyenne (Nichole Sakura), and playful and sarcastic Garrett (Colton Dunn), as well as many others), the store's wimpy and religious manager Glenn (Mark McKinney), and the stern and no-nonsense assistant manager Dina (Lauren Ash). The series portrays many aspects of working-class life both for comedy and drama (although mainly the former).


The series debuted on November 30, 2015 on NBC. In December 2020, NBC announced that the show's sixth season would be its last; the series finale airing on March 25th, 2021. Following news of the show's cancellation, a spinoff starring Cheyenne and her husband Bo (Bo & Cheyenne) was also reported to be in development.

Tropes used in this series include:

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  • Abhorrent Admirer: Dina to Jonah. Ultimately subverted, however. As soon as she realizes that Jonah doesn't reciprocate her feelings, she backs off and moves on.
  • Aborted Arc: Amy mentions early on that she is attending college courses at night, which ends up becoming a plot point multiple times (especially when she becomes assistant manager later on in the season and finds out that the position offers tuition assistance as a perk.) However, she is demoted back to floor supervisor at the beginning of season 2 and her college classes are not mentioned at all afterward. Presumably, this was because the writers found new plots they'd rather do for the character, as attending night classes would doubt be extremely difficult after Amy has another child and becomes manager of the store in season 4. In-universe, she mentions at the beginning of season 6 that she does not have a college degree, suggesting she dropped-out at some point.
    • With the cancellation of the show, Mateo's arc regarding his status as an undocumented immigrant is left inconclusive.
  • Acrofatic: Cheyenne shows off her dance moves in "All-Nighter". She's not "fat" so much as "heavily pregnant", but the comedic results are the same.
  • Ambiguously Brown:
    • In "Shots and Salsa", Glenn insists on having a Hispanic employee sell the salsa. One of the people he volunteers for the job is Mateo... who is Filipino.
    • Cheyenne is white/Japanese biracial, as is her actress.
    • Sandra gets mistaken for a foreigner as Glenn is encouraging employees to root for their home countries in "Olympics". She tries to explain that she's from Hawaii, but is ignored as usual.
  • Ambiguously Jewish: Jonah looks Jewish (he's played by Ben Feldman after all) and has a Hebrew first name. Dina even throws out a guess that he is. However, he neither confirms nor denies this and during the holiday episodes, he never mentions any family traditions.
    • Confirmed in "Spring Cleaning". Glenn asks him if Jewish people like snow and Jonah, a bit taken aback, responds, "Some of us do."
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Adam to Amy—"Would you have even married me if we hadn't gotten pregnant?" Followed by...
  • Armor-Piercing Response: Amy to Adam—"Would you have even asked?"
  • Asian Airhead: Both Asian members of the ensemble. Cheyenne is half-Japanese and not the brightest bulb in the box, but still very sweet and kind. Mateo is Filipino, and while not at Cheyenne's level of ditz is still very catty and shallow.
  • Atomic F-Bomb: A positive example when Amy finds out her new salary after she takes over for Glenn as store manager in season 4. A Cloud 9 representative surprises her with the news over the phone. It's... well, let's just say it's more.
    Representative: Do you want to hear about your perks?
    Amy: [frantically mutes the call] HOLY S[bleep]!!! [unmutes the call] Yes, I would like to, um, hear about those, please.
  • Bait-and-Switch: From the episode "Mannequin."
    Dina: Look, I guess you just have to ask yourselves, do you want your child raised in a home with loaded handguns laying around? Or do you want your child raised by Glenn?
  • Bathos: This show is fond of this trope, always willing to end, or otherwise lighten up, a depressing scene with a gag.
    • "Tornado" in season 2. The whole store is getting wrecked by the titular tornado, and everyone is hiding out in various locations scattered throughout the building. Poor Myrtle is hanging on by a thread as the storm rages through the building. Mateo is calling Jeff crying his eyes out and telling him he loves him. Garrett is giving a borderline Love Confession to Dina. And... there's still a TV on in electronics playing the shopping channel. Plus, Cheyanne is a nervous-laugher, so as the store is getting destroyed, she's writhing on the floor going full Laughing Mad.
    • There's one particularly sad scene mid-season 4 when Dina's birds escape their cages and fly away, never to return. Those birds may be the only living creatures Dina truly loves, and she's horrified seeing them go. Sandra tries to intervene, although her effort is limited to just pathetically stretching her arms out, which does nothing as the birds fly several feet over her head. What did you think was gonna happen, Sandra?
    • The breakup of Amy and Jonah in season 6 takes place in the back room of the store, and ends with Jonah walking out incredibly hurt at Amy's lack of commitment, followed suddenly by Shipper on Deck Sandra emerging out of nowhere, chewing out Amy, and throwing a fit.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension:
    • Amy can be an unbelievable bitch to Jonah sometimes, but it's clear that it's at least partly because she's attracted to him. For his part, Jonah can't help but participate in their back-and-forth for the same reason. It's worth noting that literally everyone at work believes that Amy and Jonah should—in Garrett's words, "Be adults and have an affair already."
    • Dina and Garrett for much of their relationship arc.
  • Big Damn Kiss:
    • During the season 2 finale "Tornado," Jonah saves Amy's life and she kisses him.
    • At the end of "Black Friday" in season 2, Dina surprises Garrett with this... and then tells him to meet her in the photo lab in 10 minutes.
      Garrett: Lot of firsts today.
  • Big Storm Episode: "Tornado", the second season finale, where a tornado hits the store.
  • Bilingual Bonus:
    • Mateo speaks to his grandmother in unsubtitled Tagalog, although viewers can pick up on the gist from the English peppered into the conversation.
    • At one point, Mateo and Marcus of all people are swearing at each other in Tagalog.
  • Black Comedy:
    • All of "Spokesman Scandal". It starts with the discovery that the store's mascot is a serial killer and cannibal, and the rest of the episode has Jonah and Amy making jokes about the whole thing. It even gets a Call-Back a few episodes later in "Halloween Theft", with a customer in the background dressed as the mascot and covered in blood.
    • In "Seasonal Help" when Glenn is deciding which mall Santa to hire, he looks at the bunch and declares that they have made it past "the Megan's Law search". Then Glenn's phone buzzes, he glances at it, and promptly dismisses one of the Santas.
  • Blackmail: A few times:
    • Early in season 2, after Marcus accidentally cuts off his thumb under Amy's supervision, Jeff threatens to suspend or fire Amy, though Dina threatens to report to corporate that Jeff was also at the store at the time the incident happened, possibly endangering his own bid for promotion.
    • In season 4, Amy blackmails Laurie, Jeff's successor as district manager, into making Amy store manager after Amy discovers Laurie's cocaine use. Later on, when corporate considers closing either Amy's store or a different store, Amy again subtly pressures Laurie into closing the other store.
    • Also in season 4, when Amy as a newly minted store manager, orders too many ice pops (12,000 boxes instead of 120), Glenn blackmails the vendor into taking back the excess boxes after revealing that he knows the vendor into cheating on his wife.
  • Book-Ends:
    • A monologue from Garrett begins and ends the series.
    • The end of the first episode reveals that Jonah put a luminescent star pattern on the ceiling to impress Amy, which is seen right when Bo is formally proposing to Cheyanne and Dina shuts out the lights. Jonah calls it "a moment of beauty." A similar star pattern is seen in the series finale. This time, the couple is Amy and Jonah, and the star pattern is on the ceiling in their children's bedroom.
  • Bothering by the Book: In "Dog Adoption Day", Dina won't cover up Garrett's lateness because "rules are rules". Garrett retaliates by monitoring Dina and pointing out when she breaks the rules, like timing her lunch break or not letting her have a second bathroom break.
  • Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: Amy, when she's trying to help Glenn make sure Kristen's not interested in dating Jonah. She first brings up some genuine annoying qualities Jonah has, but when those don't seem to deter Kristen she decides to take it up a notch.
    Amy: Well, I just... I just wanted to make sure that you were aware... of the... the cheese... and the films... and the meth.
  • Breakout Character: Sandra goes from recurring background character in season 1 to the main cast in season 5.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Garrett mocks a customer for picking the arc numbers from Lost in "Lottery". The end of the episode shows they were, in fact, the winning numbers.
    • Cheyanne keeps asking people, in various episodes of season 2, to return a green scrunchie to her if they find it. After the Big Storm Episode that is the season finale, the staff emerge from the wreckage to find the remains of what once was Cloud 9... and somehow, Cheyanne finds her scrunchie right there in the middle of the floor.
  • Building of Adventure: Many shenanigans happen inside the Cloud 9 store.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Sandra is usually the go-to; her life just constantly sucks.
    • There's also bubbly blonde Kelly, whom no one really seems to warm up to.
    • Jonah himself is this once in a while, since nearly everyone finds him pretentious and irritating.
  • Call-Back: From the first episode to the first season finale:
    • The same customer, who cannot seem to read the situation whatsoever, approaches the staff.
    • When Amy approaches Jonah he is stacking the same paper towel display he helped Amy with in the first episode.
    • Other call backs include: "Olympics" has a brief shot of looking at the mannequin said to look like him from "Mannequin", as the store is on fire.
    • "Halloween Theft" has a transition showing a guy dressed as a bloody version of Cloud 9's former mascot, who was arrested in "Spokesman Scandal" after it was discovered he was a cannibal serial killer.
    • "Cheyenne's Wedding" picks up several plots from "Ladies' Lunch" (the man Sandra met at the bar, Amy and her husband being in marriage councelling), to the point that NBC actually aired a rerun of "Ladies' Lunch" beforehand so viewers could get a refresher.
    • In episode "Grand Re-Opening", Marcus prints photo mural to block an aisle that isn’t properly set up, and a shopper runs their cart into it. A season later in "New Initiative", he prints another photo to cover part of the Cloud 9 parking lot, and a car drives through it.
  • The Cameo:
    • "Olympics" features cameo appearances from Apollo Anton Ohno, Tara Lipinsky, and McKayla Maroney as Cloud 9 shoppers during the episode's customer scene transitions. Ohno finds himself boxed in by an old lady with a shopping cart, Lipinsky slips and does a pirouette across a wet floor, and Maroney tries on a jacket and does her trademark unimpressed face.
    • In "Election Day", one of the scene transitions has a child driving a Power Wheels car through the store, only to be rammed out of the way by Jimmie Johnson in a motorized toy truck.
  • Casting Gag:
    • Tony Plana plays Amy's father; he had previously played her character's father on Ugly Betty.
    • In the Season 4 episode “Sandra’s Fight,” Amy (America Ferrera) goes to corporate and butts heads with executive Claudia (Ana Ortiz). Ferrera and Ortiz played sisters on Ugly Betty.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The tunnel within the store. Sal dug it out, Marcus lived in it for several months, and the staff try to use it in "Employee Appreciation Day" to hide Mateo from ICE.
  • Citizenship Marriage: Jonah offers to marry Mateo so he can stay in the country. Mateo's response: "Ew!"
  • Cliffhanger: There have been several.
    • The first season finale ends with all the employees walking out in support of Glenn, who had just been fired, and Dina as the new manager informing them that they're also fired.
    • The mid-season finale of season 2 has Amy on the phone with her husband admitting that she's not happy and that they need to talk. The season finale ends with the store destroyed by a tornado.
    • The end of season 4 has Mateo arrested by ICE.
    • Season 5 ended on one unintentionally, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. "California, Part 1" and "Part 2" were originally written as the two-part season finale featuring Amy moving to California and breaking up with Jonah, but the pandemic halted production of the show, with Part 1 airing as the season finale in May 2020, ending with Jonah announcing that he wants to go to California with Amy, much to her consternation. Ultimately, Part 2 aired later that year as the second episode of Season 6, with the season's first episode being unrelated, showing how the pandemic has affected the store.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander:
  • Most of the customers are this as well; the scene transitions usually have customers doing questionable things inside the store when they think no one's looking.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Landers Minder: Essentially what Amy does. This is best shown in "Mannequin" when she decides to prove that she's not the "responsible" one, and everything quickly dissolves into chaos.
  • Colorblind Casting: The characters weren't designed with specific ethnicities in mind. Instead a lot of the characters' backgrounds were written around the actors who were cast for their comedic abilities.
  • Cynic–Idealist Duo: Glenn and Dina in one episode. He's shocked to discover the people he knows sometimes do bad things, while Dina counters that everyone is a bit of a bad person, that's just the way it is.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Amy and Garrett mostly, although Jonah and Mateo occasionally join in.
  • Digging Yourself Deeper: Jonah's specialty. The pilot episode sets the tone nicely by introducing him to Amy, having him say a number of increasingly belittling things to her as he tries to backpedal from previous statements, and then finding out she's his new boss.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: In "Halloween", to get the other employees to stop pestering her about not wearing a costume, Dina grabs one out of the middle of a rack at random, not noticing or caring that it's a sexy police officer. The entire staff spends the rest of the morning meeting being distracted by her ample bosom, and Garrett goes through the episode becoming increasingly confused by his newfound attraction to "that same crazy fascist who physically removed gum from my mouth". Amy comes right out and says it on behalf of a tongue-tied Garrett and Jonah, saying "I cannot stop looking at her enormous breasts."
  • Doomed Supermarket Display: A common gag. The employees try to set a pretty display and customers or other employees destroy it in almost no time. Appears twice in the pilot episode, and again in the "Wedding Day Sale" episode. Any display the cast spends time on is nothing against the demands of plot shenanigans or the upcoming Retail Riot.
  • Double Standard: Rape, Female on Male: Subverted; The concept is taken seriously, however it is Played for Laughs in this instance as it was clearly consensual.
  • Downer Ending:
    • The mass walkout that ends season 1 and begins season 2 is doomed to fail, for numerous reasons.
    • The penultimate episode of the series sees the cast and a returning Amy trying to scramble to pass a store evaluation, to prevent their branch of Cloud 9 from getting shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic leading to retailers downsizing. Despite their best efforts, it gets revealed that it didn't matter what they did, because Corporate had already made up their mind and was simply determining whether their location should be converted into a fulfillment center, which they do.
  • Eagleland: Parodied in "Olympics". Glenn proclaims that America is the greatest country in the world, but falters when asked to name concrete reasons why.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: In the pilot, Glenn has white hair, while in all other episodes it's brown.
  • Eidetic Memory: Sandra has superior autobiographical memory, meaning she clearly remembers everything that's happened to her while working at Cloud 9.
  • Fanservice: Dina's Halloween costume. Serves more than fan fodder, as it doubles as a plot device initiating the will-they-won't-they, on-again-off-again, love-hate relationship story arc between Dina and Garrett.
  • Flash Mob: Bo's (second) proposal to Cheyenne, which includes him pretending to be a robber. Dina mistakes him for the real thing and has him arrested.
  • Flyover Country: The show is set in St. Louis, but it could realistically take place in just about any Midwestern town big enough to have a Walmart superstore in real life.
  • Foreshadowing: Season 2 hints at the tornado in the season finale multiple times, including when Amy makes up an impromptu tornado safety briefing, and when Glenn talks about the emergency safety memo he sent out. Sadly, the characters themselves didn't see it coming.
    Glenn (cheerfully): The building got an F in tornado preparedness. The inspector says this place is a house of cards.
  • Free-Range Children: There are a lot of scene transitions featuring unattended children loose in the store and causing havoc. Not that any one, parents or staff, steps in to deal with it.
  • Freudian Slip: In "Black Friday", when Amy is calling Adam to tell him that she's not pregnant, she says, "I'm not happy! I mean, pregnant. I'm not pregnant."
  • Funny Background Event:
    • In "Labor", while Jonah and Amy are arguing in the stock room, Cheyenne can be seen going into labor in the middle of the aisle.
    • In "Guns, Pills and Birds", Gina catches a crow in a bag and tells Mateo to "take care of it". While she talks to Garrett about the humane way they dealt with the crow, Mateo can be seen beating the bag on the floor.
  • The Gambling Addict: In "Seasonal Help" Jonah mentions he's had some trouble with gambling in the past, and it quickly spirals out of control after he shrugs off making a tiny bet.
  • The Ghost: Three examples, all of whom eventually appeared on-screen:
    • Glenn's wife Jerusha was mentioned several times in the first two seasons and was unheard on the other end of Glenn's phone calls, and she first appears in-person in Season 3's "Golden Globes Party", making reoccurring appearances afterward.
    • Dina's nemesis/frenemy Colleen is mentioned occasionally during the first four seasons, and appears on-screen in "Forced Hire" early in season 5.
    • Garrett's friend Randy, who is likewise mentioned occasionally during the first four seasons, and appears on-screen in season 5.
  • Godwin's Law: In "Workplace Bullying," during a conversation about how to protect the store from robbers without brute force, Dina asks what to do if somebody was trying to steal a baby. Marcus counters by asking what to do if that baby was Hitler. This derails into a conversation about who the "anti-Hitler" would be. Later, when Jeff brings up the "no bullying" policy, Marcus asks if it's okay if you're bullying Hitler.
    Jeff: Can we just forget about Hitler?
    Cheyenne: No! We can't ever forget about Hitler!
  • Heteronormative Crusader: A bunch of these hijack the employee strike in the season 2 premier and claim it's a protest against trans people's right to use the right bathrooms.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • Dina is a surprisingly good singer and adores all animals (especially birds).
    • Also, Amy is a pretty decent shot.
    • Sandra is a trained midwife with an eidetic memory.
  • Hit Me, Dammit!: In "Mateo's Last Day", Mateo tries to get people to beat him up so that he can apply for a U visa and stay in the United States.
  • Idiot Ball: In the "Secret Shopper" episode, Dina trying to sniff out the secret shopper by harassing customers. Even if she had been successful, harassing a corporate spy sent to rate your performance is probably not the best career move.
  • The Illegal: In "Olympics", while trying to prove to Glenn and Jonah that he's still a proud American even though he's rooting for the Philippines, Mateo has the misfortune of learning that his grandmother went to the "green card store" when he was a child. It notably becomes a plot point in future episodes, culminating in Mateo getting detained by ICE at the end of season 4, though he is released afterward.
  • Incompatible Orientation: After he and Amy break up, Jonah strikes up a friendship with Nia and thinks there's chemistry between them. He gets halfway into asking her out when she tells him that she is a lesbian. Other members of the workforce think she just said it to get Jonah to back off, but she reiterates that she is a lesbian.
  • I Never: Played by the staff while they are trapped in the store.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Glenn is the rare character who tries to learn from his mistakes when he's made aware of this trope, but then he tends to swing wildly in the other direction end up being Innocently Over-Sensitive, to the embarrassment of whoever he's trying to appease.
  • Insistent Terminology:
    • In "Ladies' Lunch", Dina takes Amy to lunch against her will. When Amy accuses Dina of kidnapping her, she corrects her.
    Dina: Kidnapping is what you do to a child. You're pushing forty, I abducted you.
    • In "Demotion," Dina confesses to Jonah she was worried Jonah was stringing her along "like some sociopath." When Jonah replies, "Nope, nope, that's not me. I'm not a psychopath," Dina corrects him, explaining, "A psychopath doesn't have a conscience. A sociopath knows what he's doing is wrong but does it anyway."
    • In "Grand Re-Opening", Carol accuses Sandra of trying to kill her during the tornado. Sandra counters that she just "didn't try to save her".
  • Is There a Doctor in the House?: In "Labor", Garrett begins to ask this over the PA when Cheyenne goes into labor, before realizing where he is. He then asks if there's anybody who's watched a lot of Grey's Anatomy.
  • I Think You Broke Him: In "All Nighter'', when Glenn goes on a rant about how much he hates Cloud 9.
    Amy: What just happened?
    Garrett: I think we just broke Glenn.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: In "Lady Boss," Jonah realizes almost too late he shouldn't tell a harried Amy to "calm down."
    Jonah: Okay, calm... up, you... come up with the best ideas.
  • Locked in a Room: The staff gets locked in while working late because the store has a remote locking system that activates after a certain hour.
  • Mood Whiplash: In universe, Cheyenne's dance routine goes from "True Colors" to "Anaconda".
  • Murder by Inaction: Possibly attempted by Sandra. When Carol accuses her of trying to kill her during the Tornado, Sandra counters that she simply didn't try to save her.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Garrett's trolled his coworkers time and time again, but none of that compares to accidentally letting Dina's birds fly away mid-season 4, a terrible mistake which leaves Garrett overcome with guilt. And when Dina eventually learns the truth, she goes out of her way to make him feel worse.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: After everyone splurges the $906 that Amy found in the lost and found, Sandra comes in and tells everyone that she tracked down the customer who lost the money.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished:
    • Garrett tells Jonah that this applies inside Cloud 9, comparing it to quicksand. Jonah attempts to prove him wrong but gets sucked into doing all the hard work for a pharmacist.
    • Glenn, in the "Labor" episode. When Cloud 9 won't let their employees have paid maternity leave, he gives Cheyenne 6 weeks paid suspension, as a "punishment" for violating company rules by having her "insides" all over the store, distracting employees, and having her child in the store with her. Unfortunately, he gets fired for this.
  • Now or Never Kiss: Amy kisses Jonah in the season 2 finale, thinking they might die in a tornado.
  • Oh, Crap!: Mateo when he realizes he's an illegal immigrant after Jonah makes him realize that green card stores aren't a thing.
  • The Olympics: Downplayed with "Olympics", which is set around the closing ceremonies of Rio 2016. No games happen, but American patriotism is explored and a fictional gold-medal gymnast appears in-store.
  • One Steve Limit: A Union buster named Steve was doing some role-playing with Glenn, but the only name Glenn could think to use was "Steve."
  • Only Sane Man: Kelly. Amy and Jonah take this role occasionally but always seem to get sucked into store shenanigans eventually.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: When Glenn snaps, he snaps hard.
  • Open Heart Dentistry: Subverted. When Cheyenne goes into labor, the pharmacist marches in, asks if Cheyenne is on any medication, and promptly leaves when she says "no" since that is the extent of his medical knowledge.
  • Overly Long Gag: "Shots and Salsa" begins with an extremely long pre-opening cheer.
    Garrett: It gets longer every year.
    Amy: When I first started here we would just put our hands in the middle and go "yay".
  • Pass the Popcorn: Garrett tends to treat most of the conflict, drama, and general awkwardness that goes on in the workplace as though it were there for his amusement.
  • Phoneaholic Teenager: The store is flooded with teenagers and their phones in "Mall Closing."
  • Pixellation: Often used for more NSFW content.
  • Potty Emergency: Dina won't go to the bathroom because she used her allotted bathroom break, and Garrett is on her back for not letting him break the rules. She claims she can hold it in indefinitely, but pretty soon she's doing the Potty Dance while at an outdoor fountain display.
  • Pregnancy Scare: Amy in "Black Friday". Turns our she just had food poisoning.
    • Double subverted with Amy, again in season 3's "Gender Reveal". Dina, while carrying Glenn and Jerusha's baby, begins to panic about being pregnant, and while trying to calm her down, Amy mentions that after worrying she might be pregnant a few weeks back, she took a Cloud Nine pregnancy test, which came back negative. However, Dina then reveals that a memo was sent out recalling the tests for being defective. Upon learning this, Amy takes four more different ones, all of which come back positive.
  • Product Displacement: Avoided, with the set and prop designers having a whole team of people to clear products to appear on Cloud 9's shelves. The fictional store does have a fictional store brand ("Halo", later rebranded "Supercloud") and if a product needs to be defective or disparaged to fit a plot point it's a store-brand item.
  • Racist Grandma:
    • In "Shots and Salsa", a beleaguered Jonah must decide who from a long line of impatient customers to give the last flu shot of the day to. He chooses a frail-looking old lady who's talking about having trouble standing in line, and when a (dark-skinned) man questions why she was chosen to cut the line, she replies that "[White people] take care of their own." However, it's only the latest in a series of racial incidents at the store that day.
    • Myrtle can be a very pleasant woman, but also because of her age, she tends to lean in this direction from time to time.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Because of a technicality, Amy is forced to go back to work two days after giving birth - you read that correctly. She spends the whole day miserable and in terrible pain, with a frozen diaper on so her insides don't fall out. She has such a horrendous day at work that eventually she blows up at Glenn and tells him to kill himself. Luckily for Amy, Glenn is a forgiving man.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: The season 6 premiere, "Essential," takes place over the first months of the Covid-19 pandemic. The planned outdoor concert for Cheyenne's birthday is cancelled, but she still sells a ticket to Sandra. The rest of the episode has how the Cloud Nine group handled real-life events from March to July of 2020.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • At the end of season 4, the employees band together to help sneak Mateo out of the store and escape ICE's detection. Unfortunately, there's only so much that a couple of minimum wage, big-box store employees can do against a government police force. When he realizes that he's cornered, Mateo gives himself up.
    • The sixth and final season shows the Store's efforts to operate throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic and the finale sees that the branch ultimately gets shut down and converted into a fulfillment center because their operation got hit too hard.
  • Relationship Reveal: In "Mannequin" it is revealed that Amy is married, although she can be seen putting on her wedding ring in the pilot.
  • Relationship Upgrade:
    • Jonah and Amy finally in season 4. Before they break up in early season 6, only to get back together for good in the finale.
    • Garrett and Dina finally make it official in the series finale, and in true Dina fashion, she just drops it out of nowhere - not that Garrett minds.
  • The Reveal: They keep finding severed foots in the store all throughout the series. The series finale shows the usually quiet Elias leaving one last severed foot on a store shelf, indicating he was the culprit.
  • Revealing Hug: Amy has a worried look on her face when she hugs Jonah at the end of Season 6's "Essential."
  • Rousing Speech: Two examples, played with the series' usual comedic flair:
    • In "Black Friday", when the crew is left exhausted and defeated after dealing with a flood of Black Friday shoppers early in the morning, Garrett of all people convinces them to not give up, noting that, as lazy as as he is, he refuses to do less than the bare minimum, and neither should the rest of the team.
    • In "High Volume Store", when the employees try to avoid reaching the level of sales necessary to have their store's rating upgraded from "Triple-A" to "Quad-A" (after hearing about how stressful Quad-A stores from a different Cloud 9 store), Amy gives an inspiring speech about how if the team tries hard, they can definitely fail the sales goal.
  • Running Gag:
    • Amy is wearing a different name tag every episode (she doesn't want customers to know her real name). After she got promoted to assistant manager she switches to a name tag with her actual name on it, presumably because she has to.
    • After Glenn steps down as Store Manager Amy gets promoted and starts wearing name tags with fake names again.
    • Every so often a severed foot is found in the store, which the staff often treat as a mundane occurrence.
    • A member of the team will do something inappropriate, followed by a Gilligan Cut to the entire staff watching a training video in the break room.
    • Marcus discussing breast milk and/or trying to make cheese out of breast milk in Season 3.
    • Raccoons are a constant problem, supposedly. Not that the audience ever sees them.
    • During the episode "Blizzard" the team is forced to stay at the store overnight where a raccoon and Justine stare at one another for a long time.
    • Glenn's car is constantly damaged by something horrible happening in the episode's plot.
  • Sanity Slippage: Garrett unravels over the course of “Costume Competition” when he notices the same Halloween song plays over the store’s loudspeakers every ten minutes.
    Garrett: Attention Cloud 9 shoppers, I do not have an announcement, but as long as I am talking I am not listening, so just gotta keep talking.
  • Saying Sound Effects Out Loud: Bo tends to celebrate virtually any achievement by making air horn noises with his mouth. Pya-pya-pyaaaaahhhhh!
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Glenn, usually trying his best to follow corporate policies, decides enough is enough and gives Cheyenne time off to recuperate and take care of her baby after giving birth (albeit as a paid suspension rather than actual maternity leave).
    • Amy has been on corporate's side most of Season 4 due to her promotion to Store Manager but in the Season 4 finale she finally ditches corporate's rules to try and help Mateo avoid ICE and deportation.
  • Secret Keeper:
    • Cheyenne is the only one at Cloud Nine who knows Mateo is dating Jeff in Season Two.
    • Garrett is the only one at Cloud Nine who knows Amy and Jonah are dating in Season Four.
      • Jonah was also the only one who knew that Garrett had accidentally let all of Dina's birds out of their cage on Valentine's Day, until Dina went through old security footage and found out.
      • Mateo was the only one who knew that Marcus was homeless and living at the store.
    • Jonah was initially the only one who knew Mateo was undocumented. This secret gradually spread to Cheyenne, Glenn, Larry, Garrett, and Marcus. In the season 4 finale, Amy realizes that she was the only one who wasn't informed.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • In the wake of the Jonah & Amy tornado kiss, at a time when Jonah is dating Kelly, the store discuss being on "Team Kelly" and "Team Amy". Sandra goes so far as to wear a "Team Amy" shirt.
    • Sandra in particular carries this status for Amy and Jonah through the rest of the series.
    • Cheyenne once stated that she was shipping Amy & Brett for some reason.
  • Shotgun Wedding: Cheyenne and Bo. Amy and Adam got married in one before the series started.
    Bo: Yeah, well, I knocked her up, so my dad says I have to.
    Cheyenne: So romantic.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Sitcom Arch-Nemesis:
    • Glenn and Dina are often butting heads because they have entirely different viewpoints and methods of running the store.
    • Subverted with Sandra and Carol. Though at the beginning it seems like a petty rivalry due to Sandra stealing Carol's boyfriend, it's escalated to the point where they legitimately seem to be trying to kill each other.
      Carol: Sandra tried to kill me during the tornado!
      Sandra: No I didn't! I just didn't try to save you.
  • Sorry, I'm Gay: The workforce says that Nia claimed she was a lesbian to get Jonah to stop hitting on her, but Nia says that she really is a lesbian.
  • Sound Effects Bleep: Several characters have gotten this when the situation called for them to curse more severely.
  • Soul-Sucking Retail Job: Downplayed, it's made clear that working at Cloud 9 is tiring, not rewarding, doesn't pay much, and altogether isn't the best job, but the employees don't seem to actively hate it so much nor have they lost their personalities.
  • Spicy Latina: Amy seriously resents being expected to live up to this trope by playing a stereotypical Mexican caricature in order to sell salsa. Eventually she grudgingly plays along after realizing that the profits go to charity.
  • Stalking Is Love: Glenn, in his usual well meaning but clueless way, met his wife this way. He asked her out every day for a year. And after a year of no's, his dad (Who ran the store she worked at) forced her to go on a date with him or he'd fire her. He's rather distraught to learn that it's not socially acceptable anymore.
    Glenn: You're a victim!
  • Status Quo Is God: Amy laments that nothing ever seems to change at Cloud 9, as shown in the page quote. This trope seems to be in effect early on - the 1st season has a lot of advancement for the main characters, with Dina stepping down from assistant manager to pursue Jonah, with Amy replacing her; Cheyenne giving birth; Glenn getting fired by corporate in the season finale when he 'suspends' Cheyenne with pay to get around the store's lack of paid maternity leave, and all of the employees (except Dina, who names herself the new manager) staging a walkout in protest. At the beginning of season 2, corporate resolves the walkout by re-hiring Glenn, with Cheyenne immediately coming back to work and Dina reassuming her role as assistant manager (with Amy returning to floor supervisor) in exchange, mostly restoring the status quo, seemingly proving Amy right. Jonah tries to cheer her up by saying that the crew took a huge leap just by staging a walkout, despite the action having minimal effect. However, this trope is averted afterward, as the show does see some big changes to the status quo afterward - a tornado destroying the store at the end of season 2, causing the exterior to be permanently redesigned; Amy and Dina both getting pregnant in season 3 and giving birth in season 4, with the latter serving as a surrogate to Glenn and his wife; as well as Amy and Jonah becoming a couple, and Glenn stepping down as manager with Amy replacing him, both permanently, until Amy leaves the store at beginning of season 6.
  • Stealth Insult: Mateo does this, although it's not all that stealthy.
    Mateo: Chey! You are so much smarter than what I tell people.
    Cheyenne: Aww, thank you.
  • Stepford Smiler:
    • Glenn is usually cheerful and looks happy, trying to encourage his employees and seeming to find a silver lining in anything. When he hits his finger with a hammer very hard, he just smiles through it. In "All Nighter" it is revealed that he, despite his cheerful and sweet demeanor, absolutely despises Cloud Nine for putting his family's old hardware store out of business.
    • Carol wields this like a weapon. She puts on a pleasant front to (poorly) disguise the fact that she's seriously unhinged.
  • Suspiciously Apropos Music: In "Essential," that takes place over the first few months of the Covid-19 epidemic, has a scene where Disturbed's "Down with the Sickness" is played over the store's loudspeakers. Cloud Nine doesn't usually play Alternative Heavy Metal and Hard Rock.
  • Teen Pregnancy:
    • Cheyenne is a ditzy high school kid who is heavily pregnant at the start of the series. She marries her boyfriend who is very irresponsible and even more of a ditz that Cheyenne.
    • Amy's backstory. She was pregnant as a teen before the series and it's strongly implied she's unhappy with the way it affected her life. She loves her daughter but has major issues with her irresponsible husband and eventually divorces him.
  • Terrible Interviewees Montage: In "Demotion" when Amy and Glenn interview replacements for Dina as assistant manager. Garrett and Jonah get their own in season 4's "Maternity Leave" when they attempt to prove they can do better at hiring employees than Glenn (and fail, miserably).
  • Themed Wedding: Episode "Sandra's Wedding" presents Sandra and Jerry's wedding. They're both from Hawaii and opt for a nautical theme. However, their venue is called Cowboy Charlie's Old West Steakhouse so the decor is a mix of western and nautical. Sayid even shows up in a western costume, though majority of guests wear formal clothes, women sporting mostly blue tones. Sayid is convinced others will look stupid once bride and groom show up in their western garb.
  • Toilet Humor: One episode reveals Marcus takes a dump in the shower and stomps it down the drain with his feet. Every day.
  • Town Girls: The three main female characters — peppy, girly, young Cheyenne is the Femme, tough, stern Dina is the Butch, and sensible Amy is the Neither.
  • Those Two Guys: The show increasingly gives Asian Airheads Mateo and Cheyenne this dynamic, as they are often given lighthearted subplots together and tend to be a double-act when commentating on the cast's affairs.
  • Trail of Bread Crumbs: In "Guns, Pills and Birds", Dina leaves a trail of bird seed out the front door to lead a crow out of the store. Unfortunately, it leads more crows into the store.
  • Twofer Token Minority:
    • Garrett is black and disabled. In "Magazine Profile" he tries to keep away from the magazine photographer because they always put minorities in the cover and he isn't comfortable with the attention.
    • Mateo is Filipino and gay.
  • Unishment: Glenn, in the "Labor" episode. When Cloud 9 won't let their employees have paid maternity leave, he gives Cheyenne 6 weeks paid suspension, as a "punishment" for violating company rules by having her "insides" all over the store, distracting employees, and having her child in the store with her. Unfortunately, he gets fired for this.
  • The Unreveal: How Garrett became disabled. Jonah spends a whole episode trying to find out before Garrett tells him to stop.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds:
    • Jonah and Garrett have this dynamic, especially when they live together.
    • Jonah and Amy as well, thought that also crosses over with their Belligerent Sexual Tension.
    • Amy and Dina slowly develop into these in Seasons 3 and 4, with Dina especially having Amy's back 100% yet still having the same abrasive personality.
  • The Voiceless: Brett never says a word. But apparently he is a selling machine.
    • Subverted once when Brett finally utters "Oh sh*t," as the tornado is coming dangerously close to him while he's putting shopping carts back in their place.
  • Wacky Startup Workplace: Downplayed. When wealthy corporation Zephra acquires big-box store Cloud 9, dashing their hopes of unionizing, its weary employees are treated to a new cereal bar. While the other characters lampshade that it makes the environment like that of a lively modern office, Jonah muses that it may be the company's way of making them feel cared for while still denying them a living wage. Also, Sandra starts demanding self-driving cars.
  • Wedding Episode: A sitcom about exhausted retail workers at a big-box store indulges in letting its characters get married a couple of times, allowing for formally-dressed hijinks.
    • "Cheyenne's Wedding" features the wedding of Cheyenne and Bo, who got engaged in the pilot. Unlike the rest of the other episodes, this doesn't take place in the titular superstore.
    • "Sandra's Wedding" marries Sandra to her longtime love interest Jerry. A lot of humor is derived from the ridiculousness of the setting (a nautical theme at a Western restaurant) and the fact that Sandra's Sitcom Archnemesis Carol is secretly attempting to undermine it.
  • Wham Line: Glenn has a seemingly idle subplot mid-season 4 where he's making videos for his daughter to watch when she grows up, since work takes up so much of his time. Halfway through making one, he stops when he has a epiphany:
    Glenn: ...I don't want to be manager anymore.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: The finale. Garrett spends the whole finale assuming they're all just going to go their separate ways, because in the end, they're all just work acquaintances, right? Thankfully, Garrett could not have been more wrong. Glenn reopens the Sturgis & Sons hardware store and hires Cheyanne and the still-undocumented Mateo. Dina not only settles into being an Official Couple with Garrett, she becomes the fulfillment center manager, and among others, she keeps Sandra, Marcus, and Justine on. Amy is still an executive, while Jonah runs for city council, and at long last They Do. And best of all, we get a scene of a bunch of the employees all hanging out together at a barbeque, still friends long after Cloud 9 closes.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Amy with Jonah.
    • As of the second season mid-season finale, Amy is, at the very least, questioning her marriage, and expresses jealousy at seeing Jonah with a potential love interest. In the second season finale, she and Jonah kiss as a tornado rips through Cloud 9.
    • During Season 3 they slip back into this even as Jonah is in a relationship with Kelly. In Episode 13 Amy admits that she has a crush on Jonah. In the final episode after having broken up with Kelly, Jonah and Amy have sex.
    • In the 4th Season premiere, it's revealed at the end of the episode that they began dating between seasons, during their suspension, but are hiding it from their incredibly nosy coworkers.
    • At the beginning of the sixth season, they settle on "won't they", eventually breaking up prior to Amy's move to California.
    • ...that is, until the two-part finale, when Amy finds herself back in St. Louis, and they finally become an item again, this time for good.
  • Withholding Their Name: The pilot episode features one character who always wears a name tag with someone else's name so that customers won't know her real name. While all the other workers know her name, she doesn't tell it to Naïve Newcomer Jonah until near the end of the episode. Her name is Amy.
  • Worst Aid: A recurring joke throughout "Health Fund." Cloud 9 employees do strange things to treat their own ailments. Isaac going to Tate to patch up his cuts is not much better.
    Jonah: Are you sure you should be putting superglue on an open wound?
    Tate: Yeah, probably. Our bodies are weird. Oh, I'm stuck.

And have a heavenly day!


Video Example(s):


Jonah is just a cute guy

Poor Jonah gets made fun of because he's just so pretty.

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