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Series / True Jackson, VP

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True Jackson, VP is a Nickelodeon Kid Com about 15-year-old True Jackson, played by Keke Palmer who is appointed vice president of youth apparel at the fashion house MadStyle. It was created by Andy Gordon, who executive produced Just Shoot Me! and NewsRadio. Supporting characters include Mr. Madigan (Greg Proops) her kooky boss and CEO of MadStyle; Amanda (Danielle Bisutti), True's bitter rival; Lulu (Ashley Argota), True's spacey yet brilliant best friend; and Ryan (Matt Shively), True's other friend who often disrupts the workplace with his oafishness. There's also her crush Jimmy (Robbie Amell) and camp receptionist Oscar (Ron Butler).

True must deal with all the trappings of the adult workplace; jealous co-workers, deadlines, regular meetings all on top of being a normal teenager attending school. And of course, since this a kids show, wacky hi-jinks ensue when both of her personal and professional life combine.

The show released its own de-fictionalized clothing line called "Mad Style by True Jackson", which was short-lived and discontinued not long after.

The show did alright for Nickelodeon, but apparently not up to the standards set by some of the bigger live-action shows on the network. Episodes also took awhile to air, as the show ended with 2 seasons and 60 episodes over about a three year period, probably due to Executive Meddling, progressively being Screwed by the Network, or that the two supporting actors were busy with other shows like Bucket and Skinner's Epic Adventures and The Troop.

This show contains examples of:

  • Adults Are Useless: Averted, two of the adult characters, Mr. Madigan and Oscar, are actually treated with some modicum of respect and usefulness. Even Amanda occasionally offers some useful insight to True and Lulu.
  • Accidental Kiss: Between Jimmy and True in "The Prototype".
  • Acme Products: The Galveston brand makes everything from mail sorters to grills to air conditioners.
  • Alliterative Name: Max Madigan is this.
  • Alpha Bitch: To a degree, Amanda. Also, Pinky Turzo and Kyle Sandbox at True's school.
  • An Aesop: Most episodes end this way, with True learning a valuable lesson.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: Ryan and Lulu try to escape out of MadStyle's basement through one.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Oscar and single-episode character Simon Christini.
  • Apathetic Teacher: Ms. Park starts out as this, but after she starts dating the science teacher she mostly becomes a Deadpan Snarker.
  • Asian Airhead: Lulu subverts this, since she is shown to actually be really smart, but still acts goofy.
  • As Himself:
  • Berserk Button:
    • Do not mention Connie Cathead around Lulu unless you want to get beaten up.
    • Merely mentioning Sophie Girard around Mr. Madigan will get you automatically fired. At least until he meets Doris.
  • Book Ends: The first episode's end shot before the credits, ends with True outside her door, smiling before closing it marked "Vice President". Last episode ends the same way, except it's marked "President".
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: Just about every main character uses True's "You said what now?!" throughout the course of the series.
  • Boss's Unfavorite Employee: Mr. Madigan, the President of Mad Style, was a sweet and respectful boss who did his best to keep things running smoothly...except whenever Kopelman was around, because he laughed at a celebrity insulting his outfit 10 years prior. It was a Running Gag that every meeting would start with him yelling at Kopelman and often forcing him out of the meeting, despite the fact that Kopelman never so much as speaks.
  • Brick Joke: In "The Party" Ryan accidentally stitches his shoe into a pillow. When he and Lulu start fighting with the pillows again, she knocks him out by hitting him with the pillow with the shoe in it.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Mr. Madigan, he's a bit zany, but he keeps the business running efficiently whether it be by acknowledging his employees strengths or helping them improve their flaws.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Kopelman, for sure, before Mr. Madigan retired. Nobody in the office took him at all seriously, until True at the end of the show.
    • In "House Party", even his nephew gets this treatment, just because he was related to Kopelman.
    • Amanda had become the butt monkey just as much as Kopelman later on, culminating in her age regression by the Fountain of Youth and ensuing wedding postponement or cancellation and forced firing from Mad Style.
  • Catchphrase: For True, it's "YOU SAID WHAT NOW?!". Lulu has her own catchphrase, being "Not even!"
  • Chain of Deals: One episode had this plot, whose purpose was to obtain the recipe for Mr. Madigan's favorite pistachio ice cream.
  • The Chessmaster: Mr. Madigan in "Fifth of Prankuary" and "Ditch Day".
  • Christmas Episode: "Holiday Parade"
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Lulu, when she's around her boyfriend Mikey J.
  • Closet Geek: True Matchmaker reveals that Amanda and Oscar are secretly fans of Space Plantation.
  • Cloudcuckoo Lander: Lulu fits this trope to a T.
  • Crossover: With, of all shows, Yo Gabba Gabba! in "Trapped in Paris".
  • Depending on the Writer: Jimmy is usually either the Only Sane Man or just as irresponsible as Ryan is.
    • Amanda is either very popular among her peers or has no friends at all.
  • Easily Forgiven:
    • True is easily forgiven for her mistakes. To be fair she's, usually honest about her mistakes.
    • Parodied in the episode Trapped in Paris when Karl Gustav doesn't bother to help his daughter, whom True and her friends locked in a trunk until he catches them.
    Carla (sarcastically): Thanks for helping me out, Dad.
    Karl Gustav: I'll buy you a pony.
    Carla: Okay!
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: The first two episodes have a bit of a different feel than the rest of the series.
    • Mr. Madigan wasn't nearly as hard on Kopelman, it was usually just him being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
  • Eccentric Mentor: Mr. Madigan, of course.
  • Embarrassing Middle Name: Ryan tries to keep the fact that his last name is Leslie on the down-low.
  • Evil Laugh: Mr. Madigan in The Fifth of Prankuary: "Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to laugh diabolically and back out of the room."
  • Falling Chandelier of Doom: In Trapped in Paris, True and her friends stop Ryan from marrying Karl Gustav's daughter by sending a chandelier crashing down on the minister.
    Karl Gustav: It's a tragedy!
    Minister: I'm okay!
    Karl Gustav: Not you, the chandelier! I made that at camp!
  • Fanservice: Amanda is no stranger to this trope.
  • Fashion Show: Regularly, even as part of meetings to show of new designs.
  • Foodfight!: True and Ryan inadvertently start one in a fancy restaurant in "Telling Amanda"
  • Freudian Excuse: When Amanda was in high school, she was a "dork" that got bullied a lot, particularly by the most popular girls in school—this is probably at least part of the reason why she's so mean as an adult. Additionally, her accomplishments were always undermined by her seemingly saccharine twin sister's.
  • Genius Ditz: Lulu—while she may act rather hyper and goofy, it turns out that she's actually very intelligent.
  • Girl Posse: The Pinks, a clique of mean girls led by Pinky Turzo, played by iCarly's Jennette McCurdy.
    • Amanda faced a similar group in her high school years: The Fluffs.
  • Grand Finale: In the end, Amanda gets age-regressed into a 10-year-old after falling into the Fountain of Youth and True becomes the new boss at Max Style after Max retires to start a family with his wife, with a new staff comprising of teenagers in addition to Lulu, Ryan and Jimmy including Lulu's boyfriend Mikey J and Ryan's on-off crush Kelsey with the only adult in the staff being Kopelman.
  • Granola Guy: Mitchell, the copy guy, who advertises fruit and earth-friendly practices, and even has a peace mural commissioned for someone else's office.
  • Head-and-Hip Pose: When Amanda is trying to teach True how to walk on the red carpet, she attempts to teach her to pose in this style. When True doesn't want to, Amanda tries to prove to her that "even a monkey can do it" by telling Kopelman to pose and watching him immediately stand in this position for the imaginary camera.
  • Heh Heh, You Said "X": Even when he's mad, Max Madigan stops to laugh at the word "nincompoop".
    Max: It has the word "poop" in it.
  • Honorary Uncle: When True's uncle Troy fills in as receptionist in "True Luck", everyone refers to him as Uncle Troy, and his nameplate even reads "Uncle Troy".
  • Human Chess: Max Madigan and Simon Christini compete in this, using their employees as chess pieces.
  • I Broke a Nail: Parodied, while True was searching for a horse that was visiting Mr. Madigan, and she lost in the office, she heard Amanda screaming, but when she arrived she said she broke a Nail. When True pointed that her nails where perfect, Amanda explained that it actually happened a month ago..."but I'm still haunted by the memory".
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Episodes often times start with the word "True".
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Amanda may be mean and do anything for status, but she's not so bad when you get to know her. She may not admit it, but she cares for True deep down.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: True agreed with Kitty Monrouex's scathing comments on her Christmas tree dress, and to be fair, it wasn't True's idea, it was her clients.
    • In another episode, True resents her Little Buddy for criticizing her latest designs as being "boring." True realizes that despite how annoying she may be, that doesn't invalidate her feedback.
    • While Mr. Madigan is only Jerkass to One, that one being Kopelman, there are times his anger towards him is justified such as when he was eating a giant cookie meant for an injured employee or when he interrupted runway shoot by blocking the runway.
  • Jerkass to One: Max Madigan is a kooky, yet affable boss who treats his employees well. Except for Kopelman, who he is quick to banish from staff meetings and place into humiliating situations. It's unknown why Max hates Kopelman so much, especially since Kopelman never utters a single word in the entire show.
  • Large Ham:
    • Ryan. Whether he's backflipping to get his crush's attention, dramatically getting hurt, or eating something that is not food... he's pretty much never not a ham.
    • Mr. Madigan constantly acts over the top, and his status as a millionaire allows him to take it to the next level.
    • Karl Gustav from Trapped in Paris is an example of Evil Is Hammy.
  • Lethal Chef: True. From the first episode, Ryan warns potential customers away from the sandwiches True is selling, and everyone knows to only pretend to eat True's cooking. It's a fast-acting emetic.
  • Meaningful Name: Oscar R. Eception.
  • Not in the Face!: Karl Gustav whimpers this in Trapped in Paris after Mr. Madigan beats up his mooks. Mr. Madigan does get him in the face... by honking his nose.
  • Once an Episode:
    • Kopelman bashing, often by Mr. Madigan forcing him from meetings.
    • True telling colorful stories of her parents and various relatives.
  • Only One Name: Lulu and Oscar's last names are never revealed.
  • Only Sane Man: True, for the most part as she's the most level-headed out of the main cast. When not her, it's usually Oscar, who is sane enough to point out when True herself is acting strange.
  • Playing Hard to Get: Kelsey does this to Ryan. It starts with her pretending not to notice him backflipping to impress her, and even when they're a couple, she constantly acts bored and unimpressed by him.
  • Poorly-Disguised Pilot: "True Mall," an episode that introduces plenty of new characters and is set in Mad Style's store at the mall.
  • Post-Kiss Catatonia: After Jimmy accidentally kisses True. Also doubles as a Funny Moment.
  • Promotion to Opening Titles: Greg Proops, Ron Butler and Robbie Amell in season two.
  • Running Gag: Several:
    • True quoting her parents and telling stories about her "colorful" family.
    • Kopelman getting picked on
    • Jimmy's fixation on mail and delivering.
      • He references a Galveston mail sorter in many episodes, and then a Galveston grill. The brand pops up frequently from there on.
    • Amanda's giant hands, then later Amanda being mistaken for a robot.
    • Movies with "Spooky" in the title being "the worst movie ever".
      • And Ryan having seen them several times, regardless.
  • Sassy Black Woman: True, sometimes.
    • True's mom, according to the multiple impressions True does of her, as well as the one episode she actually appears in.
  • Satellite Love Interest: Jimmy. We barely know anything about him beyond being Max's nephew, a delivery boy and being True's love interest. He has hobbies, but not much in the personality department.
  • Shipper on Deck: True and her friends for Max and Doris. True sets them up in the first place, and whenever there's an issue in their marriage, True is there to help resolve it.
    • Also Max himself for True and Jimmy. So much so that he would be willing to resign to get them together.
  • Ship Tease:
    • True and Jimmy. They end up having an Accidental Kiss in "The Prototype" and admit to wanting to be more than friends with each other in "True Valentine," only to be broken up again in the next episode "True Date," due to Mr. Madigan's "no dating employee" policy.
    • The two do finally share a real kiss in "True Kiss" and finally begin the "Timmy" (True and Jimmy) relationship.
  • Shout-Out: According to his astronaut father, Jimmy's real name is Tiberius.
  • Soul-Crushing Desk Job: When Lulu joins the accounting department, she is deeply unhappy with how boring it is, despite being great at math.
  • Space Western: One exists in the universe called Space Plantation. One character carries a whip, and an episode title references a corral.
  • Spanner in the Works: In "The Reject Room", when True and her friends discover that the art exhibit put on by Amanda's ex-boyfriend Chad Brackett is devoted to depicting Amanda as a "she-beast", she begins to hatch a classic elaborate and goofy plan to keep Amanda from showing up and seeing the exhibit. Amanda walks in immediately.
  • Special Guest: From other Nickelodeon shows, such as Tom Kenny, Jennette McCurdy, Nathan Kress, and Stefán Karl Stefánsson.
  • Studio Audience:
    True Jackson, VP was filmed in front of a live studio audience.
  • Suck E. Cheese's: Snackleberry Junction, where there is a possum infestation in the kitchen, employees ride a dangerous zipline, the kitchen stinks, not even the water is clean. No wonder it can't legally call itself a restaurant.
  • Suddenly Shouting: Karl Gustav in "Trapped in Paris"
    Karl Gustav (to his lackeys): Guys. We talked about this. Show some initiative. THEY'RE ESCAPING!!
    • True's mom when she switches from talking to her daughter to her husband in "Pajama Party".
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Amanda is usually cold and snarky to True, Lulu, and Ryan, but she makes a point to attend events that are important to them (like the school play or Ryan's magic show) and even offers guidance if they really need it.
  • Team Dad: Max Madigan, who has no shortage of affection for True and her friends, often offering them advice and support.
  • íThree Amigos!: True, Lulu and Ryan have been friends since childhood and all hang out together all the time. Even when True is working.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Amanda.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: In earlier seasons, Amanda would try to set up True to fail in several episodes in hopes of getting her fired. By season 2, her relationship with her is more Snark-to-Snark Combat than anything else and she's even tried to save True from getting fired, most notably in "True Parade".
  • Two Girls and a Guy: True, Lulu and Ryan.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Well, it IS a show that takes place in a fashion company. One episode even features multiple crosses between clothing and eccentric inventions, like a suit that turns into a flotation device and a dress that shocks the wearer if they start to fall asleep.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Mad Style instituted a "no employee dating" rule, thus driving True and Jimmy to put a hold on potential relationship.
  • Vapor Wear: In the episode "Red Carpet", True's top at the Stunty awards has a "headlights" thing going on.
  • The Voiceless: Kopelman never speaks, and there's no explanation given for it.
  • Walking Away Shot: In episode "The New Kid" at the beginning after the theme song.
  • Wardrobe Malfunction: Happens to Amanda in "The Prototype"; a prototype dress she wears and exhibits in front of several people suddenly tears itself off her body, leaving her naked and embarrassed before True rushes in to cover her up.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Oscar in the series finale. When True takes over Mad Style, she hires only kids, and there's another receptionist seen working where Oscar should be, so what? Did True just fire one of the nicest guys working there? It could be possible that he left on his own accord than fired by True, however.
  • Worse with Context: When Oscar and Amanda are discussing why Amanda keeps losing assistants.
    Oscar: You made your last assistant pick up your dry cleaning.
    Amanda: So?
    Oscar: It was in Canada.
  • Zany Scheme: Every single episode.

Alternative Title(s): True Jackson