When a local mall closes and teens make Cloud 9 their new hangout, Superstore name-checks TikTok and Euphoria in five of the episode’s best jokes.
What happens when Cloud 9’s biggest competitor shuts down operation? The store becomes the new hot spot for local teens to waste time and spend zero money at after school. As a mall’s closure throws a stampede of new customers at the gang, Superstore touches on a number of topical issues in its latest outing, including the sometimes impossible-to-forecast conditions in consumerism and the trend of turning outrage into viral videos.
While Amy attempts to keep the teens at bay as to not embarrass her daughter, Superstore forces Cheyenne to confront her fading cool factor and teaches Jonah a valuable lesson about gambling. Jonah dabbles in bets and wagers again with good intentions, to help Mateo make ends meet between jobs. But like the teen uprising in Cloud 9, it all comes tumbling down. From memes to movies from the ’90s, here are five of the funniest jokes from the latest episode.
1. “Wait, so you’re telling me I have to go all the way to the airport to get Sbarro’s?”
Amy announces at the morning meeting that the West Concord mall will be closing, and of course the leading concern was how to get your hands on a slice of Sbarro. But Dina and Glenn are ecstatic to have slayed the beast that was the mall, and Amy rejoices in the prospect of increased foot traffic and sales from customers looking for a new place to spend their money. Step one in appealing to the new clientele entails “malling up” Cloud 9 with more free samples, an omnipresent aroma of men’s cologne, and an ear-piercing station.
2. “You want to feel good about yourself, go teach some inner city kids poetry.”
Mateo expresses to Jonah and Garrett his concerns about finding a job that pays under the table but is also up to his standards. But since he’s hard up for cash, has no leads, and won’t accept financial help, Jonah comes up with the idea to give Mateo money via trickery. Jonah, who has a touch of a gambling problem, masterminds a $50 bet about Cher having won a Grammy and another $50 bet about Garrett throwing a ping pong ball into a blender. After Mateo loses both, Jonah goes into a gambling spiral and winds up owing Mateo $400. Hey, he accomplished his goal!
3. “Those girls? They look like they’re from Euphoria.”
As it turns out, Amy’s expectation of the new customers doesn’t match reality. Profits haven’t increased because the store has become overrun with teenagers who do nothing but take up space in the dining area, the home section, and the massage chairs in the breezeway. Sandra’s instructed to kick the teenage girls texting out of the massage chairs, but she’s intimidated by their resemblance to the glitter-fied girls from HBO’s Euphoria. Cheyenne offers her assistance, but she’s brutally rebuffed by the teenagers. Bad news for Cheyenne: She’s no longer cool.
4. “I have never met an actual bully in real life. I though they were just from old movies in the 1990s.”
The teenage girls mock Cheyenne’s use of the word “chill” and scoff at everything she says. Unexpectedly, the girls decide to befriend a super-timid/terrified Sandra, which Cheyenne assumes is a textbook case of mean girl-ing. When Cheyenne confronts the girls for making fun of Sandra and becoming her friend out of pity, they flip the script on Cheyenne and accuse her of being the bully. And the Gen Xers claim to have never seen bullying save for in “old” ’90s movies… Maybe they haven’t watched Euphoria.
5. “I don’t want to become a meme like that racist BBQ lady with the cool sunglasses.”
Amy’s insistence on letting the teenagers run amok in the store to save face with Emma goes wildly awry. The teens start destroying the store and even waltzing into the employee’s lounge like they own the place. Dina tries to swiftly kick them out, but the teens start recording her and calling her out for age discrimination, not unlike multiple viral videos on Twitter featuring disgruntled customers. They realize to avoid becoming an accidental TikTok star, they have to lean into what Amy does best: helicopter parenting. Too much affection and the teens are gone.
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Superstore airs Thursdays at 8/7c on NBC.