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Better Off Ted

Episode 2.07 : Beating a Dead Workforce

Better Off Ted Poster

TV Info


Episode Premiere

January 05, 2010

Distributor

ABC

Genre

Comedy

Show Period

2009 - 2010

Production Company

20th Century Fox Television

Cast and Crew


Director

Marc Buckland

Screenwriter

Ingrid Escajeda

Main Cast


Additional Cast

  • Merrin Dungey
  • Warren Sweeney
  • Brad Raider
  • Graham Norris

Synopsis


Everyone at Veridian has been working around the clock to prepare for a convention known as Relax-a-Con, the world's largest gathering of relaxation technology. The long hours have forced Ted to have Rose sleep nights on the sofa in his office. Morale is low and the workers are getting a little loopy from exhaustion. This becomes evident when Lem accidentally tosses a cup of hot coffee on a coworker named Jenkins.

Ted has an idea to inspire the troops. He wants to single-out the hardest working employee and reward him with something fun. Ted and a small group of workers bring a big cake to a man who has been holed up in his office all night. It happens to be the guy Lem scalded with coffee: Jenkins. Of course, there's a very good reason Jenkins never left his office. He's dead. Guess he won't be asking for a corner-cut of cake.

Ted feels that people are working too hard and now a man is dead. Veronica says, "The company feels that if we ease up just because someone died, it will only encourage other people to die." But Ted doesn't buy it. He tries to use Jenkins' memorial service as a forum to convince people to take it easy. Then it's Lem's turn to talk. He didn't really know Jenkins, but he did throw coffee on him once. He'll miss those good times.

Veronica ends the memorial with an inspiring speech about Jenkins. Well, it's not really about Jenkins the man. It's more about the project he held so dear. Yes, Jenkins died trying to make the deadline for the Relax-a-Con project. Veronica channels her inner-Knute Rockne to rally the workers into a motivated frenzy. She wants to keep the legacy of Jenkins alive by continuing to work ridiculously long hours to fulfill his dream of creating the most advanced sleep system in human history!

Veronica also uses Jenkins' death to inspire Linda to live in the moment. She does so by poking her in the eyes with her fingers. Whenever Linda starts to drift off into fantasyland, she needs something to reel her back to reality. Sometimes that involves something as simple as holding onto someone's face as they are talking to her so she'll stay in the moment. Other times, Veronica must "sweep the leg" to send Linda crashing to the ground. Not even Mr. Miyagi could defend against Veronica's swift kicks.

Lem's tribute to Jenkins at the memorial has made him a mini-celebrity at work. Even the cool accountants want to hang with him just to hear him tell more Jenkins stories. But, again, Lem didn't know Jenkins all that well. So, he inserts Jenkins' name into some of the stories he knows about Phil. The cool accountants are spellbound.

Ted discovers that the company plans to exploit Jenkins' death to the point where they make 14-hour days the norm. Veronica says the only way to stop it is to convince the company that overworking employees will cost them money. So, Ted tries to sabotage the delivery of a part needed for the project to succeed. His plan is foiled by an overly-motivated worker who drove all night to pick up the missing part. He took every stimulant the truckers gave him just to stay awake. Love those truckers.

Enough is enough. Ted doesn't care anymore. He's going back to working normal hours, which means he's taking his daughter and going home. As Ted carries a sleeping Rose in his arms through those hallowed halls of Veridian Dynamics, he's met with a slow, steady chorus of applause from the workers around him. It's a total "Officer and a Gentleman" moment. Right up until the point when Rose wakes up to say she has to pee.

After a quick trip to the restroom, Ted takes Rose in his arms once more - lifting her up where she belongs. The workers clap once again as Ted makes his way into the elevator. Veronica rushes in to say that she's going with him. Ted can't believe that she's supporting him in this decision. She's not. She just has a dinner date.

Nevertheless, once the workers saw Ted and Veronica head out the door, they did the same. This forced the company to back down on their desire to make everyone work unreasonable hours. Now if you'll excuse us, we have to go out and rent a certain Richard Gere-Lou Gossett Jr. movie.

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