After 23 years in business, Eddie is facing hard times at Orbit Salon. Recession? No. Advent of root touch-up? No. A filthy hair trap staffed by self absorbed workers? Bingo.
Someone will be castrated.
Luckily one woman is on hand to fight the powers of laziness and apathy with only a perfect platinum coif and more leather than the Hell’s Angels Annual Clam Bake. Tabatha Coffey has returned to Bravo for season two of Tabatha’s Salon Takeover and Oz’s true wicked witch has even less patience than ever.
Tabatha arrives at Orbit Salon in Chicago, Illinois and has immediately set up surveillance on the staff. In “Salon Undercover” we learn the Owner Eddie owns two salon and manages them both with little Finesse and has gotten himself up to his Head & Shoulders in debt. (I apologize for the shampoo puns, but they’re fun.) He estimates that he’s $750K in debt and that he’ll have to fold if there isn’t a drastic change.
I may not be a Suave owner, but I want No More Tears at my salon…
Joined by Tabatha they begin to review footage of Eddie’s handpicked, ehem “hand-me-down” crew. First caught on camera is Salon Manager Andrea, who is tending to her own hair during work hours. In fact, a client is left unattended, while she continue to stress her over-processed mane…and conduct a mental review of the next sister act for The Lawrence Welk Show…
Tabatha asks Eddie if this is the standard he wants set in the salon. I don’t know if she’s referring to Andrea’s hair or her behavior, either way Eddie and I agree… no, that’s pretty bad.
Next on Tabatha’s hit list is the faux-hawked “Artistic Director” and head stylist, Bobby. Bobby is applying color to a client and is slopping the color down her face. And as Manic Panic has taught many girls and boys of my generation, if you get Fuchsia Shock on your face, Fuchsia Shock stays on your face.
I made it extra sloppy for ya…
Not that Bobby would neglect to clean up the client after color application, because nothing says “high-end salon experience” like a stranger working your face with turpentine, spit and a Q-Tip…
In the next scene a client asks to use the salon’s bathroom. Apparently, Orbit Salon is equipped with a barely opaque shower stall/bathroom, centered in the middle of the cutting floor. Naturally the client is hesitant. No worries, they have another bathroom available in the basement, past all the salon stock and Sloth’s room, there’s another pit that would put Rutgers’ frat houses to shame.
This woman is going to need the roofie first…
Tabatha is impressed.
Tabatha turns to Eddie for answers and all he can muster is that his business is a dump and his staff is a hodgepodge of hand-me-downs. Wow Eddie, any chance YOU many have the power to do something about that? Ask the boss, go have discussion with him in the Aqua Net flaked mirror in your centrally located Port-A-Potty.
Tabatha is ready to address the staff. She announces that she’s cancelled all the appointments for the week and that they have a lot of work ahead of them. She begins to pick through the staff members and hones in on Bobby first. She wants him to account for the sloppy color work on a client. Bobby says that he would have cleaned her face later.
Deer in headlights defense…
I think he lost the arguement.
Andrea has no excuse for making clients watch her straighten her hair. The whole group is lectured for being pigs. No one looks like they’ve cleaned up after themselves ever. There’s hair caked to the floor and walls, the tile it looks like it’s been grouted in hair… it’s gross.
In the group, one bronzed Tammy Faye disciple is smirking while Tabatha is berating the staff. Lash extension addict Lindsay says she’s just nervous, and it’s a nervous giggle. Since Tabatha has never in her life experienced a giggle, she doesn’t seem to be buying her excuses.
Tabatha now insists that the staff take her on a tour of the salon. Beginning at reception Tabatha calls them out on stray hair everywhere. The product section, aside from being overrun with boxes of unloaded merchandise, is covered in dust…
…oh yeah, and used.
Why don’t they just relocate the salon to a litter box? It would have the same aroma and be easier to clean…
As Tabatha walks past the desk she announces that is she can’t teach them “she’ll shame them into being professional.” I’m pretty sure they have no shame, but good luck.
We’re forced to relive the bathroom situation and the basement which is a stock room/bat cave. It smells terrible, so naturally it’s all where the staff hangs out.
Tabatha is on a tear through the salon picking up bowls of color that have been left out and hair balls bigger that her iron fist. During the tour the staff is smirking and agreeing that it’s disgusting and they are happy Tabatha is really giving Eddie shit about the state of the salon. I’m sure she’s telling them all they’re digusting. And if she wasn’t, I am. You people are gross.
I didn’t make the mess, I just chose to work in it.
Tabatha is done for the day after the tour and sends them all home.
On a bright new morning in the Windy City, the employees of Orbit Salon are gathered together for Tabitha’s “Staff meeting.” She wants to know what changes the employees want to see in the salon and in the management of the salon… and of course provide an open forum to blame the owner for their professional short comings…
Still not shamed…
The staff says they’re not clear on the rules. No one ever told them what to do. “They never got a handbook or a lecture.” Life Rule: When your mother taught you at age 1 to not get shit all over the place, that didn’t just apply to potty training. Don’t do it. Ever.
They maintain that Eddie is a horrible boss, there’s no structure in the salon. Andrea is the manager, but she has no control. Eddie has undermined her authority on numerous occasions.
Tabatha is a sympathetic as can be. She tells them to step-up and shut-up. They need to come together as a team and be part of the solution. To additionally lay the responsibility on the staff, Tabatha busts out with “Eddie called you hand-me-downs.” Although she omitted the part where she stuck her tongue out at them and made obscene hand gestures, the staff is considerably shaken by this piece of gossip. Some of the staff begins to tear, but before they can lose their Lee Press-on Lashes, Eddie arrives and Tabatha sends the staff to begin cleaning.
The next day it’s time for Tabatha to assess the quality of the staff’s work. She has models coming into the salon and each stylist will be creating one look for Tabatha to ridicule.
Bobby is working to adjust the blonde on his model to match Reese Witherspoon’s color. Eddie is putting this 23 years of styling experience to the test by forming an entire sentence about the bob is planning for his model. The man is not much for verbal communication… which is so bizarre in a salon. If there’s ever a place for obnoxiously loud over-shares it’s in the salon. They’re already copping a squat together in their communal latrine, you think a “how is your day?” wouldn’t be too much.
Batty for Lashes Lindsay is center stage with her client. She gives her model an uneven cut and Tabatha catches her. Instead of even attempting to send up a bullshit balloon, Lindsay doesn’t really attempt to defend her work. She says that there are so many techniques to cutting hair that Tabatha can’t tell her she’s wrong.
Confirmed. You’re wrong.
Beauty Professional. Need we say more?
Tabatha calls the Orbit team around and tells them they’re not totally deficient. They’re just lazy.
Lindsay thinks it’s ridiculous her Tabatha to “ridicure” them since they’re all professionals with well developed technique and a well developed grasp on the English language.
Tabatha then sits with Andrea and Eddie to sort through some of their manager vs. owner conflicts. Andrea calls Eddie out on undermining her authority and Eddie agrees to support Andrea in the salon. Once again Shitshow Lindsay’s name is thrown out. Apparently, she came in hungover to work was sent home and Eddie didn’t support that decision. Nothing beats metaphorically spewing bile… Eddie wants to see the literal translation.
Tabatha also brings up the massive surplus of products that Eddie is selling and storing in the salon. It’s way beyond what one salon should stock. It’s out of control, so the next day Tabatha has a solution. She’s going to dump it all in his living room….
The next day Tabatha is set to address all the unless crap in Orbit. She has the hand-me-downs start loading up a truck outside full of more of Eddie’s hand-me-downs.
All the non-salon related items that Eddie is hoarding in Orbit’s basement are getting sent to Eddie’s house. The salon is just the dumping ground for his crappy stylists, not non-recyclable goods.
At Owner Eddie’s apartment the team congregates again to unload all the crap into Eddie’s living room. They have an impromptu pep talk in Eddie’s living room where several members of the staff start to feel bad for their emotional neglectful boss and cry. Once again, Tabatha is the picture of compassion.
Suck it up.
Back at the salon Tabatha begins the demolition by having the team tear down the Rent-a-John bathroom currently at the center of the salon. I was hoping they would just tip it while Tabatha was inside, but I guess non-mutiny is fun too…
We’re back for the reopening and salon that was once a filthy excuse for a skate park has been cleaned polished and repainted. The retail section has be reconfigured and cleaned.
The layout is basically the same and the chairs are still positioned around the bathroom in the middle, which is still there… But the voyeurism element is gone, the doors have been replaced.
The basement is now solely a well organized stock room and the staff’s break room as been moved to the former esthetician quarters in back. There’s even a stall allocated for Eddie’s office.
Tabatha has booked a full day of clients for the stylist and will be supervising their first day back.
Everything is going swimmingly, except at Lindsay’s station. Apparently Lindsay wants to put bleach over the color she has already applied to her clients head. Because nothing provides a precise application quite like Â½ inch of other chemicals. I can’t imagine her client is happy about this “technique” either. Personally, I don’t usually like when people get sloppy with bleach near my hair, or eyes for that matter.
Obviously she’s not a stickler for precision…
Tabatha stops Lindsay before she applies the bleach and confronts her about her techniques. And because Lash Blast Lindsay is the consummate professional. She leave her client and stomps into the basement and tells Tabatha to “fuck off.”
However, the strategic destruction of her career and reputation is impressive.
Empowered Andrea joins Tabatha to speak to Lindsay, but Lindsay storms back past them to sulk in the newly refurbished break room.
Eddie give an inaudible pep talk(/lecture?) and tears up. Lindsay throws up a Veruca pout and will not answer any of their questions.
I think eye make-up really distracts from the puffiness… I think Miss Piggy uses the same technique.
In the “Final Recommendations” section, Tabatha says that faux-hawk aside, Bobby lived up to his title. He actually has some artistic direction. Lindsay was not “on board” with Team Orbit and Andrea and Eddie discuss their options. They decide to can her and she’s brought into a meeting with Tabatha, Eddie and Andrew and told the news. Her reaction is about as reasonable as the amount of mascara caked on her face, and she storms out of the salon.
That ends Tabatha’s visit to Chicago and marking the beginning of a fresh start for Orbit Salon. When she goes back to visit and they’re doing much better and have kept up a clean salon.
What did you think of the season priemere? Was Tabatha too tough? What did you think of the new Orbit Salon? Would you ever let Lindsay touch your hair?