First, a public service announcement – remember to turn your clocks forward an hour Saturday night. Because god forbid this country could have more than 4 months of normal time a year! No one in government seems to realize that the days get longer completely on their own, without any monkeying around with clocks. No disrespect to monkeys intended.
This monkey salon looks so much better than any Tabs has been to, doesn’t it?
On to our ep! This ep was an interesting change of pace. As I mentioned in the Minicap, it’s really unusual to see Tabs bond with an owner so well. Was there anyone (besides his daughter Tiana – more on that later) who didn’t love Dr. Flavio? His staff, his students, and Tabs who was completely smitten. And what’s not to love? He’s 84 and still spry and active and more than that, at his school every day guiding and leading. Also, he’s pretty handsome. And he’s really funny. So basically he is my dream date except for the massive age gap and the fact that I’m at least a foot taller than he is. He’s not perfect though, as we’ll see.
We open with shots of Flavio Beauty College, which was founded 53 years ago. 6 years ago, Dr. Flavio (he has a Ph.D. but we’re not told in what field) turned the school over to his daughter, Tiana. Tiana doesn’t have a cosmetology license. Attendance is down, the quality of teaching isn’t good, and due to the lack of income Dr. Flavio’s house is (or soon will be) in foreclosure. I question why he didn’t have someone with management experience, who is also a stylist, run the school, and try to turn things around before their enrollment fell so low.
We someone who will turn out to be “Mr. P” being asked to dye hair caramel reddish. It turns out black. Tabs tells us that he jacks up people’s hair. She strides into the school and orders the teachers and students “stop working, brushes down”. P ignores Tabs, and she repeats “brushes down”. So right off the bat we know that the “P” undoubtedly stands for “p-ick”.
Tabs calls for Tiana, who comes out of the office.
Undercover. TIana tells Tabs that Flavio was for a long time the biggest beauty school in the country, and was one of the first such schools founded. Her father has written 5 hairstyling books, has been a stylist for 63 years. He’s about to turn 85. Tiana says Dr. Flavio still comes in every day. He does do things the “old-school way”. The school has a capacity of 560 and currently has about 130 students – as Tabs remarks, one-fifth of what it should have.
Tabs says the school has bad teaching, no structure, and no state board prep (which is apparently mandatory at such schools prior to the boards). Tiana says that’s not her job. If you’re the manager, then it is your job! Tabs says Tiana should know about hairdressing.
You could start here.
And let’s stop here for a minute. Tiana’s father is a stylist. Her grandparents (we learn later) were stylists. So she’s been around salons/schools her entire life, and she’s never picked up anything? Even someone who’s not licensed would gain some knowledge in all those years.
And why doesn’t she have her license? I got the impression that Tiana doesn’t want to be doing this. I also think once Dr. Flavio passes, Tiana is going to sell the school. She clearly has no love of hair, isn’t interested in being a stylist or colorist – and somewhere along the line was what – railroaded? guilted? into being the school manager. Perhaps because neither she nor Dr. Flavio are drawing checks, and an “employee” would demand to be paid? Or has Tiana just resented her dad and having to work at the school all these years, and never been honest with him? As you’ll see, passive-aggressive is the theme du jour in this ep.
Tabs asks what would happen if Dr. Flavio lost his house, and Tiana says he would “find something else to do”. Precisely where would an 84-year-old guy do that? On a park bench? In a cardboard box under a freeway overpass? Tabs asks if he could move in with Tiana, and Tiana immediately says she doesn’t have any room. In her house, or in her heart? Inquiring minds want to know.
Is this what you want for your dad? Boo. BOOOOOOO.
Also, what the hell is up with her face? You work in a beauty school and you never use, oh, some makeup? How about some powder since your face is one big shiny orb that is blinding me? I mean, really? You knew you were going to be on camera and this is the best you can do? Also, that bleached hair isn’t fooling anyone. And you desperately need conditioner. This may come as a shock, Tiana, but conditioner is widely available – say, at beauty schools – and easy to apply. Hello!
Now we see the hidden camera footage. Students come in and then take off to the mall. Students 5 months from boards don’t know necessary information. Tiana says the state board sets the curriculum. Tabs asks if Tiana knows what that curriculum is, and Tiana says no. You’re the manager and you never read the curriculum? What the hell does Tiana do all day? Doesn’t read the curriculum, doesn’t manage – doesn’t even try. Nice way to help out your dad.
Mr. P is asked by a student why he’s using a particular technique, and he doesn’t tell them. So . . . he thinks teaching is done via the medium of mime?
Yet another reason to hate the French.
Tiana says the teachers aren’t on time and are using older techniques. So if you knew this, why did you not do something about it before the school slid downhill?
Takeover. Tabs and Tiana return to the school, and Tabs announces it’s being closed for the week. Joey, a senior student, is thrilled at this (we saw him earlier not getting the instruction he wants).
P, even I, a student, know your “demo” is whack.
P shares with us that Tabs is a bitch. Apparently he’s never read her book – Tabs considers that word a compliment. Also, STFU. Tabs asks the clients she sent in to come back – they are the ones on the hidden camera. The gal whose hair turned out black talks about how awful her hair is. P says he’s been doing color for 37 years. Tabs questions if he should be teaching. I question if he has, or has developed, color-blindness or if he just doesn’t give a f—.
Case in point.
Inspection. The place is disorganized, messy and dirty. We meet Miss Kathy. She’s about 150 years old and is not happy Tabs is there. Tabs asks Tiana when she last toured the school, and she says a couple of months. Or years? How big is this school? Seems to take Tabs about 20 minutes to tour it. Tabs says the school is run-down and not cared for. Duh.
Commercial. We return to Tabs and Flavio talking. He’s used up all his savings to keep the school going, and says Tiana spends the minimal amount of time at the school.
Staff meeting. All the teachers have been there a long time. Miss Sue came in 1970, P has been there 33 years. They say Tiana doesn’t have passion, and is mostly in the office. They think she could be a good manager, if she had the right education. Speaking of, Tabs asks when they last had education and is told 15 years. No wonder they’re doing outdated techniques. But that said, if you call yourself a stylist – much less a teacher – are there no after-hours classes? You know, the ones all the other stylists go to? Again with the passive-aggressive behavior. They’re all – ahem – mature adults, there’s no reason why they shouldn’t have the means and motivation to take evening or weekend classes periodically.
Like, say, here.
Miss Sue is sort of the administrative head of the school. Tabs asks if she manages the teachers, and Sue says she assumes it will be done (by someone else). Oh good, more passive-aggressiveness. P is irritated by his students. And we’re fed up with you too, pal. Tabs says their job is to inspire. They seem less than persuaded by that.
Assessment. Tabs brings in students as models, and tells the instructors to talk through their techniques as they use them. We start with the charming P who does almost no consultation and is challenged by Tabs. He again shares Tabs is a bitch. WhatEVER.
Miss Kathy is working on a student who wants bright red hair, and whose cut was butchered by P.
Back to P, who is coloring a student’s hair, which has a couple of colors in it already. Tabs tells him the root color (blond) is a level 8 and he says no, level 5. She’s trying to get him to assess effect the color he chose will have on all the different colors of the student’s hair – you know, something a teacher should be able to know and do. Tabs has to make P get the color chart and points out the color, to which he again says level 5, and she has to again tell him IT’S LEVEL 8. I’m worn out just watching this.
Go home and memorize this, P. Like you should have done 33 years ago.
If this is the best P can do, what kind of godawful “stylists” has he been “training”? And why up until now has no one, Dr. Flavio, anyone said hey, this guy isn’t doing a good job? I have never understood how businesses can just drift for decades. There’s loyalty to employees, and there’s lunacy. This is the latter.
Commercial. We return to Tabs asking what 3 pigments make up all hair. Red, blue and yellow, BTW. She’s trying to teach the students. Dr. Flavio is offering advice. Tiana is in her office. It’s too much for the poor delicate flower.
She’s gonna sell this place once I’ve gone to the hair salon in the sky. I just know it.
Miss Kathy’s color turns out well. P’s client hates her color and he retorts “you chose it”, which makes her cry. Remember she’s a student of his! He says he’s not god and “the magic shop is not across the street”. Also, he’s not going to let Tabs intimidate him. What a total mother-.
Too bad there isn’t a magic shop nearby. Then they could make P disappear. For good.
Tabs says the staff isn’t inspired, and starting tomorrow, things will turn around.
Tabs then talks with TIana, who says P is the most ridiculous of all the teachers. Tiana says she hides in her office because if she sees what’s wrong and doesn’t fix it . . . That makes no sense. How about seeing what’s wrong AND FIXING IT? OMG I have had it with this attitude.
I hate this school and my dad.
Apparently Tabs has too. The next morning, she’s at Dr. Flavio’s house, packing a bag for him. They then go to Tiana’s house. The look on her face is quite telling. It’s “get out of my house”, and it’s aimed at her dad. Tabs says Flavio is staying with Tiana for a couple of days so she’ll realize what it’s like if he loses his house. Tiana again says she has no room because she, her husband and her one son take up all the room. And by the look on her face, which has now changed to one of complete obstinacy, I realize there is a whole lot between father and daughter besides the school. She doesn’t like him. (He knows it – he’s told Tabs Tiana doesn’t want him to live with her). She doesn’t even want to let him stay a couple of days. If he loses his house, as Tiana told us early on, that’s his tough luck. Her door will be firmly closed.
I’m not one for babying folks who are abusive, etc., even if they are parents. But it didn’t seem like the case here. We obviously don’t know the full story, and there are clearly issues between father and daughter, but really? Not “we’ll help you find a nice apartment, dad” or “of course you can stay, we’ll turn the rec room into your bedroom” or even “for the next 2 days sonny will sleep on the couch” or anything like that. And that house did not appear that small to me.
Tabs, Dr. Flavio, Tiana and the staff then go to Paul Mitchell School, where Rosie, an instructor, is going to demo a cutting technique. Miss Kathy says she wouldn’t wear that cut, and completely dismisses it. Oh, so you only cut or teach the exact hairstyle you wear? Isn’t that a tad . . . limiting? P says what can they teach him? He doesn’t need this. Ah, P’s open-minded joie de vivre is a pleasure to witness, isn’t it?
Lalala we’re not listening!
Dr. Flavio and Tiana are in another room in management training with Wynn (one of the co-founders of the Paul Mitchell school). He says true leadership is being inspiring. Tiana responds that what he’s saying is true. I guess hearing it from Tabs doesn’t count but hearing it from this guy does? As long as it made an impact . . .
Little-known fact: He moonlights as Mr. Clean.
Back to the others. The Paul Mitchell instructor is correcting P’s cutting. Miss Kathy tells Tabs she disagreed with the style, and it’s pointed out to this effing idiot that stylists cut styles the client – not the stylist – wants to wear.
If only this model would keep still, I could get this newfangled haircut done!
P finally says this was worthwhile and the school “needs to reach for this”. Well Halle-freakin-lujah, you big jackass.
Commercial. We return to the reopening. The place has been redone and painted. Joey loves the new squishy mats. Thank you for brightening this ep, Joey! Tabs has kits for the students (dryers and other tools). She’s moved a wall of fame, which are a lot of cool photos and such from the years of the school, into the main room so all can see. She tells the teachers it’s up to them, tells P to let the students work, and tells Tiana to be a leader.
Does anyone but me find those hair heads creepy?
Sue tells Tabs that Tiana has (finally) read the curriculum, and Sue’s seen a big change in her. We see Misses Kathy and Marie stepping up, and P slowing down. A student says P’s calmer and more attentive.
Tabs then fixes Jennie’s color – she’s the gal P turned a godawful shade when she wanted red. A student applies the color, and it looks great. Then Tabs cuts it while teaching. Everyone gathers around. Even P shares that Tabs knows her chops. Double duh. And that cut is of course perfection.
As is Tabs. xoxoxo
Final recommendations. Tabs talks to Tiana and Dr. Flavio and says he needs to let Tiana be the boss. Tiana says she thinks they (instructors) exhibited more unity and willingness.
Commercial. We return – but not – to an interaction between Tabs and Flavio. BFFS4EVAH!
Now we’re really back. Tiana says she now has purpose, and tells the school she is going to get her cosmetology license. Tabs hands the keys back.
6 weeks later, the students are pleased. P is using the constructive criticism he received. Oh now it’s constructive. There are 45 new students. Tiana says Dr. Flavio is still in his home. I see Tiana is finally wearing some makeup, including face powder. So it’s a win for all!
Next time, we go to Barkingham Palace dog day care/grooming. Judging by the amount of barking at Barkingham, I may have to watch that ep with “mute” on. See you then!
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