Years after men stopped “come and knocking on” her door (and hipster’s lifetime before James Franco decided to turn it into a play) Chrissy Snow decided to settle into a 9-5 gig with a children’s salon in Mission Viejo, California. Despite her low profit margin and her extensive sun damage Chrissy, now known as Joy, is on Tabatha’s eighth episode of Salon Takeover trying to salvage her business.
I can bend and I can stretch. I’m 50, 50 years old!
As the episode begins, Joy is in tears. She answers the phone sniffling and quickly lifts the dams in her ducts and the wailing begins for Tabatha to hear. Barely able to even ask Joy to step outside, Tabatha does her best not to drop the phone, say “f*ckit” to this episode and hit the road for a West Hollywood spa.
Time to ask Andy for a second Executive Producer credit.
She does stand her ground as Joy exits the salon sputtering, “I am ‘mmm jusssst so’isgusted with everyone there, iiijjja jja’suususstttt (hiccup) ddddduuuuu (sniffle) wwwwahahhtnt…” As Joy distorts her face like she was crowned the winner of the Miss Sunspot Pageant, Tabatha looks on wide eyed. She’s ready to isolate Joy, maybe convince a couple of production assistants to let her have a hit of their joint and get her composed.
It’s such an honor to be named Miss Sunspot 2011.
In the screening/stock room Tabatha asks Joy what the problem in the salon seem to be. After owning the salon for 32 years, Joy says the money isn’t rolling in. In fact she’s lucky to break even. It started going downhill a few years back when she had to step away from the salon to take care of her ill parents. While she was away, the stylists allowed the salon to go to hell.
The footage rolls and Stacey, who looks like Whoville’s answer to Tonya Harding, is trimming her own bangs. Several of the staff members spent time on their own mullets, that is… when they weren’t just napping in the break room.
Someone needs to tell the roast-beast that she’s on camera.
Working in a children’s salon cannot be that lucrative, in a regular salon the best business is the six-week touch-up and cut crowd. The mommies come in, get color on their roots and that doubles the cost of their service, while only adding a couple minutes to the stylist’s work load. It’s a good clientele to have. When mommies are just wrestling their little monsters through the door just for a 20 minute fight in a elevated chair — a service that is half the cost of a haircut with a compliant client — it’s just ridiculous to try to make money exclusively cutting kids’ hair. Even if you adore children. It seems like the only qualification to take a job in “A Star is Born” is that the dogs were howling too loud when they took a look at this bunch, so pet grooming was out. Woof.
Stacey Lo Who is now cleaning her fire-truck station with a dish scrubber thing, the footage cuts to another stylist who is using a similar instrument of disease to wipe the face of a little boy who is gasping for air and screaming for a hygienic wipe.
Those bottle scrubbers are not cleaned between clients, or between days, maybe years. They don’t have a cleaning woman anymore, what they do have is a rumor of a lice outbreak.
Tabatha isn’t calling her stuuuu–pendous
The screen lights up and Joy is trying to motivate her staff, stylist Monique laughs in her face. When Joy leaves Stacey Lo Who and Monique settle back into their seats and continue to eat their feelings.
This staff seems to like to keep their jobs because they’re require to do less than nothing. And there are cookies. They would only give this job up if some of the Keebler elves needed mistresses. They’re that lazy.
Tabatha wants to know how long these stylists have worked for her, and Joy says that some people have been at the salon as long as 15 years — but she’s ready to fire them all. Tabatha sees how frustrated she is, but she’s going to attempt to revitalize the business anyway.
Tabatha has almost made it to the door of “A Star is Born” when Joy stops her and renews her tears. “I’m really afraid this is going to be the end of my business,” she says as Headmistress Coffey looks at her like she’s observing an animal birth. “I’ve shown you the truth and it’s too much to deal with,” Tabatha tells Joy, it’s time to take action, now or never.
Balls to the walls. Get it?
Despite Joy’s fear the takeover goes to (contractual) plan and Tabatha faces the staff. Momo says that Tabatha “wants to be the big man on campus” — or just at the talented one, who scores plenty of tail. The staff faces Tabatha — barely dressed nicely enough to be allowed into the community pool, nevermind greet clients at work — and fiercely rebuff TC’s assertion that they’ve become complacent. When you’re at work in a muumuu, it’s time to face that life has been a little rougher than you can admit.
It’s a muumuu…
It’s time for the tour and the salon is gross. In the play area there is a Playskool house caked in hair…
They think the house comes with a puppy.
The staff knows it’s dirty, but Stacey Lo Who says it’s Joy’s salon, she has to take responsibility for everyone’s filth. There is dust, dirt, grime, roach motels, and hair balls taller than their clients. All the stylists seem to think that it’s not their job to clean, they seem to have no investment in working in a clean environment.
Or snacking out of a clean container. It’s like opening a salon on Sesame Street, in the can Oscar evacuated.
Tabatha wants to help, but she doesn’t want to waste her time if the staff thinks it’s just a joke. When she calls them in for a staff meeting the next day all her fears of complacency and camel toe are confirmed.
The staff says they’re all making less money than they have a couple years ago. They think Joy has lost her spark, so the whole business has faded — which they’re fine with as look as their is still plenty of cookies in stock.
Momo the Grime-izon tells the camera that when Joy lost her parents it was this whole drawn out THING. And she should have just stayed home and gotten over it instead of dragging it into the salon.
It takes compassion to work with children.
The rest of the staff echos Momo’s complaint and discuss Joy’s loss like it was a teenage breakup. It was this THING… with so much DRAMA. I have no doubt she was mess, but Jesus people, what the hell do you have going on in your life besides Kohl’s cash and repeats of Army Wives? I don’t like this flock of L’Oreal at home highlights, high-rise chino wearing bitches.
After Momo is done mocking Joy’s grief, she’s ready to change tactics and say that Joy needs to take responsibility now if she wants to take control of the salon. In fact Momo says “she’s lucky to have us here this long…” Tabatha responds by saying, “Well, isn’t that interesting.” Since they obviously didn’t stay because they love and support Joy, or because the money is wonderful and the atmosphere isn’t at all like that of an abandoned Chuck E. Cheese… staying for 10+ years must be the result of something else. Tabatha has a sneaking suspicion it’s because they’re all complacent. They’ve settled into the salon like they’ve settled into their routine of Wednesday night date night with their mustachioed husbands at Red Lobster or their homes decorated with Anne Geddes prints, on walls painted the color of the lemon sheet cake they eat standing over the sink in their kitchen. It’s safe and it’s easy and it should never be televised.
The staff shake their heads and one mammoth mother with the complexion of a pigskin football tells the camera that the accusations pissed her off.
I bet that wig came with the hat.
Tabatha tells them they could be making more money if they did events — so, for the assessment she’s bringing in pageant girls. Momo interrupts to say “…meaning undos?” Yes. Work that involves something more than a multi-setting buzzer.
“I don’t like updos,” Muumuu tells the camera. “Sure, I’ve done them for proms and stuff, but certainly not pageant hair and I don’t want to do it.”
Tabatha asks them to prep their stations and Muumuu is the first to consult with her client, or more accurately, she refuse the hair piece the Momma Pageant hands her and set about working. Rosa has given her girl a good consultation and she receives’s Tabatha’s praise. Joy seems to be working well with her client too.
Back at her station Muumuu is telling TC that she’s doing her best at a “ratted rats nest.” Tabatha is shocked that she would use that terminology, and say it in front of a client.
She’s a client. A kid though, not a person.
Stacey Lo Who is blaming her lopsided poof on the client’s hair. Tabatha has to stop her and instruct her that outside of Whoville it may take more than a single ribbon to achieve a voluminous flip, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Since the client does have fine hair, it should have been set with pin-curls in order to achieve the correct look.
At Rosa’s station, her client is complete and completed well. A couple feet away Muumuu has finished and has ejected her client from the chair so she can rest and have a snack. When Tabatha consults with Muumuu’s client + Mommy Pageant, she finds out they are not happy. Since she’s going to be on stage, the look as to be more exaggerated, so Tabs has Muu redo the hairstyle. On attempt two she still gets an F. The client’s curls are now set atop her head, but Mom’s still unhappy.
Surprisingly, they’re not impressed with the ratting…
Muu tells Tabatha that, “I don’t know what to say, I’m not an updo person… I’ll work at it… become more… ” TC stops her, calls bullshit and walks away. That’s the end of the assessment. Tabatha calls them around and says that she doesn’t see the passion in this group at all. The staff stares back at her, but no one is able to convince her of their professionalism.
Tabatha sit down with Joy again to discuss the day’s events, she tells her that she’s got a bunch of sad, sad sacks on staff, but they’re not totally brain dead, they know she’s lost her passion for the business. Joy will have to lead them, she can’t allow them to walk all over her anymore. These stylists are lazy and they wouldn’t get a job anywhere else.
You’re kinda stuck with them.
The next day Tabatha takes Joy to a children’s play facility to further discuss her business. As they sit in the playroom at an upscale McDonald’s, Joy tells Tabatha about how she originally wanted to teach kindergarten, which led to opening the children’s salon, she wanted to get the children a positive experience and help them feel good about themselves.
She wanted to pass on self-esteem with the lice.
Tabatha agrees that if Joy’s staff doesn’t feel the same, they shouldn’t be there. Joy has to refocus and lead. Not long after their food arrives at the table and before Joy could even touch her water glass, a stream of children enters the playroom and Miss T wraps this segment and they exit.
Omitting this week’s group activity, they skip straight back to the renovations where Tabatha wants them to get on their knees and scrub. As the staff hits the floor, they all start complaining about how disgusting it is. Stylist Choosi is tasked with throwing away all the bottle cleaners, while Tabatha also calls for the disposal of the toys, decorations and cookie jars.
It’s hard knock life.
Tabatha wants the staff to have some pride in their work — she expects to see that on re-opening day. She dismisses them and renovations begin. When they return the salon has been repainted and no longer looks like the playroom at Funtime Pizza, it looks more like the Disney store with styling stations — and a weaker business model.
Joy loves it, the rest of the staff doesn’t seem to see an improvement. They’re awfully snotty for women who probably buy their Hanes Her-Way at Costco.
They have new stations and they have a new play space for the kids and a section for them to have parties and events.
Since the staff complained that there were no rules, TC put together a policy manual for the staff. She wants to see them be professional today. Joy interjects to say that the staff needs to check for lice before they shampoo any client.
Today one of the pageant girls is returning to have birthday party. The stylists begrudgingly get to work, but even Tabatha is able to rally more enthusiasm for the kids than they are. Muu asks Tabatha to check her hair cut, but she sees some mistakes before her comb touches the client’s hair. Stylist Rosa gets some instruction from Tabatha and Miss T appreciates her professionalism.
I never thought to strap the kid to the chair, so smart!
Joy is renewed, she’s so happy with the new look and the new outlook for the salon.
Leatherface takes a client back to the shampoo chair without checking for lice – per the staff’s request for structure, Joy follows through on enforcing her rules and asks to speak to LF in the break room. Butch Fatassidy and the SunDamage Kid have their discussion in the back room and Butch comes out grumbling that Joy was “playing boss” and she resents it. Tabatha checks in with Joy and Joy says that the talk didn’t go well, but she really thinks that Butch just forgot.
This woman is a beauty PROFESSIONAL.
Joy acted like a boss and protected her business and Tabatha sees that Joy has changed. When she gives Joy her recommendations, they discuss firing the whole staff. Joy goes back and forth on the decision and vows to stand up for herself, but she will give the staff another chance.
When Tabatha and Joy talk to the staff, TC reiterates that she still feels like the staff is complacent, but Joy is a new woman. At least that’s something. Miss T reluctantly leaves Joy behind to take control of the salon. “Who’s in an who’s out?” Joy says to the staff. They all shrug and agree like they’re decided to change restaurants for the staff lunch.
I guess if I’m already here…
When Tabatha returns 6 weeks later, Joy is still optimistic and has recommitted to the salon. She says that Tabatha has saved her business, and may be her life.
What did you think of the infestation of camel toe at “A Star is Born”? If this bunch of clueless losers, plus the all-children clientele didn’t push Tabatha to the brink, what will?