Nathan for You (2013–…): Season 3, Episode 4 - Sporting Goods Store/Antique Store - full transcript

Nathan attempts to secure an endorsement deal for a sporting-goods store, and an antique shop learns how to better utilize their "You break it, you buy it" policy.

- My name is Nathan Fielder,
and I graduated

from one of Canada's
top business schools

with really good grades.

Now I'm using
my knowledge

to help struggling
small business owners make it

in this competitive world.

This is "Nathan for You."

Niky's Sports is
a growing retail soccer chain

in Los Angeles,

and although owner
Niky Orellana

has high hopes
of becoming a household name,

the high cost of advertising
has been holding him back.

- I used to pay, like,
$7,000 for a full-page ad.

- But fortunately for Niky,
I had an innovative idea

to gain exposure for his brand
without breaking the bank.

Hi, Niky?
- Yes, sir.

- Hey, Nathan.

- How you doing?
- Hey, good. How are you?

- All right.

- Thanks for having me.

- No problem.

- Um, how's business going?

- All right.

- The best way to advertise
a sporting goods store

is to get the endorsement
of a professional athlete.

The problem is, landing a deal
like that can cost millions.

But if Niky's were to sign
cheap, long-term contracts

with a number of children
that showed potential,

all it would take is
for one kid to turn pro

for the investment
to pay off big-time.

The plan:
secure endorsements

with the soccer stars
of tomorrow

by investing in kids
while they're still cheap.

- Well, if it's a possibility,
why not?

- The only thing is,
if you do this,

it won't pay off for another
10 to 15 years' time.

- Mm-hmm.
- So I guess I should ask,

you know, do you think
you'll be around then?

Is your health okay
and everything?

- I'm okay
at the moment.

- You know, I just wouldn't want
to do all this work if it's--

you know, you're gonna be
dead or something.

- Well, you never know.

- Okay.
It's probably worth doing then.

- Yeah.
- Roll the dice on that.

- [whispering]
I guess.

- Niky was in,
so over the next couple weeks,

I went to watch several

of the best-ranked youth teams
in the area,

taking note
of their top players.

Some of these kids
suck, huh?

- What's that?
- Some of these kids suck.

- Oh, yeah.

And after each game, I would
wait in the parking lot

to talk to their parents.

Your kid was really good.

- Oh, thank you.
- Yeah, you were really good.

What's your name?
- Josh.

- Josh, hey, nice to meet you.

I told them I was scouting
young athletes

for an endorsement deal,
and his mom seemed interested,

so I asked permission to take
all his physical measurements

which I would then use
to make my final decision.

[photo snap]

Over the course
of several days,

I gathered information

on as many of the top kids
as I could,

and even though some parents
had doubts

about their kids'

- Because he's--okay.
- Yeah.

- I was still able
to get extensive data

on 40 promising
young athletes

from in and around
the City of Angels.

But before making offers,
I wanted to figure out

which of these kids were
most likely to develop

the athletic physique needed
to play soccer professionally,

so I met
with Cornelius Ladd,

an age progression specialist
I found on Craigslist,

who said he could
accurately predict

what these kids would look like
when they were all grown up.

I don't know much
about age progression.

Is this kind of
a science then?

- Yes, police use
this technology all the time...

- Okay.
- For missing children's cases,

and children have actually
been found by the police

based on renderings
of artists like myself.

- Wow.
- I mean,

I have a really good eye
for what could possibly be,

as far as what a person
could look like.

- Cornelius seemed perfect
for the job,

so I gave him
a jump drive

containing all the photos
of my top picks,

and later that week,
I returned to see the results.

All right, so...
this is him?

- Yes.

- Um, what age
is this at?

- This child,
I believe, is 8,

and I age-progressed him
to around 22,

and there's quite a bit
of progression in this picture

where you take this young child
who has no facial hair,

and I added facial hair.

His face is
spread out more.

His hair is completely gone
because of a choice,

and you know, a lot of people
wear bald today.

It's a "in" thing.

- How sure are you

this is what his body
is gonna look like?

- I would say
his body's about 90%.

At a constant progression,

his body would
look like that, 90%.

- 90% chance?

- Yeah.

- Okay.

- Okay.
You want to go to the next one?

- Next one?
- Yeah.

- Okay, sure.

- So in this picture,

I think he would grow to be
a very attractive young man,

and I tried to show that
in the picture

and also to keep his ethnicity
the same, you know.

- You're pretty sure
this is how he'll look?

- Yes, definitely.

Again, you can use this
in a court of law.

- You're sure? 'Cause there's
a lot of money riding on this.

- I'm 90% sure.

- Okay.
Um, what--

- Let's go to the next one.
- Next one?

- Next one.
- Okay.

Why is she playing
with her hair like that?

- 'Cause it's cute.

- Okay.

>> In her, I'm projecting
my own little imagination,

but I project that
she's having fun.

- So it's science,
but then you add

your own kind of opinions,

- Right, you have to have
a vision

when you start
the project.

Ultimately, what you end up
with is science and vision.

- So this is a combination
of both?

- Right, it's a combination
of science and vision.

- Okay.

This is a boy.

- No.
- This, yeah.

- Okay, so...
I made this a girl.

I thought this was a girl.

- Okay.
I-I-It's a boy.

- Okay.
- I believe, yeah.

- Well, the good news
about that is--

or the funny news is that
I could take a girl or boy

and make it into a girl.

- I'm just more concerned
with accuracy.

- Yeah, I'll make him a man
on the next version.

- Okay.

- I wasn't sure about some
of Cornelius' choices,

but still, I felt like
I had enough information

to start making offers,
so later that week,

I began meeting
with the parents

of my top picks to negotiate
an endorsement deal

that would go into effect
if their kids went pro.

We think $250 is
very fair

because of the age
of your child,

and we expect, you know,
a low price

because we are buying
while he still, you know, sucks.

- Hmm.
- Okay.

- I mean, no one else is
offering you deals, right?

- Right.

[clears throat]
All right.

- The majority of parents
agreed to sign our contract,

which would allow Niky's
to use their kids

as future brand ambassadors
if they became star athletes,

but I was most excited
about landing a deal

with my top prospect,

His skills on the field

far exceeded
any of the other players,

and I felt like
he was our best shot

at playing in the big leagues
and becoming a star,

so once I finished up
with his dad,

I sat down with him
to make sure

he stayed on track.

We're really excited
to be in business with you.

I see a lot of potential.

- What does potential mean?

- But as we were chatting
about his future,

Sasha said something
that blindsided me.

- When I grow up,
I want to become an astronaut.

- Really?
- Yeah.

- I mean, Sasha, you know,
you can do what you want,

but, you know, your talent
really is on the field.

- But I think
when I'm older enough like you,

maybe I could
go to the moon.

- I was deeply concerned.

If Sasha chose
to pursue his dream

of working
in the space program,

it would be a huge setback

for Niky's endorsement

I had to find a way
to keep him on track,

so later that week,
I arranged

for who I said
was a real astronaut

to pay a visit
to Sasha's home,

but in reality, this astronaut
was my old pal James Bailey,

who I knew
had a special skill

for nudging children
in the right direction.

I have a special surprise
for you today.

- Okay.

- How would you like to meet
a real-life astronaut?

- A real one?

- Yeah.

So I brought in James
to help Sasha

learn a bit more
about life in space.

- My whole life has
just been a nightmare.

It's a terrible

You know, most of my friends
have died in space

or gone insane from
the unimaginable loneliness

of being there.

- Yeah?
- Yeah.

My wife and my kids,
they died in space.

It was an accident.

- But I thought kids
can't go to space.

- Yeah, I smuggled 'em on
against the rules.

- Oh.

- As James went on,
I could tell

Sasha was getting
a better understanding

of the dangers
of space travel.

- Some restaurants,
they won't even serve me

because I used to be
an astronaut.

- Really?
That's like a brown person.

If you were a brown person
a long time ago,

what happened, like, you
couldn't go to a restaurant.

Is that how it feels?

- Yeah, that's kind of
how it is.

It's that kind of discrimination
that happens.

- Really?
- Yeah, you know,

I really just wish I had
decided to be a soccer player

instead of an astronaut.

- Oh?

- Yeah, it's too late
for me now.

I'll probably die
on my next mission anyways.

- Really?
When is it, in two years?

- Yes, sure,
two years from now.

- After James was done
talking to Sasha,

I came back in
to see how it went.

Wow, that was cool, huh?

- Yeah, it was amazing.

- You got to talk
to a real astronaut.

- Yeah.
- So what did you learn?

- He said that his family
died in space

because he didn't follow
the rules, and he took his kid.

- Mm.

- And he told me that once,

a alien tried to--
to pull him into the sun.

- Oh, okay.

So do you still want
to be an astronaut?

- Well, a little,
not really, not as much.

- What do you think
you're gonna do instead?

- Play soccer.

- Well, if that's your choice,
then that's your choice.

- Yeah.

- I did it,
and with Sasha back on track,

I could finally return
to Niky's

with the solid portfolio
of kids I needed

to give him the best shot
at becoming a national brand.

I mean, some of them are
definitely gonna flame out,

but all you really need is one
to go pro

for this to pay off

so I think your odds
are pretty good.

- Oh.
- Yes.

- Good.

- One thing I like to do

is follow up with the businesses
I work with, you know,

once the idea's done,
to find out

if it was actually

- Mm-hmm.

- What did you just do?

- Nothing.
- Oh, okay.

Just looking at your phone?

Okay, that's okay.


Thanks so much
and take care.

Good luck.

[upbeat music]

- Emily Yep has been
operating her antique shop,

Magnolia and Willow,
in the Long Beach area,

for over five years,
but lately,

she's been finding it tough
to get customers in the door.

- It does get hard
when it's really slow.

I mean, it always feels like
it's the end of the world.

- But after surveying
the neighborhood,

I realized that Emily
might not be taking

full advantage
of her surroundings,

so I paid her a visit
with a way to help.

I noticed there are
a lot of bars

and nightclubs
in the area.

- Yeah.

- Is that something
you like?

- Um, it's a little hard.

Sometimes we have some problems
with over-serving

and that kind of thing,
but most of the time,

we're closed by 6:00,
so it doesn't affect us as much.

- But maybe it should.

You see, Magnolia and Willow
has a strict

"you break it, you buy it"

meaning that if an item breaks,
it's as good as a sale,

so if, instead of closing
at 6:00 p.m.,

Emily extended
her hours

to be open
straight through the night,

her chances
of inebriated customers

generating new sales
would greatly increase.

The plan:
attract late-night drunks

by staying open
24 hours a day.

- Well, possibly,
I guess, yeah.

I mean, I would--
I guess so, yeah.

- I mean,
the way I see it,

if you get the right drunk
in here...

- Yeah.
- You could make

more in a single night
than you do all month.

- I just wouldn't prefer
a broken item.

I'd rather sell a good one,
but yeah, I mean,

it would be the same thing,
no matter what happens, so.

- I mean, a lot of this stuff
is--probably the only way

you're gonna get anything for it
is if someone breaks it.

- Well, some of the items,
but yeah.

- Yeah, yeah.

- Yeah.

- Emily agreed to try out
my idea

to see if it got the results
I had promised,

so the next day,
I returned to the store

and officially changed
the hours.

Then to help our cause, I had
the aisles narrowed slightly

and moved some
of her poorer-selling items

to an area of the store
that would increase

the likelihood
of accidental contact.

So that evening,
once the sun went down,

it was time to see if the new
extended hours would work.

But knowing
that tonight's sales

would determine
if Emily kept using my idea,

I wanted to guarantee
we had some results,

so I headed
to a nearby bar

with a plan
to befriend a drunk patron

and lead them
back to the store.

Do you know the antique shop
next door?

- Oh, yeah, yeah.

- They're open
24 hours now.

- Yeah.
- Okay, well...

- After a few
unsuccessful attempts

to connect
with the locals...

- I finally found someone
who was willing to chat.

- What's your favorite movie?

- "Inception."

- "Inception," really?

- Yeah.
Have you seen that?

- Why?
Why is it your favorite movie?

- What's yours?

- "Forrest Gump."

- He told me
his name was JJ,

and he seemed like
my best shot

at getting a big sale
for Emily,

but for this to work,
I needed to get him drunk

while staying
sober enough myself

to execute the plan,

so prior to my arrival,
I had a vacuum-powered device

sewn into the lining
of my jacket

that was designed
to discreetly suck up

the alcohol I was served
through a tube,

into a pouch
on my back.

Then a second motor
would deliver apple juice

from a different pouch,
quickly refilling the glass

and allowing me to go
shot-for-shot with JJ

without losing my focus
one bit.

- Cheers.

- Over the course
of the next hour,

we had several rounds,

and I noticed that JJ
was getting pretty tipsy.

- My roommates put this
piece of paper in my pocket.

Like, "Just in case you get
too drunk and get lost tonight."

- That's your address?
- [laughs] Yeah.

- They put a piece of paper

with your address
in your pocket?

So you get drunk often.

- Oh, yeah.

- Really drunk.
- Every night.

- And I felt that we were
finally ready to head out.

I explained to him
that the cameras were there

for a documentary
about nightlife in Long Beach,

but in reality,
my only goal

was to get him
inside the antique shop.

There was just one more step
I had to take to get him ready.

There's this costume party
in the area that--

- A costume party?

- Yeah.
- Let's go.

- You want to go?
- Yeah.

- Safety is always
my number one priority,

so I came up with the idea
of a costume party

as a way to get JJ
into a padded outfit

that would protect him

against any antiques
he might shatter

once he stumbled
into Emily's store.

- Cool--oh.
- Oh, shit.

- Ow, [bleep]!

And with that, we headed out
to my made-up party.

I just hoped I could
convince him

to make a stop
along the way.

Oh, sweet, look.
Open 24 hours.

- What is it?

- Looks like some sort
of store, but look.

- Free p--
- Free pizza.

- Do you see it?
It's right back there.

It's right there at the back
by a heat lamp.

- Let's go.
- All right.

- You're coming with me?
- Yeah, yeah, yeah.

[doorbell ringing]

- [groans]

[dishes clattering]


- You okay, man?

- I'm all right
right now.

- All right.
You better be careful.

- It's all right.

- Watch your back.

- There's no way.
- Should--

- I can't even fit through that.
It's too tight.

- Well, what do you--I mean,
do you want the pizza or what?

- I'm kind of wedged here.

- You broke this stuff.
- Right, I see that,

and that's why I'm, like,
eh, I don't really want

to break anymore 'cause
it's [bleep] super expensive.

- You have a "you break it,
you buy it" policy?

- Yeah.

- The plan was a success.

JJ had destroyed
a large selection of antiques,

and once he freed himself
from the aisle,

all Emily had to do was
catalogue the broken items...

- You're pretty clumsy,

- Is there any way I can
take this thing off?

- And ring up the sale.

- It's about $280
worth of damage,

and that's probably
getting off easy

'cause I couldn't really assess
all of that broken--

- Right.

- Boo.

- So with that, Emily
got to make a sizable sale.

Well, lesson learned,

- Right.
- Sorry.

- And JJ even got to take home
some antiques.

If you look at it this way,
it looks like it's brand-new.

- Right.

- So...

it's kind of a blessing
in disguise.

- Right, right, right.

- I was so happy
everything worked out,

and Emily seemed
really won over by the idea,

but as we left
the store,

I noticed that JJ
was still pretty drunk,

and since he made
such a big purchase,

I felt the least I could do
was be a gentleman

and give him
a ride home.

Do you often do
stuff like that

without really
thinking it through?

- Um, yeah.

- As we drove
to JJ's apartment,

I thought my night
was over,

but that's when he started
talking to me

about his sex life.

- Tag team a girl, yeah.

- Tag team a girl?

- Yeah.
- Yeah, what's that?

- It's when you have a threesome
with two guys and one girl.

- And you do that?
- Yeah.

- Yeah, yeah.

- I do it with my brother
a lot, actually.

- Oh, really?
- Me and my brother are dogs.

- JJ began
going into detail

about the threesomes
he has with his brother,

and that that point, I really
just wanted to get home,

but when I
dropped him off,

he insisted
that I meet the guy,

so I waited outside
as JJ went in

and brought out
his brother.

You guys have sex
with the same girl.

- Yeah.
[both laughing]

- I told him about--
I told him about tag team.

- Yeah.
- I told him.

- So you guys
are brothers?

- Mm-hmm.
- Yeah.

- And you guys, you'll have sex
with the same girl?

- Mm-hmm.

- Shit, I'll be
[bleep] a girl

when he's [bleep] a girl
right next to me.

Two...even, like.

- And then you're looking
at each other during it?

- No.
- It's dark in the room.

Lights are off all the way,
and you don't see shit.

- It's fine.

- But if you're not looking
at each other,

and you're having sex
with a girl,

why not just one of you
do it,

and then the next one
does it later?

- 'Cause it's something we do,
it's [bleep]--

- Right, it's just
something we've done.

I mean, all my homeboys
from back in Ohio, they do it.

Everybody does this shit,
Max, [bleep] George.

- J-squad.
Shout out to J-squad, you--

- Shout out to that J-squad.
- J-squad.

- I mean, the one--
I do look at you guys,

and a part of me is envious
that, you know,

I don't have someone in my life
that is--I'm this close with.

- [snorts and spits]

- It's nice to see
brotherly love

taken to that level,
in a way.

- Yeah, I definitely see
where you're coming from.

- It's just--
- And, like, you know--

- To us, it's just, like--
it's nothing.

- It's just, like, that's what
[bleep] we're used to.

We're used to all this shit.
- Right.

- It's great meeting you.
- Yeah, yeah.

- All right, man.

- See you, guys.
- Yup.

- All right, buddy, yup.

- With a successful night
under our belt,

I could finally return
to Magnolia and Willow

to get Emily's thoughts
on how it went.

I mean, that's a pretty big
sale, right?

- Yeah, yeah, yeah,
definitely, it helps, yeah.

- So how'd you feel about that?

- It's good, yeah,
and, you know,

any time we're moving...
- Great, right?

- Any product, it's always
beneficial to the store, so--

- That was a lot
of product.

- Yeah, I mean,
it was good.

It's just kind of awkward...
- Definitely.

- Having people
that might be

having a little too much
to drink.

It's a little harder
to control in your store,

that kind of thing.

- Well, a sale's a sale.

- Yeah, for sure.
- Yeah, definitely.

- Yeah.

- All right.

- Yeah, thank you for all
your help and your suggestions.

This is all really great.

- Mm-hmm.
- Good experience to try it.

Thank you.
- Yeah.

- Have a good day.

- Yeah, you--
no, you too.

- Thanks.

[playful music]

Thank you.

- [blows air]

- If you're just
glancing at that picture,

you cannot tell
that was done in Photoshop.

You would think that was
an actual picture.

- Yeah, yeah.

- I mean, if you saw
this picture lying on a table

somewhere, you wouldn't think
that was done in Photoshop.

You would just think,
"Oh, all right,