Better Off Ted (2009–2010): Season 2, Episode 6 - Beating a Dead Workforce - full transcript

Veronica exploits the death of an overworked Veridian employee in order to motivate the rest of its overworked workforce to work even harder to meet an important deadline.

you put in lot's of late nights. Are you sure you
don't want me to have the sitter pick you up honey?

I'm sure she wouldn't mind eating
all my breakfast bars while you sleep,

- and then hiding the wrappers from Mr. Ted.
- I want to stay here with you.

Good. Good night.

We did it, Ted.

We now have a working prototype
for the Veridian sleep system.

All the hard work,

late nights and no rest have paid off.

We've cured sleeplessness

- and demonstrated irony.
- Well, that's great,

because the relaxation
convention's only a week away.

I know. It's so exciting.

We heard a commercial
for it this morning.


The world's largest gathering
of relaxation technology."

"72 hours of nonstop,

cutting-edge relaxation."

"Sammy hagar! Alice Cooper!

And the navy's blue angels!"

We're a little loopy

due to the exhaustion.


Inside this box is a transmitter

which will induce the human brain

to emit Alpha waves,

gently lulling it into a restful sleep.

That sounds means it's working.

If you can put up with
it for three minutes,

hello, dreamland!

Turn it off! Just turn it off!

I have a note.

It's the sound, right?
That's what's bothering you?

- It's too loud, correct?
- You've only got a few days to crack this, fellas.

Otherwise, we are not
gonna make this year's.


The extra "x" is for more z's.

Well, that is fun.

Hey, Linda. One more
week. How you holding up?

I'm a little tired,

and working these hours
is making everyone unhappy.

Bob stole Amy's danish.

She got so mad, she stapled
his lip to his cubicle.

He tried to call for help,
but it came out "helf."

It was actually horrifying.

They had to call an ambulance.

Ugh! This is bitter.

- Oh! God, you idiot!
- Oh, my God.

Jenkins, I'm so tired, I
thought you were a sink.

I'm so tired, I thought
you were my mouth.

- Morale does seem pretty low.
- It's like that time

they paid our holiday
bonuses in frozen food.

Potpie Christmas.

It did not help that they
made them with real reindeer.

We have a morale problem.

You're always coming
to me with a problem.

Just once I wish you'd greet me
with a sparkler and cotton candy

- and tell me I have the number one album America.
- You handed out

"Veronica in the key of
love" at the office party,

and no one threw it back at
you. Consider that a victory.

Listen, this deadline is coming up fast,

and if we want these
people to keep going,

- we've gotta do something to keep th motivated.
- Ted, if there's a morale problem,

the company recommends

you take the hardest-working
employee and fire them.

That'll scare the rest of the peasants

- back into the fields.
- What if instead of scaring people,

we single out the
hardest working employee

and reward them with something fun?

Less Stephen king, more
Stephen... the clown.

I couldn'think of a fun Stephen.

Segal. No, that one's no good either.

Fine. The workers pushed the
button and lit up the light.

They can have their monkey chow.

Now you've all been working
really hard this week,

but no one harder than Jenkins.

He was here when I left last night,

and he was already at his desk
when I got in this morning.

If I had known Jenkins
was gonna be such a hero,

- I wouldn't have thrown my coffee at him.
- You should never throw your coffee at anyone,

because you never know
if they're going to become

a great man.

I threw coffee at a cardinal
on a plane. Now he's the pope.

Back then he was just a guy in
a big hat blocking the movie.

All right, guys.

Okay, I was wrong. It's
more than a morale problem.

- We worked a man to death.
- I heard about Jenkins' death.

The company feels terrible about it.

People are working too hard,
Veronica. We need to slow down.

Legal's position is,

we don't know if hard
work killed Jenkins.

Legal thinks he may have
had high cholesterol.

They're also floating the
idea that his being dead

may have been a preexisting condition,

and that he may not have
been alive when we hired him.

- Apparently he was pretty quiet in his job interview.
- Veronica, we need to get back to a normal work schedule,

even if that means we don't
make the relaxxxacon deadline.

We can introduce our sleep system
next month make at the snooze-a-palooza

or in July at the Texas
pillow and gun show.

Look, they're giving
everyone an afternoon off.

And we're throwing
the guy a big memorial,

something nice he would
never have treated himself to.

- So that's it? A half a day off?
- Sorry, Ted. The company feels

that if we ease up just
because someone died,

- it will only encourage other people to die.
- Well, if it's one thing this company understands,

it's how human beings work.

You better not let Ted see
you looting Jenkins things.

Ted asked me to clean up Jenkins'
desk, so we can ship it all to Florida.

I think Jenkins has family there.

Either that, or Florida has a shortage

of miniature mouthwash
and dilbert cartoons.

This cartoon resonates

with my own experience of office life,

but through a comical lens.

God. You're here one
minute, and then... poof.

You've exhaled your
last minty fresh breath

and died in your office, cakess.

That's why it's important

to always appreciate
the moment you're in,

because the future is a
cake which may never come.

Wow. Look how profound
this moment just got.

Let it wash over you,
Linda, because now it's gone.

Did you appreciate it?

I did, because I always
live in the present.

Wow. This is a good moment, too.

Savor it. I am.

And now it's gone.

I wish I could live
completely in the present.

That's something about me
I've always wanted to work on.

Maybe I'll attack it this summer.

No, I was gonna do some
traveling, maybe go to europe.

Also, I want to go up in a blimp...

Ow! God! My eyes. What the hell?

- I was helping you to live in this moment.
- It hurts!

Exactly. You're in pain,

and so you're completely in the present.

And when you're in the present,
you're living your life.

You're not caught up
in what could have been

- or what might be.
- Huh. That makes sense.

And so the student becomes the master.

Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow!

Oh, I'm in this moment.

Excellent. Now quick, look
at the dilbert cartoon.

Oh. It's funny now.

Because you're giving
it your complete focus.

Now let's go listen to my
cd. It'll blow your mind.

Since the company wasn't
gonna ease up on the schedule,

I thought I'd use the
memorial to encourage everyone

to take better care of themselves.

You know what I remember about Jenkins?

He used to be alive.

So pace yourself, know your limits,
and if you feel yourself dying...

Uh, well, tell your supervisor.

I can't believe Ted's making
me speak at this thing.

You knew Jenkins better than anybody.

I didn't know him. Nobody did.

- All I did was throw coffee at him.
- I am not saying things were always smooth

between the two of you, but in
the end, you understood each other.

Chest bump for good luck?

Now I'd like to ask Lem
Hewitt to say a few words.

These sugar cookies are great.

I'm gonna have 'em at my memorial.

I love sugar cookies.

When I was a kid, my
mom used to make 'em.

But instead of sugar, she'd use Brandy.

And instead of dipping them in milk,

she'd dip them in Brandy...
now what's going on?

My mind was drifting, and I'm
trying to stay in the moment.

Now I know what a beard
of fingers would feel like.

It's just as I had imagined.

Gordon Jenkins was a good man.

But he was also a complex man.

For example, he liked coffee,

but he did not like having
coffee thrown at him.

In fact, Jenkins hated being
burned by any hot liquid.

In that way, he was like many of us,

sensitive to heat.

What a character. Goodbye, Jenkins.

I hope you're throwing
coffee at God right now.

Nice work, Lem. Goose bumps.

- Really?
- Sure. Why not?

Carl Jenkins...

- Gordon.
- Carl Gordon...

- Jenkins.
- Carl Gordon Jenkins...

Gordon Jenkins.

Carl Gordon Jenkins Gordon Jenkins.

- Are you sure that's right?
- That's fine.

Was a man who loved his work.

He lived for it,

and in all but the
legally culpable sense,

he died for it.

And so we must ask ourselves,
how do honor this great man?

By giving up on the
project he held so dear?

I said, by giving up on
the project he held so dear?

- No.
- By quitting on him and his dream of creating

the most advanced sleep
system in human history?


Or by finishing the job

Carl Gordon Jenkins
Gordon Jenkins started

so that his death will not be in vain?

Yes! By working day and
night to meet our deadline

and storm the walls of relaxxxacon.

- Yes!
- My friends, we will complete this project on time,

and we will do it for Jenkins!

- For Jenkins
- I can't hear you.

- For Jenkins!
- Avenge him!

Who do we kill?!

Insomnia, and who do we kill it for?


You're damn right.

Now let's go upstairs
and get back to work,

for tonight, we dine in hell!

Sorry, Ted.

The company didn't think
sad was the way to go.

Veronica's speech at Jenkins' memorial

inspired people to work even harder.

The company liked what
it saw, so the next day,

- it shifted the Jenkins mobile into turbo drive.
- So after day care,

- do I get to sleep in your office again?
- Oh, look at you, saying "get to"

to make me feel better.

Honey, I know my being busy is hard,

- but it's just for a few more days.
- It's okay. At least your couch is comfortable.

So we're doing posters now?

The company got us these

to remind us what we're working for.

Plus, they got us

these neat little rubber
wristbands for free.

- It says, "work strong. For Jenkins." Here.
- Sheila, don't you see what's happening?

The company is exploiting Jenkins' death

- to make people work harder.
- The company said that Jenkins said

that some people would say that.

I just can't believe
it's one of the finders.

The finders?

One of the eight people
who found his body.

Lem! Wake up!

The cool accountants
are on their way down.

- Oh, damn it. And the lab is such a mess.
- Wh... Perry and Todd and beaver?

What are those guys
doing coming down here?

Stop questioning me and
help clean this place up.


- Hey.
- Hey.

- Clean lab, bro.
- Yeah, whatever.

So you were friends with Jenkins, huh?


Uh, yeah, yeah. We
were pretty tight. Sure.

That's sick. What was he really like?

He had a huge heart.

Uh, I remember him saying once,

"Lem, you are my best
friend, and if I should die,

at least I'll die knowing
one really cool guy.

You, Lem, the cool
guy I'm referring to."


Dude, we're gonna step outside
to take a cigarette break.

- Do you want to come?
- Well, I don't smoke,

- but I'd love to watch you guys smoke.
- Me, too.

Then it's settled.

- We all get to...
hang out with you guys.

Oh, sorry, odd lab dude.

The smoking area's kinda small.

Well, isn't it all of the outdoors?

For the love of God, Phil,
please don't ruin this for me.

Oh, Linda, I need your testing report

on the sleep system packaging.

Marketing keeps... I'm
going to count to one.

Sorry. It helps me stay in the moment.

If your moments don't
hold your attention,

you need to look deeper

until you find what's
interesting in them.

Like right now, I'm losing
interest in this moment.

And so I'm going to...

Sweep the leg.


That's what this moment needed.

Now the company's exploiting Jenkins

to get people to work harder.

There's posters and bracelets.
There's an inspirational video

- about him playing in the elevator.
- I know. I got them to use one of the songs from

"Veronica in the key of love."

The settlers crossing the prairie...

Jonas Salk discovering
the polio vaccine...

Gordon Jenkins writing
the table of contents

for the Veridian sleep system manual...

Great achievements take hard work.

Shouldn't you try to be
more like Gordon Jenkins?

Yes, you should.

Don't get me wrong. It
was the best elevator video

since the soft-core
porn one about recycling.

But if the company keeps
using Jenkins to rev people up,

someone else is gonna get hurt or dead.

It's just for a few more
days until relaxxxacon,

and then the Jenkins thing will end.

Yeah? Because knowing how much
this company loves productivity,

it wouldn't surprise me if
14-hour days became the new normal.

- The Jenkins thing will end.
- And so will the 14-hour days.

- The Jenkins thing will end.
- Veronica, the 14-hour days?

Jenkins, goodbye. Adios, Jenkins.

- Jenkins no mo'.
- You gotta be kidding me.

So they really are gonna
make this permanent?

None of us are gonna
see oufamilies again.

AnI like Rose.

I wasn't entirely sold
in the first six months,

but now I'm way into her.

I'm gonna go tell everyone
in this department, Veronica,

-and they are not gonna stand for it.
- Oh, Ted, you adorable little flower.

What are they gonna do, quit?

If they do, the company
will just replace them.

Then I am gonna go upstairs
and convince management

that what they're doing is immoral.

Wow. I'm glad I tried that one
out on you before going up there.

Ted, no one knows how
many licks it takes

to get to my moral center, but I can see

how this is important to
you, so here's the deal...

if you want to get the company
off this, you have to show them

that this new pace is
gonna cost them money,

because the company loves its money.

If they could, they'd go to strip clubs

and throw naked women at money.

So Jenkins hooks this 6-foot trout,

and it's freaking out,
flopping around the boat.

And Jenkins hated the sight of blood

because of his time in the Mossad.

So I had to reach past
those razor-sharp teeth

and pull the hook out for him.

We hugged and wept,

and Jenkins said to me,

"Lem, you... are my best friend."


Can I talk to you for a minute?

Oh, sure.

That was our fishing story,
except it was you who was

flopping around on the floor
with a hook in your mouth,

and I was thone who took it
out, and there was no fish

because the whole thing happened
at a sporting goods store.

- And it is my wife who was in Mossad.
- Phil, the cool accountants like me.

They let me go to the store
and buy them cigarettes.

And I need more Jenkins stories than that coffee
spilling one that just lies there like a turd.

I feel like Jenkins is replacing me.

That's ridiculous.

Why don't we have lunch
later, just you and me?

It's basted chicken
day in the cafeteria.

It'll give us another chance
to figure out what broasting is.

Well, I do want to get
to the bottom of that.

Okay, we'll have lunch.

I just hope "broasting" is not a typo,

like that butter crotch pudding.

So I've been trying
to live in the moment,

but it's really hard

because a lot of my moments
aren't that interesting.

So I was wondering... do you
want to have sex right now?

Gee, that feels really right,

but I'm in the middle of something.

In fact, you can help me.

I need to sabotage the sleep system
and make sure it's not finished

- in time for relaxxxacon.
- Cool. That's not sex but it beats

getting knocked to the
floor so hard, you want to go

- back to Wisconsin and get your master's in cheese sciences.
- Yes, it does.

See, I need to show the
company that overworking people

will make them so tired,
they'll make mistakes,

- and that will cost the company money.
- Yeah. This could be a great moment.

We'll go to the basement
and get a fire hose.

- Then we get ten pies, a ramp and a motorcycle...
- All I need is your computer.

See, you have access to
the shipping database.

And I need to cancel an order of parts

- for the sleep system prototype.
- And you want to use my computer

so you don't get in
trouble. Nice try, crisp.

Sweep the leg.

Look, you're not gonna get in trouble.

It'll just look like an anonymous worker

- making a sleepy mistake.
- Fine.

Lem, I talked to the chef, it turns
out that broasting is a combination of,

and I'm quoting,

"roasting and get the
hell out of my kitchen."

He wouldn't tell me the proportions.

Who's in the urn?

It's him, isn't it?

Jenkins doesn't have
any family out here,

so the company asked
me to pick up his ashes.

I see. Well, you two enjoy your lunch.

Oh. Come on, Phil.

What was I supposed to
do, leave him in a car?

- It's a hot day.
- He's already ashes.

Look, I know you don't like him,

but he is my friend now.

So why don't you come join us for lunch?

I'm sure the three of
us can work this out.

Or... why don't I do this?!

You two are jerks.

Shaba-daba-Dee-do-da ♪

Shaba-daba-boo-be-ba... ♪

It is 8:00 at night,
and the shipment of parts

for the sleep system never got here.

Now we are not gonna make our deadline,

and the company will learn

that pushing people too
hard leads to mistakes.

How do I feel about that?

♪ Never gonna let you down ♪

♪ Never gonna run
around and desert you ♪

♪ Shaba-daba-Dee-do-da
shaba-daba-boo-be-ba... ?

Ted, the parts shipment for
the prototype didn't arrive.

We'll never be ready
in time for relaxxxacon.

Where's your Jenkins now?

The parts didn't come? Oh,
my God. This is terrible.

What are we gonna do, go
home to our families? Okay.

Can I have everyone's attention, please?

We are all disappointed we're
not gonna make the deadline.

Now Jenkins' soul is going to hell!

Aw. No, it's not, Sheila.

That's just something the elevator said.

Look, when we push ourselves
too hard, mistakes get made.

And now there's no possible way...

- I've got the parts for the prototype!
- What? That's impossible.

The parts didn't come
because someone was tired

- so now the company can't work us so hard.
- Actually, last night, I was so sleepy,

I accidentally opened
the shipping database,

and I saw that someone
had canceled the order.

So I stole my ex-wife's minivan,
drove all night to Stockton

got the order and brought it back.

I've been driving for 20 straight hours.

I took everything the truckers gave me.

- Watch how fast I can run.
- Now we can go back to work. For Jenkins!

- For Jenkins!
- No, wait, wait, look.

The company is using Jenkins
to get you all to work harder.

But the thing is, it's...

it's not gonna be just for this project.

The company wants to make these
crazy hours the new normal.

But we can't work this way forever.

No, we can't. So I'm going
back to my old schedule.

I don't care what they do to me.

I'm taking my daughter
and I'm going home.

So we weren't working
this hard for Jenkins?

We were doing it all for the company?

But Jenkins was still
a great man, right?

I mean, you were with him when
he helped that killer whale

- find its way home.
- I had not heard that one.

Was that an embellishment
of the time I helped

that large woman with the
hole in the top of her head

find her way back to her apartment?

Actually, I stole that
story from "Free Willy."

I've been using Jenkins for my own gain,

just like the company.

All those stories I told about Jenkins

were really just things I did with Phil.

Phil is the great man and
Phil is my best friend.

Who's Phil?

Where are you going?

I've had it. I'm going home.

But it's still dark out.

I have to pee.

Uh, can it wait, honey? We're
kinda having a moment here.

Nope. Sorry.


Hold the door!

- I'm going with you.
- You're supporting me on this?

What? Oh, no. I just have a dinner date.

Well, all my stuff's still here.

And they didn't spring the
trap door on me in the lobby.

- So I guess I haven't been fired.
- Nope. We won.

Apparently after we
stormed out last night,

the whole department
filed out behind us.

So the company backed
down on the new hours?

I... we did it,

because I/we stood
up for what was right.

I/we am proud of me/us.

I/me, too, Ted.

Together, we're like Gandhi.

I'm skinny, and you're tan.