How Superstore Season 4 is Neglecting Amy and Jonah's Relationship

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Jonah Simms and Amy Sosa have one of the best dynamics in sitcom history. 

Superstore spent seasons crafting a "will they/won't they" relationship that kept viewers on the edge of their seat, as well as experiencing emotions that most comedies can't elicit. 

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While the series wraps around a group of characters experiencing different comical situations while working at a retail store, Jonah and Amy bring the show to an entirely new level. 

Secrecy - Tall - Superstore

Ever since the moment in the pilot when Jonah transformed Cloud 9 into a starry night sky to give his new co-worker a "moment of beauty" Amy and Jonah have been the heart and undeniable center of the series. 

But since the two finally called it official, Superstore has been neglecting the couple's new dynamic, as well as their relationship as a whole.

In turn, it feels as if the entire show is getting neglected as a result. 

The series is still enjoyable and continues to be one of the most innovative and unique comedies currently on television, but it feels like Superstore has been overly cautious of writing Amy and Jonah's new relationship, for fear of enacting the "moonlighting curse."

Taking a Stand - Superstore

The moonlighting curse (for those of you who really need to learn more about television history!) is the idea that once a slow burn couple on television gets together, the couple loses their chemistry and the show loses its magic. 

This is, of course, a real fear, and more series than not have succumbed to this ideology in the past.

Therefore, Superstore has decided to "increase the tension," as showrunner Justin Spitzer has said, between Jonah and Amy rather than showcasing them as a couple. 

That doesn't work for a majority of reasons. 

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Firstly, "increased tension" between two people who are already in a relationship makes for an unhappy one. Knowing these characters, we're not expecting everything to be rainbows and butterflies, but we are expecting them to act like they're in a relationship. 

It's almost like Superstore didn't know how to write them in an established romance, so they chose not to write them at all.

They don't act like a couple, but they also don't act like they did before they called things official. It feels as if Amy and Jonah are stuck in a weird limbo.

The writers are undoubtfully worried that the more time Amy and Jonah spend together as a couple, the more their chemistry will fizzle out.

But as long as the characters continue to play off of each other and behave believably, the only real danger of ruining their relationship is if they are kept apart meaninglessly

However, one of the main problems is the amount of time they were kept away from the audience. 

Sure, the revelation that Amy and Jonah were dating at the end of the Season 4 premiere was a pleasant surprise. But how exactly did that happen?

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Justin Spitzer himself admitted that the writing crew pulled some influence from The Office's Jim and Pam, but the couples are different, and therefore have different needs. 

A time jump on The Office worked perfectly for Jim and Pam's relationship, but Amy and Jonah are not them. 

One incredibly notable difference is that Amy and Jonah are the leads of the show, while Jim and Pam were supporting characters.

Therefore, Amy and Jonah can't afford to get pushed to the side. 

Snowed In - Superstore

Over the past three seasons of the series, Superstore has been incredibly invested in showing the audience every critical aspect of Jonah and Amy's relationship development.

Up until the fourth season, viewers didn't get left out of a single conversation, which made us feel like we were right alongside the characters every step of the way. 

But after the Season 3 finale, we were suddenly in the dark about the most crucial time in this relationship. 

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What happened when Jonah and Amy realized they got broadcasted to all the Cloud 9 stores? When did they decide they were going to give it a shot for real? Was Amy's pregnancy with her ex-husband a factor? Did they have a first date? Was it weird and awkward? 

These aren't questions that can get answered with common sense. We have no idea how they got to the point they're at all.

The audience is missing a huge chunk of story that feels vital to connecting with the characters' onscreen relationship. 

We do understand that the series mostly takes place in the store, but there have been plenty of exceptions to this rule of thumb.

It wouldn't take much deviation from the characters' time in the store to see their first date or a scene of equal importance.

At this point, we'd give anything for a series of flashbacks to fill in the gaps. 

Less Than Ideal - Superstore

It wasn't as if we missed only a couple of weeks of their relationship, but Amy and Jonah were together for four whole months.

The honeymoon and figuring it out phase is always one of the best parts of a "will they/won't they" finally coming together and there's a reason why. The audience wants to watch it come together.

There's also the fact that Amy and Jonah didn't even label their relationship for that entire four-month period, presumably so the audience could be kept in the loop about something.

So then what were they even doing for those four months when they weren't figuring this stuff out? After everything the characters have been through, it just feels like both the relationship and audience deserve more.

On Season 4, the writers are trying too hard to keep the antagonist side of them alive and using the wrong moments to do so.

While their bickering and disagreements used to feel natural, they now feel as if they're placed purposefully in the series to tell the audience, "they haven't changed."

Take Jonah and Amy's first "I love you," for example. 

There's no doubt that it was a cute moment, but the problem wasn't that it came out in an argument, but more so that the revelation was inconsistent with the previous care that was invested into the pairing.

Not only did it feel cheapened by coming out in such a petty disagreement, but it came out in an episode in which Amy and Jonah were just a side story. 

It felt like a disservice to the characters and the intensity of their relationship so far. 

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Whether the writers of Superstore think an "I love you," is a big deal or not, there's no denying that every small aspect of Amy and Jonah's relationship was written in a manner that contradicts this statement. 

Their first meeting, their first kiss, and the epic crush confession scene were all intense moments of connection in a usually comedic show.

It was an excellent example of how you can create a dramatic and emotional relationship within a sitcom while still keeping the show light-hearted overall. 

An Unexpected Kiss - Superstore

The audience should be able to see the core of the relationship hasn't changed rather than being told.

Usually, it can be exemplified by observing the characters daily interactions with each other, but as of late, we haven't had the opportunity. 

What happened to Amy and Jonah's shenanigans? We got a glimpse of their old dynamic at the managers' conference, but it was far too short-lived. 

Amy and Jonah making bets, challenging each other to a series of dares, and sneaking through the secret tunnels of Cloud 9 on a video game mission were all things that made their relationship so entertaining in the first place. 

It almost feels like this season has been taken over by an entirely different set of writers. Even things as simple as the camera angles have changed drastically. 

While it may sound inconsequential, the way a series gets filmed helps set the overall tone. 

The farther you are physically from the characters, the more distance there is between the onscreen relationship and the audience. There's a reason why closeups are shown and often used as a dramatization.

If you haven't noticed a change, I challenge you to watch an episode from one of the first two seasons with this in mind and see if you feel a difference. 

Overall, we want Amy and Jonah to continue to prosper in the long run, which means not being afraid to follow through.

After years of buildup, the series' main couple is finally together, and we couldn't be more impressed that Superstore was able to create such an incredible dynamic in the first place.

The only thing left to do is let them prosper by using the characters' already established chemistry to their advantage. Let's hold nothing back and dive in once and for all. 

What do you think Superstore fans? Do you agree? Disagree? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section down below!

Superstore airs Thursdays at 8/7c on NBC. 

Rachel Foertsch is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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