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Undercover Boss
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TV Series
    CBS TV reality series
    Premiered February 7, 2010 immediately after Super Bowl XLIV
    Created by Stephen Lambert
    Premise: Presidents and CEOs of major corporations assume false identities and intermingle incognito with the grunts/front-line people of their industries to get a first hand look and feel of how their companies are operating
    Employees are told the camera crew following the 'undercover boss' is filming a documentary of an entry-level job applicant seeking work, and we're to believe none of the coworkers are the least bit suspicious of this.
    Some critics have accused the show of hand picking employees with 'sob stories' so as to milk the concerns of the undercover bosses for more dramatic effect.
    You never see a coworker talking candidly about what a shithead (or other disparaging remarks) the boss of their company really is.
    Coby G. Brooks, President and CEO of Hooters, seemed genuinely shocked (and clueless) when he was told by random people that Hooters is degrading to women.
    Coworkers who interacted with the boss are brought to corporate headquarters, many of whom look like they're ready to pass out or vomit, because they haven't a clue why they're being summoned (until told they were part of an elaborate hoax).
    The format of the show will need to be altered now that episodes have aired and employees will be wise to the old 'filming a documentary' shtick.
    The show is based on a 2009 British TV series concept, but aired before the British version completed filming.
    Face it - a lot of people like the idea of seeing 'out of touch' bosses doing manual labor, usually quite poorly.
    The premiere show pulled in a whopping 32 share, with over 38 million viewers tuned in.
    The show was the highest rated premiere of a series since 1987, the biggest premiere of a reality series and the highest rated show of the 2009-10 TV season.
    At the end of the show, many hard working employees are rewarded to varying degrees with raises, promotions, company paid-for vacations, college courses, personalized benefits, etc.
    In a tearful moment, Roto-Rooter president Rick L. Arquilla is told by an employee he is a recovering alcoholic, and the boss opens up about his father dying of alcoholism without getting a chance to resolve personal family issues.
    The show helps humanize bosses and the employees seem genuinely touched and grateful that their hard work has been noticed.
    Bosses hold company-wide meetings at the end of the show to let employees see film clips of their embarrassing moments, then thank them for their dedication, vowing to use the info gathered to better themselves and their companies.
    There have been more than enough presidents and CEOs willing to go undercover that the show has a deep pool of potential future episodes for showcasing major corporations.

Credit: Scar Tactics

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