Advertisements

The True Name of the Janitor From ‘Scrubs’

janitor scrubs name

Scrubs is one of my favorite shows of all time. During college, I watched every season on repeat until I saw every episode at least 100 times. And that was before the days of Netflix.

Even though my Scrubs bingeing is extremely economical now thanks to the advent of streaming, I still revisit those old DVDs on occasion and jump back into the lives of John “J.D.” Dorian and his lifetime friends at Sacred Heart Hospital. I even watch Season 9 when I’m in the right mood.

So you’d think that after all this time, I’d have some sort of mind-blowing fan theory or revelation naturally generated from my obsession, but it’s quite the opposite. The show manages to be pretty airtight on its themes and messages, mostly because we spend most of our time inside J.D.’s head. There’s little left to the imagination.

scrubs janitor name

But there do happen to be longstanding questions that Scrubs has never truly resolved, except they have, actually. There’s the matter of the Janitor, who you may recognize as Mike from ABC’s “The Middle.” He’s an enigma throughout the series, to the point where the writers initially intended for him to be a figment of J.D.’s imagination (they changed their mind by Season 2).

Yeah, he gets married and finds meaning in his life or something. But we never really find out his name. Throughout the series, he’s only referred to as “The Janitor,” and the mystery behind his name becomes a running gag all the way through the Season 8 finale. He finally reveals his name to J.D. as “Glen Matthews” in the finale.

Case closed, right?

WRONG.

scrubs name janitor

Right after he reveals his name, Janitor is referred to as “Tommy” by an orderly. This implies that he was lying to J.D., which isn’t a stretch at all because that’s what the Janitor does. He consistently fabricates stories and facts about his life that are blatantly false and reveal his pathological lying.

So what is the Janitor’s name? Does he have one?

The answer is yes, and it’s depressingly simple, really. In “My Friend the Doctor” (S3E8),  J.D. finds out that the Janitor played a character in the real-life movie, The Fugitive (you know, the Harrison Ford movie from the 90s).

This information alone lets us know that the Janitor’s real name must correspond with the actor who played his character in The Fugitive. So his name is Neil Flynn, the actual name of the actor who portrays him.

scrubs name janitor

Case closed, right?

WRONG.

Look, I’m certainly not the first person to pick up on all this. Scrubs fans have been assuming the Janitor is Neil Flynn for over a decade. That’s why Bill Lawrence, the creator of Scrubs, took to Facebook and Twitter to decry those theories and say the following:

scrubs janitor name

What does this mean? How is his name Glen, if his name is Neil in The Fugitive?

One argument is that he lied about his name to the casting director in the movie, so his real name ISN’T Neil Flynn after all. It really is Glen.

Case closed, right?

You serious?

scrubs name janitor

Bill Lawrence want us to believe that the Janitor told J.D. the truth (for once). This is because the episode “My Finale” was meant to be the series finale, so it would make sense for the Janitor to close this chapter with one final moment of honesty.

There’s just one problem. The Janitor reveals one episode later that he never really thought J.D. was leaving. Scrubs was revamped into a semi-spinoff for Season 9 that focused mainly on a med school built for Sacred Heart, and J.D. only showed up for a few episodes.

In the first episode, Turk reveals to J.D. that the Janitor didn’t really think J.D. had left. Of course, Turk has to insist that J.D. is really gone, which causes the Janitor to hand him his mop and leave Sacred Heart…forever. No one there saw or heard from the Janitor again.

If the Janitor thought J.D. was really coming back, then why would he tell the doctor his name? Because of Season 9, I have to conclude that Lawrence lied to us, Janitor-style.

So is his name Neil Flynn? Let’s revisit 2009 for a second. Season 9 of Scrubs got started in December. And another show got started that fall. The pilot episode of The Middle premiered on ABC, starring…Neil Flynn.

What if the whole point of that first scene in Season 9 was to point us to the potential fact that The Middle stars the Janitor, who happens to be Neil Flynn. And that’s why he disappeared from the show altogether, instead of following J.D. to his new job. He revisited his acting career to portray a guy who has everything the Janitor wanted throughout the series: a family in the Midwest.

scrubs janitor name

In the episode, “My Own Worst Enemy,” the Janitor reveals that his obsession with J.D. has prevented him from doing what he really wants to do: start a family. The day after J.D. leaves, the Janitor does too and finally pursues that dream. A year later, he’s on ABC starring as the loving father of a humble family. After all, the Janitor loves to lie. Becoming an actor is the perfect job for someone who likes to make up stories.

Don’t bother trying to tell me that’s not the case, Bill Lawrence.

And hey, if you don’t believe me and think this article is a waste of time, then don’t worry. Here’s a chart showing every girl name Dr. Cox called J.D. categorized by season:

scrubs janitor name

 

Thanks for reading this. To get updates on my theories, books, and giveaways, join my mailing list.

Or just say hey on Twitter: @JonNegroni

 

Advertisements

How “Amy’s Baking Company” Has The Worst PR Strategy I’ve Ever Seen

Screen shot 2013-05-18 at 2.01.48 PM

1 week ago, I watched the most entertaining episode of Kitchen Nightmares yet, as Gordon Ramsey actually walked out on a restaurant for the first time in the show’s history.

Short version: Amy’s Baking Company shot itself in the foot this week and destroyed their reputation via social media and their behavior on the show.

For more insight on what happened, here is the most comprehensive article I’ve read on the subject, but right now I’m just going to discuss the aftermath and what to make of their upcoming PR efforts.

Here are the facts: the internet hates this restaurant. Their biggest challenge is that they are trapped in a black hole of negative publicity. Can they really be saved at this point?

I get that they hired a PR firm, but even I have more Twitter followers than those guys. Yes, they have an impressive client list, but everything about Jason Rose, his firm and their website screams old-school, and this brand is facing problems because of the owners’ inability to grasp the new school. Social media, that is.

I mean, did they really expect people to believe they were hacked? For days? Especially when the content matches up with how they were portrayed in the show?

What convinces me the most that these hacking claims are a lie is the follow-up. Your statements amid a PR crisis speak volumes, and I don’t believe this PR firm they’ve hired understand how shallow their strategy has been so far, so let’s analyze.

Their first follow-up statement:

“Obviously our Facebook, YELP, Twitter and Website have been hacked. We are working with the local authorities as well as the FBI computer crimes unit to ensure this does not happen again. We did not post those horrible things. Thank You Amy &Samy”

First of all, this isn’t “obvious” to anyone that witnessed the couple in action via the show. Their disrespect towards their customers, their employees, and Gordon Ramsey was caught on film. And yes, it portrayed them as crazy. That’s not spin, that’s being caught red-handed.

Yet, they still claim to be the victims in all this and expect people to believe them.

Next Facebook post:

“Other Side of Amy’s Baking Company Controversy in Scottsdale To Soon Be Told

SCOTTSDALE, AZ. MAY 15, 2013 — Amy’s Baking Company will host a Grand Re-Opening on Tuesday night, May 21, following unflattering portrayals on national television.

Customers will be able to decide who is correct: a famous celebrity chef or the marketplace that has supported the small, locally-owned business for six years. 

When re-opened, a portion of proceeds will benefit a charity organized to bring awareness to cyber bullying. 

Seating is limited. Reservations may be made by emailing sjones@rosemoserallynpr.com. 

Diners will also have the opportunity to meet, and judge for themselves the character of owners Amy and Samy Bouzaglo, who have devoted their lives to and earn their living from their small restaurant. The Bouzaglos have been married for 10 years, after Sammy emigrated from Israel. 

The owners will likely be holding a press conference before the Grand Re-Opening and answer falsehoods depicted on a reality television show, including assertions that the restaurant confiscates tips from servers. 

In fact, wait staff is paid $8-$14 per hour, two and half to nearly five times the standard hourly wage for servers. 

Questions will also be answered about what happened to their Facebook page. 

Amy’s Baking Company was recently featured on the hit PBS show “Check Please” and has received A+ reports from CBS 5 for kitchen preparedness. 

“We are very upset by what has taken place, apologize about the acrimony that has ensued but now must fight back to save our business. We hope and believe much good can result from what has transpired. We ask the public to keep an open mind as we begin to tell our side of the story,” Samy Bouzaglo said. 

For more details, please contact Michael Saucier. 

-30-“

I kept the boilerplate at the end because it shows you how “press release” this is.

Okay, let’s begin with “Other Side of Amy’s Baking Company Controversy in Scottsdale To Soon Be Told”

Other side? How can there be another side when we’ve caught you in the act? Shifting the blame is a classic PR move that doesn’t really work anymore now that information is so easily shared. ABC has been picking fights with bloggers and critics for years. No one is convinced that there is another side. 

It’s also evident here that this was written by their PR handler due to the language. We need statements from the owners, not their advisors.

SCOTTSDALE, AZ. MAY 15, 2013 — Amy’s Baking Company will host a Grand Re-Opening on Tuesday night, May 21, following unflattering portrayals on national television.

“Unflattering portrayal” is interesting language, because it seems to imply that the depiction of them is not accurate, even though the word “portrayal” literally means to describe. Nice try. The Grand Re-Opening seems like a smart move, since it keeps their publicity going and will no doubt draw interest, but to me, it just makes the restaurant look more guilty. If they really didn’t say all of those terrible things, why did they have to close down? Acting guilty can be just as worse as being guilty.

Customers will be able to decide who is correct: a famous celebrity chef or the marketplace that has supported the small, locally-owned business for six years. 

Asking us to pick between Gordon Ramsey and them is quite possibly the dumbest decision I’ve ever seen a modern PR firm make. He’s famous for a reason. He’s well-loved. The public is absolutely going to pick a professional, well-loved chef, over a restaurant that’s been harassing customers and employees for years. If the market has been so kind to them, then why did they need Gordon Ramsey’s help in the first place? If the problem was always cyber-bullying, wouldn’t that be a reason to hire a PR firm over a “famous celebrity chef?” 

When re-opened, a portion of proceeds will benefit a charity organized to bring awareness to cyber bullying. 

More shifting the blame. They are still trying to perpetuate the myth that they are victims, even though we saw firsthand on the show why they are getting all of this hate. They’ve been shown that they bully everyone else, but they claim that they’re the ones being bullied. Giving to a charity is good in theory, but choosing one that satisfies your complaints comes off as self-serving. If they really wanted to appear authentic, they should have chosen a charity to help the hungry. Since, you know, they’re a restaurant.  

Seating is limited. Reservations may be made by emailing sjones@rosemoserallynpr.com. 

Who is “sjones?” I don’t really care, but what’s odd is the email. Why are reservations being made with the PR firm? This makes no sense. 

Diners will also have the opportunity to meet, and judge for themselves the character of owners Amy and Samy Bouzaglo, who have devoted their lives to and earn their living from their small restaurant. The Bouzaglos have been married for 10 years, after Sammy emigrated from Israel. 

We can judge pretty easily from the tape. No one is asking to meet these people in person unless they just want to observe the train-wreck firsthand. Rebuilding a reputation is pointless when there is no apology. Also, this whole “small local restaurant” thing is easy to figure out. They want us to feel like they’re just a small business trying to make it, but oh no! They’re being bullied by the “big guys” like famous, celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey. Are you kidding me? First, anyone who has seen the extravagant decor within the restaurant can tell that they’re not “the little guy.” The rest is obvious. They’re the bullies, and constantly saying the opposite doesn’t make it true. Also, being married for 10 years and emigrating from Israel doesn’t say anything about your character…

The owners will likely be holding a press conference before the Grand Re-Opening and answer falsehoods depicted on a reality television show, including assertions that the restaurant confiscates tips from servers. 

The owner and many employees have already confessed that tips are being confiscated. Denying it is pointless.

In fact, wait staff is paid $8-$14 per hour, two and half to nearly five times the standard hourly wage for servers. 

Yes, because servers keep their tips, hence they don’t need a high hourly wage. Gordon Ramsey rightfully pointed out on the show that the customers would not have given any tip if they knew that the owners were taking them. If the owners are paying them this wage, then they should have a policy in place where the servers can’t accept tips, which is not the case. 

Questions will also be answered about what happened to their Facebook page. 

Can’t wait to see this excuse in action, especially since posts like the ones from the other day weren’t the first. Hate language has been seen on their site long before this fiasco.

Amy’s Baking Company was recently featured on the hit PBS show “Check Please” and has received A+ reports from CBS 5 for kitchen preparedness. 

We already know that Gordon was impressed with the cleanliness. That doesn’t make the food or customer service better. In PR, we call this “bolstering” which is an attempt to highlight unrelated positive aspects of a company in order to decrease attention to negative aspects. This doesn’t work well when the negative has been so greatly highlighted, and no apology or remorse is evident. 

“We are very upset by what has taken place, apologize about the acrimony that has ensued but now must fight back to save our business. We hope and believe much good can result from what has transpired. We ask the public to keep an open mind as we begin to tell our side of the story,” Samy Bouzaglo said. 

Oh look! A statement from the owner! What?? An apology? Why didn’t they start with this? Because at this point, it doesn’t even seem remotely genuine. If they were so sorry, they wouldn’t bury this at the bottom. Also, more tricky language. They apologize for the acrimony that has ensued. Okay, well that doesn’t say you apologize for your acrimonious behavior, just what’s “happened.” Wow, just when I thought they couldn’t shift the blame one more time.

For more details, please contact Michael Saucier. 

Who?

So much of this nonsense could have been avoided if they simply said this:

Sorry. We’ll change. 

Because that’s all people want. We don’t want to be accused of being closed-minded. We don’t want fancy PR strategies or a big press event. We want to see responsibility and admission of guilt. But according to them, we “the customers” aren’t always right, but they are.

May 21st can’t get here fast enough.

Like what you read? Connect with me further via twitter @JonNegroni. I’ll follow back if you seem like a real person. You can also subscribe to this blog by clicking the “follow” button in the top-left corner.

Don’t forget to check out New Professional News every day, updated at 8am for a list of today’s main headlines as selected by my editorial team (me)  

%d bloggers like this: