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Chad Vader: Day Shift Manager

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Chad Vader is a series of comedy shorts by Blame Society Productions that has gained popularity on the Internet, particularly through viewings on YouTube and MySpace. It was originally created for Channel 101, where it was cancelled by the Cinespace audience after two episodes. However, the creators continued to develop the story arc and publish the series in other venues. The first episode has been viewed over eight million times on YouTube. A portion of the episode IV video was aired on Good Morning America on October 12, 2006. Though Sloan and Yonda did not create Chad Vader as a "fan film" series, it won the "George Lucas Selects" award at the 2007 "Star Wars Fan Movie Challenge."

There are eight episodes in Season 1, each between five and six minutes long, written and directed by Matt Sloan and Aaron Yonda. Season 1.5 (released on DVD in Fall 2008) features the collection of "Chad Vader Training Videos" and other material created after the release of the Season 1 DVD. The first episode of Season 2 was released on the Internet on February 1, 2009 and subsequent episodes have been periodically released. The "Empire Market" scenes were filmed on location at Willy Street Co-op, Madison, Wisconsin. The mayor of Madison, Dave Cieslewicz, appears in two episodes of Season 1 (six and eight).

Chad Vader has been translated into at least 6 languages, including Portuguese, Spanish, French, Chinese, Hebrew and Lingua Franca Nova. The series also has a DVD, which contains all 8 of the first season episodes, and has also spawned a merchandise line.

Plot Edit

The storyline centers around Chad Vader, the younger brother of Darth Vader, who works as a day-shift manager at a supermarket named Empire Market. The story presents Chad's clash with customers and other employees while incorporating dialogue and concepts from Star Wars.

Season One SynopsisEdit

Episode One: Day Shift ManagerEdit

  • SCREENING DATE Sunday, June 25th - 2006
  • AUDIENCE SHARE 75.4% (1st at screening with 263 votes)

This episode establishes the character of Chad Vader, the day shift manager at a grocery store called Empire Market, as well as his co-workers, including his boss, Randy, and night shift manager Clint Shermer, with whom Chad has an intensely adversarial relationship. Chad manages to convince attractive cashier Clarissa to have a date with him, under the guise of discussing "some plans I have for a more powerful laser checkout system". Later on, Chad gets into a fight with Clint, threatening him with his lightsaber. However, Chad trips on a banana peel Clint throws under him, and is left in pain on the floor by Clint. [1]

Episode Two: "The Date"Edit

  • SCREENING DATE Sunday, July 30th - 2006
  • AUDIENCE SHARE 45.7% (6th at screening with 150 votes)

Chad Vader continues his training of two Empire Market employees, Tony Edwards and Jeremy Wickstrom. Edwards, annoyed with Chad's behavior, leaves him with the more enthusiastic Jeremy, whom Chad takes under his wing as his "apprentice". During his date with Clarissa, Chad confides to her that the reason he wears his suit is for life support after he accidentally rode his bicycle into a volcano; the suit was given to him by his "famous brother". Clarissa expresses sympathy for Chad. Later at work, Chad is caught using his hologram to spy on Clint while he is complaining to Randy about Chad's behavior. Randy, furious, gives the day manager position to Clint while giving Chad the night shift. [2]

Episode Three: "The Night Shift"Edit

It's Chad's first shift as night manager, and he finds that Empire Market is inhabited by strange employees and customers when the sun goes down. "Commander" Jeremy Wickstrom, Chad's new "apprentice", has transferred to the night shift to assist him. After dealing with some of the store's unusual customers, Chad calls Clarissa on the phone. It is revealed that Clarissa stood up Chad on their second date the previous night. After Clarissa abruptly ends his call, Chad gets into a physical confrontation with a gloating Clint, who, to Chad's horror, reveals that he has begun to date Clarissa. [3]

Episode Four: "A Dog in the Store"Edit

Chad is still on his first night shift. Jeremy urgently reports to Chad that a dog is loose in the store. After giving Jeremy the job of finding the dog, Chad spends some time to himself on the loading dock out back, using his hologram to spy on Clarissa sleeping. He is later joined by "Weird Jimmy", Empire Market's eccentric janitor. Weird Jimmy reveals to Chad that he was once a day shift manager himself, but had some "minor problems" after being given the night manager position. Chad and Jeremy later chase down the dog loose in the store, which turns out to belong to the store's slightly deranged night-time cashier, Lionel. The following morning, Chad sees Clint complaining to Randy about their fight earlier that night. When Randy confronts Chad, and refuses to give him back the day manager position, Chad quits his job. [4]

Episode Five: "Drunk" (a.k.a. Holiday Blues)Edit

It's almost Christmas, and Chad Vader, now unemployed, gets drunk at a bar while spying on Clint and Clarissa nearby. Clint and Chad almost have a fistfight, but Clint relents to go to the bathroom. When Chad confronts Clarissa, she asks Chad to "do something useful with your life and stop being so lame". A drunk, spurned Chad leaves the bar. Later on, Chad stands on a bridge at a park, contemplating suicide. Just as he is about to jump, Chad is met by a Force ghost named Ben, the spirit of a drunk driver who died after he ran over a gas pump that exploded. Ben manages to help Chad take Clarissa's advice to do something with his life, and Chad resolves to find another job. Chad is later seen at his new job, wearing what would pass for a business suit. [5]

Episode Six: "New Job"Edit

Over the course of two days, Chad is hired as a telemarketer and a printer, but is quickly fired due to his erratic, aggressive behavior. Ben appears to Chad again to persuade him to return to Empire Market, but Chad balks at the idea and runs away. Meanwhile at Empire Market, Chad's old co-workers, including Jeremy and Clarissa, begin reminiscing about Chad's career there. It is revealed that Clint, as day manager, has begun to bully his subordinates, including Clarissa. Chad, meanwhile, is hired and quickly fired both as a janitor and a cleaner for the mayor of Madison, Wisconsin, Dave Cieslewicz. Chad has begun working as a taxicab driver when he is again visited by Ben and is finally persuaded to go back to Empire Market to get his old job back. Chad Vader returns to the store, confronts Randy, and demands that he be re-hired. [6]

Episode Seven: "The Plan" (a.k.a. Trapped in the Trash)Edit

Chad threatens to not leave the store until he gets his job back. He vows to buy an item once every hour to avoid a loitering charge. However, Chad admits he's broke to Jeremy, but the latter hatches an irrational plan to shut down the store's power. After another visitation from Ben, Chad realizes he must settle his score with Clint once and for all. Dubiously assuming Clint's identity, Chad begins to sully Clint's reputation by verbally assaulting customers and behaving erratically. He is helped by Clarissa—whom he reconciles with—when she gives him Clint's name tag, which Chad prominently displays on his suit. This leads to customers unloading a ton of complaints against Clint. However, Clint deduces the ruse and angrily confronts Chad. As he does so, Jeremy, with Weird Jimmy's help, cuts off the store's power supply. In the dark, Clint and Chad begin their final battle. [7]

Episode Eight: "Clint vs Chad" (a.k.a. "Chad Fights Back")Edit

Clint manages to gain the upper hand once the store's emergency power kicks in, and knocks Chad to the floor. Chad feels like giving up, but finds upliftment when Clarissa, Weird Jimmy, Chad's co-workers, customers, former employers, and Mayor Cieslewicz profess their belief in him. Chad is further provoked when he sees Clint bullying Jeremy. Using the Force, Chad manages to attack Clint with a barrage of lemons, and pushes him into a display of lettuce. Later on, Chad tells Randy that Clint damaged the lemons and cabbage display by himself and quit, claiming his former enemy "has mental problems". Randy reluctantly gives Chad the day manager position back, on the condition that Chad change his attitude. Randy further tells Chad that there's talk of a conglomerate buying out Empire Market. Later on, Clarissa and Chad arrange another date, and Chad discovers that Jeremy has begun using the Force. The first season ends with Chad telling his apprentice Jeremy about his new plans for Empire Market. [8]

Season Two SynopsisEdit

Episode One: "The Takeover"Edit

The day has come when the conglomerate Red Leader Foods finally takes over Empire Market. After arriving late for the occasion on his bicycle, Chad, along with his co-workers, meets the owner of Empire Market, Champion J. Pepper, as well as Red Leader liaison Margaret McCall, and her assistant, Libby. Chad and Libby seem to be instantly attracted to each other. Randy and Champion move off to discuss some business, leaving Chad with the task of giving the two visitors a tour of the market, including his project, the "more powerful laser checkout system" mentioned during the first season. They go to the deli and meet Lloyd, who Chad disciplines with the Force choke for making inappropriate comments towards the two women. Clarissa tells Jeremy to let Chad know the laser checkout system is malfunctioning. [9]

Episode Two: "Laser Trouble"Edit

Randy and Champion talk at the water cooler, where Randy tries to apologize for what happened with Clint in the first season. Champion pardons Clint for being "a Shermer...something about that family ain't right." Meanwhile, Chad continues his tour of Empire Market with Margaret McCall and Libby. After some rather uncomfortable encounters with one of Chad's cleaning droids and Weird Jimmy, Chad takes the pair to the cash register to demonstrate the checkout system. Jeremy desperately tries to stop them, only to be repeatedly dismissed by Chad. When McCall decides to purchase a can of beans with the checkout system and Chad swipes it, a beam of light shoots out of the machine, exploding the can and covering McCall with beans. She angrily vows to keep watch on Chad and all of the other employees, and chastises Randy for supposed incompetence[10].

Episode Three: "Into the Basement"Edit

During an Empire Market staff meeting, Chad sits next to Libby and makes conversation with her while a jealous Clarissa watches nearby. McCall announces that she is the new general manager, while Randy has been transferred to the dreaded night shift. She also rolls out a new series of strict rules and regulations, which includes the prohibition of employees to date each other. After the meeting, McCall tasks Chad with the yearly "boiler recalibration", which requires Chad to go down into Empire Market's mysterious basement. Chad goes into the basement with Jeremy, telling his apprentice that venturing there will help Jeremy uncover his "dark soul half." However, the two are soon separated after Chad hears a woman calling his name. The voice comes from a ghostly vision of Libby, who disappears when Chad tries to embrace her, falling into a hole. Chad soon hears groaning inside the hole. Meanwhile, Jeremy encounters a strange droid with lightsabers for hands, before being attacked by an unseen presence.

Episode Four: "The Basement Strikes Back"Edit

Jeremy, asleep, is woken up by Weird Jimmy. The two travel to the boiler room to fulfill Jeremy's task at recalibrating it. On the way, Jeremy sees strange visions of himself and McCall in a mirror. After Jeremy and Weird Jimmy recalibrate with the boiler, they find Chad behind a door, apparently attached to the hole he was trapped in. As they try to make their way out of the basement, they run into three hostile droids, including the one Jeremy encountered earlier. The trio fight the droids, but Chad and Weird Jimmy are soon dispatched. Jeremy vanquishes the droids with Chad's lightsaber. The trio hold an impromptu memorial serivce for Weird Jimmy's beloved mop -- which was cut in half during the battle—with Weird Jimmy playing a somber saxophone tune. On the way out of the basement, Chad admits to Jeremy that the droids were failed experiments of his, ment to be substitutes for absent employees. Chad says that after the droids began assaulting him and stopped doing any work, he put them in the basement, which Jeremy deems "irresponsible."

Episode Five: "The New Employee"Edit

Chad encounters Hal, a strange customer who is shopping for food to feed his doll. Chad is then hit with a marshmallow with the number 1 written on it. During the night shift, Chad visits Randy, who has gone insane after two weeks as night shift manager. When Chad visits McCall to ask about Randy, she tells him that she is reversing many of Randy's decisions as day manager. She has started with the re-hiring of Robby Johnson, who was fired by Randy for taking Chad's questionable training videos too seriously. McCall orders Chad to train the enthused Robby as his new apprentice, and to stop spending time with Jeremy. After Chad and Robby leave, McCall tells Libby that "everything is happening exactly according to plan". While training Jeremy and Robby, Chad becomes impressed with Robby's superior knowledge of the store. Chad leaves with Robby to continue his training, leaving a spurned Jeremy behind. McCall approaches Jeremy and implies that Chad hates him and doesn't recognize his "true talent", and that "we will be monitoring the progress of your career very closely."

Episode Six: "First Kiss" (a.k.a. Chad Gets Libby)Edit

An insane Randy confronts Hal in Empire Market and tells him he has clothes for his doll. When the doll starts talking to Randy, he snatches it from Hal and claims it as his own. Chad again tries to talk to McCall about Randy. She instead reveals that she has created an "employee rewards program" to improve her strict image among the employees. She also reveals that Robby is the program's first winning employee, with the reward being dinner at a restaurant. McCall tells Chad to accompany Robby there. To ensure they don't spend too much money, McCall tells them that Libby will be joining them. While an ecstatic Chad expresses his happiness to finally go out dating with Libby, he is hit by another marshmallow, this one with a number 2 written on it. At the restaurant, Chad requests a round of an alcoholic beverage. Libby initially rejects the idea, but eventually follows through. Before long, all three are drunk. When leave the restaurant, Robby runs off to a bar, leaving Chad and Libby alone. Chad tells Libby he wants to date her again despite the new rules. The two then embrace each other. Unbeknownst to them, Jeremy has been spying on them the entire time. He returns to Empire Market to report what he saw to McCall.

Episode Seven: "Goodbye, Chad"Edit

Chad, enthused from his kiss with Libby the previous night, arrives at work and happily (and annoyingly) greets customers and co-workers, including Weird Jimmy, Lloyd, and Clarissa. Chad also encounters a bitter Jeremy, who tells him that McCall wants to see him in her office. When he arrives, McCall tells Chad that she is aware of his relationship with Libby, in violation of Empire Market's new rule against dating. Chad initially denies her charges, but eventually admits his relationship with Libby and offers to let McCall punish as she pleases. McCall, however, says that Chad will not be punished. However, she also tells Chad, much to his dismay, that she had Libby deported back to New Zealand. McCall gives Chad a letter left for him by Libby, in which she apologizes for being deported and professes her love for him. Chad is left feeling depressed at his loss. Chad then discovers the person who has been throwing marshmellows at him: the Marshmellow Bandito, a strange man in a chef costume who claims to be Chad's archnemesis.

Empire Market Training VideosEdit

Chad was asked to make a series of training videos to teach the potential employee of Empire Market. Using his brand of aggressive solutions to problems, he will "complete your training".

Video 1: "A Spy in Produce"Edit

This begins the series of training videos, where Chad deals with "customer satisfaction". This episode deals with a multiple choice question that Chad presents on how to deal with a shady individual spying on the beets to try to gain insight on Empire Market's "new pricing system". Typical of Chad's aggressive solutions to problems, the choices include "draw lightsaber, slice spy's hand off" and "advance menacingly, demand that they leave".[11]

Video 2: "Custodial Empowerment"Edit

In this video, Chad lets Weird Jimmy teach the potential employee about "custodial duties", or "mopping". Weird Jimmy digresses from talking about the grip, to talking to "Mop"; Chad concludes, "Avoid Weird Jimmy whenever possible". [12]

Video 3: "Decoding the Dress Code"Edit

Chad discusses the importance of the dress code, using Commader Wickstrom as a model. Chad show that the dress code requires an apron and nametag, "free of detritus", and that "disfiguring injuries" should be covered "tastefully", with choices such as "a pair of mechanical hands", "full-length body robe and cloak", and "a full upper torso exoskeleton with breathing apparatus". [13]

Video 4: "Are You Fit for Command?"Edit

In this video, Chad planted a hidden camera in Randy's office, since Randy was "too busy and important" to participate in the video. Chad regards Randy in very high regard, saying that he was not worthy to "look at or be friends with", despite Randy's disapproval of his aggressive solutions to problems and occasional rudeness to customers. We find out that Randy spends his time yelling at food suppliers, describing to doctors his foot fungus, sleeping, and yelling at Chad. Eventually, Randy discovers the hidden camera in his office. [14]

Video 5: "Shoplifting: Never Lower Your Guard"Edit

Here, Chad discusses the perils of shoplifting. He produced this episode by himself, and attempted to use various employees of Empire Market to act like a shoplifter, but they all fail to meet Chad's expectations, so he was forced to use a video of himself acting like he was losing a fight, and a video that showed him acting like he was winning a fight, then splicing the videos together. [15]

Video 6: "Patrolling the Parking Lot"Edit

Chad discusses the importance of maintaining a safe parking lot. He parked his bicycle in a handicapped parking spot, to attract a policeman's attention, so Chad could show the rules of the parking lot. Unfortunately, the Retarded Policeman showed up as a special guest, and Chad was forced to deal with the Retarded Policeman's titular trait before getting the point across of "don't park in a handicapped spot". [16]

Main characters Edit

  • Chad Vader (Aaron Yonda/voiced by Matt Sloan) - The main character and day shift manager of Empire Market. Sometimes using lines lifted from the Star Wars films, Chad's main goal is to crush Empire Market's competition and help make the store dominate the food retailing industry. While he has antagonistic or rocky relationships with some of his co-workers, most notably Clint, he has better ones with others, such as Jeremy, whom he adopts as his "young apprentice". Chad implies in the second episode that his older brother is Darth Vader, and that Darth gave Chad a life support suit and helmet similar to his own after Chad accidentally rode his bicycle into a volcano. This fact is mentioned explicitly on the Blame Society website ( Though he uses a red Sith lightsaber as a weapon to threaten opponents (and shoplifters), he may not be a Sith; he is never referred to as "Darth", the title given to all members of the Sith order. He is, however, referred to as "Lord Vader" by some characters. Despite Sloan being a local comedian and voice actor, LucasArts were impressed by his Darth Vader impression. This led to him becoming the new voice actor for Darth Vader. His voice appears in the games Empire at War: Forces of Corruption[17], Soulcalibur IV, and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed[18].
  • Clint Shermer (Matt Sloan) - Chad's nemesis, the former night shift manager. Clint is a bully who is constantly finding ways to abuse Chad, and does the same with his co-workers after Chad quits his job including tossing Jeremy's helmet on the floor. It becomes apparent in the second episode that he has wanted Chad's day manager position for some time. Chad forces Clint to quit his job after he is defeated in their final battle. It is revealed in the eighth episode that Clint's father owns Empire Market, explaining Clint's spoiled demeanor. Matt Sloan also performs as the voice of Chad.
  • Randy Morgan (Brad Knight) - Chad's boss as the general manager of Empire Market. Chad, who takes his day manager job very seriously, practically worships Randy. When Chad meets with Randy, the former always kneels and calls Randy "Emperor", which causes Randy some considerable discomfort. In one of the Empire Market training videos, Chad describes Randy as, "a man I am not worthy to look at or be friends with", and a "true managerial genius", despite the fact that Randy disapproves of Chad's aggressive solutions to problems and his surveillance on Randy via hologram.
  • Clarissa (Christina LaVicka) - A cashier at Empire Market who went on a date with Chad, but later dated Clint. She ultimately asked Chad if he wanted to go on another date after Clint had quit his job. Chad said he had to check his schedule.
  • Jeremy Wickstrom (Paul Guse) - An Empire Market employee who idolizes Chad and wears the headpiece of an Imperial ground officer (which is the back piece of the Hasbro Darth Vader Voice Changer mask); Vader usually refers to him as Commander Wickstrom and treats him as his "young apprentice". Jeremy eventually transfers to the Night Shift with Chad, until Chad went back to being a Day Shift Manager. In the second episode of the second season he is shown to have the power of the Force when he pulls a broom to his hand. Wickstrom sees Chad more as his leader than his boss. In the second season, Chad neglects Jeremy in favor of Robby Johnson, which leads to Jeremy being persuaded by Margaret McCall to betray Chad by spying on him with Libby.
  • Weird Jimmy (Craig Johnson) - An insane janitor. He used to be the day shift manager, but has become unstable since moving to the night shift and losing his position as manager. This was revealed during a conversation with Chad outside the store in Episode 4. He consults his mop (named "Mop") before he does anything, "believes in elves" and has, shown in Episode 7 and Vader's fifth video in the Empire Market Training series, a gun with a very long silencer.
  • Margaret McCall (Karen Moeller) - The new owner of Empire Market. She is the liaison for Red Leader Foods that Mr. Pepper sold Empire Market to. On the surface, she seems nice, but has many unpleasant qualities under the surface. She is very indifferent to others' well being, and appearantly has a very small amount of values, especially when she starts turning Jeremy Wickstrom into her personal spy, using a technique similar to that Emperor Palpatine did to Anakin Skywalker. McCall is responsible for driving Randy insane after assigning him to the night shift, and for having Libby deported to her native New Zealand after she learns of her romantic relationship with Chad.
  • Libby (Kate Sprecher) - McCall's assistant whom Chad begins to fall in love with.

Minor characters Edit

  • Champion J. Pepper (Matt Sloan) - The original owner of Empire Market. He sold the market to Red Leader Foods, a corporate conglomerate. He is Clint's father. He wears a cowboy hat and speaks with a Texas twang, and is fond of introducing himself every time he enters a room, a "new thing he is trying out".
  • Ben (Mike McCafferty) - A Jedi ghost who stopped Chad from committing suicide and helps him get his life back on track. He claims his death was caused by driving drunk over a gas station pump (which then exploded). He appears suddenly, but disappearing requires additional effort, such as performing a song and dance. He finally finds another way to disappear — by screaming 3 times.
  • Hal (Aaron Yonda) - An odd man who searches for strange things such as a live chicken, goat's milk, a goat's hoof, and a goat for his "voodoo ritual." He is one of the main characters in one of Blame Society Productions other series, Fun Rangers. Aaron Yonda also plays Chad (but does not provide the voice).
  • Tony Edwards (Asa Derks) - An employee in Empire Market who doesn't like Chad very much. He can be seen in the first two episodes. Chad refers to him as "Commander Edwards," much to Tony's annoyance. He also hates being told to search his feelings to find an aisle.
  • Lloyd (Rob Matsushita) - An employee in Empire Market who often makes fun of Chad about his relationship with Clarissa. Chad uses the Force to choke him for saying too much about him and Clarissa. Despite this he eventually ends up missing Chad being the day manager due to Clint's more mean-spirited attitude.
  • Tammy (Kealynn Kees) - An employee in Empire Market who refuses Chad's proposal for her to work an extra shift in Episode 1. She also shows up here and there.
  • Lionel (William Bolz) - A weird employee in Empire Market who always says that customers "save a lot". In one of the episodes he asks Chad if anything is faster than the speed of light (referencing Star Wars spaceships). He also asks Chad if he likes light bulbs. He brings his dog into the store in episode 4 but refuses to search for him saying "I'm not supposed to leave the cash register".
  • Star Wars Nerd (Steve Agee) - A Star Wars fan whom Chad sees when he's about to commit suicide.
  • Mayor (Mayor Dave Cieslewicz) - The mayor of Madison. Chad tries working for him but it didn't work out.
  • Bartender (Drew Foerster) - The bartender who serves Chad in Episode 5.
  • Baby Cookie a doll that Hal and eventually Randy carries around. He wears a black mask and no clothes but some pink socks.

See Also Edit

Awards and recognition Edit

  • Matt Sloan and Aaron Yonda were awarded the George Lucas Selects award for The Official Star Wars Fan Film Awards 2007, presented at Star Wars Celebration IV, for their work on Chad Vader. George Lucas personally selected the short movie as the best fan movie of the year. The annual competition is hosted by AtomFilms.[19]
  • Chad Vader appeared on the cover of Isthmus Magazine, January 25, 2007.[20]
  • Clips from episodes 1 and 4 appeared on the October 11, 2006 episode of ABC's Good Morning America.[21]
  • In an obvious homage to Chad Vader, one of the achievements on the Xbox 360 version of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is entitled "Worst Day-Shift Manager Ever".
  • Chad Vader appeared on youtube live on November 22, 2008
  • The character appeared as a guest riffer on Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back for Michael J. Nelson's RiffTrax service.[22] Nelson and fellow riffer Kevin Murphy also appeared in a special episode of the series.[23]
  • Chad also appeared in an episode of a YouTube series called "Retarded Policeman" starring alongside the eponymous learning impaired policeman.
  • Chad Vader appeared on YouTube live in an act


External links Edit

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