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The main setting for Between Failures, the Megatainment store in Marbleton employs all of the core characters, and several of the regular characters (including Mike, Reggie and Wes).

Appearance / Layout

Interior

The store is divided into multiple different areas, including the sales floor and back rooms. The key departments appear to be film, games and books, although the store is also known to stock some toys (notably Nerf guns - which don't sell[1]) and confectionary. There is also a soda fountain and some refrigerators under a counter near the front of the store[2].

Most of the store is decorated in shades of light green. The games area appears to be a contrasting light blue[3]. Books are stocked on tall shelves[4], whereas games and films are kept on lower shelves[5] or racks.

Exterior

The store appears to be a primarily brick-built[6], single-storey structure[7]. It has a pair of large, manually-operated plate glass doors at the main entrance[8][9].

Store Performance

The store is known to be steadily failing, year-on-year. Sales appear just high enough to keep it open, but low enough that the various previous managers all lost their jobs[10]. Weekdays are extremely slow, although there is slightly more trade at weekends[11]. The Games section in particular appears to struggle[12][13].

It appears that relatively the few customers who visit[14]. They obviously browse the stock, but sales volumes remain low[15]. Initiatives seem thin on the ground, although Mike has organised at least one book-signing event[16] (not realising the issues between Thomas and Dawn).

Staff Rules

The Megatainment chain appears to have assorted rules (fairly standard) regarding staff conduct. These are followed, bent or blatantly disregarded at various times, depending on the characters involved. We know of the following rules:

  • Staff aren't meant to date each other[17][18];
  • Staff aren't meant to leave the store while on the clock[19];
  • ...

Staff Positions

The majority of the staff are referred to as 'associates'[20], while the senior staff hold various titles. At the start of the comic, the characters appear to hold the following roles:

The part-time staff appear to rotate around the store departments, albeit everyone seems especially keen that Reggie is rotated evenly[21]. Thomas is notionally in charge of the rota, although in practice Carol often gets to work before him and handles this[22].

Trivia

  • There is a sign on the Front Desk which reads "If you can't read this clerk is obligated to hate you"[23]. Although the whole sign isn't seen in full after its first appearance, it still appears occasionally in the corner of shot, suggesting Megatainment (or at least, Mike) are prepared to tolerate some tongue-in-cheek sassiness by the staff.
  • In the same shot as the sassy sign, we can see an old-school CRT monitor on the front counter[24]. Although such monitors would still have been relatively common in stores when the strip in question was first published, this further suggests that Megatainmnet have not invited in their Kansas branch for some time.
  • It appears Megatainmnet do not employ a third-party cleaning contractor, as we periodically see the staff cleaning the store at the end of the day[25].
  • Judging from Reggie's comments (albeit, likely exaggertated), the store may have a somewhat pervasive odur[26].


References

  1. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/899-got-your-gun
  2. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/262-drink-soda
  3. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/895-weird-kid
  4. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/169-clowns
  5. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/157-spider-sense
  6. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/123-i-like-to-watch
  7. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/7-i-dont-think-so
  8. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/9-the-art-of-war
  9. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/156-quest
  10. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/199-particulars
  11. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/198-unpacked
  12. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/25-new-unit-of-mesure
  13. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/277-our-glorious-city
  14. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/161-will-to-live
  15. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/157-spider-sense
  16. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/181-that-one
  17. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/127-it-wouldnt-be
  18. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/134-split-hairs
  19. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/103-distraction
  20. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/278-never-again
  21. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/320-rotation
  22. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/324-days-of-our-lives
  23. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/10-lineage-in-question
  24. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/10-lineage-in-question
  25. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/262-drink-soda
  26. http://betweenfailures.com/comics1/317-hobodor