Warning: Spoilers ahead for the winter finale of Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, “Zoey’s Extraordinary Reckoning.” Read at your own risk!
Whenever television shows and movies tackle real world issues, it can be hit or miss depending on whether or not they do it right and it fits into the storyline. That was the case with NBC’s Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist. After Simon called out SPRQ Point for their racial bias and lack of diversity after a problem with facial recognition not recognizing people of color, John Clarence Stewart is talking about what Simon’s consequences could be, if he faces any at all.
The issues at SPRQ Point were not just about race, but about equality overall, especially when it comes to people of color in leadership positions. John Clarence Stewart told TVLine that fans will get to see Simon moving through the changes at SPRQ Point after everything. Stewart explained:
Moving forward in the season, we get to see Simon moving through the implementation of what has been happening at SPRQPoint. The leadership position changes in a way, and we get to see him doing the work of the thing, which I think is really important. … My hope is that, as we move forward, we’re still moving through what we’ve excavated in [Episode] 6, because the truth is, and I think we all know this, transformation is not born in a moment. Transformation is a process that happens over time, and process isn’t something to run away from. It’s something to be acknowledged and honored.
John Clarence Stewart also mentioned that with Simon and Zoey’s (Jane Levy) talk in the winter finale, their friendship and their connection has survived and is very alive. Although he doesn’t think feelings have gone away entirely, he thinks both characters have changed. They’ve both been through a lot in the first episodes of Season 2, and even in Season 1. Stewart says it’s going to be interesting to him to see who they are now and how their friendship evolves with people now that they’re at the end of the sixth episode.
When all seemed lost on him, Simon had a conversation with friend/former love interest/boss Zoey about the lack of diversity and how he feels about the situation, telling her directly that he was disappointed she didn’t hear him the first time around. It was also revealed that employees across the company’s offices share his feelings and SPRQ Point’s board made a commitment to investing in BIPOC-owned businesses and diversifying its leadership positions.
The musical dramedy’s race equality storyline is an interesting one, and one that reflects what it’s really like in the working world today. And while fans will have to wait a while to see what the implications at SPRQ Point will be now that the company seems to be changing its tactics, fans will still have a lot to unpack before the show returns to TV screens later this spring.