Superstore will ring in the new year with a long-awaited (and potentially dangerous) family reunion, when Dean Norris enters Cloud 9 as Dina’s deadbeat dad.
As previously reported, the Breaking Bad vet will assume the role of Howard Fox, a “rugged and eccentric” individual who comes back into Dina’s life, ready to make amends for leaving her when she was just a child. (The character was most recently referenced in the Oct. 24 episode “Self-Care,” when Glenn served as a temporary stand-in for Dina’s father.) In the exclusive photo above, Dina looks positively giddy to be reunited with Dad, while Amy looks concerned about the knife he’s brandishing in front of her.
“I have been begging our showrunners to let us meet Dina’s dad since Season 1 when we learned that he abandoned her at a gas station when she was a kid,” Lauren Ash said in a statement to TVLine. “Never in my mind would I have dreamed that I would get to work with the incomparable Dean Norris, who brought so many layers to this character. It was honestly one of the most fulfilling acting experiences of my career having him as my scene partner in this storyline. I also have to shout out that episode’s director Tristram Shapeero and writer Hailey Chavez, who were very collaborative in letting me explore how to portray this Dina story in a way that felt most honest to me. (That’s probably the most actor-y thing I’ve ever said, but I stand by it.)”
The episode — which is set to air on Thursday, Jan. 16 (NBC, 8/7c) — will double as a tribute to the late Linda Porter, as “employees wrestle with the loss of beloved co-worker Myrtle… and the fact that she left a large sum of money to Jonah,” according to the official logline. Elsewhere, “Cheyenne recruits Mateo in a possible pyramid scheme,” while Dina reconnects with Howard.
Superstore‘s last episode of 2019 airs on Thursday (at a special time, 9/8c), before Season 5 resumes on Thursday, Jan. 9.