The Good Place blew up, multiple times on this week’s episode and Eleanor may have finally found her soulmate.
Just when you think this series cannot get any better or that they won’t bounce back from such an epic twist, they hit you with a giddy episode filled to the brim with hilarious escape plans by Eleanor, Chidi and sometimes Tahani and Jason, who realize that they’ve been living this same afterlife more than 800 times.
While Michael’s superiors believe he’s still on trial #2, he’s been rebooting “The Good Place” at record speeds as Eleanor keeps forking figuring it out. That one time Jason actually got it, Michael admitted it was a low point.
Michael believes that wiping their memories clean will do the trick but he fails to change their surroundings and each time, somehow, someway, these four find their way to each other. Fate works in funny ways. They’re triggered by a sort of familiarity and finally, with the idea that no one would be suffering even remotely, and never being forced to eat clam chowder, they realize that they are being tortured.
In order to make them believe in the narrative, the four of them must be separated. And even then, with different soulmates, they somehow are drawn to each other and to the truth. What does that say about humans, even the “worst kind” that should end up in hell? Are they smarter than Michael believes?
Finally, during one of Michael’s “I give up” moments, Eleanor and Chidi accidentally overheard the “actors” talk about the bad place. They decided to seek refuge in the middle-place with Mindy St. Claire, the coke-fueled 80s woman who found middle ground between the two worlds. Eleanor thinks she’s so clever arriving here but it seems like this has been a popular pit-stop for the four humans. Much to Mindy’s dismay, each time, they forget to bring the cocaine she’s asked for.
Still, she has to be grateful that Michael’s experiment finally gives her mundane existence some kind of excitement. I know I’m grateful because thanks to her and her curiosity, we now know something I don’t think Michael is aware of – Chidi and Eleanor are actually soulmates. They exchanged ‘I love you’s’ and slept together and we know all about it because Mindy has to keep herself entertained somehow.
I think their relationship is actually the key to why Michael is unable to make them suffer. They are in love so they’ll always find their way back to each other and realize that the bliss they feel together, isn’t the bliss they’re feeling around Michael or anyone in the neighborhood.
While Eleanor and Chidi realize they’re actually in love and look through all of their failed plans at stopping Michael, which includes making Michael think this is the bad place, the creator is being harassed by Vicky/Denise/the real Eleanor.
She’s been thoroughly enjoying watching all of Michael’s failures and keeping track of them. She informs him that the actors are on strike until their demands are met and calls for a bigger part; she wants to be the creator and believes she has a solution that would serve up a world where Eleanor doesn’t figure it out. When Michael opposes, she threatens to out him to his superiors.
Hitting his lowest point, he acknowledges that whatever her name is, has leverage over him and turns to Jason/Jianyu for some advice. Jason’s ramblings about a dance crew actually gives Michael an idea – he needs allies.
“So what do you say, new best friends?” he asks a shocked Eleanor, Chidi and Tahani, who now know more than they ever did before.
The Good Place really took “making friends with the devil” to a whole new level.
Can Michael be trusted? And what does he mean by “new best friends.”
In a perfect world, which this isn’t, the foursome would agree to play dumb, never admitting that they are aware that the good place is, in fact, the bad place, thus saving Michael from being burned by a thousand suns.
And if the tradeoff is that they have to accept clam chowder as a delicacy, then so be it.
The Good Place Final Season Sneak Peek: Everything is Fine
All good things must come to an end, yes, even in the Good Place.
NBC’s comedic gem is preparing for its fourth and final season, and it’s bittersweet.
The first preview is more of a montage of the cast preparing to say goodbye, and it’s breaking our hearts despite Manny Jacinto (Jason) assuring us that “everything is fine.”
Tucked away amid a montage is a sneak peek of the final season that includes the creator of the Good Place, Eleanor, showing residents Janet’s impressive abilities.
That girl can do anything.
Eleanor tells Linda, who may or may not be one of the hand-chosen four residents, that she can ask Janet for anything her heart desire. To demonstrate, she asks for a “baby elephant made of pure light that tells you true secrets about the universe.”
And behold – a glowing elephant that reveals that “Shirley Temple killed JFK.”
It’s this kind of sense of humor that we’re going to miss the most about this show.
If you recall, Ted Danson’s Michael was forced to recreate the Good Place in an attempt to prove that humans are judged unfairly.
His goal was to show that humans can change for the better, and while the Bad Place agreed to his little experiment, their one condition was that they choose the four new participants. The intention was to make it as difficult for the Good Place to succeed in proving their point to the judge.
The first arrival was Chidi’s ex-girlfriend, Simone, which caused Eleanor (Kristen Bell) to wipe her boyfriend’s memory so that he wouldn’t ruin the experiment. Catch up on all previous reviews HERE!
Will he fall in love with Simone again or will he be drawn to Eleanor proving that true love exists?
Watch the first look below:
The Good Place Season 4 is set to premiere on Thursday, September 26, 2019.
The Secret of The Good Place’s Biggest Twist
The Good Place – Pandemonium (3×12)
Eleanor returns to the spotlight in the season finale after a few weeks of giving the most active role to Michael. It’s a clever way to bring Eleanor back to the forefront, having Michael rendered incapable of doing his job by fear. The plot point also pulls double duty by finishing off another arc for Michael.
Michael started the season hustling down to Earth to tinker with the humans. Later he tried to play the “snowplow” in their lives and incessantly tried to maintain the type of control he had in his neighborhood. Now here we are at the end of season three and he has willingly stepped into the background, ceasing control to someone more fit for the current situation.
Season three (the back half especially) pushed Michael to the forefront. He was the only character capable of truly moving the plot forward, but now with the new neighborhood built and his arc seemingly complete, we return to Eleanor.
I think this is a good move for the show. This year meandered a bit in places and lacked the singular focus of the past seasons. There were three distinct phases to the season, first the brain experiment, then the quest to improve other people, and finally the last ditch attempt to change the system. I definitely felt the back half of the season was stronger than the first, but I do feel the show needs to refocus itself in the upcoming fourth season, and placing Eleanor back at the forefront is a good start.
As an episode, though, tonight was quieter and more reserved than previous season finales. It didn’t actually feel too much like a finale to me personally, as this is the first time we will be continuing a story from a previous season instead of starting with a fresh timeline. This isn’t a knock, not every season finale has to be explosive of course, but it does highlight a point I made last week about emotional stakes.
I predicted Eleanor becoming the architect and Simone being one of the new residents, as many fans probably did. What I didn’t predict was Chidi requesting his memory be wiped. This greatly upped what I discussed last week – the emotional stakes.
This makes sense on a plot level and devastates the characters on an emotional one. Michael providing Chidi and Eleanor a look at their memories – ones they don’t even still have – was touching and ironic. It felt a little bit like the show was trying to sell me on their romance, but it still provided a nice showing of Michael’s affection for them. It’s not as if I don’t buy the chemistry between the two; I do. I just don’t feel we got to see their love develop over this season. Fortunately, because of the history of the show, there is more weight to their romance than is provided just by season three, which consequentially provides the proper weight for the tragedy of Chidi losing his memories of Eleanor.
It’s a heartbreaking idea. One lover forgets and the other doesn’t? Brutal. How is Eleanor going to handle this? As interested as I am to see where the experiment goes, I am much more invested in Eleanor and the rest of the gang interacting with the memory wiped Chidi. The emotional stakes provide a strong storyline moving forward.
And yet I have to admit that emotional stakes are not everything, and a series does need to follow through on its plot. The plot went almost nowhere tonight, only telling us the kinds of people the Bad Place has picked for the experiment, which lead us into Chidi’s memory wipe. As I said, not every season finale has to be Earth-shattering, but I do feel like a little momentum was lost with such an introspective episode. The final scene of Eleanor and Janet played like a teaching moment, and while Janet’s response to Eleanor’s question about love is touching, I hope the show has more on its mind for the endgame.
Season three felt like a bridge season. Shawn mentions chess in this episode and it’s an apt callout considering how much of this season was moving pieces into place. This will be fine with me if these moves lead to a spectacular fourth. It’ll be a long wait to find out!
- Disclaimer: My television flashed a flash flood warning to me during the entire sequence Eleanor introduces herself to John, so I missed all of that. I’ll rewatch tomorrow and see if the missed info affects my views on the episode!
- I thought John was a good start to the residents! He made me laugh and will play very well off everyone, and I hope I can see him in a conversation with Jason immediately in season four.
- Tahani has improved so much as a person. Her improvement highlights the tragedy of Chidi’s reset even more.
- We all knew Simone was coming back, right? I’m glad that wasn’t the big twist of the episode.
- Janet doesn’t have all the answers. But she is a friend.
- I love the score to The Good Place, but I really wish this season had mixed up the music with some new cues or stingers. A lot of shows get repetitive with their music going into a third season and it’s a small gripe I have with season three.
I love this show. It was tough for me to review this episode, though, because it was mostly a large set up for what will follow, and a lot of my opinion on this one will depend on how effectively season four capitalizes on what was presented here. The emotional stakes are higher than ever, as are the physical ones with humanity hanging in the balance. Hopefully those two things combined can bring out the best in the series.
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