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  1. The Final Chapter - Whenever You're Ready Season 4, Episode 13 January 30, 2020 Man, there are a lot of callbacks and references in this episode. Michael recording "attempt #803" was a silly fakeout, and his song lyrics go back to season one. Doug Forcett replaced on Michael's wall with the four humans is a nice touch. So is having a few of the philosophy consultants for the show in Chidi's class. Jeff the Doorman is much busier in the new system. Good running bit with him and the frogs in this episode. And there's a niednagel down below the bridge. I see that they did eventually track down the Good Place Committee and one of them is Joint Council, but didn't get any dialogue. Jason's story first. His goals to satisfaction were always the simplest. Perfection in his video game, reuniting his dance group and spending time with his friends. And we get young Doug Forcett, Donkey Doug and Pillboi. Tahani had a lot more goals, but reached them eventually, while waiting to fulfill the most important goals with her family relationships. And then she finds something else to do. Plus we get quick bits with John, Brent, Trevor, Glenn and even Beadie, the Good Place architect who did Mindy's welcome video. Michael giving her his original bowtie and planning to brag about knowing her was the first time I teared up this episode. Next is Chidi's passage. A few more returnees, with Simone and some of Eleanor and Chidi's Earth friends. This is quite a journey, especially the way it uses some different filming techniques to the standard for the show. Listen to the podcast for a detailed discussion about the long shot following Eleanor from their house to Michael's office and back, including how they got Janet to appear without the usual cut or effects. Then a trip to Europe for some location filming. I have to skip the final Chidi/Eleanor goodbye most times because it breaks my heart. Chidi's final scene with Janet is a nice coda, with the way he's immediately able to say he's ready. And bringing Jason back at this point is a masterstroke. It brings some needed levity to the story after some heavy stuff. "Kind of like a monk." "What do you mean?" And then Eleanor tying up her loose ends. First with Mindy, which also gives us Maximum Maximum Derek, and provides a nice final look at Tahani and Shawn. Finally figuring out what Michael needs. Janet's farewell scene with Michael is a nice endcap to their story, going back to the classic "the reason is friends" scene years ago. And then Janet and Eleanor at the final door, with the scenes of Michael on Earth, appropriately ending with his guitar teacher Mary. And through the door... Which leads back to Earth, and however you want to interpret the floating lights. A final goofy joke with Michael's human name, "Michael Realman", and a callback to season one and his joy at getting a rewards card, and the final line: "I'll say this to you, my friend, with all the love in my heart and all the wisdom of the universe. Take it sleazy." And the podcast is an appropriately long two-part three hour talk with Marc Evan Jackson (he played Shawn) talking with creator/writer/director Mike Schur and producer Drew Goddard. Fascinating stuff, especially on some of the things they took out of the episode or changed late in the production. And that's the series, until the next of probably many rewatches in the future.
  2. Chapter 51 - Patty Season 4, Episode 12 January 23, 2020 And we finally get to The Good Place (well, except for the mailroom visit). Loved how casually Jason hides Michael's weed. The Jason and Eleanor aspects of the party really do seem to overwhelm the more understated Chidi and Tahani elements. Knew that Good Place Committee couldn't be trusted, but still surprised by what they did. Loved their whiteboard of ideas, especially "Giant Mini Donuts (not just regular donuts. Dave will explain)". Lisa Kudrow was a pretty good guest star to pull at this point, especially for someone whose brain is a little mushy. Especially with the on-going joke about Michael's obsession with the show Friends. And a final afterlife problem for our team to figure out. The solution and how it was presented have been and will continue to be debated for a long time, but after seeing the finale multiple times in the last week, I'm pretty happy with it. Part of me wonders what they would have done if they took a full season to explore and fix The Good Place, but that might have opened up all sorts of other problems. A very satisfying conclusion to set up a very different denouement for the finale. And on the podcast with Marc Evan Jackson is producer/director Morgan Sackett and writer Andrew Law (he plays Drew on the Good Place Committee).
  3. Chapter 50 - Mondays, Am I Right? Season 4, Episode 11 January 16, 2020 And back to the Bad Place to begin training for the new system. Didn't realize until I listened to the podcast that Megan was one of the demons they met at the museum back in season two. Loved Jason's rattling off of his bizarre choices for "very best people", and Eleanor and Chidi's reaction to it. Interesting that "Wendy from Wendy's" was on the list and Michael later included the "Where's the beef" lady in a list of notable people who passed the test. That training video, and then Janet and Michael singing... wow. Hope we someday see all the outtakes from that. Vicky's entrance is great, and she really steals the show this episode. "Chainsaw Bear!". That one really cracked me up the first time. And then smaller, more relatable Chainsaw Bear with the "Epic Bacon Much" t-shirt. Jason fooling Chidi to apply his own logic on the Jason/Janet relationship to himself was wonderfully convoluted. "Chess... mate". And then, the return of the golden balloon to the real Good Place. Podcast has Marc (he plays Shawn) talking with D’Arcy Carden (she plays Janets), Tiya Sircar (she plays Vicky) and writer Jen Statsky (she plays Susan the restaurant cashier in season one). Stories about the Janet/Michael song, Vicky's earlier singing number and a generally looser tone as they get close to the end, including a disturbing number of references to Marc as "daddy".
  4. While the timeline is obviously confused, Chidi does reference "a thousand lifetimes", so I'm going to assume they spent the equivalent of at least the high tens of thousands of years in The Good Place. Derek was also rebooted 151 million times, so if you assume Mindy can hold out an average of a day between reboots that's over 400,000 years. And Tahani had over 11,000 items on her list. Some were obviously trivial joke items for the freeze-framing audience, but let's assume a significant number are expert level skills which would take decades to master. But of course Michael still walks out in a recognizable early 21st Century Earth. But frankly if the epilogue was in a Buck Rogers flying cars future or a post-apocalypse wasteland or any other standard fictional future it wouldn't have been as satisfying.
  5. I know this was a hiatus rewatch, but it feels a bit odd to leave it four episodes short, so I hope y'all will indulge me. Chapter 49 - You've Changed, Man Season 4, Episode 10 January 9, 2020 Loved the various styles of Janet void, along with their individual computing systems (I'm not sure if any computer actually used 8-tracks like in the Disco Janet void). I'm not sure why NBC doesn't already have a Bad Janet Scarface poster for sale... "I agree. Chidi should hook up with the Judge to get us out of trouble. I've done that a bunch of times. It's called a Jacksonville plea bargain." Newly confident Chidi, with his many lifetimes fully integrated, is great. Especially his reaction to the Good Place Committee. And of course we'll know why the Committee is so infuriating in a few weeks. The Timothy Olyphant guest bit was pretty odd. Still not sure how I feel about it, but there are some very funny bits in there. I liked Shawn finally, reluctantly, giving in to change. "There are still some kinks to work in." "Out." "Out. Sorry. Old habits." Podcast has Marc Evan Jackson talking with Kristen Bell and writer Matt Murray about the episode and the show in general, including Kristen's directorial debut a few episodes earlier, plus the filming time lost thanks to Jason's delivery of the title line of the episode.
  6. "You know what I just discovered recently? Podcasts. There's, like, a billion of them and they just keep coming." http://art19.com/shows/brooklyn-nine-nine-the-podcast Join host Marc Evan Jackson for a deep dive into each season of one of television's biggest hit comedies with guests including co-creator Dan Goor, cast members Terry Crews, Joe Lo Truglio, Melissa Fumero, Stephanie Beatriz and more as they reveal behind-the-scenes stories, funny anecdotes, never-before-heard secrets and much, much more!
  7. Double episode, over three hours total for the series finale, with Marc (he played Shawn) talking with Mike Schur and Drew Goddard. Lots of stuff there, including details on various scenes that were cut or changed. Almost hard to believe that at one point they had Chidi explicitly explain what was on the other side of the final door, and in the second last episode.
  8. Chidi: Shakespeare went through the door. Eleanor: Really? Chidi: Yeah. Everyone's talking about it. Eleanor: It's probably for the best. His last 4,000 plays were not nearly as good as the ones he wrote on Earth. I mean, did you see "The Tempest 2: Here We Blow Again?" Woof
  9. I wanted to get a rewards card, any rewards card. I wanted to talk briefly to someone and then say, "Take it sleazy."
  10. Most unexpected thing was that they took us through the final door, and it leads back to Earth, where apparently you become the spark of inspiration for others to "do something good", the voice in the back of their head. So Eleanor became a good deed that helped Michael Realman.
  11. That was pretty amazing. Can’t recall the last time I liked a series finale that much. So much to explore on rewatching. unfortunately, the Canadian cable showing messed up the after show somehow. Hope it’s available online soon. And can’t wait for the last podcast...
  12. I can't help but wonder where they'll go in the finale. Part of me is expecting one final twist, but it might be hard to pull that off knowing there won't be any more seasons to explore and follow up (unless we get "four seasons and a movie"). Otherwise it might be satisfying to have more of a curtain call, jumping forward, finding out how the likes of Shawn and Vicky and Gen are doing in the new system. But maybe that's too similar to the PARKS & REC finale. I'm trusting them to come up with someone more clever, but I'm picturing a final scene at the end of time, with the six leads after everyone else has opted for the final door.
  13. So, I guess Michael was right about Phoebe being the one character in FRIENDS who didn't deserve the Bad Place... This did kind of explain the Good Place Committee always being ready to give up and concede anything in the last few episodes. We never did get to see any Good Place architects in any meaningful way (just non-speaking roles in the end of the previous episode). I guess they were unaware of the problem. Maybe Michael was right back in season one about them just setting up the neighbourhoods and not interacting with the residents, so they've just been waiting 500+ years for new residents.
  14. So, in that analogy, Janet is... Toto? No, wait, she already told us...
  15. Plus A corner for Jason’s selections, including Gleek and “da Super Friends”. I’m sure he appreciated Chidi writing it down instead of doing a scribble-scrabble.
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