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ElectricBoogaloo

S02.E10: Best Self

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Between calling out humans for only needing the emotions anger and confusion (absolutely true, most especially on Twitter) and the crack about reading "a Dr. Oz diet book because you're all such suckers," it's clear that Michael has a firm grasp on humanity. Getting drunk and coming up with an audacious plan was a completely apropos way to round things out and set up the next episode.

Kinda sad to see fake Good Place dissolve (but not the clowns, they can stay away), but excited to see where things go from here. I love that this show isn't afraid to subvert expectations and is sending the characters willfully to the place they've always feared and tried to avoid.

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Does anyone else want a human starter kit?   

I loved Michaels line about getting to do the most human thing of all... Attempt something futile with a ton of unearned confidence and fail spectacularly.

And yeah humans only do need two emotions anger and confusion.   

Edited by Chaos Theory
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Wow, did I laugh throughout this whole episode. All of Eleanor's descriptions of Tahani, Jason's desire to ride shot gun on the balloon, Chidi's explanation on the usual places to meet women (really Chidi, you'll meet a women at your lectures - doesn't that violate some ethical rule?), and always Michael and Janet. Sad to see the Good Place go, but this leads us to -

Next week, on The Bad Place ...

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Eleanor wants to know what happened with the reboot that resulted in Chidi falling in love with her. Michael's first thought is to tell her about the kabob restaurants. I love this show.

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Janet gets marbleized! In this case, it's Bad Janet, but you knew it was going to happen at some point. 

12 minutes ago, Mabinogia said:

I have to admit, I teared up a little (lot) when Chidi and Eleanor were dancing to Unforgettable, and she snuggled up closer to him. OMG And when they were saying goodbye to the house and then the Good Place collapsed in on itself. I'm going to miss that cute little town and Eleanor's odd little house. But I honestly cannot wait to see where they are headed next. 

Me neither. I love this show. I suspect we've haven't seen the last of "Good Place" Neighborhood 12358W though. 

Just now, Nordly Beaumont said:

...or 69 ... or 420  LOL

Of course those would be the numbers Jason would mention. 

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This episode really highlighted for me that Michael and Eleanor are totally soulmates. The thing he was most upset by was her being angry/disappointed with him. Ted Danson was amazing in this episode. 

And also Tahani looked marvelous in her blue sailor dress. 

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The human starter kit is way too accurate.  Especially the car keys so we/humans can loose them all the time and the Dr. Oz book ("because you're all such suckers!")

So, Michael was being shifty last week, but it wasn't because he had a nefarious plan, but because he actually doesn't know how to get to The Good Place.  Still a dick move, but I'm glad he is actually learning from it, and even felt guilt for the first time!  Michael really is getting good with this whole emotional thing between that and saying that it is worse when someone is disappointed in you instead of just angry.  Aww, Michael!

Overall, mainly a set-up episode for what is ahead, but I enjoyed all the character interactions and especially the big dance party.  I imagine the cast was having a ball in that moment.  It was just fun seeing the entire regular cast together and getting to play off one another.

Even in text form, I could hear Shawn/Marc Evan Jackson's deadpan voice in all of his lines.

So, they're really going to the actual Bad Place next week?!  I can not wait to see where this goes.  And who this judge is.  I'm guessing it will be someone from Mike Schur's past work, but I've learn not to predict anything when it comes to this show!

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God, this is such a *human* show.  I can't believe how freaking beautiful this episode was, on so many levels. There's so much depth and emotion here--and yes, going foolishly and confidently off to a quest that's almost certain to fail may well be the essence of humanity.  (And I actually think that it might be a profound observation to collapse all emotion to anger and confusion!)  Such great work!

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If this show ever gets canceled before it’s time, let’s all send the network Human Starter Kits, shall we? 

Edited by tennisgurl
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24 minutes ago, thuganomics85 said:

The human starter kit is way too accurate.  Especially the car keys so we/humans can loose them all the time and the Dr. Oz book ("because you're all such suckers!")

So, Michael was being shifty last week, but it wasn't because he had a nefarious plan, but because he actually doesn't know how to get to The Good Place.  Still a dick move, but I'm glad he is actually learning from it, and even felt guilt for the first time!  Michael really is getting good with this whole emotional thing between that and saying that it is worse when someone is disappointed in you instead of just angry.  Aww, Michael!

Overall, mainly a set-up episode for what is ahead, but I enjoyed all the character interactions and especially the big dance party.  I imagine the cast was having a ball in that moment.  It was just fun seeing the entire regular cast together and getting to play off one another.

My favorite thing about the human starter kit is that it confirmed Michael really does love human things.

Michael had clearly been hiding something, so it’s nice to see that the “something” was his own inability to get them to the Good Place. I was worried he was torturing them again. That balloon was just too easy. I still want to know what happened between him and Shawn before Shawn summoned the humans. 

Michael saying there is only one way to get into the Good Place and that is to get enough points on Easth makes me wonder if the judge will make them go back to Earth. Is that too “Lost?”

Who will play the judge? I nominate Amy Poehler.

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A hot air balloon as a never-before-conceived transportation device is great. And makes a neat Wizard of Oz comparison given Michael's chicanery.

15 minutes ago, tennisgurl said:

If this show ever gets canceled before it’s time, let’s all send the network Human Starter Kits, shall we? 

I love this idea. You know, as long as I'm on previously.tv with you guys, I'm always in the Fake Good Place.

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Janet announcing that she wasn’t programmed to give a speech and then just not giving a speech slayed me. 

And I just need to stop trying to guess where this show’s going next because I certainly wasn’t expecting the actual Bad Place. But it’s going to be a whole lot of fun. Hopefully Trevor pops up. 

Edited by Mockingbird
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There was a really beautiful establishing shot in this episode. Setting up the evening party with "all of Janet's booze" they were all outside among the lights. Eleanor and Chidi were casually chatting, Michael was sitting back in a chair staring into space with a defeated look on her face and Janet was standing in a "power-down" mode and that's when Tahani walked up to Jason. 

It set the mood, and looked just spectacular. 

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The show reinvents itself a lot, but for practical making-TV reasons I'd be really shocked if they really moved the show to a place with different sets.

I kinda hope the judge isn't anyone from Parks and Rec. Or B99. Or The Office. 

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2 minutes ago, arc said:

The show reinvents itself a lot, but for practical making-TV reasons I'd be really shocked if they really moved the show to a place with different sets.

I kinda hope the judge isn't anyone from Parks and Rec. Or B99. Or The Office. 

 

The neighborhood was a standard set at Universal Studios, the 'European square'. They're could probably re-dress it or any other blacklot location for the remaining episodes.

 

Meanwhile, I wonder if going to the real Bad Place will result in Chidi getting lost trying to find Kierkegaard and Kant. 

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In a sad, depressing universe where The Good Place wasn't successful, this would have made a pretty great series finale. Instead, we're on episode TEN of a thirteen episode season. Amazing how much story this show burns through. 

My theory is that the gang will spend the rest of the season getting to the Judge and he'll offer them an ultimatum: in order to prove they've been sincerely rehabilitated, they'll be put in charge of their own Good Place with the object to redeem people even worse than they were in their previous lives. 

Edited by loki567
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2 hours ago, loki567 said:

My theory is that the gang will spend the rest of the season getting to the Judge and he'll offer them an ultimatum: in order to prove they've been sincerely rehabilitated, they'll be put in charge of their own Good Place with the object to redeem people even worst than they were in their previous lives. 

That idea makes a lot of sense. Shawn told Michael that his promotion was going to be overseeing neighborhoods just like the one they left. Rather than use it for torture, I can see Michael instead turning those neighborhoods into places to redeem one's self and/or achieve self-actualization. While rescuing a few cockroaches like the gang might convince the Judge (a non-denominational entity of superior power, I'm guessing) to let him in, saving people besides the ones he's grown attached to would make his case more compelling. 

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3 hours ago, loki567 said:

My theory is that the gang will spend the rest of the season getting to the Judge and he'll offer them an ultimatum: in order to prove they've been sincerely rehabilitated, they'll be put in charge of their own Good Place with the object to redeem people even worse than they were in their previous lives. 

So, basically, they'd create Purgatory (perhaps the most useful part of the Christian afterlife for us mere mortals). The fun thing about that as a concept for the show is they could even end up back in the neighborhood (or a recreation of it) all over again.

Even more fun would be if the Judge dropped it right around Mindy's borderland home so she can become a regular next season.

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I can't think of any characterization more perfect than Jason's conception of his personal hell as a place where the bass drop never comes.

10 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

Even in text form, I could hear Shawn/Marc Evan Jackson's deadpan voice in all of his lines.

I loved the smiley face he threw in.  "So random."

10 hours ago, crashdown said:

There's so much depth and emotion here--and yes, going foolishly and confidently off to a quest that's almost certain to fail may well be the essence of humanity.  (And I actually think that it might be a profound observation to collapse all emotion to anger and confusion!)

He forgot hope!  The only reason we can go on those goony quests in the first place.

"Because of the way we were programmed and conceived, Janets don't typically give speeches."  Oh, Janet.  I loved her line about being the best version of herself because she's always updated.

I so very much loved this episode.  Not a lot of forward momentum story-wise, but great leaps and bounds in the character stakes.  Michael felt guilt!  Tahani tried to engage with Jason as a human being!  Eleanor exposed her vulnerable heart!  Chidi learns to get out of his own head and look at the bigger picture, the greater good.

Ted Danson is amazing.  I got a little misty when they called Michael an honorary human and gave him the starter kit.  And couldn't help but notice that Michael -- improving though he is -- still loves screwing with Chidi.  He made sure he was the only human to fail the balloon test at first, haha.

I kind of like the idea of Team Cockroach getting their own Purgatory-style neighborhood to transform other jerks help people achieve self-actualization.  Of course, then the show turns into something of a workplace comedy and you risk losing the inventiveness of the plot, but I have a feeling these writers could figure out how to keep it fresh.

"The real Bad Place was the friends we made along the way."

Edited by Lois Sandborne
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I absolutely loved this one! Several funny moments and enjoyable characte beats throughout. As others have said, I love how often this show reinvents itself and yet succeeds in remaining true to its heart. 

 

Funniest Moments 

- "kissing is gross. You just mash your food holes together. It's not for that". The delivery of that was absolutely hilarious. Poor Michael having to deal with the disgusting humans hahaha 

- "I'm not programmed to give speeches" the long drawn out wait until Eleanor realises that's it. I love Janet. 

 

Best Character Beats

- Eleanor's realisation that to be her best self she needs to open up to others and allow herself to be vulnerable. 

- Tahani's conversation with Jason. Her internal realisations and attempts to connect with him. 

- Michael opening up about his failures and the gang choosing to forgive him. I felt that calling him out on the lies, but also acknowledging he had tried his best was the perfect way to handle this. I really love that this show isn't one for introducing faux conflict for the sake of having extra drama. 

 

On another note I love @loki567's suggestion on a potential storyline for the remainder of the season :) 

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If you end up in the Bad Place, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that there IS cable TV! The bad news is, its 24/7 reruns of Two and a Half Men. 

And only the last two seasons. With Ashton Kutcher. 

 

Eleanor high-fiving Jason for the 69 and 420 was my favourite part of the episode. I love that even with all the growth and maturity, the writers still realize that she and Jason are really the ones with the most in common. 

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13 hours ago, Chaos Theory said:

Does anyone else want a human starter kit?   

I loved Michaels line about getting to do the most human thing of all... Attempt something futile with a ton of unearned confidence and fail spectacularly.

And yeah humans only do need two emotions anger and confusion.   

It sounds like something potential humans should all get on their sixteenth birthday. 

Fear should play in their somewhere. 

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10 minutes ago, Notwisconsin said:

Is "420" a sexual positioin?

Slang for pot.   It was pretty funny!

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This show is a masterpiece. So funny and deep and original. Every character is a treasure, I swear. 

And now it seem we're going to finally see the Real Bad Place! I can't wait!

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Wow,  I just never know where this show is going to go next.   At first I had assumed that Chidi really wasn't his best self beside he hadn't really done anything to improve.   But,  nope, Michael was stalling. 

Not a lot happened in this,  it was mostly a set up,  but I'm looking forward to the last three episodes now.

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2 hours ago, Helena Dax said:

This show is a masterpiece. So funny and deep and original. Every character is a treasure, I swear. 

And now it seem we're going to finally see the Real Bad Place! I can't wait!

Agree.  I did'nt watch this show until last spring. I am lucky I had them all on my dvr. I hesitated because I thought their might be a religious or spiritual element that I didn't want to deal with.

They have made a show about heaven that features human morality but not religion and they have done it very well.

Edited by applecrisp
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This is show is so awesome and creative. It's always keeping guessing what's actually going to happen.  However now I'm wondering despite Michael's growth this episode if it's still a ruse. I mean he got the humans to willingly to go to real bad place with him and it was their idea. I still believe he likes them but that could mean he wants them in the bad place with him. 

I hope they have to go to Michael's house, I want to see what his place looks like. 

Loved Eleanor giving Jason a high five for his "69" and "420" to go with Chidi's numbers.  Jason is such a lovable dumbass. 

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I am fully expecting the real Bad Place to look just like the fake Good Place they just left.  I don't know why, and I don't know how they would explain it, but that's just what I am expecting.  They've described some pretty gruesome stuff that goes on in the Bad Place, so it will be interesting to see how they deal with that.

When Chidi couldn't pass the balloon entry test, I thought the rest of the episode would be dealing with whether the other 3 should go and leave him, Eleanor staying back with him, or any number of those choices.  I did not expect that each one would then have problems getting back into the basket, and that was just soooo great!  The writers really are geniuses. 

1 hour ago, applecrisp said:

  I did'nt watch this show until last spring. I am lucky I had them all on my dvr. I hesitated because I thought their might be a religious or spiritual element that I didn't want to deal with.

I like how the show dispensed with all the religious stuff in the first episode (something along the lines of every religion had a bit right and a bit wrong).  Another show that's on, Kevin (Probably) Saves the World, is one that I wish they took the same route with.  I like the show, but it veers into "Touched by an Angel" territory every once in a while.  It all revolves around a "God has a plan" theme, but it would have been better (for me) if it was a small -g- god, and not so overtly the Judeo Christian big -G- God.  Still worth watching, though. 

Oh, and as others have noted above, I also saw strong Wizard of Oz parallels.  I was actually hoping someone would have been in a blue & white gingham checked shirt/skirt/tie/whatever, or at least carrying a basket.  Maybe that's just too obvious.

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15 hours ago, Chaos Theory said:

Does anyone else want a human starter kit?   

This is going to be my go to gift for anyone I don't know what to get a gift for.

I can't even say what my favorite part was because every second of this episode was perfection for me. It was sad but joyous, it reflected the human condition perfectly. The sad little going away "we may all end up being tortured forever so let's party" party was, just so perfect. Tahani and Jason were bittersweet. Everyone dancing was lovely. I just want to hug this show. I want to shower it with all my love and affection. I want to 69 this Show and ply it with all the 420 it wants.

1 minute ago, chaifan said:

When Chidi couldn't pass the balloon entry test, I thought the rest of the episode would be dealing with whether the other 3 should go and leave him, Eleanor staying back with him, or any number of those choices.  I did not expect that each one would then have problems getting back into the basket, and that was just soooo great!  The writers really are geniuses. 

That's what makes this show so wonderful. You think it's going to go one way and it goes some other way that is totally unexpected but makes perfect sense and you wish you had thought of it because it's brilliant.

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12 minutes ago, chaifan said:

 

Oh, and as others have noted above, I also saw strong Wizard of Oz parallels.  I was actually hoping someone would have been in a blue & white gingham checked shirt/skirt/tie/whatever, or at least carrying a basket.  Maybe that's just too obvious.

Janet was carrying a basket! I didn’t get a chance to see what was in it yet.

 

This show. So original, always keeps me interested and entertained. 

I am wondering how many seasons  it will and should continue. Some shows are perfect in a limited run. This seems like one of those. They won’t be able to nail Kristen Bell down for a weekly sitcom situation. 

Edited by CinAZ
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On 1/12/2018 at 0:54 PM, chaifan said:

Oh, and as others have noted above, I also saw strong Wizard of Oz parallels.  I was actually hoping someone would have been in a blue & white gingham checked shirt/skirt/tie/whatever, or at least carrying a basket.  Maybe that's just too obvious.

 

On 1/12/2018 at 1:05 PM, CinAZ said:

Janet was carrying a basket! I didn’t get a chance to see what was in it yet.

It looked like there was an ostrich egg in there, but it was never explained.

On 1/12/2018 at 0:54 PM, chaifan said:

When Chidi couldn't pass the balloon entry test, I thought the rest of the episode would be dealing with whether the other 3 should go and leave him, Eleanor staying back with him, or any number of those choices.  I did not expect that each one would then have problems getting back into the basket, and that was just soooo great!  The writers really are geniuses. 

Tahani was pretty willing to leave him behind.  That's when I started to suspect there was something wrong with the test (she was clearly too selfish to be her best self).

Edited by ItCouldBeWorse
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22 minutes ago, CinAZ said:

Janet was carrying a basket! I didn’t get a chance to see what was in it yet.

20 minutes ago, ItCouldBeWorse said:

It looked like there was an ostrich egg in there, but it was never explained.

It's in the Extended Cut. Janet's packed them food for their journey. 

Twizzlers for Jason, Shrimp for Eleanor (of course), hard-boiled eggs for Chidi (that large egg is just actually a container for four hard-boiled normal sized eggs), and Lord Vivian's vinegar drenched cuttlefish crisps for Tahani (unpickled, so she takes a pass on those). 

It also looks like there were some flowers and some napkins in there as well. 

Edited by DrScottie
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