Alright my precious dinks, strap back in and get your shrimp cocktail glasses ready, because the final season of The Good Place is back from its break and that means it’s time to slurp down (but also delicately savor) the remaining episodes left to us.
Full disclosure: I am going to try and make this review as spoiler-free as possible, but the heart of this show is exploring philosophical quandaries by playing them out as part of the plot, and so it is extremely difficult — especially as it draws to its conclusion — to write about its themes and what the larger message of the show is without giving away the plot. But I am going to do my best! Please forgive me if some spoilies get in. Please don’t send me to the Bad Place. I beg of you.
Okay! So while the Judge is rapidly searching through and marbling the Janet army to find her universe ending clicker, Michael and Janet have woken up Chidi and dumped the memories of all of his past 800 something lives into his head in the hope that he can come up with an alternative to the afterlife so perfect that it will convince the judge not to end existence and start fresh. Woke Chidi (lol get it?) is much more confident and decisive. He’s had several hundred lifetimes of mistakes and anxiety, and he’s learned and grown. It’s actually a very exciting development — to see Chidi, a man once so frozen with indecision that he literally died from it, learn from his past but not let it define his future. Plus, Eleanor is extremely horny for new confident Chidi, so that’s nice too.
So it should be no surprise that Chidi comes up with the perfect plan, based off of his 800 lifetimes of experience and study, that satisfies not just the Judge but also Shawn and the Bad Place demons as well. I won’t go into details, but I will say that Buddhists and any remaining worshippers of Osiris and the ancient Egyptian afterlife will be pumped. The gang has saved humanity! And the Universe! And fixed the afterlife! It’s a happy ending for our extremely attractive group of fork-ups…. but there are also three episodes left and this is The Good Place, so you know there are bound to be some remaining twists in store. Will their plan actually work? Will we flash forward a thousand years and see the results? Will the demons of the Bad Place adapt to these changes or revert back to their old ways? What show will the Judge binge watch next? And what will happen to our group now that their work is finished? Will the couples stay together? Will the group stay together? I have a feeling things are going to not going to end simply or smoothly. And, on a larger note, what does their seeming success mean for the rest of us chumps stuck in reality?
Overall, the solution they present to the Judge — and the way they got themselves to it — was extremely satisfying. I will say, however, that I do miss the new group of humans (Simone, Brent, and John) and I do hope they are dropped completely but appear in the final episodes in some impactful way — particularly Simone. She did have her own relationship with Chidi and we got to see her as a person before she was drawn into the experiment. Also, I never thought I would say this (and it truly hurts to), but I think they have overplayed the “penis-flattener” joke. What was one of my favorite bits (and still one of my favorite reaction memes on Twitter) is now the go to line for every Bad Place character and is used/referenced at least four times in episode 11 alone. The joke now falls flatter than a Bad Place penis, (I didn’t say I couldn’t do it) and I know the writers of The Good Place are capable of so much more! Despite these minor quibbles, I am still excited to see how the series wraps and honestly, at this point I have no idea what is going to happen next! Which, you can’t say for basically any other show out there.
The Good Place airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on NBC.