Several times throughout this 30-minute episode, I found myself asking the following questions: What even is The Good Place? Is this actually heaven? Or is this some weird purgatory staging area for misfits to find each other, forcing them to then find themselves? Wait…. Is this LOST?
And that’s because everything about the latest episode is wonderfully weird. From Tahani throwing the most depressing retirement party ever (when we learn that “retirement” for angels/whatever creature Michael is involves less “smoking moonbeam cigars” as Eleanor imagines, and more the disintegrating of Michael’s soul, where “each molecule will be placed on the surface of a different burning sun. And then (his) essence will be scooped out with a flaming ladle and poured over hot diamonds.” Buzzkill.
Seeking saltines for the end of the world
Michael is super bummed because he loves humans and was looking forward to doing more simplistic folksy human things. He actually has the desire to try a Saltine – which he later does and is predictably disappointed. Eleanor and Chidi know that the sinkhole isn’t actually Michael’s fault and he shouldn’t face torture when the problem is actually Eleanor and Jason. The only way to keep Michael from riding the death train and face “the eternal shriek” is to destroy the only person who has keys to the train – which is Janet.
Eleanor is totally fine with offing Janet, and Chidi is, of course, totally against it. Janet is the one to tell them that she’s not even human, and can be murdered with the push of big red button found on the beach. She takes them straight to the button, and even though she repeatedly reminds them that she’s incapable of suffering or feeling pain, her programmed fail-safe forces her to beg for her life in a devastatingly convincing way (crying, screaming for help, and listing the names and personal details of her beloved children – that are actually just three random kids in a stock photo).
Jason shows up at the worst possible time and all he wants to do is push the big red button. Chidi shoves him out of the way, and ends up pushing the button himself. Janet falls face-first into the sand, and an image of her is projected onto the sky, as she lets the neighborhood know that she has officially been murdered.
It’s totally okay though, because at Janet’s funeral, the new Janet sits up at the coffin and says “Hello” to everyone. But even though she looks the same (aside from the adorable mod outfit change and chic ponytail), she knows nothing. Her brain is like a baby’s, and she’ll have to learn a lifetime of info all over again.
The guilt eats away at Chidi, and Eleanor is still firmly on the side of keeping this secret forever.
Michael gathers the town together to announce that the problems in the neighborhood obviously aren’t his fault, and he urges anyone with information to come forward. Eleanor – the selfish liar who was totally fine with the idea of murdering Janet to keep her secret a secret – sees Chidi about to crack and decides to end it, once and for all. She stands up and tells Michael the truth, that she doesn’t belong there, and never deserved to be in The Good Place. Everyone around her is speechless, and I feel like everyone watching is too.
I still have no idea what this place is, but I love it more every second.