The Good Place: Category 55 Emergency Doomsday Crisis
October 6, 2016 6:18 PM - Season 1, Episode 5 - Subscribe

Eleanor and Chidi are stuck inside with another couple as the growing sinkhole threatens. Tahani's inferiority complex is aggravated when she finds out she has the second lowest score of anyone in the neighborhood.
posted by Small Dollar (10 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
I said "Did the score change?" when she checked it the second time. But it totally makes sense that Tahani doesn't care how "good" she is except in relation to other people.
posted by Etrigan at 7:06 AM on October 7, 2016


Did anyone else pause to check the yogurt flavors? They had some really good ones in there, but also repeated a few ("Beyonce compliments your hair" was one).
posted by Etrigan at 7:07 AM on October 7, 2016 [4 favorites]


I really liked Tahani's flashbacks. The actress playing her adult sister gives great smug side-eye.

So if the sinkhole healed after Eleanor patches things up with Chidi --- and got worse the worse their relationship got --- does that mean only Eleanor's fuck ups fuck up TGP? We know Jason's not supposed to be their either, and while his budhole does provide some sort of outlet*, it's hard to believe he hasn't done something thoughtlessly selfish in all his time there. But all the weirdness we've seen so far seems directly attributable to Eleanor.

*I know. I'm so sorry.
posted by Diablevert at 3:59 PM on October 7, 2016 [3 favorites]


"But all the weirdness we've seen so far seems directly attributable to Eleanor."

Yeah, and that's interesting. Surely it means something. I know she's the star of the show, but it just doesn't make sense that given that she's not the only "impostor", she would be the only person causing malfunctions.

One possibility is that she's actually the worst person there. She was no axe-murderer or anything, but, wow, was she an awful person in her life. Therefore, she's proportionately more disruptive than others.

Generally, I'm still on-board the whole "purgatory in disguise" train. I guess purgatory isn't the right word -- it's more like this is a carefully designed system for gently leading people down a path of becoming better people. Some less gently than others. Michael is such a goof, I keep waiting for the reveal that he's totally in control and not at all what he appears to be.

I'm loving the show, but I'd probably be happy watching Kristen Bell eating Cheetos and burping for an entire hour, so I'm not unbiased. (Although, I did stop watching House of Lies after the first season.)
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:11 PM on October 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


One possibility is that she's actually the worst person there. She was no axe-murderer or anything, but, wow, was she an awful person in her life. Therefore, she's proportionately more disruptive than others.

tl;dr: I have two theories! Either a) Jason and maybe others are equally responsible for the neighbourhood falling apart, or b) The Good Place is in Eleanor's head.

We know that Jason did some pretty shoddy stuff, like planting drugs on the girlfriend of his dance crew friend so he wouldn't leave. While Eleanor was a bad friend and refused to boycott companies because it was inconvenient, I don't think we've seen her do anything as nasty as that. They are both selfish people but Jason took it a lot further I think.

Eleanor is the main character and actively trying to improve, but her reason for improving is still purely selfish: she wants to stay in the Good Place. Jason wants to be himself, regardless of the consequences (also he's just an idiot). I'm not sure whether that makes either one of them better than the other.

It seems to me like based on their past behaviours, they should both be responsible for any damage to the neighbourhood.

Going back to episode 1-2, when everything first went bizarro, there were visual changes there that seemed to have no connection to Eleanor's choices.

* giraffes - Eleanor told Chidi that Tahani was a perfect cartoon giraffe
* forks - from her regular attempts to curse
* blue and yellow clothes on everyone except Eleanor
* giant shrimp - stealing the shrimps from Tahani's party
* fireworks/rockets
* Ariana Grande - Eleanor says something about her earlier in the ep
* giant ladybug
* giant frog
* rolling bottles of nose "medicine" - Eleanor's job when she was alive
* fighting tulips

Long comment, but in summary I think there is at least one other person (Jason and maybe more) responsible for the problems, including the sinkhole.

Oh! And why is it that the first outbreak of trouble is connected to Eleanor's ineligibility, but the sinkhole is dependent on Eleanor and Chidi's relationship? Those are two very different but Eleanor-focused things.

Is the Good Place solely in Eleanor's head?
posted by tracicle at 1:12 AM on October 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


The blue and yellow clothes were because Eleanor had been wearing a University of Michigan sweatshirt. I presume that wasn't where actual-Eleanor went to school.
posted by Etrigan at 3:31 AM on October 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


The blue and yellow clothes were because Eleanor had been wearing a University of Michigan sweatshirt.

Aha! I was reaching a bit thinking maybe it was the colours of the Ukrainian flag (which would also be true, but felt like a reach).
posted by tracicle at 10:35 AM on October 11, 2016


If I remember right, the giant ladybug was a reference to Michael’s welcome presentation, where said that “every blade of grass, every ladybug” had been crafted to be part of the perfect neighborhood.
posted by mbrubeck at 9:08 AM on October 12, 2016


This is the episode that flipped me into a fan. What a wonderful twist to convention.

I'm inclined to bloviate about technicalities, but I need to remind myself to ignore that aspect and enjoy this thing. They aren't making a stance, just pushing a premise in the gosh darned right/correct/funny tangential direction.
posted by porpoise at 7:03 PM on January 7


The yellow and blue outfits were there because the incident happened on Leap Day, obviously.
posted by tobascodagama at 9:36 AM on November 2


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