The Good Place: Season 1 (Rewatch)   Rewatch 
August 30, 2017 5:49 PM - Season 1 (Full Season) - Subscribe

Discuss what the fork was happening with Eleanor, Chidi, Tahani, and Jason in the Good Place.

Now that we know the secrets of the "Good Place" and Michael, what can you learn rewatching the season? Refresh your memory with TV Tropes' page on the show.
posted by gladly (14 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
I rewatched the entire series last weekend, and it was just as enjoyable knowing all the secrets ahead of time. I missed how not-good a person Tahani was during my first watch, and it's much clearer that her motivations are not at all pure. She's still really lovable through the whole series.

Jason probably suffers most for me of all the characters on rewatch. He's so great pretending to be Jian-Yu, and then as Jason he's kind of just dumb. Janet is carrying a lot of the jokes in that pairing, and that's okay, because that actress is pretty genius.

Michael is totally enjoying the torture the whole series.

The Bad Place karaoke was still gold.
posted by gladly at 6:05 PM on August 30 [2 favorites]


Welcome! Everything is fine.

Are we allowed to speculate about Season 2 here?
posted by roger ackroyd at 10:11 PM on August 30


I recommend everyone who enjoyed it the first time around watch it again. I did so just a week after the season ended and it was just as funny but also a different experience, knowing what was really going on.

This is such a great show and I'm eagerly awaiting the new season to begin.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 2:01 AM on August 31


I would cheerfully speculate on season 2 in here. Rewatching got me very excited for it to start.
posted by gladly at 6:52 AM on August 31


Huh. So I gave up on TGP after a few episodes because, while funny, it just kept falling flat for me. Like, if I wanted to watch a show about obnoxious people, I'd just be catching Seinfeld reruns, you know, instead of watching a show with terrible people that's being sold as everything fine? Now knowing about the twist, it makes sense why off-brand-heaven seemed pretty terrible and not a great place. Which is all well and good, but when a show doesn't match the alleged premise, I guess it confused me*. And life is too short for (seemingly) terrible sitcoms.

I wish the show could have held my interest through the conclusion of the season, but it sounds like it's worth going back to at least the last few episodes now. Season 2 sounds potentially interesting!


*There's probably a way to relate TGP's Twist to The Clever Reveal at the end of episode one of This Is Us. Clever and interesting, but problematic if they had gone all season without The Reveal?
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 10:29 AM on August 31


Just finished rewatching this last week and enjoyed it at least as much as the first time. That's saying a lot, since I haven't been able to stick with a show since, I dunno, The Wire or thereabouts. Really looking forward to S2, though the promo shot of the clam chowder fountain may have permanently put me off chowder.
posted by sapere aude at 1:07 PM on August 31


NSAID - yeah, me too, I almost gave up on the show until I twigged "somethings not right."

Luckily, I gave it the 3 ep benefit of the doubt, but I think it "caught" for me near the end of e02 but e03 sold it.
posted by porpoise at 2:30 PM on August 31


the promo shot of the clam chowder fountain may have permanently put me off chowder

I hadn't seen that picture, and I don't like clam chowder, but I still made the mistake of looking it up. Very upsetting.
posted by gladly at 6:10 PM on August 31


I had extreme issues with the morality of the show up until the reveal, and now I dunno because literally everything we know about the show's universe comes from the mouths of literal demons. Of course, the reveal raises its own issues- Chidi, as far as I can tell, has been damned for eternity because he has a severe mental illness.

On rewatch, there's so many great moments that make perfect sense in light of the reveal, like Michael repeatedly withholding praise from Tahani or forcing choices on Chidi. I can't wait for the new season.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:00 AM on September 2 [2 favorites]


Wow, this was a great surprise for me, both the show and the twist ending. I remember seeing the ads for this show last year during the Olympics, and to me it looked so bad that I never gave it a second thought until it showed up on Netflix for me, and I gave in to my Kristin Bell fanboyness. Glad to see she got another shot at a good series.

Anyway, this show did what I think a few really clever shows have started doing, using the audience's familiarity with genre cliches to set up a surprise. Like, we all knew for the whole season that Tahani was kind of full of herself and obsessed with status, but I thought that we were just supposed to take it at face value that she was a really good person because the show explicitly told us she was, and the jokes about her were just for fun, even though not really consistent with her character. Shows do this all the time--never let consistent characterization get in the way of a good joke. I think a lot of people just let that kind of inconsistency pass, because hey, it's just a show, I should really just relax. Here, that's part of the twist, the shallowness/status obsession is baked into her character and makes the twist feel earned rather than arbitrary.

The idea that heaven turns out to be hell is not in of itself a shockingly original conceit, but I think the way they did it was really inventive, and to me the real surprise was how they were able to finish the season and set up a second season in a satisfying way that didn't feel cheap or made-up as it went along.

I'm only about 3 episodes into a re-watch, but it's worthwhile so far--except it's hard, you really have to pay attention to the nuances. It's hard to find a network show that stands up to multiple viewings though, so good job.
posted by skewed at 4:41 PM on September 5 [2 favorites]


It's not like we don't know anything at all about the show's eschatology. Mindy St. Claire and The Medium Place are real. Good Janet and Bad Janet are real.
posted by Monochrome at 6:36 PM on September 7


It's not like we don't know anything at all about the show's eschatology. Mindy St. Claire and The Medium Place are real.

Are they? We have no reason to believe that the trains actually go between Places, or that Mindy isn't an actress like Vicky, or that the Medium Place isn't just part of the Neighborhood (which is larger than advertised), or just another part of the overall Bad Place. We only "know" that the trains go between Neighborhoods and Places because, well, the demons say so. And they're liars, who spent the whole season lying, so we can't trust the things they tell Eleanor, Chidi, Tahani, and Jason.

Good Janet and Bad Janet are real.

This is probably true, because what the demons say to each other in their office is probably trustworthy (since they're basically coworkers and not interacting with victims). As far as I'm concerned, literally anything that can't be derived from those scenes in the finale set in the Bad Place offices cannot be trusted. Of course, if Janets are in fact not people but basically sophisticated computers, they can be programmed to say whatever the being controlling them wants.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:43 PM on September 14


We have no reason to believe that the trains actually go between Places, or that Mindy isn't an actress like Vicky, or that the Medium Place isn't just part of the Neighborhood (which is larger than advertised), or just another part of the overall Bad Place.

It may well get retconned, but Mike Schur has confirmed some of these things:
Does Michael have any control over Janet other than being able to reboot her and convince her that she still works in the Good Place? If not, then does this mean that the fake Good Place has to largely resemble the real one so she won’t figure it out?

That will also be addressed. The key about Janet is that he does not “control” her. She is just part of every afterlife Neighborhood. One analogy we used internally: Janet is to the afterlife as Clippy the Paperclip (or whatever it’s called) is to Microsoft Word — it’s just there when you turn on the program.

Is the Medium Place real, or part of the con?

Medium Place is real. The essential story of Mindy St. Claire’s situation is on the up and up.
posted by Etrigan at 8:09 AM on September 15 [2 favorites]


Huh, that's a fascinating interview! Now I'm even more excited for Wednesday!
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:11 PM on September 15


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