The Good Place (Season 1 and Season 2) – Great Sitcom

Rating (5 out of 5)

The Good Place mixes pure stupidity together perfectly with philosophy and ethics to great a quality quirky sit-com.  This is one of the best comedies I have seen in a while, and have enjoyed watching this multiple times.

SEASON 1

The premise is fairly simple, Eleanor (Kristen Bell) has died and goes to the The Good Place (Heaven), but she is there by mistake.  She has to seek help from her soul-mate and philosophy professor Chidi (William Jackson Harper) to become good so she can stay.    The whole community is overseen by Michael (Ted Danson), who is the architect of this Good Place.

What I Liked:  The flashbacks to what she was like before she died, and how it applies to lesson and struggles she is having with ethics currently were well done.  I saw my wife and daughter in lots of the struggles/flashbacks.  Things you think but don’t say.   For example, she throws a coffee cup into a trash can and misses; the environmentalist tells her she missed and she calls him whale humper and if he is so horny for the environment, then he should pick it up.  I know at times my wife thinks but doesn’t say it.

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Little jokes are thrown into the middle of conversations.  It might be simple examples that Eleanor gives about what she did in the real world.  There just thrown into the middle of conversations, which kept everything light, but also kept the show moving.

The whole Dress Bitch episode, where Eleanor has to recount an episode from her life was to me an example of what makes the show great.  And you can actually buy the shirt on Reddit.

Jason Mendoza (Manny Jacinto) who is also mistakenly placed in the Good Place is the Joey of Friends type character.  He isn’t too bright and adds more levity too it all.  He is a good offset to the intellectual pursuits of others.

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What I Didn’t Like:

The only issue I have with the show, is you could be offended, if one of the things you like is considered torture.  For example, I like Hawaiian pizza, but it is considered the worst and something the people for hell send to Michael.

And literally, they use “literally” a lot in this show.

SEASON 2 (Spoilers included)

In this season the first few episodes deal with them to continue to discover they are in the Bad Place, and keep getting rebooted.  Then Michael and team have to work together to escape the bad place and get to the good place.  But to do so, they must pretend to be tortured and continue their ethics lessons, but now Michael is included.

What I Liked

Michael is an immortal being has trouble with grasping the issues of ethics, and the couple of episodes where he has to come to terms with them were great.  My personal favorite is the trolly problem.  The picture gives you an idea of what happens.

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There seems to be more philosophy included in this season, and it was great. I know I can’t believe I just typed that.  It is snuck in with the humor, so you almost don’t notice.    Even friendship and the bond between characters is snuck in with some laughs.

The museum in hell was amusing for the exhibits that were on display.  Also, their interactions with the demons, when they pretended to be demons, as the exhibit of their community was put on display was well done.  Leading to their eventual escape.

I also enjoyed Eleanors retry on earth.  Sometimes life feels like that, as much good as you do, it works against you.  She tries to be good for 6 months, and everything works against her and she gives up.  That last segue from the season 2 to season 3 was very well done.

What I Didn’t Like:

They escape to see the judge (Maya Rudolph), who gives each one of them a test to see if they are good.  It wasn’t my favorite section of the show.  I understand it was a transition piece.  The Judge maybe was just a bit too over the top in a couple of scenes.  She could have been more of a straight-man to everyone else.

Summary:  A smart comedy that has left behind the nudity,  violence and cussing (sort of) and the whole family can enjoy.  A very refreshing comedy.  If you haven’t tried it, I would high recommend this show.

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