The Good Place: 3.09 Janet(s)
After a two week break and a cliff hanger ending The Good Place is back in action, and the are a lot more Janets than there were at last count. The previous episode ended with Janet sucking all of the main cast into her void so that they could avoid being killed by a hoard of demons. However, in taking the humans into her void, Janet effectively killed their physical bodies. As such we get to see the hilarity of D'Arcy Carden playing Janet, Chidi, Eleanor, Jason and Tahani.
Which, while somewhat confusing at first, also served as an excellent way to showcase the subtle differences in each characters body language and tone of voice. To Carden's credit she did an absolutely fantastic job in capturing each of the human's quirks, from Tahani's posh-ness to Eleanor's faux-laid back attitude.
I think the most baffling part of the many Janets in the void was that it coincided with Chidi's crisis about Eleanor's confession of love to him. While his reaction is predictable, I did feel a bit of a disconnect between the arguments he was making and him finally coming to terms with his feelings. Both instances were, in themselves, well done. But the connection between them wasn't very well defined. As Eleanor started to have a breakdown, the switch from one to the other felt much to fast. Now this may have been written this way because episodes of The Good Place aren't that long, but this format has never been an issues before. But, it ended with Chidi and Eleanor kissing, so I can't complain that much. Chidi and Eleanor's relationship is incredibly sweet and it will be interesting to see it develop further, since we have only seen up to the point of the first kiss so far.
While the humans are running amok in Janet's void, Janet and Michael make it to the accountants office. This something that I was really looking forward to on a personal level as both of my parents are accountants, so seeing how the profession is represented on TV is always interesting. The Good Place didn't disappoint, as Stephen Merchant's chipper Head Account lead his tour of the old fashioned and endless cubicled office of the afterlife accountants. Though my favourite part of this segment was the sheer sadness and exasperation shown in Matt, the accountant in charge of 'Weird Sex Things'. The points system of the afterlife has been an underlying but central them for the entirety of The Good Place. So it was really satisfying to finally see 'behind the curtain' of how points are assigned to both people and new actions.
The overall moral of this episode seems to surround Michael and his situation. For more than a season he has been trying to work out why the afterlife works the way it does and has gone to various different authority figure to try and get it to be fixed when he realised that it was broken. But, by the end of the episode, both he and Janet realise that this approach isn't going to work, and in order for the system to change, they are going to have to change it themselves. This is a particularly poignant sentiment in current times. Which isn't unusual for The Good Place, but it is still nice to see that, not matter how ridiculous it may seem, the show is still rooted in human experience.
The end of the episode saw the main cast finally make it to The Good Place. I'm unsure of what awaits them, as no one new has entered in over 500 years, but I am keen to find out. I am even more keen to see what exactly has been keeping people out for so long.