Jessica Thomas reviews this weeks episode of The Good Place as Janet and Michael begin their life on Earth.
After running away from The Judge, Michael and Janet are now on Earth and stuck without their powers. This lack of powers, or rather what Janet remembers from when she did have powers, is one of the most adorable parts of the episode. As they stay behind the scenes doing everything in their power to keep the group together, Michael and Janet inevitably come into contact with various other humans. Janet soon starts to spout some of the information she knows about them. Each human that is subject to this is amusingly, and understandably, baffled. Each Interaction is charming in its own way.
However, they do bring up the question as to how it took a year for Michael and Janet to be found out. From the short scenes in their office, it would seem that the extent of their manipulation goes far beyond what is seen on screen. Not only were they working in the same building as the group, they were also present in the background of their lives for the entire year of the study. If this were a drama then I might be annoyed by this, but since this show has always been supernatural and wacky, it doesn’t really bother me.
This episode, moved the humans’ story along quite quickly, though none of them seem to have changed as much as in previous seasons. This may be because the amount of pressure that they are under on Earth, is a lot less than it was in The Bad Place. But, how much can someone’s core personality be expected to change? While Eleanor is still quick to lash-out, she does go to apologise and try to fix her mistake, and, though Tahani is still a posh name-dropper, she has been able to develop a lasting relationship with someone who needs a lot of support. These more subtle changes make the story this season different, which isn’t a bad thing. Keeping the narrative new means it doesn’t get boring, and the subtleties that are shown are each as heartwarming as the last. So far this season has shown how much humans can grow and how no one is perfect, just as much as the past two seasons.
The end of The Sbowplow sees the four humans discovering Michael and Janet opening the door to the afterlife. This discovery isn’t a surprise, considering that all six of them are shown walking through the door in the official season image. But I was a little surprised that it happened so early into the season, then again I wasn’t expecting this episode to span an entire year. The whole tone of the season will likely shift now, which I am intrigued about. I have really enjoyed the season so far, and am very glad that Michael didn’t get the chance to reset the Earth timeline, but I’m also a little sad that we didn’t get to see more of how the humans interacted when the supernatural wasn’t involved.
But, whatever happens next, I will probably enjoy it just as much as I have enjoyed everything else so far. The Good Place is a fun, sensitive and thought provoking show and I have confidence that any direction they take will be a great watch.
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