The Good Place: The Burrito

“I’m just saying, we’ve certainly seen weirder things than an all-knowing burrito.”

Holy Maya Rudolph, Batman!

After some brief confusion over whether the all-seeing, all-knowing judge is, in fact, a microwave burrito, the humans confront the real judge and she gives them tests to see if they’re good enough people to make it to the Good Place. That judge, Gen, is played by the one and only Maya Rudolph! Who I love! She’s hilarious; her telling Tahani how much she loved her accent…comedy gold.

My favorite test might just be Tahani’s. She has to walk down a corridor while resisting the urge to open any doors behind which her friends and acquaintances are discussing what they really think of her. She doesn’t pass, instead going into the room where her parents are. But once there, she reaches a kind of closure with them, declaring that that she was never going to be good enough for them and that she was fine with that. I’m not entirely sure the moment was earned, however. We’ve seen Chidi and Eleanor (mainly Eleanor) become better people but Jason and Tahani we never really see progress because they’re the comedy relief.

Eleanor’s test is also great. She and Chidi are told they made it to the Good Place but that Jason and Tahani did not. Eleanor, unaware if this is a test or real, has to decide whether she and “Chidi” (who turns out to not be the real Chidi) will leave their friends behind or relegate themselves to an eternity of torture. Because Eleanor is able to discover that “Chidi” is a fake, she chooses correctly and passes her test, the only one of the four to do so.

We’re never clear on what Jason’s test is, because he doesn’t wait for instructions from Judge Gen to begin, he just jumps in, immediately failing. Chidi’s test is to pick a hat, which I guess would prove that he became more decisive? Chidi’s indecision rings more as a serious anxiety disorder than a human failing to me and I honestly think it’s a little unfair that he’s judged so harshly for it. Especially when the stakes are as high as they are here: eternity in paradise or hell. I’d agonize over a hat as well.

Because they chose to be graded together, and because Eleanor lied to the others and said she didn’t pass, the humans prepare to troop off to the Bad Place when Michael and Janet show up.

Michael, having been captured by Shawn, is sentenced to eternity in a room with nothing to do but not read New Yorker magazines. Thankfully, Janet is there to save the day. She poses as a Bad Janet and then kicks Shawn’s butt before facilitating the duo’s escape. It may be a little unbelievable how quickly her acting skills progressed, but it was funny, which like…is the point of the show so I’m not going to fault the writers for it.

Ethical Bits

I really didn’t love the body shaming jokes at Tahani’s expense, especially given that Jameela Jamil is an eating disorder survivor.

The Good Quotes

Michael: “In the words of one of my actual friends, “Ya basic.” It’s a human insult. It’s devastating. You’re devastated right now.”

Tahani: “You know, I have done things that you would never have approved of. I died dressed as someone in the service industry. I shagged a Floridian. I even ate a Cheeto.”

Three and a half out of four Cheetos

sunbunny

2 comments:

CoramDeo said...

I saw the body shaming stuff as part of the emotional abuse of her parents, which seemed to be condemned by the show quite definitively.

sunbunny said...

CoramDeo, I mean, yeah, the show definitely doesn't present it as a good way to treat people but I really could've done without it altogether.