This hour is a bonafide comedy gem due to one special reason: Maya Rudolph.
The casting of this highly talented comedian as the show’s “Judge” has to be the most genius move of all time. Rudolph is immediately perfect in the role – she’s whacky, charming and hysterical all at once. Moreover, she bounces off each of the show’s characters beautifully, and keeps the hour moving at a snappy and lovable pace. Of course The Good Place is already a wildly funny show, but Rudolph just elevates the material. Here’s hoping the show will feature her as a guest-star on a recurring basis because she’s that good!
The Burrito is tremendously heartfelt and clever in the way that it positions each of our core four to take a test that challenges their personal growth. The awesomeness here is that each of them does indeed showcase glimmers of change, although it’s not nearly enough for Gen to grant them access. Tahani might not be able to resist hearing what her parents truly think of her, but she FINALLY lets them go and accepts herself fully. Jason unwillingly plays against his favorite team, but tries to find a moment to meditate amidst the chaos. After 81 minutes, Chidi actually makes a decision, and Eleanor realizes that she’s being fooled with a fake Chidi who tries to get her to leave the others behind. In fact, Eleanor is the only one that passes the test, but she chooses not to hurt her friends and instead has them think she failed as well. It’s a wonderful character moment for a character that has grown so much over the past year.
And then there’s the Janet twist. The reveal of Good Janet pretending to be Bad Janet and saving Michael is a bombshell in every way. Not only did it make my jaw drop, it made perfect sense giving everything we’d seen before. So many drama series try similar twists and fail, but The Good Place pulls this one off with flying colors and it’s a true cheery-worthy moment.
Bits & Places
– Epic teaser with the gang approaching the burrito until Gen pops in from behind.
– Gen is obsessed with Tahani’s accent. Aren’t we all?
– The high five between Bad Janet and Sean is everything!
– The rooms in Janet’s hallway are: childhood friends, butlers and maids, Ivy and North West, spa and bikini waxers, Prince William, Prince Harry and Prince, Stephen Hawking and some guy he’s feuding with, Fergie (the popstar) and Fergie (the duchess), and Tahani’s parents.
– How strong is Janet? Wow at the way she kicks and punches Sean around the room like a rag-doll.
– Tahani references her godfather: Paul McCartney. Of course.
– Gen made a video of their time together and it’s hysterical. Notice how the picture is immediately framed behind her.
– Love the ending with Micheal and Janet arriving at the last second. Bring on the season finale!
Eleanor: The last thing I saw was Shawn grabbing him.
Jason: Was it a nice grab or a bad grab?
Eleanor: A bad grab.
Jason: Like, a nice bad grab, or a mean bad grab?
Tahani: No Michael and no Janet. Didn’t even get to say a proper goodbye. Not even a mere toodleloo.
Gen: I just absorbed the entirety of your existences, and I just wanna say you guys are so cute.
Gen: I mean, it takes a lot of guts to just show up here unannounced. Plus, I haven’t had a case in, like, 30 years and I’m super bored. So, it’s either this or start “Bloodline,” and I don’t know, I just don’t feel like I can see Kyle Chandler as anyone else but Coach Taylor.
Michael: (to Sean) In the words of one of my actual friends: “Ya basic!” It’s a human insult. It’s devastating. You’re devastated right now.
Eleanor: Can we be tested together as a group?
Jason: Yeah, we all need to be able to cheat off Chidi. Oh, that’s why your name is Chidi. I get it now.
Gen: So, if you all pass, you’re in. And if even one of you fails, you’re all effed, right? Terrible idea. I mean, truly awful. You are very lucky that I cannot send you to the Bad Idea place, because that one is a stanker.
Judge: Tahani… it’s such a pretty name. My name is super boring Gen. It’s just short for hydrogen, which was the only thing that was in existence at the time that I was born.
Sean: So, just to be clear, you actually rebooted them over 800 times, and all of these reports of their torture are completely fake?
Michael: Yes, but frankly, this is on you. A lot of those details I just took directly from Stephen King novels and episodes of “Pretty Little Liars.
Sean: Pft, fair is the stupidest word humans ever invented, except for…
Bad Janet: Staycation.
Eleanor: Sorry, I feel weird saying this to an almighty judge, but you have hot sauce on your chin.
Gen: Thank you. It’s actually not hot sauce. It’s envy. Or, the concept of envy. It’s really good on Mexican food, it gives it a little kick.
Eleanor: (to Chidi) Oh no, that was your moral quandary grimace, which is different from your gas pain grimace. And different from your someone said “from whence it came” instead of “whence it came” grimace. So, spit it out, man.
Jason: I hate scoring against my own favorite team. But you already knew that. Because this is the test!
Gen: Yeah, that’s not a revelation or something. I explained that very clearly.
Mother: Apologies, it’s been a while since we’ve seen you. We have so much to tell you about your sister. We’ve just heard the most wonderful news. Kamilah dedicated her last album to you.
Mother: Well, she dedicated it to her fans and you’re one of her fans.
Tahani: You know, I’ve 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.
(Her parents gasp)
Tahani: That’s right. Chewing it was deafening. And it’s the happiest I have ever been.
Mother: Don’t get upset, dear. You barely fit in that dress, and I’m afraid you’re going to “hulk out”, as it were.
Sean: Goodbye, Michael. We will leave you with one of Bad Janet’s classic farts. The smell will linger for 10 million years.
Janet: All right, here comes the boom!
Gen: Well done, Eleanor. You can take a seat and wait for the others. And can I have that medallion back ’cause it’s actually a coaster for my sodas?
Thanks to a magnificent guest-starring turn by Maya Rudolph and the show’s usual brilliance, The Burrito is supremely memorable and hilarious.