The Good Place finale: everything is not fine.
Spoilers for The Good Place series finale to follow
I’m not usually someone who throws myself into TV shows, but The Good Place was something special, something I always looked forward to at the end of each week. Even during the ensemble’s lowest lows, there were always bright and funny moments that lifted my mood and brought a shared joy to the friends I watched with. The finale aired this past Thursday, and I don’t know what I was supposed to expect, but this … was not it.
The finality of the last episode really shocked me. While I could understand Michael Schur’s creative direction, it still left a bitter aftertaste, especially after his reliance on the cyclical nature of the plot for so long. What was meant to be a comedy show ended with me crying for more than half of the finale, which seemed like a kick when I was already down, considering I was already upset over having to say goodbye to the beloved show. There were definitely some funny moments, but it was mostly depressing to watch. Although the characters did enjoy their time in the real Good Place, it was unsatisfying that we never really got to see those happy moments. After all the characters had been through, the creators should have given us more time to celebrate, but they just breezed through and didn’t allow us to relish in the last few good memories Eleanor, Chidi, Tahani, Jason, Michael, and Janet were able to make together.
The pacing was surprisingly good, but I hated watching the progression of events because I didn’t want the characters to go their separate ways. A group of friends who balanced each other out perfectly quickly dissolved before my eyes, and it was heartbreaking. Four seasons of them fighting, making up, struggling together, and laughing together were over.
Now that it’s over, my friends and I are on a quest to find a new show that brings the same palette of emotions. The first thing that came to mind, after seeing many ads for the recently-premiered second season of the show, was Miracle Worker. The first season, released last year, follows the lives of angels who work at a corporation run by a slacking, unmotivated God as they attempt to convince him not to destroy Earth and create a restaurant in its stead.
Miracle Workers is slowly filling the void left by The Good Place, but it won’t for long, as the first season is only seven episodes long, and the second season follows a new set of characters. I don’t want to compare the two in every aspect, but I definitely enjoy that Miracle Workers similarly follows an eclectic cast of misfit characters that have to come together and ultimately save humanity from an unjust “higher power” type system. The premise of switching the characters but keeping the cast is interesting. And the new Dark Ages setting for season two will be exciting, I’m a bit sad that we won’t be able to get a deeper read of the first season’s characters. Craig, Eliza, Sanjay, and God seem like very rich and fleshed out characters, and yet we’ll only have the chance to meet them for the seven episodes, and Craig and Eliza will have only 14 days to save the earth from destruction. And coming from a show like The Good Place, with four seasons of intensive character growth for all six main characters, it’s hard not to grasp for more information about these angels and their God.
We’re three episodes in, so here’s to the next four satisfying our cravings.