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Recap / The Good Place S1E10 "Chidi's Choice"

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"Look, I know I can be indecisive, but what's the harm in taking a few extra minutes to find the perfect—"

"Jason, when I was rebooted, and I lost all my knowledge, I was confused and disoriented, but you were always kind to me. And according to the central theme of 231,600 songs, movies, poems, and novels that I researched for these vows in the last three seconds, that's what love's all about."
Janet
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While working together on Eleanor's defense case, Real Eleanor makes Eleanor realize she loves Chidi. Tahani confronts Jason and learns Chidi inspired his kind gestures. Chidi panics when Eleanor and Tahani both tell him they love him. Michael successfully encourages Chidi to make a decision. Eleanor insists that she and Tahani preserve their friendship, so they spend the rest of the day together. Appreciating Janet's kindness towards him, Jason decides to marry her. Eleanor and Tahani attend the wedding and, when Chidi arrives, Eleanor tells him that her love for him is that of gratitude towards a friend and teacher and Tahani admits she was just on the rebound. Declaring she has thought of a way for Eleanor to stay, Tahani leaves with her. Flashbacks show Chidi's life on Earth. One incident in his childhood showed Chidi wasted an entire recess period unable to pick teammates. Later in life, Chidi's indecisiveness made him unable to act as his best friend Uzo's best man and indirectly led to Chidi's death when an air conditioning unit, which he knocked loose, fell on him while he stood below, unable to choose a bar to visit with Uzo.

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Tropes:

  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Tahani's reply to Jason requesting her help:
    "You have some nerve asking me for favors when you have spent weeks deceiving me, making a fool out of me, and bringing snack food into my house."
  • Brick Joke: In an earlier episode, Janet explained that she doesn't eat and how after every reboot she would take a piece of birthday cake and smash it around where her mouth is. In this episode, Jason helps her doing just that with their wedding cake.
  • British Brevity: Parodied with Tahani's favorite show Deirdre and Margaret. It ran for 16 years and has "nearly 30" episodes.
  • Chick Magnet: Chidi is a notable example in that characters of his archetype aren't usually contenders for this.
  • Death by Looking Up: How Chidi died, from Uzo's falling air conditioner.
  • The Ditherer: Chidi was extremely indecisive during his life on Earth, and he's forced to make another choice with regards to who he loves.
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  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Eleanor when Real Eleanor asks if she's in love with Chidi starts to vehemently deny it, only to start singing his praises and going Oh, Crap!.
  • Got Me Doing It: Michael declares this when he and Chidi are equally unable to decide which Eleanor is supposed to be Chidi's soulmate.
    Michael: You is spreading.... your indecisiveness is infecting me like a virus.
  • Hot for Teacher: Eleanor name-drops the trope while talking about her "incredibly patient, and kind, and surprisingly jacked" mentor, though she eventually says that she thinks they would be Better as Friends.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Chidi really cared about the people around him and only wanted to live a moral life, but his tendency to overthink and obsess about taking the right path led to him being so indecisive that he hurt everyone around him.
  • Love Epiphany:
    Eleanor: There are way more things I hate about Chidi than like about him. His stupid Clark Kent glasses, his extensive turtleneck collection, oh, and he loves ethics so much. He once talked about John Rawls for two hours... I timed it. And he only stopped because he saw me timing him. Granted, he laughed, and kind of made fun of himself, it was a nice moment, but still. He always twitches his eyebrows when he says "absolutism," and he tilts his head whenever I say anything ignorant, but he never makes fun of me, which is nice. He's also incredibly patient, and kind, and surprisingly jacked, and, oh, fork, I'm in love with Chidi!
  • Love Triangle: Parodied, lampshaded, and played with as about 6 different characters realize they have varying degrees of love for one another at around the same time, but by the end it's all resolved happily, with Janet and Jason marrying and Chidi choosing Real Eleanor.
  • Loving Details: Eleanor recalls many details about Chidi revealing her affection for him.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • Chidi ruined the relationships with the people he loved due to his dithering habits.
    • Chidi also caused his own death by punching Uzo's air conditioner and destabilizing it enough for it to fall.
  • Parting Words Regret: Uzo tells Chidi that it is literally impossible to be friends with him. Then Uzo's air conditioner falls on Chidi just as the latter is saying he can take a few more minutes. Uzo is horrified, sad and guilty at the same time.
  • Please Wake Up: Uzo softly says Chidi's name after an air conditioner falls on the latter, and Chidi isn't getting up from the ground.
  • Reality Ensues: Something that Eleanor and Tahani tell Chidi at the end; Eleanor doesn't know what real love is, and so she was probably projecting her gratitude onto Chidi for teaching her how to be a better person. Meanwhile Tahani says she was latching onto the only person who was grounding her after she learned that "Jianyu" lied about everything to her.
  • Rescue Romance: All but said by Eleanor; she says she started falling in love with Chidi when he made a commitment to help her.
  • Say My Name: Uzo says, "Chidi?" softly after his air conditioner falls on Chidi and kills him.
  • Show Within a Show: While hanging out and bonding, Tahani shows Eleanor her favorite sitcom, Deirdre and Margaret.
  • Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace: Janet asks if anyone objects to the wedding; Eleanor and Tahani both object on the grounds that it's an absurd and terrible idea. Janet overrules them.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Both Uzo and Michael call out Chidi for his indecisiveness at a terrible time. Uzo constantly did it, while Michael is begging Chidi for help to save Eleanor.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: It turns out Uzo lied about his wedding date to see if Chidi would be ready, having planned it a month in advance. While Chidi is relieved and embarrassed that he forked up as best man without causing real harm, Uzo forgives him and says they should go for a drink. Then Chidi takes forever to choose a bar, and dies just as Uzo yells at him that it's literally impossible to be Chidi's friend.

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