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Recap / The Good Place S 4 E 05 "Employee of the Bearimy"

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Jason and Michael travel to the Bad Place, determined to rescue Janet. Meanwhile, with Derek left to run the fake neighborhood, Eleanor and Tahani conspire to make sure none of the real test humans catch on to a genuine emergency.

Tropes for this episode

  • All Part of the Show: The demons at Demon-Con seem to think Michael and Jason breaking in and stealing Janet back in front of them was all a part of Shawn's seminar.
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  • Animation Lead Time: As revealed on the podcast, this episode was filmed before the football season began, and the joke about Foles breaking his clavicle was dubbed in.
  • Apologetic Attacker: Michael is reluctant to turn Rufus the security guard into goo due to the fact that they were roommates.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Janet points out to Jason that Blake Bortles actually was kicked off of the Jacksonville Jaguars and that Nick Foles is replacing him... and Jason is ecstatic.
    Jason: Nick Foles? Are you kidding me?! (Beat) He won a Super-Bowl! We're gonna be unstoppable!
  • Big "NO!": Jason makes one upon learning that Nick Foles just broke his clavicle. Apparently the final scene of the episode takes place on September 8, 2019 Earth time, though Jeremy Bearimy muddies the waters on that point.
  • Balance Between Good and Evil: Here, Michael literally spells it out that before his Heel–Face Turn, he (and presumably the rest of his kind) did what he did because he believed that what they did was for "the moral balance of the universe", the Heel–Face Turn coming from the realization that humans are capable of change even after death.
  • Call-Back:
    • The title (and the topic that it's based on, the Bad Place's Employee of the Bearimy wall) is a reference to the Timey-Wimey Ball nature of the afterlife explained in "Jeremy Bearimy".
    • After regaining his memories of his first time in this afterlife, Jason remembers throwing a Molotov cocktail in the Bad Place.
    • Shawn mentions the Butthole Spiders, sadly the tortured humans are getting used to them and, even worse, the spiders are bored.
  • Character Development:
    • Jason puts aside his usual impulsive nature to impersonate Glenn and rescue Janet.
    • Michael is horrified and guilty when remembering how he used to be and vows to keep improving.
    • Derek reboots himself to run the neighborhood better.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The not-lie detector. It's used to help Michael, Jason and Janet make their escape.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Michael makes this speech to the other demons at Demon Con. He tells them that, like all of them, he believed he was following the rules and making the world a better place by torturing "bad" people but has since learned that humans and demons can improve, and they don't have to abide by what Shawn says.
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  • Didn't See That Coming: Shawn didn't consider that Michael or any of the humans would willingly return to the Bad Place to mount a rescue.
  • Escort Distraction: While Michael and Jason go rescue Janet, Eleanor sends the humans to a lake house far away from the neighborhood for a little vacation; that way, the neighborhood can power down until Janet can get it running at full capacity again. Unfortunately, Chidi has decided to stay behind, which throws a monkey wrench in the works.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good:
    • Vicki's impression of Michael is terrible because she claims she doesn't understand his inherently good motivations, to which Janet claims that is why the Soul Squad will win. Vicky even says "ew" in response to that.
    • Shawn likely never imagined that Michael and the humans would find out that Janet was replaced with a Bad Janet, nor that they would go into the Bad Place to mount a rescue.
  • Heroic RRoD: Derek is unable to maintain the neighborhood and the fake residents, finding himself being overwhelmed by the sheer amount of energy he has to use. This makes him shut himself down so that he can then get rebooted and become stronger.
  • Hoist by Their Own Petard:
    • Michael is able to impersonate Vicky since she now has a Michael suit. Moreover, he's better at pretending to be Vicky than she is at pretending to be him.
    • Shawn had sent in a modified Bad Janet to impersonate the main Good Janet so she could sabotage the experiment. She creates a gun that can cause demons to explode into goo, giving Michael and Jason an easy weapon to use in their rescue attempt. It's used on Vicky and Rufus.
  • Put Me In, Coach!: Tahani tries to reference this trope when she's unsatisfied with only hosting events for the humans and wants to be more proactive in Soul Squad's current task (which has gone awry). She unfortunately words it wrong and phrases it as, "Insert me, Coachman!"
  • Refuge in Audacity: Shawn never thought that Michael and Jason would have the courage to enter the Bad Place and pass themselves off as regular demons in skin-suits.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: Tahani wouldn't serve finger sandwiches at a lake party, because "What am I, Welsh?" Eleanor's response is "I don't know, are you?"
  • Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: Eleanor points out to Tahani that the reason why she just kept making everything worse was because unlike Eleanor, Tahani was raised in a privileged environment and that while this made her a master at decorum and culture, it makes her terrible at improvising.
  • Sarcastic Clapping: Vicky's response to Michael's speech about self-improvement.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Vicky tells Michael that he's still a demon and thus a bad being by nature. Michael responds by shooting her with the explosive gun, reducing her to goo.
  • Trust Password: Jason tells Janet, "I love you, girl." She responds, "Not a girl."
  • Un Evil Laugh: Part of what makes Vicky's Michael impression ineffective is her inability to get his Evil Laugh right.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Michael doesn't want to turn Rufus, the Demon Con security guard, into goo because they used to be roommates.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Glenn (in goo form) is carried to the Bad Place in a container, and Jason even talks to him on the trip there. Michael, Jason, and Janet return to the neighborhood (seemingly) without Glenn's container and he isn't mentioned.
  • Your Costume Needs Work:
    • Michael (while pretending to be Vicky in a Michael skinsuit) pretends Jason is Glenn dressed in a Jason skinsuit. Shawn falls for the trick and says the "skinsuit" isn't bad, while criticizing the cheekbones for being overboard.
    • Both Shawn and Janet say that Michael's "suit" is smelly.


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