[Editor’s Note: The following contains spoilers for “The Good Place,” Season 2, Episode 13, “Somewhere Else.”]
“The Good Place” wrapped up its second season in intriguing fashion, seemingly sending Eleanor (Kristen Bell) back to the point where she was supposed to have died, but instead allowing her to reflect on her near-death experience. Because so much of the episode took place in what looked like the “real” world, “The Good Place” kept a tighter rein on its usual fantastical puns and over-the-top references.
But there were still a few sly allusions and visual gags to be had if you looked closely. Here are 10 Easter Eggs we caught and what some of them may mean:
Of course Tahani’s uber-popular and accomplished sister is internationally known and advertised on the side of a truck. It was too difficult to make out what the rest of the text says though. But it’s fun seeing this connection to Eleanor’s future mate (that’s friend in British).
No real allusion here except for a very straightforward fake name for what we assume is an erectile dysfunction-type of medical product.
Again, this fake allergy medication probably isn’t referencing anything bigger, especially since we know that this company peddles fake medications, but the kitten sure is cute.
4. Jean-Ralphio Champagne
The ad on the back cover of the “Celebrity Baby Plastic Surgery Disasters” magazine that Eleanor is reading lets us know that Jean-Ralphio Saperstein (Ben Schwartz), a fan-favorite character from creator Mike Schur’s other comedy gem “Parks and Recreation,” exists in this universe. Not only is he peddling bubbly, but his signature phrasing is still alive and well, as evidenced by this slogan: “Turn that frizown upsidizity.”
5. Taylor Spliff’t
Yep, that’s the name of the Taylor Swift reggae cover band. Kind of wish we got to hear them sing “Look What You Made Me Doobie.”
6. Redeem Yourself (pictured at the top)
When Eleanor and her roommate walk into the bar, the framed poster on the wall reads, “Redeem yourself. You are your biggest cash prize.” This is so reminiscent of the messaging and punnery seen in the mock Good Place that we feel this is the first clue that maybe this isn’t the real world, but part of a simulation, especially since Michael (Ted Danson) is lying in wait to help Eleanor through her moral quandary. More on that later.
7. Sam Malone
This was already pointed out in our review, but Danson slinging that bar towel over his shoulder and playing bartender again is clearly a reference to his character Sam Malone on his other hit comedy “Cheers.”
8. Sting’s Desert Rosé
Did we mention that “The Good Place” really likes its puns? This Easter Egg works triple duty. While the name is a reference to Sting’s song “Desert Rose,” spelling it “rosé” also references the delicious wine, which indicates that this establishment is also a bar. Finally, Eleanor has been spinning in circles trying to figure out why be good if there is not “moral desert.” “Desert” is a philosophical idea that is the condition of being deserving of something, whether good or bad. The philosophical nature of this establishment’s name, not to mention the excellent punnery, really seems to indicate that this is not reality. (And yes, this version of desert is spelled with only one “s” when referring to the philosophical condition.)
9. “Kangaroo Jack”
Eleanor referencing the 2003 film starring Anthony Anderson and Jerry O’Connell could be foreshadowing for her trip to Australia to find Chidi at St. John’s University. Again, is this reality?
10. Google Searches
When Eleanor attempts to Google “What do we owe each other?” she comes up with a few interesting results. While most of them seem fairly random, the one that reads, “What’s a good excuse to skip baby shower,” seems like a reference to earlier in the episode when Eleanor promises to bring an assortment of brownies to a co-worker’s baby shower.
One of the environmental outreach teams is made up of names that may seem familiar: Damon, Drew, Morgan, and Dean.
Dow Goddard, Morgan Sackett, and Dean Holland are all directors on the show. Damon Lindelof is of course Mike Schur’s good buddy and creator of “The Leftovers” and “Lost.” Lindelof was a sounding board for Schur in developing this show.
Did we miss any?