TV Club: Eleanor finally chooses a side as The Good Place prepares for war

As bright and funny a center as Kristen Bell’s Eleanor (known hereafter as Fake Eleanor) has been to The Good Place, at times she has functioned more as foil for the good place’s sunny perfection. That’s the initial impression The Good Place gave, that Eleanor would function sort of like Rodney Dangerfield at the Bushwood Country Club, a bowling ball of snarky, disreputable comic energy, pointing out how snooty and silly everything in this creamy paradise really is. What quickly became clear was how much of a bait-and-switch that impression was. Eleanor’s presence in the good place was an excuse for the no-bulshit, me-first Eleanor to crack wise about how nice and peachy everything is, certainly, but the show’s been seeding in hints that Eleanor Shellstrop’s journey here means a lot more—to her and to the show—than it initially appeared.

Kristen Bell …

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