Kristen Bell, Ted Danson, Jameela Jamil, D’Arcy Carden & Michael Schur
The Good Place Says Goodbye at Comic-Con 2019
By Lindsey Blick
It was an emotional outing for the cast of The Good Place at San Diego Comic-Con 2019. The cult-favorite NBC show stars Kristen Bell, Ted Danson, Jameela Jamil, D’Arcy Carden, and William Jackson Harper. The news of the shows fourth – and final – season came last month from creator/executive producer Michael Schur.
The comic fantasy series, which started in 2016, tells the story of Eleanor (Bell), a woman who finds herself unexpectedly in the afterlife, which is run by Michael (Danson). However, heaven is not at all what she would have expected. Besides, Eleanor is certain that she is there by mistake. And that mistake appears to be having some catastrophic effects upon the Utopian “Good Place.”
The show has charmed fans with three seasons (so far, the last season starts September 2019) of clever and unpredictable storytelling and humor. And unlike so many shows, the creator of The Good Place decided to get going while the show was still good.
Schur explained, “Four seasons just feels right. We don’t want to tread water because the water is so warm and pleasant.” As such, the upcoming fourth season will be the last. This came as a bit of a shock to show’s adoring fans; not to mention the cast, who are just not ready for it to end.
Star Kristen Bell said at the NBC press junket at Comic-Con, “It’s the best/worst feeling to have because we all have a really fun time together. I’m going to miss working with these people so much. I feel so grateful to have been a part of this show. Not [just] because it was just a fun party for me, [though] it was! I was able to meet some of my dearest friends.
“Also, because it gave people a road map on how to be a good person,” she continued. “I hope that when people go back and watch this show, or watch it for the first time, they say to themselves, ‘Oh my God, look at all of these cool lessons about how we’re all supposed to share the Earth.’ Being human is hard, right? We’re talking about really hard stuff. I just feel really grateful to be a part of it.”
When PopEntertainment caught up with Schur and a few cast members, gratitude was the common theme amongst them all.
What are you going to miss most about working on this show?
Michael Schur: Oh man, I get regular calls from Ted Danson. That’s pretty cool! The cast in general. I’ve known Kristen for a long time, but I met everyone else from doing the show. I feel very strongly that they are wonderful people. They are all really my friends. A lot of the writers on the show I have worked with before, but this is the first time I have ever worked with any of the cast before. Besides Kristen – we worked on Parks and Recreation together. I am going to miss them a tremendous amount. To be able to write dialogue for people and imagine exactly how good you think it’s going to be, then they do it and it’s even better than you thought it was going to be. [That] is a rare and special thing.
This is a show that reinvents itself just about every episode. Even though we are going into an endgame this season, do you think that’s going to continue?
Michael Schur: Well, the seasons are usually broken into three pieces. I would say at least the first part of this season will continue that trend. There does come a point where there are “no more surprises.” There is a final “this is how everybody ends up” phase. Then from that point on there are no more twists and turns.
How excited were you to find out that The Good Place was nominated for best comedy at the Emmys?
Michael Schur: I was very happy! I was very happy for Ted. I was morally and righteously outraged on behalf of Kristen and D’Arcy, as well as everybody else in the cast. But the show getting nominated is nice because everybody gets to share it. The mood is very happy. There is a lot of celebrating and people bringing doughnuts to set. It’s nice that there’s something like that that everybody feels like they have a piece of. That was great.
Next-up we were able to chat with the wonderful Jameela Jamil, who said she was totally distraught that The Good Place is ending.
Season four. How are you feeling?
Jameela Jamil: Sad! Sad as fuck! But really, really proud! I think this was the right way to end it, right time to end it. We are serving our fans well. And the guest stars are SOOO cool! This season is perfect. I am the luckiest person in the world, I can’t believe this was my first acting job. After this I’m basically going to have to retire.
You’ve hinted that you don’t have anything else lined-up after this, but you must have something in mind.
Jameela Jamil: I have so many non-acting things lined-up. Like, I’ve launched a movement called “i Weigh.” I’m turning it into a company for young women, to make sure they feel recognized. I also have a book coming out. And I also have a game show, a very disgusting comedy game show coming out with the Impractical Jokers. I’m looking at scripts, but how do I match this? How do you go anywhere further from this? I feel like I’ve peaked, and too soon! Seriously guys, where do I go from here?
I’ll tell you where you go, to steal something from the set. What’s that one thing going to be?
Jameela Jamil: Ted Danson. Can I have Ted Danson?
Anybody who has ever watched this show has laughed and cried a number of times. Were there any scenes over the last few seasons that were particularly emotional for you?
Jameela Jamil: Yes. When I had to reconcile with my sister, that was really emotional. She’s an incredible actress, Rebecca [Hazlewood]. It felt like I was telling a lot of people’s stories in that moment. A lot of people resonate with that. I resonate with that. It is unbelievable the impact your parents can have on the rest of your life, far beyond childhood. We spend our lives undoing that or absorbing it, depending on if you had good parents or bad parents growing up.
How are you preparing for the final table read?
Jameela Jamil: Oh no, I can’t. I don’t know how stoned I might have to be to get through it! This show means the world to us. We are a real team and a real family. It hasn’t really sunk in that this is it. I still feel like I’m going to be seeing them all next summer, but I won’t. It’s very weird.
Can you tease anything about the final season or final episode?
Jameela Jamil: No, I can’t. I can tell you that the guest stars are amazing. The show is really cool. Because we have known about it since last October, we have been working on it for a very long time, so I think everyone will get the ending they want.
After Jameela, we briefly got to speak with Ted Danson and D’Arcy Carden who was very excited about her bright yellow high-heels. She said, “Did you guys see my heels?” as she sat down with Ted Danson following behind her.
So, as an old school actor, what is it like to be here at Comic-Con?
Ted Danson: Well, at first, I wanted to dismiss it, it’s not something that I really wanted to do. Then we all came together. You are meeting 1,800 fans in a room that have watched the show, loved it. [They] are there to tell the cast, writers, and the rest of the crew how much they appreciate it. It’s a very moving thing and a real treat.
D’Arcy Carden: Yes, it really is.
Were there any scenes over the last few seasons that were particularly emotional for you both?
D’Arcy Carden: Absolutely, most of them were with this guy. (She points to Danson.) The writing is so good on the show, sometimes you don’t even mean to be emotional. As you say the words it just happens. I can think of three different scenes where the point was not to produce tears at all. In fact, Janet probably shouldn’t but once I started saying the words the tears would just come out. What if I started crying right now?
As for Danson, it was the episode where Janet (D’Arcy’s character) and Michael (Ted’s character) declare their friendship.
Ted Danson: That was very sweet.
It’s your final season. What have you done on the show that you are most proud of?
Ted Danson: Not mess up the show! (chuckles) Mike’s writing is so good that every morning you are really hoping you can live up to the words.
D’Arcy Carden: That is truly it. We are delivered these scripts [which are great] in our opinion. Then you get on set, and the hope is that you make them proud.
Ted Danson: Everyone is bringing their A-game, so you always want to make sure you rise to that level.
Danson said at the end of their final panel on Saturday that “We are all so honored to be part of this show that Mike created. We’re so honored that it fills a room for people who love it as well… We are so blessed, and we thank you so much.”
The end of The Good Place is rapidly approaching. Although it is sad; it’s also a good thing. The show did not get cut or cancelled. Instead, it is ending because the creators think it is the right time. Not many television shows anymore are able to end on a good note because of that reason. At the panel on Saturday, the audience was told by Michael Schur that “The finale script is complete, and we read it on Monday.” Schur and the rest of the cast received a standing ovation at the end of their last panel.
Season four of The Good Place is set to premiere September 26, 2019 on NBC. Make sure to tune in and watch!
Copyright ©2019 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: July 23, 2019.
Photos ©2019 Ashley Foster.