TV

Janet Kicking Demon Butt On ‘The Good Place’ Is Proof That The Real ‘Wonder Woman’ Era Is Truly Upon Us

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Well, Chidi isn’t the only jacked one on NBC’s The Good Place, and as it turns out, those arms and that six pack didn’t serve him well in Thursday night’s fight scene. This was actually a battle royale of sorts, and Chidi had to be rescued by Eleanor after demon Chris ripped off his own shirt and declared the “bad news” that he’d been working out a lot. Yet who turned out to be the most “jacked” of all? D’Arcy Carden’s Janet, who didn’t feel like listening to chit chat about whether the core four should be taken to the Bad Place. “Screw this, let’s fight,” she declared. And so, she started karate-chopping he holy hell out of demons.

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Y’all, there was a knock-down, drag-out dive-bar fight scene on The Good Place — an episode that’s so much deeper that I can do justice to in this post — yet I’ll gladly declare that it was exhilarating to behold. From the sidelines, Eleanor remarked that Janet’s “a straight-up hottie right now” (and folks on social media agreed), but let’s back up for a moment. Janet’s not truly jacked here in a physical sense, yet she’s faring much better than, say, Chris.

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Tahani got him pretty good, and Chris eventually ends up being tricked through a door by Michael, but let’s get real here, Janet’s saving everyone’s ass. It’s entirely out of left field, and she doesn’t have to be stereotypically muscle-bound to do so. Or at least, she doesn’t need to show off any muscles off in the process with “sexy” attire. To draw what some might consider a gratuitous analogy, this reminds me of that standout moment when Gal Gadot’s thigh jiggled in a 2017 Wonder Woman battle scene. Those few seconds resulted in an explosion of reaction pieces about the male-gaze shattering moment, given that Diana wasn’t focusing about being alluring or sexy — although maybe some people perceived her that way — she was simply getting a job done.

And in the aftermath, we’re getting a history-making Captain Marvel movie and, finally, a standalone Black Widow film. It’s an unexpected place to arrive at, a handful of years after Black Widow was shown outsmarting Loki in The Avengers by pretending to be overly emotional and pulling the rug out from under his presumptuous attitude. Unfortunately, Joss Whedon framed that scene by pointing the camera straight at her butt, which was all that many people could notice in the theater. I’m not attempting to make any sort of grand statement here, because Wonder Woman has been kicking around in popular culture for over four decades, but nothing that she’s ever done onscreen has played as powerfully as that thigh jiggle.

Look, I’m simply saying that Wonder Woman recently kicked ass without caring about looking “perfect,” and Janet kicked ass and got called a “hottie” without dressing the part. Maybe these two things are related, and maybe they’re not, but maybe 2018 isn’t so bad after all.

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Here’s the whole battle royale from The Good Place, if you didn’t catch it. Or want to watch it again!

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