From a Knish joint referencing a Seal song to pastries inspired by Cruel Intentions, writer Megan Amram really turned up the comedic heat in this week's episode.
NBC's The Good Place has a particular affection for food and this week's episode, "Dance, Dance Resolution" proved how deep that affection runs. This week "The Good Place" got rebooted not once, but nearly 700 times after Eleanor (and one time Jason) discovered the truth about it being not such a good place after all. The Groundhog Day-like shenanigans were fun, but the better part of this week's episode were the food jokes and puns, from "Clam chowder is just hot ocean milk with dead animal croutons!" to the 14 different restaurant names. It was all a small, but meaningful creative touch that only added to the series' wildly funny (and genius) story. Here are the 14 puns from last night's episode, as well as the foods and piece of pop culture they played on.
Beignet and the Jets
If you know anything about music, this pun was probably one of the easiest to figure out. "The Good Place" shop for the deep-fried choux pastry had its name based an Elton John greatest hit, "Benny and the Jets"—a subtle joke about space (or heaven?) and a fictional band. The Good Place four are quite a band of characters, so it's rather fitting.
While there were plenty of music-related puns in the episode, this one was for the sports fans. The Italian treat shop's name is based on Scottie Pippen, the famed former NBA player whose time with the Chicago Bulls made him a household name.
This deadly sweet bakery's name is a play on Cape Canaveral, also known as the "Space Coast" or the site of the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and several NASA launches. It's a funny fit for "The Good Place" because let's face it, weird stuff happens a lot in Florida, too.
Chicken Soup For The Mouth
This chicken soup shop is all about those non-fiction pieces that doubled as recipes for our lives in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. These books seem like a good addition to Chidi's ethics library, but we especially appreciate episode writer Megan Amram telling us exactly where to stick our soup.
This joke about the Cruller pastry involves the 1999 movie Cruel Intentions, a story about jealousy, young love, and an awful step-sister who hides drugs in her necklace. The joke takes on a particularly topical bend when you consider the running gag about Mindy St. Claire and how love for a particular drug helped her earn the only spot in "The Medium Place."
Everything on a Stick
In one reboot sequence, every single restaurant was focused on delivering food on a stick. That includes Bagel On A Stick, Steak On A Stick, Caviar On A Stick, and Hot Dog On A Stick On A Stick. There was even a store for "Extra Sticks." It was a funny concept but would be actual hell if your only source of sustenance was offered to you state fair style.
From Schmear To Eternity
The name of this bagel shop is a play on the phrase "From here to eternity," which happens to be the title of a 1953 movie about a tumultuous love triangle between two military men and one of their wives during World War II. It is also coincidentally the title of a 2014 Long Island Business News restaurant profile on Ben's, a kosher deli with locations around New York City.
This gnocchi (or soft dough dumpling) restaurant earned itself one of the longest eatery names in "The Good Place," with "You Do the Hokey Gnocchi and You Get Yourself Some Food." It's, of course, a play on the hokey pokey song and how "The Good Place" literally keeps turning itself around.
Knish From A Rose
If you love this Eastern European food, then you'll probably love The Good Place's Knish from a Rose. The name is a punny nod to the song "Kiss From A Rose," one of Seal's greatest hits and the really intense theme song to 1995's Batman Forever. It's also clearly the love song between The Good Place and its viewers because the more we get of it, the stranger it feels.
Lasagna Come Out Tomorrow
This pasta restaurant's name is a reference to the lyric "The sun will come out tomorrow," from one of Broadway's most memorable orphan stories, Annie. It's funny because in "The Good Place," everything's so awful that even if the sun does come out tomorrow, it's a fake sun and you probably don't want it to anyway.
This saucey pun is a tribute to the citrusy Japanese sauce Ponzu and a reference to the Ponzi scheme, or a fraudulent investment scam that typically promises high rates of return with very little investor risk. That sounds exactly like what Michael promised his fellow masterminds of hell, but not surprisingly things don't seem to be working out so well.
Sushi and the Banshees
Possibly one of the most obscure restaurant puns (and not because of the food), Sushi and the Banshees is a play on 1970s English rock band Siouxsie and the Banshees whose songs "Happy House" and "Switch," with their eery sounds and haunting lyrics, feel particularly relevant to The Good Place.
The Pesto's Yet To Come
We're not sure what a shop dedicated to this green sauce would sell, but if the name is a pun of Frank Sinatra's "The Best Is Yet to Come," it's a good sign that things on The Good Place are just heating up.
Ziti of Stars
This pasta pun has two potential meanings, the most obvious of which is its wink to the La La Land number "City of Stars." However, "City of Stars" was also the title of a special 2002 edition of Natural History Magazine (published by The American Museum of Natural History) that focused on astronomical phenomena in New York City. Endless amounts of space and peculiar phenomena sound like the perfect recipe for The Good Place.
While viewers only glimpsed 14 restaurant puns (minus a few weird but standard food jokes like the Clam Chowder Fountain), writer and comedian Amram shared the complete list of restaurant puns she submitted along with her draft of the episode on Twitter.
Included were gems like Penne For Your Thoughts, The Maize Runner, Gouda-nough, and The Catcher in the Rice.