Of all the members of Team Cockroach, none are as simultaneously kind and dim-witted as
He's a man with simple needs: he loves Janet, the Jacksonville Jaguars, EDM, Molotov cocktails, and the The Good Place's Jason Mendoza. Transformers franchise — in that order. And while he's made strides to become a better person throughout the show's four seasons, he'll always be a slightly immature man-child who loves yelling "Bortles!"
A core part of that includes his enthusiasm for his Floridian hometown. Jason refers to Jacksonville as "one of the top 10 swamp cities in northeastern Florida," and it's clear that he had an unconventional childhood there. We also know that the "pre-successful DJ" died after suffocating in a safe that he and Pillboi were trying to rob from a Mexican restaurant. His main claims to fame include doing a wheelie through a Waffle House and being interviewed on the news after finding a foot on the beach.
One of the show's writers, Joe Mande, told SB Nation in 2018 that they
decided to make Jason from Florida because it was the polar opposite of a silent, Buddhist monk, which is what he was initially forced to pose as before he and the other humans pieced together what Michael was up to. "So then it was, what's the funniest part of Florida? And I had just done a show in Jacksonville with John Mulaney, and everything about Jacksonville was cracking us up.... So we started talking about Jacksonville and just made it completely cartoonish."
Here are some of the funniest things Jason has revealed about Jacksonville so far.
Jet Skis Often Crash Into Manatees
Screenshot courtesy of NBC Season 1, Episode 4. Jason tells Eleanor that once he drove his jet ski into the aquatic mammal. "I'm from Jacksonville, Florida — it happens a lot," he explains.
Fred Durst Parties There
Screenshot courtesy of NBC Season 1, Episode 4. In a flashback, audiences see Jason getting a meeting with Acidcat. However, the EDM musician says that he needs to leave soon because, "Fred Durst is throwing an orgy on a partially capsized yacht."
There Are So Many Buffalo Wild Wings, They Have To Distinguish Which One Is "Nice"
Season 1, Episode 9. Janet becomes flummoxed when people begin asking her things that she doesn't know the answers to, like what jalapeño poppers are. Jason, however, gives her the definition by way of a troubling anecdote. "One time at a Buffalo Wild Wings in Jacksonville — the nice one, not the one above the gas station — I ate 50 of them in two minutes! Everyone at the hospital was so impressed."
They Problem-Solve With Dance-Offs
Season 2, Episode 2. Jason tells Michael that he and Donkey Doug (which viewers now know is his father) once got into a fight about his girlfriend, Sheila.
"One day, Donkey Doug and I got into a fight because I'd framed his girlfriend for boogie board theft," Jason tells Michael. "So he started a new dance crew called 'Hashtag Doug Life' and immediately challenged us to a dance-off. He said, 'Meet us inside the abandoned orange juice factory at midnight.'" He explains that his crew then slashed their tires. "It was dope," Jason concludes.
Jason's High School Was Just a Bunch Of Land-Locked Tugboats
Season 2, Episode 7. "I went to Lynyrd Skynyrd High School in northeast Jacksonville, which was really just a bunch of tugboats tied together," he explains to Tahani. When she asks whether he ever got sea sick, he responds, "No, they were tied together in a junkyard. It wasn't a very good school. For most of my classes, we just sold dirty magazines door-to-door."
Jason later reveals that — to no one's surprise — his teachers weren't the most ethical people. As he tells Tahani, "You're basically like a hot genius teacher who sometimes has sex with me, your student. That used to happen a lot at Lynyrd Skynyrd High School, but this time you won't be arrested."
Swamp Stomp Is An Annual Dance Festival
Screenshot courtesy of NBC Season 3, Episode 1. After Jason almost suffocates in a safe, he decides to change his life. Upon seeing the poster for Swamp Stomp — Jacksonville's 6th annual dance competition — he decides to form a new dance crew. They practice at the Carmen Electra Auditorium, which is located in the Smith & Wesson Performing Arts Center and ATV Repair Shop.
Flu Virus Strains Are Named After People
Season 3, Episode 4. "I love getting my name on stuff," Jason tells Tahani excitedly. "In Jacksonville, I got a flu virus named after me 'cause I kissed a bat on a dare."
Their Airport Is Named After Randy "Macho Man" Savage
Screenshot courtesy of NBC Season 3, Episode 5. OK, so in reality, it's just called the Jacksonville International Airport, but a Non-International Airport named after the late WWE wrestler is a solid joke.
Jason Had His Own Swamp — Kind Of
Season 3, Episode 5. When Michael and the four humans lands in Jason's hometown, he says that he can't wait to show everyone around. "Like, that swamp is where me, Pillboi, and Donkey Doug used to stand and try and blind pilots with laser pointers," he says.
Monster Trucks Qualify As Taxis
Season 3, Episode 5. Only in fictional Jacksonville would this big boy come tearing down the street to pick up the crew instead of the regular taxi that it crushes along the way.
Graffitiing a Red Lobster Is the First Stage of Grief
Season 4, Episode 8. When Team Cockroach begins talking about all the lives they've lived, they ask Janet to share what their Earth funerals were like. As she tells Jason, "Your friends didn't say things about you so much as they graffitied a Red Lobster about you."
Jason responds knowingly: "In Jacksonville, that's the first stage of grief."
The Good Place The Podcast, writer Josh Siegal explained that the other four stages of grief in Jacksonville, which were cut from the episode, are ATV race, tattoo fight, prank call the morgue, and graffiti the morgue (in that order).
They Have A Weird Funeral Tradition
Season 4, Episode 8. "There's a Jacksonville tradition of having your funeral where you were born," he explains to Tahani, Eleanor, and Janet. "I got born in the deep end of a pool right after my mom did a cannonball."
Piñatas Are Apparently Hard To Come By
Season 4, Episode 8. During Tahani's eulogy to Jason, she says that despite his difficult childhood, he always looked on the bright side. "He once told me the closest he'd ever gotten to having a piñata on his birthday was when a seagull ate too many condoms on the beach and exploded," she says, which causes Jason to smile fondly.
he loves Jacksonville — even if he's the only one.