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  • -Welcome to the show. -Thank you.

  • And congratulations on, what is it?

  • Season three now?

  • -Season four. -Season four of The Good Place.

  • -Mm-hmm. -That's starting... That started tonight.

  • -Yes, it's the final season. -Yeah.

  • -Congratulations. -(cheering and applause)

  • I-I love the premise of the show,

  • because it's basically, like, a...

  • Well, it's like the afterlife.

  • -Mm-hmm. -And then some people are in hell,

  • some people are in heaven, but then some people

  • have been mixed up on where they should be.

  • Where do you think you would be?

  • The Good Place or...

  • -No, I'm saying, like... -I'm an actress.

  • (chuckles): I would go straight to hell where I belong.

  • (laughter)

  • Who makes money this way?

  • Yeah. (blows raspberry)

  • -You think you'd be in hell? -Yeah. Where are you going?

  • -Will I see you there? -Uh...

  • I think I'll get into heaven 'cause of my mom.

  • I think my mom has prayed enough

  • that they'll be like, "Yeah, she's got a plus-one.

  • Come on in. Come on in."

  • -That's probably what it'll be for me. -We'll see. Yeah.

  • (laughs): But... I like how you're, like,

  • -you're waiting for me. "Oh, Trevor!" -Okay, Trev. Yeah.

  • Um, the show... the show has been really popular.

  • It's just, like, got-got an interesting vibe about it.

  • Like, what the story is. But you have become

  • really popular on the show not just because

  • of your character but because of the backstory.

  • -Because this is your first acting gig. -Mm-hmm.

  • -You were a teacher. -Mm-hmm.

  • No, I was a teacher, then a TV host,

  • -so I used to do what you do. -Okay.

  • Um, for less money.

  • -Yes. -(laughs): Uh, and I then moved to America.

  • Didn't know what I was gonna do. Thought I'd just be

  • -a writer. -Oh, so you were getting paid in pounds.

  • -Yeah. -So maybe it's more money, but carry on.

  • Well, it is kind of the same now 'cause of the economy.

  • -(laughs): But yeah. -Well, that's Brexit, not my fault.

  • -Yes. -I know.

  • Um, so, I, uh, yeah. I moved here to be a writer,

  • and I-I got, uh, an agent based off a script that I wrote,

  • and that same agent was also representing people

  • -at The Good Place. -Right.

  • And he said, "We need a Pakistani, overly tall,

  • annoying Englishwoman. Off you go."

  • And I went to the audition, and I got it.

  • Yeah, but you-you've really connected on the show.

  • You-you have a vibe about you.

  • One thing I've heard a lot of people say--

  • not just from the show, but in real life-- is they go like,

  • -"Jameela is one of the funniest..." -I'm a bitch?

  • No, they go, "Jameela's one of the fu..."

  • I don't read comments on YouTube.

  • I'm talking about real life.

  • -People go, "Jameela's..." -No, they just say I'm a slut.

  • They go, "Jameela is one of the funniest people

  • "you will ever meet, but she is also one of the most,

  • "like, what people would say 'woke' people

  • -you will ever meet at the same time." -Right.

  • Right? Like, how did that journey begin?

  • How do you go... Like, we all grow up

  • -in the world that we grow up in. Right? -Yeah.

  • I always say to people, like, I think wokeness is learned.

  • I don't think anyone just wakes up, and they're just, like,

  • -"This is how the world works." -Yeah.

  • It's been a journey for you. Where did it begin?

  • Uh, I was probably around 19 years old.

  • That's when I started activism. And, uh...

  • Started in activism, rather. And it's just been an on--

  • Like, it's just an ongoing journey.

  • It's an upwards-- like, it's an uphill struggle, I guess.

  • Like, you know, it's something that you're constantly learning,

  • and no one is perfectly woke.

  • No one knows all of the answers.

  • Everything is constantly updating around us in humanity,

  • -and we need to update alongside it. -Right.

  • And so I'm just-- I call myself a feminist-in-progress,

  • because I consider myself never fully formed.

  • And I think that that helps me know

  • -that I always have more to do, more to learn -Oh, wow.

  • and I can always be and do better.

  • -So, you know... -(cheering and applause)

  • You may-- you may refer to yourself

  • as a feminist-in-in-progress, but a lot of people see you

  • as a face of what they would call

  • the body positivity movement.

  • But you don't see yourself that way.

  • No. That movement is not for me.

  • That movement was designed for women

  • who are discriminated against, like, in-in front of doctors

  • and in our society because of their size.

  • That-that is a--

  • It's a must-have movement for those people.

  • I am slender, so I'm not discriminated against

  • because of my size. I actually believe

  • in body liberation and body neutrality.

  • Like, I-I believe in just not thinking about your body,

  • and I have the luxury of being able to do that,

  • because I'm not being constantly persecuted for my size.

  • So, I am someone who used to have an eating disorder.

  • I still have bod-body dysmorphia,

  • and I just manage to get more things done in my day

  • when I'm not thinking about my figure.

  • I can't stand in front of a mirror and say,

  • "Oh, I love my thighs. I love my cellulite."

  • I can just not think about them

  • and think about my bank account and orgasms, you know?

  • (cheering and applause)

  • Did you say "think about my bank account and orgasms"?

  • -Yeah. -WOMAN: Yeah!

  • And, like, world peace and, like...

  • No, no. It's just--

  • I just think there's a business opportunity here,

  • where you-you sell people mirrors

  • that don't show them themselves-- just show you,

  • -like, a bank balance going up -Yeah.

  • and-and then, like, their last orgasm.

  • -Let's do it, man. -We can just do it. We can make--

  • -We just sell it as an app. -Yeah. There you go.

  • -You can make a lot of money. -Yeah.

  • It-it is-- it is interesting that you say

  • -"feminist-in-progress," because it does feel -Mm-hmm.

  • like we're in a world now where everyone wants to be heard--

  • -rightfully so-- but then the conversations around it -Mm-hmm.

  • can become so visceral and, you know, like,

  • no one wants to listen in and around these conversations.

  • You've been very quick to-to just take it.

  • If someone says, "Hey, Jameela, you didn't include these people

  • in your conversation" or "You've excluded these people

  • in this conversation," you just go, like,

  • "Yes, I'm sorry. I'll include them, and then I move on."

  • Does it ever get tiring to do that?

  • Or, like-like, how did you decide to take that approach?

  • No. Like, I only have the freedom that I have now

  • because other people before me fought for women of color

  • to be given opportunities that I'm now able to benefit from.

  • So, no, I never tire of being corrected if I'm wrong.

  • You know, I-I have more to learn,

  • and I-- and I'm grateful that people don't patronize me

  • -and they think that I can take the criticism. -Right.

  • And I can. And I think that the thing

  • that we are sometimes searching for in our society

  • is moral purity, and you're just never gonna find that.

  • All you can find is progress and not perfection.

  • And so that's what we should all be striving towards.

  • You know, if we-- if we completely cut people down

  • every time that they show their ignorance or they make a mistake

  • or they have a mistake from ten years ago,

  • then people are gonna feel like there's no value

  • in learning or progressing whatsoever

  • because you're punished forever

  • for the sin that you no longer stand by.

  • So, you know, if you haven't done irrevocable harm,

  • I think you should be allowed the opportunity

  • to learn and grown and do better.

  • And, so, you know, ten years ago, I was...

  • -(applause and cheering) -Thanks. But...

  • Eight years ago, seven years ago,

  • ten years ago, I was problematic in my thinking,

  • and there were loads of things that I didn't know

  • -and didn't understand... -Right.

  • ...and thought I was right about.

  • And had I been counseled at that time,

  • I would never have gone on to become someone

  • who now spends all of their life fighting for women's rights

  • and the rights of people who are marginalized,

  • and who is now being able to, you know, get Instagram

  • and Facebook to change their global policies

  • -to protect young people. -That-that's a huge thing...

  • So thank God I didn't get counselled, 'cause I'm...

  • -Right. That's a huge thing. -I got better.

  • -(applause) -Tell-Tell... But tell us more about that.

  • No, this is... this is really... This is a really powerful, uh,

  • you know, movement that you spearheaded,

  • and that was, you got the social media companies

  • to change how they viewed what advertising,

  • uh, people were able to see under the age of 18.

  • Because you-you've been very vocal

  • against, like, people who advertise, like,

  • -those tummy teas, and the, uh... -Don't know what you mean.

  • The tummy teas and the...

  • Like, all those, like, super diet fads

  • -for people who, like... -They're laxatives.

  • They're all laxatives. You just shit fire.

  • -That's it. -Is that what they are? -(laughter)

  • Mm-hmm. And then, you don't shit again

  • for several days afterwards.

  • -And then you need more, and it's just bad. -Oh.

  • -Sexy, but it's bad. -But I've seen it.

  • But the people have, like, a flat tummy when they do it.

  • -Yeah. -They'll, like, have the tea, and they go like,

  • "Look at my tummy," and then, like, they have the tea.

  • Yeah, their photoshopped, surgically-enhanced tummy.

  • (bleep) off. Sorry.

  • -(laughter) -But... I thought the tea...

  • (applause and cheering)

  • So anyway... No, but they're...

  • Unfortunately, there are a lot of impressionable young people

  • who don't know that the tea is a scam.

  • -They don't know that a lot of these ideas are scams. -Yes.

  • You went out to the social media companies,

  • and you said, "It's your job to do something."

  • What are they doing?

  • Uh, so they have made it impossible

  • for minors... anyone under the 18... age of 18

  • to see cosmetic surgery procedures being sold,

  • or any kind of diet or detox products.

  • It just will not come up on your feed.

  • And, uh, if you're over 18,

  • and you don't want to see these things,

  • and you see that people are selling, like, false claims--

  • -like, "Lose 300 pounds in five minutes..." -Yes.

  • "if you just drink this, like..."

  • -I don't know. Banana. -Right. That's like...

  • -Yeah. Like that. -That would be, like,

  • -a piranha drink. It was, like, "Drink these piranhas." -Yeah.

  • -You know, you drink piranhas. Yeah. -Yeah, you drink piranhas.

  • -You know that. -And they eat you, and you lose everything.

  • -Yes. -And, so, yeah, exactly. And so, you can report those,

  • and they get taken down.

  • So Instagram and Facebook, also--

  • these two, like, huge corporations--

  • are most importantly, making a stand against...

  • Because we've, like, hyper-normalized this culture

  • -of celebrities and influencers... -Yes.

  • ...just being able to sell, like,

  • everything other than heroin injected into your eyes,

  • freely on the Internet to their really young followers.

  • And so, what we needed was the powers that be

  • to say, "No, we do not accept this."

  • And, so, I've only... This is just the start

  • of what I'm doing.

  • Like, next, I'm moving on to legislation,

  • because we need to get this stuff off the market

  • and away from children.

  • I'm someone who took these products,

  • and I will never get my full health back.

  • And so, I'm damned if this is gonna happen again

  • 20 years later.

  • -(applause and cheering) -Wow.

  • I think...

  • I think... I'm gonna see you in heaven.

  • -(laughter) -I'm just putting it out there.

  • The final season of The Good Place airs Thursdays

  • at 9:00 p.m. on NBC.

  • Jameela