Moral Philosophy on TV? Pretty Much Pop #32 Judges The Good Place

Mark Lin­sen­may­er, Eri­ca Spyres, and Bri­an Hirt dis­cuss Michael Schur’s NBC TV show. Is it good? (Yes, or we would­n’t be cov­er­ing it?) Is it actu­al­ly a sit-com? Does it effec­tive­ly teach phi­los­o­phy? What did hav­ing actu­al philoso­phers on the staff (after sea­son one) con­tribute, and was that enough? We talk TV finales, the dra­mat­ic impact of the show’s con­vo­lut­ed struc­ture, the puz­zle of heav­en being death, and more.

Here are a few arti­cles to get you warmed up:

If you like the show, you should also check out The Offi­cial Good Place Pod­cast, espe­cial­ly the inter­views with Schur him­self. There are also sup­ple­men­tary edu­ca­tion­al videos with pro­fes­sor Todd May like this one on exis­ten­tial­ism.

A few clips: What’s the deal with the “Jere­my Bearimy” time mea­sure­ment? The Trol­ley Prob­lem, meet­ing Hypa­tia, finale clip with Arvo Part’s “Spiegel Im Spiegel.”

This episode includes bonus dis­cus­sion that you can only hear by sup­port­ing the pod­cast at This pod­cast is part of the Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life pod­cast net­work.

Pret­ty Much Pop: A Cul­ture Pod­cast is the first pod­cast curat­ed by Open Cul­ture. Browse all Pret­ty Much Pop posts or start with the first episode.

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