Actresses Lucy Lawless & Jaime Murray Perform Jean-Paul Sartre’s “No Exit” for The Partially Examined Life Podcast

Spartacus sartre

Lucy Law­less (Star of Xena the War­rior Princess and notable con­trib­u­tor to such shows as Spar­ti­ca, Bat­tlestar Galac­ti­ca, and Parks & Recre­ation) pre­vi­ous­ly appeared on the Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life Phi­los­o­phy Pod­cast in Fall 2012. And, in Spring 2013, she sang with me (under my musi­cian moniker Mark Lint) on an orig­i­nal song called “Things We Should Do Before We Die.” Now she’s joined fel­low PEL host Wes Alwan (“The Valet”) and me to cre­ate an audio­play of Jean-Paul Sartre’s 1944 play “No Exit,” where she plays the work­ing class, hos­tile les­bian Inès Ser­ra­no with a pret­ty hilar­i­ous off-the-cuff gener­i­cal­ly Euro­pean accent against my rel­a­tive­ly dead­pan Joseph Garcin.

The third damned soul in our one-room hell was played by a delight­ful­ly shrieky Jaime Mur­ray, friend and Spar­ta­cus co-star of Lucy’s. You like­ly know Jaime for her role as Lila, the psy­chot­ic main guest star in Sea­son 2 of Dex­ter, and right now she appears in the sci-fi shows Defi­ance and Ware­house 13.

The play is about three dead peo­ple stuck in a room togeth­er, any two of which would prob­a­bly reach some equi­lib­ri­um. But, as a three­some, they enter into a tox­ic dynam­ic where none can get what he or she needs out of the oth­ers.

To hear Lucy, Jamie and me per­form “No Exit,” click below or lis­ten at


The record­ing was made in sup­port of the Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life episode dis­cussing Sartre, cov­er­ing this play as well as his essays “Exis­ten­tial­ism is a Human­ism” (1946), and “Bad Faith,” (which con­sti­tutes part 1, chap­ter 2 of Being & Noth­ing­ness, 1943). These con­vey the essence of Sartre’s exis­ten­tial­ism and give a pic­ture of his view of man’s rad­i­cal free­dom (we’re con­demned to be free!) and what for him serves as some sem­blance of an ethics.

For the Sartre episode, click below or lis­ten at


The audio­play is the sec­ond in a series, with the first being the PEL Play­ers’ per­for­mance of Pla­to’s dia­logue, The Gor­gias.

For those with who want more, PEL offers access to an out­takes reel. The pic­ture above fea­tures both actress­es in Spar­ta­cus.

Mark Lin­sen­may­er is the head hon­cho at The Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life, the #1 down­loaded phi­los­o­phy pod­cast on the plan­et, which pro­vides amus­ing, in-depth dis­cus­sions of philoso­phers old and new. Mark is also a musi­cian who wrote a song just for this audio­play.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Jean-Paul Sartre’s No Exit: A BBC Adap­ta­tion Star­ring Harold Pin­ter (1964)

Wal­ter Kaufmann’s Clas­sic Lec­tures on Niet­zsche, Kierkegaard and Sartre (1960)

The Exis­ten­tial­ism Files: How the FBI Tar­get­ed Camus, and Then Sartre After the JFK Assas­si­na­tion

100 Free Online Phi­los­o­phy Cours­es

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.