The Good Place: Philosophically Sound?

I think it would be interesting if someone familiar with philosophy or moral theory could dissect some of the main thematic elements in the television series "The Good Place". Main character Eleanor awakes after death in heaven, only to realize she isn’t a "good enough" person to belong there. She receives lessons from a former ethics professor, which she attempts to apply towards her daily life to become a better person.
The show quotes Kant, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Albert Camus, among others, and offhandedly mentions topics like moral particularism and utilitarianism. While the show takes these moral lessons in stride, it doesn’t do much to unpack them in the context of the show’s characters. Moreover, while much of the show focuses on the question, "what does it mean to be a good person?" I think there are other philosophical questions the show hints at, like what heaven or hell really is, and in which scenarios we can or should put ourselves before others.
What questions about morality and ethics does "The Good Place" raise, and why should they matter to lay audiences? How does this show make these topics accessible to viewers, and why should it matter?

  • I also think dissecting it under different ethical theories that can include Deontology, Utilitarianism, Virtue Ethics, and Consequential Ethics. That would narrow it down to specifics in order to truly understand the types of characters on "The Good Place", and why they have ended up where they are. – Amanda 5 years ago

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