The Good Place is a show that only works when it adheres to a strict set of rules. It’s a comedy built around a heady concept that could have a companion course taught in college alongside its episodes. But the weighty issues of morality and good and evil are often made accessible to the viewer though downright silly things.
Jeremy Bearimy is a good example of that, as the concept of linear time on Earth in relation to how time passes elsewhere was essentially explained away with two words written in cursive. After nearly three seasons of an ever-shifting concept of reality and time on The Good Place, viewers finally got an explanation for one of the biggest questions lingering about how it all works. It was super dumb, it broke Chidi and maybe a lot of people at home, but it was also hilarious.
If graphic organizers about linear time doesn’t sound very funny, well, yeah on paper a show about torturing humans for the bad things they did on Earth doesn’t sound all that funny. It’s kind of a show about philosophy and often doubles as a thought experiment simulator. But the fact that it’s one of the funniest and most thoughtful shows on TV speaks to the importance of those rules.
And one of those rules is just how the Bad Place is portrayed on the show. It is hell, after all, which means that 1) it has a gift shop and 2) some pretty terrible things are happening to people who were less than good during their life. The Good Place creator Mike Schur said the writers on the show have some specific rules about what they can and cannot show in the Bad Place, though, and what kinds of torture they want viewers thinking about. According to Vulture, kids are off-limits.