Fall TV Preview
The Good Place Preview NBC

Fall TV First Impression: The Good Place

The broadcast networks have nearly 20 shows debuting this fall, including new sitcoms from Kevin James and Matt LeBlanc, the story of MLB’s first female player and Michael Weatherly’s NCIS follow-up. To help you prep for it all, TVLine is offering First Impressions of the not-for-review pilots.

Next up on our list….

THE SHOW | NBC’s The Good Place (Thursdays at 8:30/7:30c, following an hour-long sneak preview on Monday, Sept. 19 at 10 pm)

THE COMPETITION | ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy, CBS’ Thursday Night Football (and then The Great Indoors, new), Fox’s Rosewood and The CW’s Legends of Tomorrow

THE CAST | Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars), Ted Danson (Cheers), William Jackson Harper (The Electric Company), Jameela Jamil, Manny Jacinto and D’Arcy Carden (Broad City)

RELATED Fall TV 2016: Your Handy Calendar of 90+ Premiere Dates

THE SET-UP | In this new, straight-to-series offering from Michael Schur (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Parks and Recreation), Bell plays Eleanor Shellstrop, a rather selfish piece of work who upon dying accidentally ends up in “The Good Place.”

RELATED Fall TV Schedule 2016: What’s on When? And Versus What?

THE FIRST IMPRESSION | From go, Schur has created a colorful and fun-to-look-at world with The Good Place‘s titular haven, which is alternately sprawling, lush lawns and cozy, frozen yogurt shop-laden streetscapes. The pilot is also peppered with freeze frame-worthy details, such as a list of “point values” assigned to good and bad Earthly behaviors. (Sorry, vegans!) All told, The Good Place is a fun, funny place to visit — especially once the ramifications of Eleanor’s accidental entry are felt.

As said bad girl, Bell is a highly entertaining mix of snarky Veronica Mars and House of Lies‘ crafty Jeannie, reluctant to modulate her misbehavior, as much as she must. Two-time Emmy winner Danson, as the architect who crafted this particular parcel of The Good Place, imbues Michael with the pride and joy of an ebullient, less-twisted Willy Wonka. Harper, Jamil/Jacinto and Carden play Eleanor’s “soulmate”/confidant, her cloying neighbors and a Siri-like knowledge base, respectively.

THE TVLINE BOTTOM LINE | The Good Place inhabits an “OK” place on the schedule, as the only comedy in its time slot… for the first month or so, until the Big Bang-buoyed Life in Pieces returns. But because of its limited, by-design 13-episode run — and despite having a soft lead-in in Superstore — viewers shouldn’t worry about this one perishing before its time.

MORE FIRST IMPRESSIONS The CW’s Frequency, ABC’s Conviction, Fox’s Pitch, Fox’s Lethal Weapon, NBC’s This Is Us, ABC’s Designated Survivor, NBC’s Timeless, CBS’ Bull and ABC’s Notorious

Watch the trailer for NBC’s The Good Place, then vote in our poll.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

21 Comments
  1. Eric says:

    Netflix show binge show if I have ever seen one.

  2. Sam says:

    Wait, so the whole SERIES is only meant to be 13 episodes?

  3. Shaun says:

    Sounds good,but it’s up against Greys so not live for me XD

  4. Kevin K says:

    WATCH IT. Should be a great and funny series and Kristen Bell gives an outstanding comedic performance as does Ted Danson. One of the best new comedies this upcoming season.

    • Velocisexual says:

      And you know this how? There is no leaked pilot or anything like that for this show, so none of us know if it’s really “great and funny” do we?

      • Kevin K says:

        What are you complaining about? If you’re not planning to watch The Good Place then don’t watch it after the first episode.

        • tsevca says:

          The comment had nothing to do with whether Velocisexual looks forward to it or not. He/she only made a good point that trailer can show a very misleading picture. There were shows before that had a great trailer and pilot revealed it was terrible. And there were shows that had boring trailer and ended up being amazing shows. Claiming it´s one of the best upcoming comedies, while not seeing single one of them, is naively sure wild guess.

  5. kate says:

    This has been my only show I have been planning on from the new ones (I think the one about the insurance agents might be fun too) for a bit. But, my only caveat is that I tended to save Superstore for Saturday mornings, and this might join it as I would find myself so disappointed at the 23 minute mark. But, I’m again thinking that TBBT on demand is not that onerous. After a full twenty four hours, it plays a lot of NCIS commercials, but not much else.

  6. Simon Jester says:

    Looks fun, I’ll give it a try. And the art direction reminds me of Pushing Daisies, which is no bad thing.

  7. sarah t says:

    It’s got Kristen Bell, I’m in! I’ve been waiting for this one. especially since I don’t watch Grey’s (meh-Shonda!) and I tried LoT but couldn’t get into it last year. And I love Superstore so this will be a good hour block for me.

  8. Bella says:

    I like the cast. I’ll definitely check it out.

  9. Jay says:

    Ugh, Superstore is so good. “Soft lead-in.” Terrible.

  10. benjamonstertv says:

    It is not facing Life in Pieces, it is facing The Great Outdoors starting in late Oct

  11. HAP says:

    Definitely looking forward to this. But, I have a few questions. I get why this was a straight to series order, given the pedigree of the people behind it. But since when does a fall premiere show only have 13 episodes?

    Noting that Matt was very emphatic about the finite 13, what do they do if this is a smash hit?

  12. Carol C says:

    Looks like fun, but it’s sooooooo short!

    • John NYC says:

      I’ve grown to appreciate that: short summer shows I’ve noticed don’t have those filler episodes most winter shows have to stretch things to 20 or more episodes.

      I came to realize I appreciated a higher percentage of the “less important” summer stuff.::: no filler

      • Anna says:

        I’m with you, John. I think 13-15 episodes is the perfect amount if you want to maintain consistent quality with a concise narrative. With longer seasons come filler episodes and loss of cohesiveness over the season. HBO, Showtime, Netflix, etc. are doing it right with their shorter seasons.

  13. Nero tTVFiddler says:

    Very excited about Good Place – looking forward to it, if only for the thirteen episodes of season one. The cast, the people behind the camera, all looks very, very promising.

    This show, along with ‘This is Us’, will be my own ‘must see’ on NBC this fall. :)

  14. Watched this last night. Ted Danson must need the money…this is the worst show I have seen in years!