By Dan Snierson
June 07, 2019 at 10:47 PM EDT
Credit: Vivian Zink/NBC

The Good Place is headed into the afterlife. For real.

NBC’s critically acclaimed comedy starring Kristen Bell and Ted Danson will end after the upcoming fourth season, it was announced on Friday. While speaking at a panel in L.A., creator/overlord Mike Schur revealed his plans to wrap up the series with one final season, a plan he began to formulate back in season 2. “After The Good Place was picked up for season 2, the writing staff and I began to map out, as best we could, the trajectory of the show,” he said. “Given the ideas we wanted to explore, and the pace at which we wanted to present those ideas, I began to feel like four seasons – just over 50 episodes – was the right lifespan. At times over the past few years we’ve been tempted to go beyond four seasons, but mostly because making this show is a rare, creatively fulfilling joy, and at the end of the day, we don’t want to tread water just because the water is so warm and pleasant. As such, the upcoming fourth season will be our last.”

“I will be forever grateful to NBC and Universal TV for letting us make The Good Place, and for letting us end it on our own schedule,” he continued. “I will also be forever grateful to the creative team, both on-screen and off, for their hard work and dedication to a very weird idea. We ask the question very frequently, on this show, what do we owe to each other? The answer, for me, is: I owe all of you a whole lot.”

Debuting in 2016, the charming, shrewd and ambitious series revolved around a quartet of recently deceased souls, Eleanor (Bell), Chidi (William Jackson Harper), Tahani (Jameela Jamil), and Jason (Manny Jacinto). The Soul Squad believed that they were living in heaven, a.k.a. the Good Place, only to discover at the end of season 1 — in one of the best finale twists in recent memory — that they were actually toiling in hell, a.k.a. the Bad Place, a wicked sham that was perpetrated by the seemingly avuncular architect of their neighborhood, Michael (Danson). The series also stars D’Arcy Carden as the all-knowing database Janet, who has aided the quartet and the reforming Michael in their journey toward redemption and ultimate goals of reaching paradise.

The only network comedy that routinely name drops moral philosophers such as Aristotle and Kierkegaard, The Good Place peppers its comedy with explorations of ethics and morality. And along the crooked path to enlightenment, the show has claimed a Humanitas Award, a Peabody Award, and a Television Critics Association Award for Program of the Year. Danson was nominated last year for an Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Emmy.

The Good Place tallied a 1.6 rating in the 18-to-49-year-old demographic and 4.6 million viewers per season 3 episode, when factoring in a week of DVR playback. The show is currently in production on the final season, which debuts this fall and sadly will remind of the fleeting nature of existence.

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The Good Place

  • TV Show
  • 4
  • 53
  • Michael Schur
  • NBC