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Jeremy Bearimy From The Good Place Explained

Michael Schur's subversive comedy The Good Place kept fans guessing for four excellent seasons by changing its own rules and embracing complex philosophical theory. Eleanor Shellstrop (Kristen Bell) and Chidi Anagonye (William Jackson-Harper) tried to navigate the titular Good Place with the assistance of Michael (Ted Danson), only to find out they've been trapped in the Bad Place the entire time. Meanwhile, lessons about Kant's moral imperative or the trolley problem helped characters understand the impact of their actions, even if it risked confusing audiences. While the show spent a lot of time in the Good Place and the Bad Place, it also featured locations on Earth, typically through flashbacks during the first two seasons. In the third season, however, the entire show shifted to real world settings as the characters tried to redeem themselves through positive behavior. Of course, The Good Place doesn't let that go on for long, as the show reveals that the centuries the group unknowingly spent in the afterlife have disqualified them from earning a spot in the Good Place.

As Eleanor and her friends grapple with this new challenge, they bring up an excellent point — how had they spent so much time in the afterlife when no time had passed on Earth? The answer, that time in the afterlife is a Jeremy Bearimy, is just as confusing as it is enlightening. Here is Jeremy Bearimy, The Good Place's unit of time, explained.

Jeremy Bearimy describes the circular loop that time travels through in The Good Place

As The Good Place moves through its third season, the main characters eventually begin to see that their redemption efforts do not have the impact they expected. Their worldview, Michael explains, is tainted by their knowledge that an afterlife exists. As a result, their efforts to be better are disingenuous. Eleanor, Chidi, Jason, and Tahini were so irredeemable that they have existed in the Bad Place for centuries as a form of torture. However, Chidi notes that although they have been punished for hundreds of years, Michael can return to the exact moment they passed away on Earth. This revelation prompts Chidi to ask whether Michael can travel through time, to which Michael responds that he didn't need to because of Jeremy Bearimy.

Michael explains that Jeremy Bearimy is not a name or a character but a physical representation of the path that time takes in The Good Place. Whereas people on Earth experience time as a linear phenomenon, moving in a straight line from one event to the next, time in the afterlife loops — but not in a simple circular shape. Time moves forwards and then heads backward. Time even goes up and down before it runs back to its starting point, and at times exists outside of itself, as represented by the dot above the letter "I" in Bearimy. As a result, any time frame on Earth is accessible from the passage of a Jeremy Bearimy.

How long is a Jeremy Bearimy?

The Jeremy Bearimy timeline defies the sorts of units used to define linear time, such as years, months, or even minutes. Eleanor points out that the time loop that Jeremy Bearimy creates means that events occur before the events that lead to them occur. Of course, having something be by definition impossible to define has never stopped the internet from trying to explain it. One Reddit user, FlyingDutchman9977, heroically attempted to tie various timelines from The Good Place together to estimate the length of a Jeremy Bearimy. Their post notes that the show gives a definite reference to the amount of time that separated Jason and Tahini's decision to leave the Good Place, 323.6 Jeremy Bearimys. By calculating the length of time it took to complete each character's most important tasks before departing, then dividing the difference in those two lengths by the Jeremy Bearimys that separated their departure, an approximate length can be guessed.

Jason's most important task is playing a perfect game of Madden, which takes him 433,000 tries over about 13,000 years. Tahini needs to complete a to-do list that includes 11,336 items, such as mastering woodworking and paving a driveway, which takes her about 45,000 years. Dividing the difference between those two figures by 323.6 yields a result of 99.3 years, meaning that a Jeremy Bearimy might be a little less than a century, based on FlyingDutchman9977's rough estimates.