The show is the latest in a line of similar-themed shows
CBS’s line of offerings this fall includes the brand new show God Friended Me. It is from the Greg Berlanti and imagines what someone would do if God friend requests someone on Facebook. Media sources indicate that the program will not only show the online behavior of the Almighty, but it will also explore the convergence of existentialism, faith, and science.
The story is about an explicit atheist whose is shocked when God not only wants to be his friend but uses Facebook to have him help people around the city and do good deeds. It is designed as a light comedy with a heart.
God Friended Me is not a new concept in the genre. It is another example of using faith as a central part of the programming like Joan of Arcadia and Touched by an Angel. There is also a faint resemblance to 100 Deeds for Eddie McDowd. One of the main differences is the inclusion of social media in the show. It is unclear why the main character has to be an atheist, and why God would use Facebook to select a trusted agent. It can be regarded as a successor to the 2017 show Kevin (Probably) Saves the World broadcasted by ABC.
CBS has repeatedly tried faith-based programs. Living Biblically was another comedy about a man trying to follow the rules of the Old Testament, which only lasted two episodes before being canceled. It is unclear if the show will be successful, but given the fact that the last two faith-based sitcoms failed, it does not give good reasoning to be optimistic.
Atheists have complained that the show makes light of not believing in God. The portrayal of Atheists as a temporary state for someone with lapsed faith ignores that Atheists have made a conscious decision based on critical thinking and reasoning.