SPOILERS Discussion of Good Omens, the series

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Dotsie

Sergeant-at-Arms
Jul 28, 2008
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#1
For those lucky people who've seen it :)

I'm only one episode in, due to being on holiday & Sticky Midget 2 being unable to sleep two nights since we got back.

Anyway, please don't carry on reading if you don't to see any spoilers.
 

Dotsie

Sergeant-at-Arms
Jul 28, 2008
8,807
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#2
LOVE Aziraphale and Crowley, Sheen & Tennant are so right for the roles. Really liked the extra scenes, where we see them through the ages.

Great also that there's a more diverse cast than the book implies, although I did wonder about Pepper, as she's supposed to have red hair - otherwise, would the link with the four horsemen be obvious? But lo, at the start of episode 2, she's wearing red wellies and mac. Also, would the Lord of the Flies realistically be a woman? Shouldn't she be Lady of the Flies? Peed off that Anathema is a millionaire! Way too stylish to be in the role - until she lands in the UK, buys a bike with no gears, and puts on a pair of Harry Potter-style glasses. Unlikely.

Not impressed with Adam I'm afraid. He's the weakest link in the Them, and in no way does he seem to be a leader (he also can't act unfortunately). The character doesn't seem to have that traditional 'Boy's Own' theme going on - where are the long lazy summer days with scrumping and thinking up amazing games to play for the Them? Possibly there isn't enough screen time to show how the Them hang on his every word. Happily, he is a minor character, and Sheen & Tennant are getting all the air time.
 
Jul 27, 2008
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#3
The only thing missing for me was one of my favourite parts of the book, the four bikers of the apocalypse, as that brought back happy memories of belting down the M6 at often illegal speeds before all the speed camera's were there.:devil:. But due to time and money it was not possible to include it.
 

Kdal90

New Member
Jun 12, 2019
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#4
I loved it. I managed to binge watch it over 2 days when my son was napping or playing. David Tennant is one of my favourite actors so was excited to see how he portrayed one of Terry's characters. I actually haven't read Good Omens yet. It's next on my to buy list. Once I've read the book I'm looking forward rewatching the series so I can make comparisons.
As for my current opinion on the series i enjoyed it as much as I have the other dramatisations. I find that Terry's books port well onto video and with the right cast the humour can be just as funny.
 
Jul 27, 2008
16,366
85
3,075
Stirlingshire, Scotland
#5
I loved it. I managed to binge watch it over 2 days when my son was napping or playing. David Tennant is one of my favourite actors so was excited to see how he portrayed one of Terry's characters. I actually haven't read Good Omens yet. It's next on my to buy list. Once I've read the book I'm looking forward rewatching the series so I can make comparisons.
As for my current opinion on the series i enjoyed it as much as I have the other dramatisations. I find that Terry's books port well onto video and with the right cast the humour can be just as funny.
There are two versions of Good Omens the original, and the new edition without the errors.
 

Molokov

Lance-Corporal
Sep 29, 2011
332
1
2,325
Adelaide, South Australia
ausdwcon.org
#6
I also enjoyed the series, although there were a few things that grated on me just a little (I'll detail them below). On the whole it was great. I loved:
- Sheen and Tennant as Aziraphale and Crowley
- All of Episode 1
- Shadwell
- Adam and The Them
- Gabriel, Hastur and Ligur
- The history of A&C in episode 3
- The costumes
- The music (incidental and Queen, and the variations played over the closing credits)
- Lots of little tidbits I'd forgotten were in the book.
- The ending (that's not in the book)
- The diversity of casting (genders and skin colour) for many of the smaller roles. It was, of course, a lot of white people in the main cast, but it *is* England...

What didn't sit so well with me was:
- Anathema being American - although I grew accustomed to it after a short while. It was just the initial shock and I think I'll be more accepting of it in future.
- Frances McDormand as God. Her voice is just too American for the part. I think the Narrator should have had an English (BBC) accent or something more neutral that McDormand, even if it was still American. Plus there was sometimes too much narration, some of it unnecessary - describing exactly what we could see on screen.
- Death's voice. Sorry, Brian Cox, but that wasn't how Death should sound. Christopher Lee got it right in the Discworld cartoons and The Colour of Magic. I know Good Omens Death isn't Discworld Death, but the voices should be similar.
- Death's look - those eye sockets were just a bit too creepy.
- The "signposts" used as on-screen titles. I didn't like those at all. Would have much preferred just the words as titles without the silly animated signpost.

I'll try and see if I can get over these things on the next rewatch, because I do think it was very much a wonderful show, but I have the mental images in my head of having read the book so many times over the past 30 years to try and shake off a bit.


As for my current opinion on the series i enjoyed it as much as I have the other dramatisations. I find that Terry's books port well onto video and with the right cast the humour can be just as funny.
Having been involved in Discworld theatre for a number of years, I can tell you that it works incredibly well on stage too - that way you can let the audience's imagination take care of the more complex special effects and just focus on the humour in the dialogue and action :)
 

Molokov

Lance-Corporal
Sep 29, 2011
332
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Adelaide, South Australia
ausdwcon.org
#7
There are two versions of Good Omens the original, and the new edition without the errors.
Well.. the "errors" are fairly minor. (A number of typos, or other such small mistakes). But yes, Neil Gaiman has made some corrections so future printings won't have the same problem. If you get the TV-tie in copy of the novel, it's probably the most correct version to date. I'll stick with my ratty paperback purchased in the early 1990's - because I managed to get both Terry and Neil to sign it, admittedly 12 years apart, but it's still signed by both authors!
 

=Tamar

Sergeant
May 20, 2012
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#8
If I recall correctly, Gaiman has said that there were some astounding typos in some of the editions, non-obvious errors that were created by the use of OCR software. I'm tempted to go through the new edition page by page with one of my older ones, to try to pick out examples, but I probably don't own the worst one.
Oh, and Gaiman also said that he found the typo in the new edition...
 

Penfold

Sergeant-at-Arms
Dec 29, 2009
8,259
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www.lenbrookphotography.com
#10
I noticed on my second watch through that when discussing feeding the ducks in St. James's Park, there wasn't a single duck in sight (and also on subsequent visits to the park). There does seem to be a "what duck" theme running through the series. :cool:
 

Catch-up

Sergeant-at-Arms
Jul 26, 2008
7,541
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Michigan, U.S.A.
#11
Finally finished watching it last night! I could almost copy and past what Molokov said, with just a few differences.

Loved the way Sheen and Tennant played the main characters! They brought them to life in a way I never fully imagined them in the books - and I loved them in the books.

Some scenes were just a little bit drudgey. The ones with the Them, mostly Adam's parts. And the scenes with the demons. I know they're demons, but they could have been just a smidge more dynamic.

Anethema was all wrong, but I felt by the end of the series she had kind of pulled it together and felt like she fit a little bit more.

I loved the voice of God, it somehow felt fitting that she sounded like a mom. I think it would have helped if she'd made an appearance.

But, bottom line, we all loved it! Each episode was like finding treasure.
 

Toothy

Moderator
City Watch
Jul 26, 2008
880
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2,475
England
#12
There’s so much hidden in plain sight in the series. I’ve watched it a couple of times and spotted multiple new things second time around. Undoubtedly there’s more.

A few examples are Aziraphale’s parting comment to Crowley, “Mind how you go” (The Pratchett family farewell to each other), the Just William book series in tired bookshop (Terry was a fan), I wondered whether the choice of performing Hamlet in the Globe was a nod to David Tennant’s recent portrayal of the same, the nod to Dirty Harry (“Do you feel lucky”), and so on. I believe the reg. number of one of the cars is Tardis backwards, but haven’t spotted that yet.

Overall a good production, despite the niggles everyone will inevitably have.
 

Molokov

Lance-Corporal
Sep 29, 2011
332
1
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#13
the nod to Dirty Harry (“Do you feel lucky”), and so on. I believe the reg. number of one of the cars is Tardis backwards, but haven’t spotted that yet.
The Dirty Harry bit is straight from the book.

Mr Young's car (when arriving at the airfield) has the number plate SID*RAT. There's a few other Doctor Who subtle references that people have spotted (not me!) - Newt's tie is the 4th Doctor's scarf, and amongst the planets that Crowley tries to decide to go to is a page entitled "Gallifrey".
 
May 20, 2012
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I think a fan of the Just William books might appreciate the scenes with the Them. I have a feeling there are elements that are directly connected but non-obvious to those of us who have never read that series.

I think part of the issue with the demons is that they were intended to be both stupid and banal. The banality of evil isn't supposed to be dramatic. The whole point is that evil isn't exciting at all. The demons are just disgusting, and too stupid to understand the subtlety of Crowley's modern style of evil. Big, obvious evils like the worst of the Spanish Inquisition are more likely to put people off evil than to inspire imitation in anyone who thinks clearly (despite the thin-edge amusement of the kids playing at it while using a swing as the equivalent of the Comfy Chair). Meanwhile the ripple effects of the cell phone outages will lead to thousands of small evils that tarnish society. (Was it that same outage that inconvenienced Crowley at a significant moment?)
 

Dotsie

Sergeant-at-Arms
Jul 28, 2008
8,807
70
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#16
I've finished it all and I loved it. I quite enjoyed the relationship between Aziraphale and Crowley, it definitely ran deeper than in the book. I also got used to Anathema, since the subject of her being super-rich didn't come up again. I thought the four horsemen were great, and I didn't mind Death not having the deep voice - he was super creepy.

For the most part though, the Them could have been portrayed with Thunderbirds puppets. I know it's hard to find good child actors, but it's not impossible!

BTW, the Bentley's plate was NIAT RUC, or 'curtain' backwards. Any thoughts on the significance of that?
 
Jul 27, 2008
16,366
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Stirlingshire, Scotland
#17
Could be curtains for the car as it came through the flames and ongoing demise or mystic curtain.

Another thought just stuck me while reading a review of G.O. film was again this scene in the bookshop where Gabriel was holding a copy of Mrs Beaton's cook book while talking about buying porn, a thought just flashed in I wonder what Fanny Cradock would have said about that.:eek: for those who don't know who she was, I think the first TV cooking programme with her hen pecked hubby in attendance.:laugh:
 
Last edited:
May 20, 2012
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#18
If you see the license plate coming at you in your rear view mirror, it's legible, and it probably means curtains for you. I think some places still put the word AMBULANCE on the front as ECNALUBMA, for faster recognition.

The cookbook-pornography was probably a Nanny Ogg's Cookbook allusion - first edition, of course, maybe even the one that wasn't actually printed but existed in manuscript. You know that someone at the printer's made a copy before they sent it back for revision. Or maybe it was because of the term "food-porn" for recipe pictures.
 
Jul 27, 2008
16,366
85
3,075
Stirlingshire, Scotland
#19
Could be curtains for the car as it came through the flames and ongoing demise or mystic curtain.

Another thought just stuck me while reading a review of G.O. film was again this scene in the bookshop where Gabriel was holding a copy of Mrs Beaton's cook book while talking about buying porn, a thought just flashed in I wonder what Fanny Cradock would have said about that.:eek: for those who don't know who she was, I think the first TV cooking programme with her hen pecked hubby in attendance.:laugh:
This was the photo I forgot to put in.
 

Attachments

May 20, 2012
3,180
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#20
Come to think of it, given that Gabriel considered food to be a pollutant of his angelic essence, for him a cookbook would be very like pornography.
 

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