He’s not the Anti-Christ. He’s just a youth in a hoodie. This isn’t a quote from the book or the show, it’s just my take on it… Good Omens (the book by the late Terry Pratchett and the still living Neil Gaiman) feel like the love child of a mad love affair between Douglas Adams (Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy) and the Monty Python writers. If you don’t know who they are stop reading at once and bugger off (as John Cleese would say!) No, don’t go! Just go to Youtube and watch. I love me some silly British humour. I grew up watching great (?) comedy like The Goodies, The Two Ronnies, Doctor Who, and even The Benny Hill Show. I loved all the old British sitcoms like Are You Being Served and Love Thy Neighbour. And Monty Python, of course. There was a time I could recite word-for-word their skit Why Michelangelo didn’t paint the Last Supper.
I read Good Omens recently. I possibly read it years ago but I can’t be sure. It is definitely the kind of thing I read in my teens and early 20s, snorting quietly to myself in the train. I read it last month because I was super keen to watch the new series on Amazon but I think I made a tactical error. I enjoyed reading it (although whoever told me that you don’t use footnotes in fiction was dead right. Trying to read it became a little frustrating as every other page seemed to have a lengthy footnote. Granted, I could have ignored them but to be honest, many of the best laughs were in the footnotes.)
It was reminiscent of the time I saw The Lion King musical and fell asleep. (It was late, I had a small child) I’d seen the movie dozens…possibly hundreds of times…and I knew the dialogue by heart. It was visually spectacular but…boring! I knew exactly what was going to happen next and so it was with Good Omens.
Do good stories date? As much as I loved the book, it is possibly in need of an update but I don’t think it will ever happen considering Sir Terry Pratchett is no longer with us. The story was probably au courant at the time of writing but there are so many dated pop-culture references in the book that the writers of the series seemed to have included where appropriate (answering machines, anyone?) To be fair, I only watched the first two episodes before losing interest and I feel so bad about it. I am sure a lot of people love it and no doubt I will go back and watch the rest. After all, the cast is brilliant. How lucky we are to see Michael Sheen and David Tennant together on screen.
Imagine writing something that loads of people read. Imagine how George R R Martin feels right now. Millions of people world-wide clamouring for his next book in the Game of Thrones series. I am hoping that all those disappointed in the series ending will go and get the books. There is so much more to the story than the HBO series could include, but far fewer tits. And now that the show has wrapped, perhaps GRRM can back to his writing desk and get that book out. Maybe he can take Diana Gabaldon with him so we can see what Jamie and Claire are up to.