End of Days, Maybe (Series Review: “Good Omens”)

An irreverent send-up of the Armageddon Bible story, with The Omen and Rosemary’s Baby movie homages placed firmly tongue in cheek. Scathingly funny and ingenious.

SnapShot Plot

Almost too cool for even Amazon Prime is the 6-part series, Good Omens, set mostly in present day London (as well as both Heaven and Hell). The story centers on the peculiar bond between a popular demon named Crowley (brilliantly played by David Tennant) and the angel Aziraphale (in an adorable pixie-like turn by Michael Sheen). Ancient combatants, their dynamic over the long millennia has morphed into something more resembling friendship than enmity, with one irrefutable commonality: their affection for life on Earth. When they receive the news from their emissaries that the End of Days has finally been set into the divine calendar, the writing’s on the wall. The Antichrist – Satan’s Spawn – is about to be born into the world, and in a mere 11 years, when the boy comes into his power, he will unleash Armageddon, or the final battle between Heaven and Hell. That is, unless Crowley and Aziraphale can’t thwart his destiny by inserting themselves into his upbringing in comic and bizarre manifestations of their own. How will it all end? Will it all end? Oh, and did I mention they may be a tad confused about which boy it is?

Parting Shot

To those of you who fondly remember Kevin Smith’s clever biblical parody from 1999, Dogma, as well as the 1960s cult classic Rosemary’s Baby and Wim Wenders’ wondrously elegiac Wings of Desire, than this series is everything you’ve been waiting for and more. Good Omens is based on the 1990 novel by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, who himself created and wrote the series. All six episodes were directed by Douglas Mackinnon, who mined absolute gold from an ensemble cast led by David Tennant, Michael Sheen, Adria Arjona, Miranda Richardson, Michael McKean, Jack Whitehall, Jon Hamm and Frances McDormand (narrating as the voice of God.)

The socio-religious hype about the series may have turned some viewers off to this phenomenal production, despite the clumsiness with which critics decried its release (remember they demanded Netflix cancel it when in fact it’s on Amazon Prime, and being a mini-series the cancellation demand was a moot point?) Notwithstanding anyone’s religiosity, this show is almost too original and fun, with exceptional acting, writing and production credits across the board in the depiction of an unlikely alliance between two opposing foes across the sands of time, who join forces to try and save the world.

Let that be a lesson to Humanity that reaching across the aisle – or in this case across realms – doesn’t have to be a partisan miracle. Amen.

Good Omens is presently streaming on Amazon Prime.

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YouTube Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUJoR4vlIIs

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