A Good Omens weekend

If you somehow missed the news, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omens was made into a mini-series, released on Amazon Prime.

I read the book eons ago (okay, like 2002), which was pre-brain injury, so my recall of the book is spotty (I remember random tidbits and overall plot but not the majority of specifics). In general I know I liked the book, although it was never one of my favorites. However, my friend is…a fan…so when it released, I signed up for my 30-day free Prime trial (yes, I’m one of twenty people who didn’t already subscribe) and got my Good Omens on.

For those not familiar, here’s a blurb:

According to The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch (the world’s only completely accurate book of prophecies, written in 1655, before she exploded), the world will end on a Saturday. Next Saturday, in fact. Just before dinner.

So the armies of Good and Evil are amassing, Atlantis is rising, frogs are falling, tempers are flaring. Everything appears to be going according to Divine Plan. Except a somewhat fussy angel and a fast-living demon—both of whom have lived amongst Earth’s mortals since The Beginning and have grown rather fond of the lifestyle—are not actually looking forward to the coming Rapture.

And someone seems to have misplaced the Antichrist . . .

Now for my review: it was good 🙂

Well worth the watch for the superb acting alone, but I will warn viewers that it requires (or at least is easier with) a certain acceptance of British humor, although not a lot. Also a willingness to go along with the ride, as reality and normalcy fly out the window. In many ways it’s goofy and silly, and I can see how that might not vibe with some people.

However, the acting was superb, bringing to life two characters who already had a bit of a cult following (Michael Sheen as Aziraphale and David Tennant as Crowley), and adding flavor to other characters who might not have been as engaging. The special effects were used to just the right level, the makeup was delightful, and for me the changes made between book and show were good/acceptable.

Honestly, I think the whole 6 hours is made worthwhile for this scene alone:

Who We Write For

Somewhere along the lines of writing my first book, telling my brother to “write for himself” and try to start working on my second book, I seem to have forgotten that I should, indeed, be writing for MYSELF. This entry by Neil Gaiman reminded me. Not only to not feel that the writer should be obligated to entertain us, but also that as the writer, we should not feel obligated to produce. Obviously producing earns money and money is, at least a little, good.

But if after my first book I want to scale some giant mountain instead of writing the second book, I can.

Of course no one is waiting for my second book, sitting on pins and needles, wondering if ___ and ____ survive and if ____ get’s that bag he’s been drooling over. But sometimes when I write I wonder if I’m making good decisions in my writing, and I wonder what my audience things. What I should be thinking about is if these actions are true to the story. I need to work on that a bit more.

Why Neil Gaiman gets better every day

Today on Neil Gaiman’s blog, he made this post describing why he believes in supporting Freedom of Speech. For those of you not familiar with the circumstances behind the original question, here is a very brief description: A man is being charged (? I’m not sure where they are at in the proceedings, etc, so don’t quote me on this) because he owns comic books (manga) of questionable content. The content (the actual content is hotly debated throughout the internet, and many in the anime/manga community question how much is actually inappropriate) is possibly (or actually, again, my following of this is minimal) lolicon (young girls represented in a sexualized manner) and perhaps shotacon (which is the male equivalent). So the question the person poses should make sense now.

I’m pretty sure I agree completely with Gaiman in his argument and reasoning. I liked especially how he pointed out that pornography that used real children was a different realm since those children were directly being injured. And the allusion that porn could be an outlet that keeps real people from being harmed. I think it’s well worth the read.

The most important point I think he makes: “It’s because the same laws cover the stuff you like and the stuff you find icky, wherever your icky line happens to be … because you only realise how wonderful absolute freedom of speech is the day you lose it.”

It reminds me of a poem by Niemoller that I saw in history class (all those years ago):

… they first came for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant.

Then they came for me —
and by that time no one was left to speak up.

~

You have to fight for what is right, even if you don’t agree with it, because you’d want others to fight for your rights when it’s your time.