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Trivia / Good Omens (2019)

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  • Acting for Two: Jack Whitehall plays both Newt Pulsifer and his ancestor Thou-shalt-not-commit-adultery Pulsifer.
  • Actor Allusion: There are a few scenes where Crowley is walking by a prominent police call box.
    • David Tennant's character is at the Globe Theatre yet again. Shakespeare even takes one of his lines to use in his plays.
    • When Crowley is trying to find a place in the universe to run away to, one of the possible choices is Gallifrey.
    • Crowley's ability to stop time doesn't appear in the novel. It's not quite as good as a TARDIS, but it'll do.
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    • Shadwell is oddly uninterested in his protege encountering aliens. You'd think someone who was previously trying to catch them would feel differently.
  • All-Star Cast: Just about everyone, even the cameos, are famous actors.
  • Ascended Fanon: Hellfire destroys angels in the same way that holy water destroys demons. This was a staple of fanfic, but never mentioned in the original book.
  • Author Existence Failure: Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman were working on various adaptations of their book for a long time, and then Pratchett died. Gaiman says he was probably more strict about making it a good adaptation than he might otherwise have been since he wanted to keep Pratchett's memory alive.
    Gaiman: So I had to make the thing that he wanted, which meant it became kind of a mad passion project. The things that if it was a me-project I would've given away on, things I wouldn't have held the line on like some kind of a mad-eyed prophet. Suddenly I'm going "No, you cannot take this out. This is going to be in there. Because Terry wrote that scene and he would have wanted to see it, so it's in there." And they're like "Oh, but do you know how much money we could save if you don't actually see Agnes Nutter being blown up and arrested and dragged to the stake, we got this idea," said an early bunch of producers who later left, "that we could have woodcuts and the narrator explaining what happened. Isn't that just as good?" And I sort of mentally run that by the ghostly Terry Pratchett in the back of my head, it's like: "Terry, is that just as good?" And he's like: "Fuck 'em."
  • Billing Displacement: Like Game of Thrones, the title sequence only lists the main cast members who actually appear in the episode as opposed to the entire main cast. So far, so good, but the third episode's title sequence is placed about a half hour into the episode, and lists Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton, and Reece Shearsmith despite all three appearing in minor cameo roles that are over by the time the title sequence begins.
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    • Similarly, the fourth episode's title sequence includes cameo performer David Morrissey after his role is complete.
    • The fifth episode's title sequence includes Johnny Vegas, who at least appears after the title sequence is complete... in a voice-only cameo role.
  • Casting Gag: in Ashes to Ashes (2008), Daniel Mays played either Satan or one of his high-ranking minions. Here, he plays the Antichrist's (adoptive, human) father - Adam's original father being Satan.
    • Defied with Andy Hamilton as the voice of the tiny Hell's Usher; although Gaiman later said on his Tumblr that he's a fan of Old Harry's Game, it wasn't a question of giving the series a Shout-Out so much as casting the voice that best embodied the character.
    • In the final two episodes, the guard on the gate of the Airbase is played by Andre Nightingale, whose name is prominently displayed in the final episode's credits right as the line about a nightingale singing floats over the top of them.
  • LGBT Fan Base: The series is interpreted as queercoded, and the actors have said they were intentionally playing up the love between the two main characters. Upon its release Vulture ran a headline declaring it to be a Gay Love Story. While per Word of God and book canon angels don’t really use human labels regarding gender and sexuality, this attracted a lot of transgender, nonbinary, and asexual fans into the fold as well.
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  • Name's the Same: When sorting through records, someone mentions a "Mr. Plinkett," which also happens to be the name of the Caustic Critic character in RedLetterMedia videos.
  • Orphaned Reference: While the Hell's Angels who decide to become the other Four Horsemen ended up cut, tiny references to them remain in the series. One is near the end of second episode as passages from Agnes Nutter's prophecies flash on the screen, including one which reads "Four shalle ryde and Four shalle also ryde," though within the series, this may refer to Adam's gang riding into the airfield base on their bikes.
  • Promoted Fanboy: Michael Sheen has been a big fan of the book since it came out (and has hinted at a certain level of familiarity with fanfic and fanart).
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: The scene in the Globe Theatre depicting Aziraphale and Crowley attending a performance of Shakespeare's Hamlet, which is a massive commercial flop with only a handful of people in the audience. The original version of the scene called for a full audience, but Gaiman says that he noticed that it was scheduled for the last day of filming in the UK, in December 2017. It occurred to him that the scene called for hundreds of extras in Elizabethan costume, and suspected that the scheduling of the scene was a sign that it would probably get cut, and also that there would be very little daylight to shoot it, so in order to drastically reduce the budget he rethought the scene and asked director Douglas MacKinnon if he'd prefer a rehearsal of Hamlet or a flop. MacKinnon said he wanted a flop, so Gaiman rewrote the scene for just half a dozen actors and it stayed in the show.
  • Refitted for Sequel: Inverted. In an interview with GQ, Neil Gaiman said that certain elements — like the expanded roles of some of the angels like Gabriel, Uriel and Sandalphon — were ideas that he took from a sequel to the book that he and Terry Pratchett had planned but never written.
  • Technology Marches On:
    • Crowley's answering machine plays way too big a role to be jettisoned completely, so it's referenced as an antique he's hanging onto, and his cell phone also plays a part in the plot point.
    • Crowley shuts down a wireless network rather than landlines.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • The Hell's Angels bikers who decide to be sidekicks to the Horsemen were cast for the show, but due to budget issues their scenes were never filmed.
    • It’s a small scene but in the book Crowley is the one to revive the dead dove after the magic show, whereas in the show it’s Aziraphale. It was in the script as was originally written in the book, but the director needed to change it for blocking reasons (they needed to get Crowley in the car first for the actions of the scene to play out in a way that visually made sense).
    • There was originally going to be another flashback scene showing Aziraphale getting ready to open his new bookshop, and heaven attempting to give him an promotion that would have taken him away from Earth, the shop and Crowley. Crowley convinces Gabriel Aziraphale needs to stay on Earth so he can “thwart” him, through the use of some tailor dummies. It was cut due to budget reasons and Neil feeling it didn't really further along Crowley and Aziraphale’s relationship as much as the other flashbacks. Which were entirely cut in favor of the bookshop scene in one draft he was presented with.
    • War’s introduction originally more closely followed the one in the book. It was even shot. However, people found it confusing, necessitating that it be rewritten and reshot.
  • Word of Saint Paul: Micheal Sheen said he was intentionally playing Aziraphale as being in love with Crowley. He believes the moment where Crowley saved his books from the Nazis is the exact moment Aziraphale realizes the depth of his feelings for Crowley. David Tennant has also said he believes their relationship to be open to interpretation, and that “...Crowley absolutely loves Aziraphale. He hates that he loves him. It's really annoying for him."
  • Word of God: Well, aside from the literal In-Universe voice of God we hear. Neil Gaiman has revealed some things about the series on his Tumblr. Including:
    • In their retirement, Pestilence spends a lot of time on the internet ranting about vaccines.
    • Concerning why demons have animals on their heads: One might as well ask "Why the animals have people shaped things beneath them to get from place to place?” - it's up to interpretation what's what and how much of it.
    • TV!Crowley would love watching The Good Place.
    • The scene where Aziraphale does the Gavotte is set at the 100 Guineas Club (a real life historic gentleman’s club/gay bar).
    • The relationship between Aziraphale and Crowley has been written as a love story from the Garden of Eden onwards.
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