Good Omens: The Greatest Love Story Ever Told
Ah, you know what I haven’t done in ages on this blog? A bloody full-show television review. And now seems as good a time as any to pick up where I left off and yell at you about how much I fuckin’ love
Gay Good Omens.
Good Omens is the kind of show that seemed as though it had almost been comically constructed around my likes and interests. David Tennant, with great hair, in a collection of cool costumes? Check. Michael Sheen? Check. Jon Hamm playing comedy? Check. A thinly-veiled gay love story? Check. A stylish ensemble of brilliant British guest stars like Josie Lawrence, Reese Shearsmith, and Andy Hamilton? Check, check, check. But so often, the shows that I am sure I am just going to adore wind up falling back on too much quirk for their own good, and sinking under the weight of all of their goofy little mannerisms. Good Omens, though? Nah, Good Omens is the gift that keeps on giving.
Based on a book of the same name by the inimitable Terry Pratchett and the somewhat-imitable Neil Gaiman (look, I read American Gods, and I thought it was pretty boring, okay? And he introduced all his female characters by referring to their boobs. Anyway, moving on), Good Omens follows demon Crowley (David Tennant) and angel Aziraphale (Michael Sheen) as they work to prevent an inevitable upcoming apocalypse that will wipe the human race off the Earth.
It might not sound like the jolliest introduction you’ve ever heard of, but let me tell you, Good Omens is about the positive depiction of the end of the world I’ve ever seen. And that’s all thanks to our leading duo, Crowley and Aziraphale. Because as much as this is a high-concept fantasy story peppered with some deliciously surreal Prachettian humour, it’s also a love story.
And no, I’m not just saying that because it’s Pride month and therefore every time two people of the same gender share a square kilometre, they must be in love. Good Omens is probably one of my favourite investigations of profound longing and deep love that I’ve ever seen – Sheen and Tennant, as a pair of outright and unmatchable thesps, manage to uncover the deep and enduring hope they both hold for each other at the heart of their shared relationship. It’s not just love – it’s frustration at their mutual positions in their worlds, incongruence in their actions and their beliefs, and those small moments that serve to bridge the gaps between all those things as they find each other – and themselves – in their millenia-long relationship. The show blurs the line between platonic and romantic deliberately and often, till the lines between where one ends and the other begins are purposefully lost – both for Crowley and Aziraphale, and the audience observing them.
The show is never gauche enough to delve into some deep declaration of love between the two, but the performances and dialogue manage to find ways to tap into their deep affection; if you don’t swoon when Crowley asks the love of his life to run away with him, then I don’t know what’s wrong with you. Good Omens is, amongst many other things, a gorgeous, sweeping love story, and for that alone, my cheesy ass must recommend it to you.
(header image via The Verge)