Good Omens, the new TV series from literary dream team Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, was one of the most hotly anticipated fantasy shows of recent years.
The show, which is based upon a fantasy novel of the same name written by the two authors, originally aired on Amazon Prime Video back in April 2019, but began broadcasting on BBC Two in January 2020.
Neil Gaiman serves as showrunner, and has written all six episodes. The series is being co-produced with BBC Studios, hence the later showing.
The series, which stars Michael Sheen and David Tennant, sees Earth facing an imminent apocalypse – but an angel (Sheen) and a demon (Tennant) team up in order to try and sabotage the end of the world…
Find out everything you need to know about the series below.
When is Good Omens on BBC Two?
The sixth and final episode airs on BBC Two on Wednesday 19th February 2020 at 9pm
Good Omens consists of six hour-long episodes, which will air weekly on the BBC.
The majority of filming for the series wrapped in March 2018, with Gaiman sharing messages of thanks to the cast and crew courtesy of this picture from director Douglas Mackinnon.
— Douglas Mackinnon (@drmuig) March 10, 2018
Is there a trailer for Good Omens?
Amazon Prime Video released the first full trailer for Good Omens on 6th March 2019 – and it’s a thing of beauty.
A number of videos had been released in advance of the trailer above of course, including the opening titles sequence.
Who is in the cast of Good Omens?
In 2017 it was announced that former Doctor Who star David Tennant and Michael Sheen (Frost/Nixon) would lead Good Omens as Crowley and Aziraphale respectively, an unlikely duo of an angel and a demon who team up to prevent the end of the world coming to pass — donning some rather scene-stealing disguises along the way…
- Find out more about how Good Omens was cast here
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Sheen revealed that initially Gaiman thought he would be the one to play Crowley, but later realised that he would be far better suited to playing the fussy angel instead.
Crowley is described as having “dark hair” (in addition to snakeskin shoes and a pristine 1926 Bentley) in the book, but Tennant has explained why the fast-living has flame-red hair in the series.
Then, ex-Mad Men star Jon Hamm signed on to play archangel Gabriel, a good-looking, well-dressed boss to Aziraphale. Hamm has previously explained that his character was originally written as a “stuffy Brit,” before Gaiman changed his mind.
So for you, for me, for all of us. FOR PEOPLE NOT YET BORN. This is what Jon Hamm looks like as the Angel Gabriel in the upcoming TV series of GOOD OMENS. A thing of beauty, and a joy for ever. pic.twitter.com/OK84PDZXLs
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) November 30, 2017
The fantasy-drama also stars Sherlock’s Sian Brooke (Eurus Holmes) as Deirdre Young, the mother of the young antichrist who is supposedly destined to bring about the end of the world. Line of Duty’s Daniel Mays will star as her husband Arthur Young.
Derek Jacobi will, naturally, play the voice of God – Metatron. But God Herself will be voiced by Frances McDormand.
In the biggest surprise casting so far, Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch was revealed as the voice of Satan as late as 13th February 2019.
Gaiman then confirmed that actor – not physicist – Brian Cox would depict the voice of Death in the series.
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) March 5, 2019
Jack Whitehall plays the key role of Newton “Newt” Pulsifer, aka Newt, a wages clerk turned witch hunter. He’ll also play Newt’s ancestor, Thou-Shalt-Not-Commit-Adultery Pulsifer.
Michael McKean plays Sgt. Shadwell, leader of the witch-finder army, and Miranda Richardson (Rita Skeeter in Harry Potter) will star as Madame Tracy, the psychic medium who helps Tennant and Sheen as they try to save the world from Armageddon.
Adria Arjona (True Detective) plays Anathema Device, practical occultist and descendant of the ancient witch Agnes Nutter. The actual Agnes Nutter will also be making an appearance with the help of Josie Lawrence, who played her in the radio adaptation — although Neil Gaiman has stated that he had to fight to keep Agnes in the television adaptation.
The huge cast will also include League of Gentleman creators Mark Gatiss and Stephen Pemberton, who will play mysterious book-buyers Harmony and Glozier.
Reece Shearsmith, meanwhile, plays William Shakespeare. His scenes were filmed in the actual Globe, in case you were wondering.
Shakespeare is only briefly mentioned in the book, but Gaiman wrote in a tweet: “There are things about Crowley and Aziraphale’s doings over the last 6,000 years that were not revealed in the book. This is one such thing.”
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) November 2, 2017
It also looks like the emergence of Atlantis from the sea – only mentioned in passing in the novel – will be seen on screen, with David Morrissey taking the helm as Captain Vincent.
— Douglas Mackinnon (@drmuig) June 21, 2018
Nina Sosanya plays Sister Mary Loquacious.
The Horsemen of the Apocalypse have also arrived, in the form of Mireille Enos (War), Yusuf Gatewood (Famine) and Lourdes Faberes (Pollution, the star formerly known as Pestilence). Beezlebub herself will be played by Anna Maxwell Martin.
Maxwell Martin can be seen in the official trailer for Good Omens, although judging by comments she made during an interview on BBC Radio 2, this might not be the only form her character takes.
“I was dressed up and looked absolutely appalling!” she explained. “I’m playing the Head of Hell so I don’t look great. I have prosthetics all over my face and I look pretty awful.”
Parks and Recreation’s Nick Offerman stars as a US ambassador and father of Warlock Dowling, a baby that’s mistakenly identified as the antichrist.
And what about “Them”? The real antichrist kid, Adam Young, is played by Sam Taylor Buck, and his three friends are played by Amma Ris (as Pepper), Ilan Galkoff (as Brian) and Alfie Taylor (as Wensleydale).
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) December 21, 2017
The story begins in pre-apocalyptic 2018. According to The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter Witch, the world is due to end in a week, and Judgement Day is almost upon us. As the official synopsis explains, this is where Tennant and Sheen’s characters come in:
“Aziraphale, a somewhat fussy angel, and Crowley, 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 war. And… someone seems to have misplaced the Antichrist.”
— Good Omens (@GoodOmensPrime) July 18, 2018
Good Omens, published by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman in 1990, is a comedy about the birth of the son of Satan – but thanks to a terrible mix-up, the Antichrist (Adam) grows up in a nice English village with a nice family. As the End Times approach and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are summoned to Earth, what will happen to young Adam and his friends?
We also know that the show will hop back and forth between the past and the present day – hence the inclusion of Reece Shearsmith as Shakespeare.
What are the Good Omens episode titles?
Director Douglas Mackinnon confirmed the names for the six episodes on Twitter.
Episode 1: In the Beginning
Episode 2: The Book
Episode 3: Hard Times
Episode 4: Saturday Morning Funtime
Episode 5: The Doomsday Option
Episode 6: The Very Last Day Of The Rest Of Their Lives
Psst. A little teaser poster. pic.twitter.com/aTDTM8Xo3r
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) July 20, 2018
Tennant has teased the series as being “unlike anything” he has ever worked in before.
“It’s quite hard tonally to get a grip on what Good Omens is, because it’s this very unique world that comes from Terry and Neil’s novel and from the scripts, which Neil has adapted pretty faithfully from that novel,” he told The Herald. “I think it’s quite unlike anything I’ve ever been in before and possibly anything many people have seen before.”
He continued: “It’s like a sort of fairy tale with a kind of very real world setting. It’s a farce and it’s also deeply serious, it’s all things at once and not quite any one of them. If the rest of the show turns out like this early trailer that we’ve all seen I think it’s going to be quite special.”
Gaimain has confirmed that he’ll cameo in the fourth episode, appearing onscreen as a drunk — while also voicing several cartoon bunnies.
“Episode four, look out for a scene in a small movie theatre where Crowley is watching a cartoon about bunnies,” Gaiman said during a Q&A, replying to a fan who had asked whether he would feature in the series.
“Not only will you see me passed out dead drunk in the audience, but all of the voices of the bunnies are me,” he said.
We also know that there will be at least two touching tributes to co-creator Terry Pratchett, who passed away in May 2015. In December, Gaiman shared a video from set which shows a bookshelf in Aziraphale’s shop stacked with the works of “one of his favourite authors”, Pratchett. Check out the video below.
Pratchett’s trademark hat and scarf – which had their own seat at the Good Omens world premiere – will also be hanging up in the shop. “We hung it in the bookshop so that Terry would always be there,” Gaiman said.
— Prime Video (@PrimeVideo) March 11, 2019
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- Neil Gaiman: Agnes Nutter was almost cut from Good Omens – but I couldn’t do that to Terry Pratchett’s creation
- David Tennant explains why Crowley has red hair in the Good Omens TV series
- Neil Gaiman sends special message to Good Omens team with thanks “from Terry Pratchett” as principal photography wraps
- Good Omens star David Tennant: “it’s quite unlike anything I’ve ever been in before”