I think I can safely say we are all a little skeptical of the Good Omens television show. Any adaptation of a famous novel is going to be met with a healthy dose of skepticism, but ever since the Amazon Prime miniseries based on the Neil Gaiman/Terry Pratchett cult hit was announced, fans have been more than a little wary. It was been nearly thirty years since the book was released, and, considering the long wait, fans are crossing their fingers for the very best.
But then came the controversial casting, and the strange wigs, and, just this past weekend at New York Comic Con, the long-awaited trailer that somehow neither alleviated or confirmed concerns. There is one other piece of the puzzle that was unveiled at NYCC, though. Near the convention entrance was a booth shaped like a certain bookstore: A.Z. Fell and Co. If you round that booth, you'd find every side of it decorated to look like London storefronts or bulletin boards boasting MISSING posters for flaming swords and antichrists and, at the front, the gated entrance to an elevator.
There were no signs explaining what this elevator was, and yet, the line wrapped the entire booth. Half of the people I spoke to in line had never even heard of Good Omens, they were simply tempted by the strange booth design and the mystery of the tiny elevator to nowhere. People were let through the gate two or three at a time, where they would wait for the hand indicating the old elevator's location to return to its starting point. Then, they'd disappear for a couple minutes, and the cycle would begin again.
In the three minutes between being let through the gate beside A.Z. Fell and Co. and the elevator doors opening, I got distracted. They were playing the new trailer on a screen near the elevator door and, even though I'd seen it at least five times that day, I found myself studying it again. My concentration was only broken when a chipper man in a bellhop's outfit flew through the elevator doors and, in a neat British accent, exclaimed, "Welcome to Purgatory!" He guided us into the elevator, where a window showed the London streets we had supposedly just left. The bellhop explained, very simply, that we had just died. This elevator would take us to our final destination. "This is always the exciting part. I never know which way we're going to go," he said. He looked to the window, and we began to ascend above the London crowd. The bellhop waved, and I felt a rush of hope for this TV show. Where I hadn't gotten the specific feeling that the book Good Omens has yet from any of the promotional images or the trailer, this little false elevator in the middle of Comic Con somehow matched the exact tone I'd been missing. Even the bookshop our Heaven-bound elevator dropped us off in felt cozy and a little haunted, a perfect mixture.
The trailer for this show may not share the same humor or tone that we're looking for in our Good Omens adaptation, but I have a feeling that trailer isn't telling the whole story. The trailer is Good Omens, simplified for the new viewer. Those glimpses of Aziraphale and Crowley post-birthday-party-gone-awry, or Crowley in disguise as Nanny Ashtoreth, or Newt Pulsifer meeting a cartoonish UFO hint at the story waiting underneath for fans, but this trailer is for people like those I met in line: people who don't know Aziraphale and Crowley and are just looking for a bit of fun. If this little booth at NYCC says anything though, it's that there are some pieces of Good Omens still intact in this show. We're just going to have to wait for the new ones to settle in for the ride first.
Watch the trailer for Good Omens below:
Good Omens - Official Teaser Trailer I Prime Video www.youtube.com