While on religious metaphors, a story of lineage

While sitting on a foundation of morbid themes and taboo topics, good omens by Neil gaiman and terry pratchett, is a humorous following of an unlikely duo and their antic in hopes to save the human race. Using the classic switched at birth trope, the story progresses with the demon and Angel team, Crowley and Aziraphale, switching the antichrist with an innocently normal child at birth. The two children grow up to become the opposite of what was expected at their conception. The antichrist, Adam Young, grows to be a seemingly bland and average person. All the while the original “normal” child, Warlock Dowling, is raised to be a satanist being pushed by many people to be many different things. All the while during this humorous view on religious metaphors, a story of lineage and heirlooms is told. The reader dives into the world of Agnes nutter and the book of witchcraft she authored, being passed down through the generations to Anathema Device. While delving into controversial topics such as religion and cataclysm, Gaiman and Pratchett tastefully humorised story full of innuendos, hidden meanings and satire. Though it being an easier source of humour, Pratchett and Gaiman effortlessly use irony to highlight many themes of this novel. Situational irony is used in the book to introduce and involve the reader into the life of certain characters. For example the children switched in the beginning are all living lives opposite of what was intended for them. “He stared down at the golden curls of the adversary, destroyer of kings, angel of the bottomless pit, great beast that is called dragon, prince of this world, father of lies, spawn of satan, and lord of darkness. ‘You know,’ He concluded, after a while, ‘I think he actually looks like an Adam.'” (Gaiman 42) This quote is from Mr. Young. It is a true introduction to Adam Young’s character through humor. The reader learned of what Adam was born into and what his birth symbolised, yet he ended up with an average family and an average name. Almost the exact opposite of what he was destined for. Gaiman and Pratchett use this form of character introduction often. “Aziraphale remembered what Maskelyne had told him about dealing with hecklers. “Make a joke of it, you pudding-heads-and I do mean you, Mr. Fell” (the name Aziraphale had adopted at that time), “Make ’em laugh, and they’ll forgive you anything!” “Ho, so you’ve rumbled my hat trick,” he chuckled. The children stared at him impassively. “You’re rubbish,” said Warlock. “I wanted cartoons anyway.” “He’s right, you know,” agreed a small girl with a ponytail. “You are rubbish. And probably a faggot.”” (Gaiman 54) Situational Irony was used in the verbal interactions of the little girl at Warlock’s Party. Specific wording was used to emphasize the child’s innocent appearance with the words “small” and “ponytail”. Which made it all the more surprising with her use of obscenities. Another humorous twist to the dark themes is the Author’s’ use of word play. The puns and double entendres in this novel tend to be morbid, yet still come off to the reader as playful and juvenile. “Crowley found him on the pavement outside, trying to extricate a rather squishy dove from the arm of his frock coat. “It’s late,” said Aziraphale. “I can see that,” said Crowley. “Comes of sticking it up your sleeve.” He reached out and pulled the limp bird from Aziraphale coat, and breathed life back into it. The dove cooed appreciatively and flew off, a trifle warily. “Not the bird,” said the angel. “The dog. It’s late.”” (Gaiman 41) This is an example of a morbid play on words in the dialogue of the novel. When Aziraphale announces that ‘it’ is late, Crowley misunderstands and believes he is referring to the passing of the bird. At first both are unaware of the double meaning of the word, yet are able to move past it and continue on with the dialogue making it a short and humorous pun snuck into the story to remind the reader of the humor. The novel Good Omens  is largely composed of parody. The more obvious parody is the religious references. “God does not play dice with the universe; He plays an ineffable game of His own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of any of the other players i.e. everybody, to being involved in an obscure and complex variant of poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer who won’t tell you the rules, and who smiles all the time.” While some may find the religious and theistic humour offensive but it cannot be denied that the authors did not hold back on the references. In an effort to parodise the famed horsemen of the Apocalypse, Pratchett and Gaiman altered the characters to fit a humorous and modern storyline. The authors also made a playful mimic of nuns; creating the nuns of the satanist church. Without humour, Good Omens may have been a dark and intimidating book. But through the use of different elements of humor, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett created a witty and tasteful following of the process that was performed in an attempt at armageddon.Book ReviewNow I want to start by saying I believe this is an extremely well written novel. But, I did not enjoy reading it as a whole. Throughout the book there are many ‘one-liners’ and dialogues that were humorous and made me laugh, but the whole experience was overshadowed by my confusion in the plot. In the beginning I misunderstood some of the implications and it began to mix up some storylines. The part following Anathema became muddled for me and became hard for me to understand and decipher. AFter every few pages I had to google or ask thomas for help just so I could understand what is happening in the book. After reading and writing this essay I do enjoy the story and thought behind the plot of Good Omens, but the reading became tricky for me. I believe a novel like this was written for a reader of higher intellect of faster understanding. SOme people (like me) need to take things slower (or dumber) to quiet understand what is going on. With the use of dry and witty humor and high brow humor, the novel didn’t necessarily appeal to my more juvenile and crude sense of humor. Though I believe it was a great and well written book, it just wasn’t one that I would recommend to someone like me.