Hey! Hallie here!
Like every other giant ‘Good Omens’ fan, I was impatiently anticipating the New York Comic Con panel that happened yesterday. This is my favorite show to ever be made and it was all I could think about for the past two weeks. I even rewatched the series and reread the book in anticipation for this panel. And the panel did not disappoint. We have so much new information, first looks at some of the new characters, a new poster that looks absolutely adorable, and new plot details for the upcoming season. We also know the season will be six episodes and will be coming out in summer of 2023! It’s less than a year away! Along with the information we learned from the panel, we heard some things from Neil Gaiman in interviews and on Twitter later in the day, so overall there’s lots to cover here. And, of course, I need to talk a bit about the controversy that’s surrounding the way the convention handled this panel when it comes to the viewers that joined via live stream. Let’s get into this!
We all already knew Aziraphale and Crowley were returning. There would be no ‘Good Omens’ without them. But this time we’re getting mostly new characters for them to interact with! I say mostly because it’s confirmed that we’ll be seeing Gabriel, as played once again by Jon Hamm, and also Beelzebub, this time played by Shelley Conn due to the busy schedule of Anna Maxwell Martin. Shelley Conn looks amazing as Beelzebub and they promised many more flies, so I’m very prepared to be delightfully disgusted by her. Amongst the new characters we have the angel Muriel, played by Quelin Sepulveda, who’s set to play a central role in the story of the season. She’s described as being gullible, a bit naive, and very excited to be visiting Earth for the first time. Apparently she’s been in Heaven at a desk for the last 6000 or so years, hoping for something new to happen and being somewhat incompetent at her filing job. She appears to be the angel that was talked about in the first blurb about the plot Neil Gaiman gave us, which is the angel that appears at Aziraphale’s bookshop without her memories. However, we heard nothing about her losing her memories in this panel, so there’s really no way of knowing how that plays into the character. Next we have two characters who sound as though they’ll be sharing a lot of their screen time. The first is Nina, played by Nina Sosanya, and the second is Maggie, played by Maggie Service. These actresses were both in season one as Sister Mary Loquacious and Sister Theresa Garrulous respectfully, and apparently the cast and crew got so close, and Neil Gaiman liked them so much, that he decided to write major roles for both of them. The characters are indeed named after the actresses so, according to Neil Gaiman, no one could argue with him about who would be playing those roles. Nina owns a coffee shop across from Aziraphale’s book store titled “Give Me Coffee or Give Me Death”. She also struggles quite a bit with her love life. Maggie owns a record shop right next to Aziraphale’s book shop, so close that Aziraphale is actually the landlord of the building, and she’s apparently very close with Nina. And finally, the lovely Miranda Richardson, who played Madame Tracy in season one, is returning to play Shax, the demon who takes over Crowley’s job on Earth. This cast sounds like so much fun and I can’t wait to meet the new characters!
The characters were the main focus of the panel, so what we know about the plot is pieced together from parts of the panel and various other interviews. We know the show will take place mostly in Soho where a mysterious angel, who is most likely Muriel, will enter Aziraphale’s bookshop without their memories. We also know from the tagline on the poster, “Something’s going down in the up”, that something will be going wrong in Heaven that the other characters will have to deal with. Neil Gaiman hinted at both a lot of time in Heaven and Hell, and a lot of time travel in this season, with various scenes exploring Aziraphale and Crowley throughout the years much like the cold open of episode three we got in season one. Though we don’t know much about the plot, Neil Gaiman was generous in sharing what the feel of this season will be. For one, he said the focus will be romance. Romance between who hasn’t been clarified yet, but for fans like me I’m just going to point out that Aziraphale and Crowley’s wings form a heart in the season two poster. I’m actually crying. In the panel he also mentioned that we’ll learn a lot more about Jane Austen than we knew before, which knowing what kinds of books she’s famous for, definitely feels in line with the romantic theme. Overall Neil called this season quiet, gentle, and romantic. In the same sentence he confirmed that he’s planning a season three which will be just as chaotic and high-stakes as season one, so he says this will be more of a reprieve in between the chaotic seasons. If you’re hoping for more than three seasons though, you’ll be disappointed to know that Neil is planning only three. Season two is made up of unique ideas from Neil meant to lead up to season three, which will be more of the content Neil talked about with Terry Pratchett for a hypothetical second book. Personally, three seasons sounds perfect. Not too short, but not so long that it risks getting bad or redundant.
The Season Two Clip and the Controversy:
We don’t have a trailer yet, which Neil said will come out once more VFX are complete and once the release date is a bit closer. What they did show at New York Comic Con was a clip from the new season. The clip starts with Maggie and Nina while Nina deals with relationship problems. The two then see Muriel dressed in an old-fashioned constable’s uniform walking to Aziraphale’s bookshop. When Muriel enters she meets Aziraphale, who immediately knows she’s an angel based on the odd way she’s acting. He attempts to help her with her ruse by urging her to accept some tea, at which point Crowley enters and becomes almost immediately exasperated by her. He asks Aziraphale for a private word and the two disappear behind a door. Before they close the door Muriel becomes distressed because she’s supposed to be keeping an eye on the two of them, but Aziraphale assures her they’ll tell her what they talked about later. According to those who were at the panel and saw the clip, the highlights of the clip are the interactions between Crowley and Aziraphale. Evidently Crowley walks in carrying plants, which have started the rumor that Crowley’s moving in with Aziraphale, and then sits on the arm of Aziraphale’s chair so he can lean on him. Though I haven’t seen the clip, I’m pretty sure we were already shown the two in this position in the first official image they released of the duo for season two. The problem with this clip is that it wasn’t shown to anyone online. That isn’t abnormal for a big convention such as this one, but considering that some of the people who were online payed for virtual tickets to the convention, you would think at least they would have been able to see it too. But no. They essentially wasted their money for the same experience that those who watched the live stream for free were getting. And the situation was made worse when the live stream cut off only minutes into the Q&A segment that Michael Sheen, David Tennant, and Jon Hamm joined via Zoom. Neil Gaiman has said that he’s trying to get the panel fully released because of the mistake, but he’s also adamant that the clip remain a mystery to most of us. It makes sense for a first look at a comic book convention, but I do feel bad for everyone who paid for the live stream.
That’s all the information we got from the panel! Aside from the new information they spent a lot of time reminiscing about season one of the show. It was really nice to hear about how Michael went from being asked to play Crowley to being asked to play Aziraphale. It was nice to hear about how close the actresses who played the satanic nuns got. In fact, it was nice to hear about how much the entire cast missed one another. I feel bad for the actors who weren’t able to return to the show due to scheduling conflicts, but the amount of actors returning makes me extremely happy. I can’t wait for season two! It’s less than a year away!
Don’t do anything fun until I get back!
Update: For those who wanted to see Michael Sheen, David Tennant, and Jon Hamm’s Q&A, it finally went up! It’s only a few minutes but it’s a really funny watch. Jon Hamm also gave us so much information about Gabriel that they cut him off, but based on what he said, it sounds as though Gabriel is the angel who lost his memories. That definitely bodes badly for Heaven and sets up a really interesting dynamic for the show!