We kick off the Year of the Incontrovertible Skunk with our fifteenth episode, heading not to the Discworld at all, but to Earth, 1990! Two guests – academic Jen Beckett and writer Amy Gray – join us as to tackle a book written by two authors: Good Omens, written by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman!
The time has come for Armageddon: the End of Days, the Final Battle between Good and Evil. Which comes as rather a shock to the demon Crowley and angel Aziraphale, who’ve been more or less friends for centuries, and rather enjoy Earth the way it is, thank you very much. But can they really do anything about it in the face of the ineffable plan of God? Or when everything that happens has been foretold by a 16th century witch – as interpreted by her descendant, Anathema Device? And has anyone asked the Antichrist himself what he thinks? Well no, of course not. They don’t know where he is.
Good Omens was Sir Terry’s first collaboration with another author, and Gaiman’s first novel, written while he was still working on his biggest comics success, Sandman. In part a parody of The Omen, but joking about everything from motorways to computers and the Greatest Hits of Queen along the way, it’s an epic tale of Armageddon soon to arrive on the small screen via Amazon Prime and the BBC – adapted by Neil himself. Did you come to this as a Pratchett fan, or a Gaiman one? Did you cross over and start reading the others’ work? And how different do you find it to the rest of Pratchett? We’d love to hear from you! Use the hashtag #Pratchat15 on social media to join the conversation.
Dr Jennifer Beckett lectures at Melbourne University in Media and Communications. Her specialist areas as a researcher include Irish cinema and cultural studies, social media, and transmedia world-building. (Jen’s basically an expert in all the cool parts of popular culture.) A current focus for Jen is the connection between social media and trauma, as explored in her most recent article for The Conversation: “We need to talk about the mental health of content moderators”.
Amy Gray has written for The Age, The Guardian, the Queen Victoria Women’s Centre and many other publications and organisations. She’s currently working on her first book, hopefully to be published in 2019. You can find out more and support her independent writing via her Patreon. You can also find her on Twitter at @_AmyGray_.
You can find full notes and errata for this episode on our web site.
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Next month we’ll continue the religious theme as we’re joined by the Reverend Doctor Avril Hannah-Jones for an examination of faith, Discworld-style, in Small Gods! Send in your questions about gods (big or small) via social media using the hashtag #Pratchat16.