Shortly after the release of “Good Omens,” a streaming series based on the book by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, a Christian organization started an online petition to have the series cancelled.
Here’s the problem – the petition was directed to Netflix, and Netflix does not produce or distribute the series.
In “Good Omens,” reluctant friends Aziraphale and Crowley (an angel and a demon) attempt to stop the apocalypse after thousands of years living on earth and developing an attachment to their lifestyles on the planet.
The series, produced and distributed by Amazon, boasts an 84% “Certified Fresh” score on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes, and has seemingly been embraced by audiences as well.
This didn’t sit well with the Return to Order (RTO) campaign, an affiliate of The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP), which is a Christian organization.
RTO’s petition reads:
The Amazon series “Good Omens,” based on a book by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, portrays the agents of Good and Evil as fighters in an arbitrary struggle devoid of meaning and truth. This series presents devils and Satanists as normal and even good, where they merely have a different way of being, and mocks God’s wisdom in the following ways:
An angel and demon are good friends, and are meant to be earth’s ambassadors for Good and Evil respectively.
This pair tries to stop the coming of the Antichrist because they are comfortable and like the earth so much.
God is voiced by a woman.
The Antichrist, who will oppose the Kingdom of God, is portrayed as a normal kid that has special powers and a mission to destroy the world which he doesn’t really want to do.
There are groups of Satanic “nuns” that are chosen to raise the Antichrist.
The four riders of the Apocalypse, God’s means of punishing sinful earth, are portrayed as a group of bikers.
In the end, this is a denial of Good and Evil: morality and natural law do not exist, just humanitarianism and an ultimately useless creed. This is another step to make Satanism appear normal, light and acceptable. We must show our rejection. Please sign our petition, telling Amazon that we will not stand silent as they destroy the barriers of horror we still have for evil.
The petition has scored over 20,800 signatures as of publication, and released the following statement after their Netflix/Amazon mixup:
Due to an oversight by Return to Order staff, this petition originally listed Netflix as responsible for the offensive series “Good Omens.” Amazon Video released the series on May 31. We regret the mistake, and the protests will be delivered to Amazon when the campaign is complete.
This didn’t stop the two streaming giants from having a little fun at RTO’s expense, with Netflix tweeting:
Return to Order might ultimately get their wish, although not in the way they would like. Neil Gaiman has indicated that he will not return after the six-episode first season of “Good Omens.”
Gaiman told Digital Spy: “If people love this enough, and if the time and the will is there, we could absolutely go back and do a lot more. … But we’re not building it to do more, we are building this to be itself. At the end of six episodes, it’s done.”
While Amazon could pick up the series for a second season, it will likely be without its creator and showrunner.