In a case of “yell at the biggest guy in the room” confusion, viewers upset about Good Omens, Neil Gaiman’s satirical send-up of Christianity (and religion in general), are petitioning Netflix to get the series canceled. The only issue? They’re petitioning the wrong streaming service.
The six-episode miniseries, which streams on Amazon Prime and not Netflix, is based on a 1990 novel by Gaiman and fantasy author Terry Pratchett and follows the adventures of an angel and a demon as they try to rescue the Antichrist, who’s just an 11-year-old boy, and stop the Biblical apocalypse. Good Omens stars Michael Sheen as the angel Aziraphale, former Doctor Who lead and Jessica Jones villain David Tennant as the demon Crowley, Jon Hamm as the Archangel Gabriel, and Frances McDormand as the voice of God.
Good Omens features many scenes based on classic Bible stories, including sequences set in the Garden of Eden and at the Crucifixion that are mostly played for laughs. For obvious reasons, that didn’t sit well with some Christian audience members. A petition launched by Return to Order, a branch of the nonprofit Foundation For A Christian Civilization, asked Netflix to cancel the show. It gathered more than 20,000 signatures before being taken offline.
Return to Order’s complaints about Good Omens include the show’s depiction of an angel and a demon as “good friends” (and, according to Sheen, possibly more), the reimagining of the four riders of the Apocalypse as a biker gang, a woman voicing God, a sympathetic portrayal of the Antichrist, “Satanic nuns,” and the concept that “morality and natural law do not exist, just humanitarianism,” which happens to be Good Omens‘ underlying thesis.
There are a few problems with Return to Order’s demands. For one, Good Omens is a limited series that has finished production and already aired. There’s nothing left to cancel. More importantly, Netflix has nothing to do with Good Omens. The show is a joint production between Amazon and the BBC, which have been working on Good Omens for the better part of two years.
Even Gaiman, who scripted every episode of the adaptation, weighed in on Return to Order’s blunder. “I love that they are going to write to Netflix to try and get Good Omens cancelled,” Gaiman wrote on Twitter. “Says it all really.”
In Return to Order’s defense, there are already too many streaming services out there, and it’s only getting worse. If you, like Return to Order, have trouble keeping everything straight, our guides might be able to help.