Good Omens Question #5 ~ What's in a Name?

by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

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DeppInTheHeartOfTexas
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Good Omens Question #5 ~ What's in a Name?

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri Aug 11, 2006 8:07 am

Comment on Pratchett's and Gaimen’s use of characters' names. You may comment on any or all on this list, or add some of your own. Crowley, Azipharale, Anathema Device, Newton Pulsifer, Adam Young, Warlock, Pepper, Shadwell, Dog…and any others you choose!
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Unread postby Charlene » Fri Aug 11, 2006 8:30 am

Well, here I go, all by my onsies this morning...and too lazy to go get my book...

...frankly I think I am too dense to catch the drift of most of these names...but I did get a chuckle out of the 4 "would be" motorcyclists..who kept changing their names..that was a hoot..we could all relate

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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri Aug 11, 2006 12:22 pm

Good morning/afternoon, Charlene! I loved the motorcyclists names too...in fact we will be having some fun with that very shortly!

One of my favorites on the list is dog. Did anyone else think this was an inronic name for the Hound of Hell given it is God spelled backwards? Or is that just something rolling around in my brain?
:-)
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Unread postby Charlene » Fri Aug 11, 2006 12:43 pm

DeppInTheHeartOfTexas wrote:Good morning/afternoon, Charlene! I loved the motorcyclists names too...in fact we will be having some fun with that very shortly!

One of my favorites on the list is dog. Did anyone else think this was an inronic name for the Hound of Hell given it is God spelled backwards? Or is that just something rolling around in my brain?
:-)


See...that is what I meant about being dense...I didn't catch the connection of dog and God. Ok, I'm crawling back...oh Crawley..ha..where I came from.

..actually I liked the simplicity of it...Dog...just like my son named his favorite stuffed animal Pup (OK, he was 2 and not too creative, just like his brother named his Spot) (it was the Spot dog from the Spot book series)).

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Unread postby Liz » Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:48 pm

Pepper's given name was Pippin Galadriel Moonchild. Both Pippin and Galadriel are characters from Lord of the Rings. But what I don’t get is the significance. :perplexed:
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Unread postby Theresa » Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:49 pm

All the characters had very "Charles Dickens"- type names. Just seeing the names were clues to their personalities.

A few:

Crowley, from crawly -- who once took the form of a serpent in the Garden of Eden.

Anathema Device -- anathema, meaning set apart, banished or accursed. For a witch, it works.

Newton Pulsifier -- makes me think of Sir Isaac Newton, and the Pulsifier --I thought of the Pulse setting on a blender, (I know, strange). But that's how NP was around anything mechanical or scientific -- he could mess up the easiest thing in the world. For example, the kit he built that was NOT supposed to work when he finished it, and instead, he was able to pick up a radio signal.

And Adam naming the Hell-hound, Dog...that was just too good. Here Crowley was saying that he'd probably be named Killer, Terror or Stalks-By-Night...and instead, it's just DOG. I didn't think of the dog-god thing, either. But that would work, too.

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Unread postby luvdepp » Fri Aug 11, 2006 2:40 pm

Very interesting theresa. I hadn't put any of that together. (Guess I'm a little dense too, Charlene. :blush:). I'm at work and don't have the book with me, but regarding Dog, didn't Crowley say something about the dog's name was significant in what he would end up being? ie, Killer, Stalker, ect.? I thought it was funny that he ended up being just Dog, and that's basically all he was, just a dog. Oh, and I loved the motorcyclists' names too. That was really funny. Liz, I had no idea those two names were from Lord of the Rings.
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Unread postby Bix » Fri Aug 11, 2006 3:59 pm

And don't forget Thou-Shalt-Not-Commit-Adultery Pulsifer and his 9 siblings named for Commandments! :lol: I loved the spoofing of those silly "Pilgrim" names, as I think of them.

Good job on those name/personality connections, Theresa. I wasn't sure if there was any real signicance to the names or if they were just meant to be silly. I love Anathema as a name, for instance.

I thought of the Dog/God thing, too, DITHOT. And then I went one toke over the line with the idea that Adam (Biblical first man) named a creature (dog), just as might have happened in the Biblical creation story. LOL

I actually googled Aziraphale to see if it was a real angel's name and found, to my delight, that there is a fansite for our Aziraphale! Also found that Gaiman made it up and meant it to be pronounced as-a-raph-AE-el, but found himself saying it azir-a-phel (or something close to that).
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Unread postby Liz » Fri Aug 11, 2006 4:27 pm

Bix wrote: I thought of the Dog/God thing, too, DITHOT. And then I went one toke over the line with the idea that Adam (Biblical first man) named a creature (dog), just as might have happened in the Biblical creation story. LOL


That's a good point, Bix! I also thought Adam's last name referred to the fact that he was the young Adam (as in a younger version or a newer version).

Bix wrote:I actually googled Aziraphale to see if it was a real angel's name and found, to my delight, that there is a fansite for our Aziraphale! Also found that Gaiman made it up and meant it to be pronounced as-a-raph-AE-el, but found himself saying it azir-a-phel (or something close to that).


I saw that fansite too. Very cool. :lol:
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Unread postby Liz » Fri Aug 11, 2006 4:36 pm

Maybe this is a stretch.....

Madame Tracy.......Traci Lords?
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:17 pm

:lol: I wouldn't put it past them, Liz! I also had the thought about "young adam".

Bix, I don't think that is a stretch at all about why he named him dog.

I was wondering how you all were pronouncing Aziraphale...
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Unread postby stroch » Fri Aug 11, 2006 7:02 pm

Wasn't there a passage in the book that says Pulsifer rhymes with Lucifer? I had been saying pulse-i-fur in my head.

Being familiar with the phrase "Let them be anathema," I expected her to be a lot scarier. Maybe she, as a witch, was a "device" through which people were damned.

What I liked about dog was that he became the essence of "dog." Not trained for any task, no special talents, no pedigree, just a DOG.
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri Aug 11, 2006 7:21 pm

What I liked about dog was that he became the essence of "dog." Not trained for any task, no special talents, no pedigree, just a DOG.



Like the canine equivalent of Adam, who just grew up "human".
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Unread postby KYwoman » Fri Aug 11, 2006 7:28 pm

I've been enjoying reading everyone's responses to this. I like to look for metaphors in stories and hidden meanings to things in a story the author has put in to spice it up a bit. (Similar to some of the discussion around DMC has been).

I totally missed the DOG/GOD connection. Some really good observations from everyone. Really adds to the story.


What, no fansite for Crowley??
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Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Fri Aug 11, 2006 7:46 pm

KYwoman wrote: What, no fansite for Crowley??


Go figure! :perplexed:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -

Wow! What a ride!


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