Adam Young

From Discworld & Terry Pratchett Wiki
Revision as of 23:25, 12 November 2021 by Bs75660 (talk | contribs) (Grammatical improvements)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Adam Young, the Antichrist
Name The Adversary, Destroyer of Kings, Angel of the Bottomless Pit, Great Beast that is called Dragon, Prince of this world, Father of Lies, Spawn of Satan, and Lord of Darkness
Race Human
Age Eleven
Occupation leader of the Them
Physical appearance golden-haired
Residence Lower Tadfield
Parents Mr. Young & Mrs. Deirdre Young
Relatives Older sister Sarah, Dog
Marital Status
Books Good Omens

The reluctant Antichrist, eleven-year-old Adam Young is perhaps better known as the leader of the Them, one of Lower Tadfield's two gangs, which includes Pepper, Brian, and Wensleydale. Adam has an innate ability to become deeply passionate about certain subjects and lets his imagination run away with him until he becomes bored. He is especially interested (at this time) in Anathema Device's magazines with their conspiracy theories.

Due to a mix-up at the hospital, Adam was placed with the wrong family by Sister Mary Loquacious, a Satanic Nun of the Chattering Order of St. Beryl. Because of this, the Demon AJ Crowley and the angel Aziraphale spent eleven years trying to shape the mind of the son of the American Cultural Attache and as a result wound up cultivating not the antichrist (or softening said child's Satanic impulses, in Aziraphale's case) but a spoiled brat, instead. Adam, on the other hand, grew up fairly normally. This rather angered people on both the "Good" and "Bad" sides of the spectrum.

Adam loves Tadfield and unconsciously sends out a sort of protective field around it.


The primary reference in British comic fiction for the outward appearance, preoccupations, mode of speech, and lurking-place, of Adam Young and the Them, lies in [1]Richmal Crompton's immortal Just William stories. Written between approximately 1919 and 1970, Crompton writes evocative and hilarious stories about an eleven-year old rogue called William Brown, who with his gangmates the [2]Outlaws lives in a quiet English village called Hadfield. Like many other children in British serial tales about childhood, William and his three chums in the Outlaws are fated to live in an eternal summer (except where the plot requires snow or Christmas celebrations), never ever growing older, slouching reluctantly to school every morning for life. (Look at the last page of Good Omens) The eleven-year old who sees the soldiers coming back from World War One in 1919 is also the eleven-year old who watches a scruffy hippie rock band playing in the Hadfield Free Festival in 1970. Similarly, his rock-solid pipe-smoking technically-minded father, who is Something in the City, is prosperous enough to employ domestic servants in 1920, serves in the Home Guard in the 1940's, but is still the same age in 1970 (when all the domestic servants have been quietly retired, in deference to the egalitarian age of the 1960's).

Crompton's genius at least in part lies in the way she quietly reflects her times while her central characters remain the same age. William's sister continues to remain a twenty-year old heartbreaker, while his brother remains a sexually frustrated eighteen year old. While the Outlaws are all male, a thorn in William's flesh is wannabe gang member Violet Elizabeth Bott unlike the tomboyish Pepper, however, Violet Elizabeth is a spoilt brat who "scweams and scweams until she's sick" when things don't go her way. William has a sort-of girlfriend in Joan, the girl next door, who is sometimes allowed to be a member of the Outlaws (apart from anything else, being a fellow girl, she can be better at handling Violet Elizabeth!).

One book in the series, published in 1964, is actually called William and the Witch...

  • A second parallel worth annotating comes out of Northern Ireland: in the 1960's, socially conservative Belfast prided itself on not having any of those smelly long-haired degenerate mods-and-rockers pop groups that were infesting the British mainland at the time. That is, until such a band arose and stalked East Belfast with long-haired degenerate blues-based menace. The five group members, led by a daytime window cleaner called George Ivan Morrison[3], quietly prided themselves on being socially shunned, and darkly referred to as "Them" by their neighbours and community. Elsewhere, they were described as "Ireland's Answer To The Rolling Stones", but at home they were just Them yahoos out of Sandy Row... such a group[4] could have no other name.