Simon Rich’s TBS series Miracle Workers came out of his concern about the number of random and horrible things happening all the time and that maybe the guy upstairs is in the midst of a full-on midlife crisis.
Asked how a “guy who is omnipotent” could have a midlife crisis, Rich wasn’t stumped. “On our show he is not omnipotent,” he said. His god is founder and CEO of our world, who created Earth with a lot of good intentions, and gave man free will. But the project has gotten out of hand, is too hard to manage and now god thinks he should want to throw good money after bad.
“We probably have the highest body count of any rom-com in history,” Rich chuckled.
Describing the show as a cross of Old Testament and The Goonies, Rich said, at its core is a bunch of earnest young underdogs setting aside their differences in an effort to pull off a miracle and save the world.
One of the miracle workers is played by Daniel Radcliffe, who gets a million prayers a day and, on a good day, answers one or two – mostly prayers to retrieve lost car keys, Rich revealed.
God is played by Steve Buscemi as an often overwhelmed, confused, somewhat lazy, good-heart black sheep of a family of overachieving gods. He’s in over his head and now thinks he should nuke Earth to pursue his new passion project: creating a restaurant called Lazy Susan, in which people float around an island populated with chefs who dispense tasty dishes.
Rich marveled at his good fortune getting Buscemi to take the role, saying one of the best days of his life was the day he spent binge-watching Steve Buscemi to figure out how best to write for “his specific voice.”
Buscemi returned the compliment, saying Rich’s heaven is a place he’s happy to go, because “it seems the technology there is stuck in the 70’s” just like him.