American Gods S01E08: “Come to Jesus”
This Season on American Gods:
This season on American Gods, we met Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle) the week he was released from jail. He was released a couple of days early to attend the funeral of his wife Laura (Emily Browning), who was brought back to her body through Shadow’s accidental intervention with Mad Sweeney’s (Paolo Schrieber) lucky coin. On his journey to her funeral, he was recruited to be the aide de camp of a mysterious con man named Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane). During their road trip through America, there has been an attempted lynching, a bank robbery, two notable car accidents, and a decapitation. This week on American Gods, showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green aspire to justify several of their creative choices by giving fans a satisfying season finale. Did they succeed? Read Word of the Nerd’s review to find out.
This week on American Gods:
This week on American Gods, Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane) and Shadow (Ricky Whittle) visit the house of Easter (Kristin Chenoweth) and find several of their friends and enemies there.
This season finale wrapped up significantly more threads than I expected, justifying the narrative choices of both the fourth and seventh episodes of this season, where the narrative deviated from the main plot to focus on Laura Moon and Mad Sweeney respectively. There were a couple important in-universe revelations that will likely lead to character relationship shake-ups come season two, and an event occurred that could be considered a major cliffhanger. However, themes are important too, and this episode dropped the ball on a major one.
Women, Power, and the Male Lens in American Gods
This episode (no spoilers) wanted us to focus on the power of women. However, they didn’t really focus on women and their power. Instead, they had a thematic focus on what these powerful women (Biliquis, Media, and Kristin Chenoweth’s Easter) could do to further the agendas of these warring men rather than what agendas they themselves had. Women aren’t even narrating the stories of other women, men have been the only “Coming to America” narrators up to this point. The women don’t get to be chess masters, just the queens on the chessboard. Although the queen is the most powerful piece on the chessboard, said queen is still just a piece of the puzzle and not controlling the action. At this point, don’t we want more from our fiction?
However, all hope is not yet lost for female power in American Gods. Among the women of American Gods, the only one who seems to be pursuing her own agenda is angry revenant Laura Moon. Will Laura rise up to be a chess master Although Laura has a lot of physical power, she has neither the resources nor gravitas available to a god, which will hinder her chess master potential. Right now, she’s a pawn at best: very vulnerable, can do exactly one thing effectively, and has a lot of potential to amass more power. We have to wait until next year to see if anything changes in this status quo, but it seems unlikely, considering the source material.
In conclusion, the first season finale of American Gods did what it was supposed to do: it summed up many plotlines while shocking and enticing the audience into wanting more from the series. However, the episode was somewhat troubling thematically.
This episode was the first season finale of American Gods. The second season of American Gods will likely air on Starz in 2018, although a date has not yet been announced.
What did you think of the season finale of American Gods? Tell us in the comments!