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The American Gods are back

As you should know by now, I adore British writer Neil Gaiman. After the frankly mediocre cinematic transposition of Stardust, I am extremely happy to see him reaping fruits of his hard and good work: he’s one of the men behind Lucifer and we’re eagerly waiting for the brand new series Good Omens, starring no […]

As you should know by now, I adore British writer Neil Gaiman. After the frankly mediocre cinematic transposition of Stardust, I am extremely happy to see him reaping fruits of his hard and good work: he’s one of the men behind Lucifer and we’re eagerly waiting for the brand new series Good Omens, starring no other than David Tennants. The major breakthrough, however, seems to be this Starz adaptation of his award-winning huge novel American Gods. I’ve written about it last year.

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What happened since then was a falling out between Starz and director Bryan Fuller, now working on Star Trek Discovery. This worried us, because Fuller was responsible for a lot of the things that made the series great: he’s visionaristic crazy, a fiend for details. He was replaced by one of his collaborators, Jesse Alexander, but that didn’t last either and at the end our minds were put at ease by the news that Gaiman himself was stepping in to save the day. Nonetheless, a production that bumpy is bound to have ripercussions on the quality of the show.

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After having seen the first episode of season 2, The House on the Rock, this doesn’t seem to be the case.

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We reconnect with old characters just where we left off: mr World (Crispin Glover, always desperately trying not to look like George McFly) is running for his life after mr Wednesday (Ian McShane, who in the last episode was revealed being Odin) blasted his minions’ asses with lightning. He is in the company of the Technical Boy (Bruce Langley, one of the characters that were most heavily updated in the adaptation) and apparently Media (wonderful Gillian Anderson, who in seasion 1 has depicted any possible icon from Marilyn Monroe to David Bowie) is in the wind.

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On the other side of the barricade, mr Wednesday is riding with his bodyguard Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle) and his dead/resurrected wife (Emily Browning). In their car, merrily they bring along a less-than-merry leprechaun whose luck is currently fueling the resurrection of Laura: he goes by Mad Sweeney and he’s portrayed by a flaming Pablo Schreiber.

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Their destination is the House on the Rocks in Wisconsin, an actual place from the 60s, where they meet everybody’s favourite storyteller (sorry, Ibis): Orlando Jones’ mr. Nancy, meanng Anansi. The place is venue for a meeting of the old Gods and we meet again with the Jinn and his Salim (I know, it should be the other way around but it’s actually not), Peter Stormare’s Czernobog, one of the Zoryas and uninvited Bilquis, along with some new crazy kids.

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I won’t say that this episode was unflawed, the second part of the carousel sequence was a little cheesy and you see a lot less craft in directing, but the longhouse meeting was awesome and writing is still top notch. So, if you’re thinking about dropping the series, think again. And if you haven’t seen it yet… well, what are you waiting for? Season 3 is already confirmed.

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