American Gods

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John J. Falco
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I'm left with a whole bunch of question. Maybe they're answered in the book. if so can someone elighten me?

SPOILERS INSIDE




1. Wednesday kills his friends Vulcan. But we also learn that Gods are born when people worship him and die when they stop. So does that not imply that the moment someone worships Vulcan he springs back to life. Or are they worshipping a dead God. But how can a God you worship to be dead. Seems to me that a God can't really kill another God unless they find a way for people to stop worshipping that God. But surely that is something one can only achieve over a great amount of time. Unless you're the God of Forgetting and make people forget about the other God or something. In any case I don't get how one God can kill another God given said premise of how God come into and fade from existence.

2. Is there a difference between worship and knowing a God? For instance I know of Poseidon, Zeus, .. but i don't worship them. Is it enough for a God to survive if he or she is simply remembered of does it truly require worship?

3. We are told that their are many Jesus's cause people think of Jesus in many different ways. But isn't that true for all Gods. I'm preety sure the image i have in my head of say Loki would be different from the image another have of Loki. With that said shouldn't there be a whole bunch of mr wednnesday's, odin's as well. Why is Jesus the exception and is there a need to be a bunch of them. Why isn't he centralized in one character like the other Gods.

4. Why is Jesus left outside of the battle? Is it because he is a god of forgiveness? But if so shouldn't that make him an enemy of Odin? Not because he wants to be, but simply because of what they both are and represent...

5. What about the Christian God? Unlike Jesus he isn't all forgiving. (Unless you go by the notion that Jesus and God are the same. Never fully wrapped my head around the part where the ghost, jesus and god are the same entity yet different entities.) In any case if we go by him being a different God (and Jesus his son, Jesus also a god cause belief in him and stuff) then I'm pretty sure he killed everyone but Noah and his family. Killed a bunch of Egyptians and stuff. Plus how does that work with the other Gods. By killing everyone of the none believers, does that not imply he at that time (Time of Noah and his ark) killed all the other Gods by killing all their believers. Meaning only Gods born after that event should still be alive. So where does he stand in all of this?

6. The christian god claims to have created the world, and i'm sure other gods do as well. How does this all fit? Where does Allah stand. Will Islam start playing a role as well? So far the show has shown most other major religions I know about. Though that cab driver seems to be a mixture of several religions. Or do Hindu's also sit on a mat and pray to their God(s) 7 times a day?
And I will try to answer them as best as I know personally myself this is without reading any of the books.

1. I think in Vulcans case Wednesday knew that the town only exists as it did because of the high worship of Vulcan. If Vulcan was out of the picture the town would cease to exist and if there were stragglers, Wednesday would probably just kill them too. Vulcan is a means to an end for Wednesday so that he can start his war with the New Gods. In episode 8 we see many, many Jesuses at Easter’s house, because many different types of people believe in many different types of Jesuses. Wednesday knew that only that town in Virginia believed in Vulcan so it’s much easier to kill him, without many people noticing.

2. I don’t think they go this deep in the show, but at the end of the season 1 Shadow basically claims he believes in Wednesday who turns out to be Odin after Odin recruits Ostara and she kills the Earth.

3. I think the different images of Jesus are the way they are because lots of people have a different representation of Jesus. Most people have the same image of Odin, what they study in the old Norse texts. There are images of him and statues of him and how he looks. I don’t think the Chinese, or African Americans have their own version of Odin (yes similar types of Gods but not the same guy), namely because he is not in their mythology. Due to globalization, over the past 2,000 years, most people around the world have their own image of Jesus. So this goes back to your first question about knowing a God or Worshiping a God. The cultures that worship Jesus all have different Jesuses but the cultures that only study about Odin, don’t remake him in their own image, simply because they don’t worship him. Hence why Wednesday seems very, very jealous of Christianity.

4. Honestly Jesus should be an enemy of Wednesday or at the very least an old-new God. I’m not sure why he is considered old, but then again in Episode 8 Wednesday says that Jesus is a man, so I am not so sure they think he is a God in their eyes. Jesus could be a type of unknown bother to them, because the Old Gods are so established that they only have one image and the new gods don’t care about Jesus. So they just let the people believe in Jesus as a means to an end. As in Easter’s case, she uses him to exist. Even though Wednesday points out the obvious flaw in her plan.

5. The show is very light (or very deep depending on your perspective) on Christian mythology and maybe not all the stories in the bible are taken literally. The reason for this is that Gaiman is talking about the American version of all these Gods. The American perspective on Odin, Czernobog, Mr. Nancy etc… Obviously, the main counterpoint to Christianity is that there is no other gods besides the one true god which may or may not be Jesus. It’s a very interesting thing to think about if you also take what I said in point 4. If Jesus is an unknown variable to the Old Gods they should be worried about his power. The fact that they aren’t shows that they either just let him be because they know he is practically untouchable or are so egotistical that they see Christianity as nothing but a nuisance taking up their territory. You can see this in the way Easter and Wednesday talk about Jesus like he is nothing. Just a toy to be used, a ploy to get people really believing in their own religions without them even knowing it. Christianity, could have been a pact that the old gods came up with to rewrite their own stories again for the New World in America. (which ask any religious scholar and that is exactly what it is) Then if that was the case, New Gods should be doing much better than they are.

6. I haven’t read the books although they are next on my list. So hopefully once I read those I can answer the questions about other religions. I hope my answers helped you somewhat. I love these types of deep-thinking shows, but sometimes you just have to sit down and think about them for a while before it clicks with you.

Does anyone think that Dead Wife = Zombie Worship and she will become a New God in the end???
 

Alex The G and T

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Spectacular season finale. I was squirming with delight as the story went delightfully off the rails, vis-a-vis, the book.

The reason that there are so many, loose ends, Koopa, is that this was a cliffhanger episode, anticipating a further "season" to come. (A brief bit of googling fails to find any indication of when the story will resume)

The closing scene, driving up to "The House on the rock...." The "House on the Rock" is where the sh*t gets really interesting, in the book.

This is going to be like one of those "Hobbit" kinda deals where they milk it for untold, wretched YEARS.

****

Ya know how, when you lose an argument, and tomorrow you say to yourself: "I shoulda said..."

I have the delightful sense that Gaiman is having a blast, rewriting this to how it could have been better... "if i'd only thought..." and there are lots of updated political and sociological references.

I'm loving it.

***
Even the official STARZ page gives no hint of when the series resumes. A TV "Season" is like, when the kiddies get back to school, and summer reruns end... like maybe there will be more, come about October???
 

ctg

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Wonderful finale. It brought all elements nicely together. Although it was annoyingly a season finale it was also a spectacular start for the summer season as it's almost time for a midsummer festival. There's a lot more coming in just end of the month.

American Gods is a wonderful addition into the summer tradition. But it has been years late as this should have been produced ages ago. It's place is among all other stars: FTWD, GoT, Preacher, The Last Ship and Guilleromo's finish with The Strain. All of it feels programmed. More so than in any other summers.

I guess that's what time is, but if you have a chance watch this series as it is fabulous. And the Wanderer a perfect God for the antagonist. Or does someone believe Wanderer is the protagonist?

PS. Loved Odin driving over the bunnies. I once did the same thing, equally in spring time and lady sitting on the guest seat. You can guess the ending the moment she heard my car rolling over the rabbits.
 

Kylara

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I'm left with a whole bunch of question. Maybe they're answered in the book. if so can someone elighten me?

SPOILERS INSIDE


1.
Wednesday kills his friends Vulcan. But we also learn that Gods are born when people worship him and die when they stop. So does that not imply that the moment someone worships Vulcan he springs back to life. Or are they worshipping a dead God. But how can a God you worship to be dead. Seems to me that a God can't really kill another God unless they find a way for people to stop worshipping that God. But surely that is something one can only achieve over a great amount of time. Unless you're the God of Forgetting and make people forget about the other God or something. In any case I don't get how one God can kill another God given said premise of how God come into and fade from existence.



Vulcan's death was a sacrifice to Odin. It was also a way to get the other old gods on side - Vulcan made a deal with the new gods, broke it to make Odin a sword, new gods would have killed him - thus sacrifice and power to them, by killing him himself, Odin gets the sacrifice and power. Vulcan may come back as his town people believe in him, so it's less of a problem than you'd think. That particular Vulcan is dead but there'll probably be another one along in a minute ;)


2.
Is there a difference between worship and knowing a God? For instance I know of Poseidon, Zeus, .. but i don't worship them. Is it enough for a God to survive if he or she is simply remembered of does it truly require worship?



There is - knowing one implies they have existence, but gives little power as you don't necessarily ascribe to the prayer/reward system of that god (Eostre is a good example - pray for spring and new life and you get spring and new life). Worshipping means the god gets belief and thus power which means that the followers ascribe to their prayer/reward system. Take our leprechaun friend's backstory bit (Effie) - known, but not worshipped in the New World, people aren't leaving the bread or cream etc, so the power diminishes, and you end with not much power and eventually, the less power, the less worship, the less who know who you are. Which is why Gaiman picks some very obscure gods.

3.
We are told that their are many Jesus's cause people think of Jesus in many different ways. But isn't that true for all Gods. I'm preety sure the image i have in my head of say Loki would be different from the image another have of Loki. With that said shouldn't there be a whole bunch of mr wednnesday's, odin's as well. Why is Jesus the exception and is there a need to be a bunch of them. Why isn't he centralized in one character like the other Gods.



I don't think Jesus popped up much more than in a passing comment in the books. So it's all new Gaiman brain for the tv series. But you get different kinds of Jesus because of the globalisation of the faith. There is the "original" jesus (of nazareth, with the glowing head) but with enough people fixing on one, you get one, so you end with many. It doesn't matter too much because they all share it out and technically "Jesus" is a middle aged god. Not old enough to be old, but not a new one. And he didn't monopolise, but shared the festivals etc. In the tv version I'm pretty sure they are happy with all the jesuses because they are nice and sharey and aren't power grabbing.

4.
Why is Jesus left outside of the battle? Is it because he is a god of forgiveness? But if so shouldn't that make him an enemy of Odin? Not because he wants to be, but simply because of what they both are and represent...



The Jesuses aren't part of the war - middle aged, get on with everyone. Don't need to steal more power from others as already have a nice amount which they share around. Again, not trying to monopolise.

5.
What about the Christian God? Unlike Jesus he isn't all forgiving. (Unless you go by the notion that Jesus and God are the same. Never fully wrapped my head around the part where the ghost, jesus and god are the same entity yet different entities.) In any case if we go by him being a different God (and Jesus his son, Jesus also a god cause belief in him and stuff) then I'm pretty sure he killed everyone but Noah and his family. Killed a bunch of Egyptians and stuff. Plus how does that work with the other Gods. By killing everyone of the none believers, does that not imply he at that time (Time of Noah and his ark) killed all the other Gods by killing all their believers. Meaning only Gods born after that event should still be alive. So where does he stand in all of this?



"God" is faceless, and is imagined as an entity above the world, rather than one that walks among us (that's Jesus). In the novel, Christianity was left out as it's a middling aged religion, not old or new so somewhat irrelevant to the PLAN. Also, they'll probably mention somewhere that the Old Testament God was killed by New Testament God, who is much nicer about things. And that those who believed in that one are few and far between as it was a very specific area of the world who worshipped. Enough people believing works to keep alive. Look at Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels which cover belief and gods - very well explained and in a very similar vein to Gaiman.

6.
The christian god claims to have created the world, and i'm sure other gods do as well. How does this all fit? Where does Allah stand. Will Islam start playing a role as well? So far the show has shown most other major religions I know about. Though that cab driver seems to be a mixture of several religions. Or do Hindu's also sit on a mat and pray to their God(s) 7 times a day?




The cab driver found a Djin. Specific desert God that is historical in his birthplace. Bit like the UKs pagan gods. A lot of Gods are the "same" gods by other names. And the whole thing is cyclical. World probably came first, then the people who prayed to X for good weather/harvest/battle outcome and so the god popped up and helped out and thus the prayer/reward system came about. More you sacrifice the better the result etc. Doesn't matter about overlap because it is intrinsic to each indivual who believes. Doesn't matter who made that tree grow, because X will believe their god, Y theirs, etc etc. There are some very specific and very vague gods and powers about, but that works for them because you get attribution to whichever god and that boosts their power.


Hopefully that has helped answer some of the questions. It's all very twisty and specific and vague in the novel - which is drifting further from the tv series as they add things and change bits and move them around.
 

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Even the official STARZ page gives no hint of when the series resumes. A TV "Season" is like, when the kiddies get back to school, and summer reruns end... like maybe there will be more, come about October???
Are you saying October 2018??? That's more in line with cable. I know westworld takes a year to produce. Game of Thrones similar. I guess the good thing about AG being only eight episodes is that we can get them sooner and we don't have to get a season chopped up like Walking Dead does, although that is genius on their part.
 

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According to this article it looks like Fuller has a good deal of stuff that he wants to include in future seasons, and it looks like they have already mapped out season 2. It makes sense to me now that he didn't want to do Star Trek. This show is much larger than a sliver of the Star Trek universe.

They know Gaiman wants to write a sequel (or perhaps is working on one right now). However, they state that due to the mythology and the scope of the first book it's pretty much impossible to get into a Game of Thrones situation, where they might get ahead of the book, but basically Gaiman has free range here. It would just add another dimension to the show if that were to happen. I'm sure Gaiman would be able to connect the new book nicely with wherever the show might happen to be at that point. So it looks like they are in it for the long haul and have their own paths they want to explore.

Black Sails lasted four seasons on Starz and had similar audience and I just checked the ratings AG is more popular than Black Sails based on ratings.

‘American Gods’ EPs On Tonight’s Finale, “Angrier” Season 2 & Comic-Con 2017
 
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Koopa

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Didn't know that was the season final already...guess we'll have to wait a bit for new episodes. I do hope the series never become like the movie The Thin Red Line though. At times it has a similar vibe. Which is good until (for me) they take it too far and it becomes boring to watch. Cause the movie (thin red line) was beautifully fimed but at times boring for me.

Some things are clearer now thanks to the answers. Some thing still ambiguous, but that's okay.

@ctg, you serious about purposely riding over bunnies?
 

Brian G Turner

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Wasn't really a fan of the book, but thought I'd try the first episode of this to see whether they'd brought new life to it. Didn't work for me, and thought the over-use of blood splatter was ridiculous. I dread to think what would happen if Shadow ever got a papercut!
 

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ctg

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Variety reports that Michael Green and Bryan Fuller are exiting American Gods, with disagreements over budget and creative direction cited as the cause. American Gods had already been greenlit for a second season halfway through its first one, and there was talk about folding in other connected works by Gaiman into future seasons. The per-episode budget for season two was reportedly at $10 million and production company Fremantle Media was balking at increasing that.

Fuller and Green were very hands-on lead with many of American Gods’ first season episodes. Fuller also participated very energetically with the show’s fandom, regularly tweeting about specific details when the show aired on Sunday nights.
https://io9.gizmodo.com/report-american-gods-showrunners-are-leaving-the-hit-s-1820858533
 

ctg

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Does Fuller not work well with others? This seems to be a trend.
Not all artists can cope very well on compromising their vision. It's either their vision or none at all.
 

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Not all artists can cope very well on compromising their vision. It's either their vision or none at all.
He might also have a problem sticking with a project for too long. None of his TV series have lasted more than two years. I know people like this personally and they are never satisfied.
 

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ctg

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It's back. I'm not sure how interested people are on the reviews, but I'll try to do some anyway since it's only once per week.
 

-K2-

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I watched it... It's kind of fun how they have kept the path of it (last night a great example) where they pass through and utilize some of the more 'down home/seedier' aspects of America like HotH, motels and so on.

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ctg

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A world where God walk on Earth like us is so weird idea. It is a mythical one and if you wrap some tinfoil some people have theorised it being real, instead of being a magnificent fantasy coming out of Mr Gaiman's one. Yet, I started loving this series as last time it came out, the Preacher was one the first season.

So, in their world, it is no wonder that the Gods have more than one luxury resort or a save heaven, when in the Preacher it is almost the same. What is supremely weird is that in Gaiman's world most of the human population is unaware of the legends being real. But if you happen to somehow fall into it, it is really hard to get out and somehow convert back of them being unreal.

I am saying that because without belief and faith on certain things, they don't exist in Gaiman's reality. That is what I learned from the first season. Maybe this second one will show things that are pure figment of Gaiman's imagination, like Mr World.

He claimed that he is the Authority that is behind the men that puts the president in the oval office. Although it says a lot about him, it doesn't tell anything




So Mr Wednesday is now travelling with a Leprechaun, a ghoul and a new god called Shadow. I am just wondering if Odin is grooming Shadow to be new Thor. If so, Shadow is going to need so magnificent weapon if he's going to face Gods like Queen Bilguis as Odin's bodyguard.

She asked AllFather: "Are you afraid? I was there when they sacrificed first calf for you," and it made Odin go blank, almost speechless as he was trying to figure out of how he should reply. It is a totally new side on Odin, but also a believable as my understanding is that he did all those things, like hanging from a tree, because he was scared. The knowledge seems to be his way of being on top of the game.

The problem for the Shadow is that unlike all the other Gods, he is not privy to the knowledge of of the game between the deities is really played. He is really in the shadow, not really know what the hell is going as further he falls into realm that is inaccessible to normal people.

Mr Nancy noticed that same thing and he called Shadow Moon fool straight to his face. Luckily we have Mr Wednesday, who won't let his protegee to be in the dark for too long as he explained the House on the Rock being same a churches or temples in our reality.

I have to say, that place looks absolutely amazing, and it is no wonder why millions upon millions visit it on the road trips in the new country. I guess we are lucky that Mr Shadow is so innocent, because in a way he is a perfect narrator for the Gaiman universe.



"Where the ef am I?" Shadow asked. Man, I would have asked the same thing, in same intention, before I would realised that the Carousel at the end of the road had taken me through time and space to mystical place, where the Old Gods were young.

It is an impossible bucket list item that I would like to someday cross off from the list. Without Bezos shelling AMZ money in the production, I can see easily why this series was sold to them, because I don't believe that there is anyone who could have produced this.



Look at it. I don't think even Disney could have done this. Odin explained that the Old Ones came with the first people in the New Land, and they have grown old, while their power base has diminished. All the other gods said the same thing, and yet, they were all talking to Shadow as if they were making him a believer.

But seeing wasn't the only thing for the Shadow Moon that mattered as he said Mr Wednesday had brought belief back into him. Before that it was as if he was a tabula rasa, a blank page. But is that so rare in us, because many people seems to be like that. It is as if they don't have any content in their lives and they are all waiting for that something to happen.

Funny that his message was the same as the one that has been lingering all the time in the background. Gods need faith to live. Without it they are nothing. Hence Mother Winter had to die so that Wednesday War can go on. Did he plan it that way from the beginning?
 

ctg

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American Gods season 3 is a go! Starz announced, only one episode into American Gods season 2, that the adaptation of Neil Gaiman's beloved novel will be getting a third season. This is good news for anyone who is into mesmerising visuals and fantastical commentary on today's sociopolitical status quo. Also, for anyone who wants to see this full story brought to the screen.
American Gods has been renewed for season 3
 

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