American Gods Roundtable: The Secret of Spoon

American Gods Roundtable: The Secret of Spoon

American Gods delivered another strong episode last night, we met some new characters and dug a little deeper into our familier faces. See what we have to say and let us know in the comments what you thought.

How do you feel about the different Coming to America stories to introduce some of these gods to us?
Mynda: I like them. It gives us a context and point of reference for each of the gods. We need the creative backstory especially since we are all thrown into this new world just like Shadow Moon.
Alex: I completely agree. It’s a great way to present exposition and the show’s themes without spoiling the main plot. I’m assuming we’ll get a Coming to America story every week, at least I hope we do, because I love seeing the tokens of the gods reach and remain in America.
Leah: I like them and I get the point but visually there is a huge disconnect for me between the coming to America and what is going on.
Cara: I also think the Coming to America stories give some context and depth to the gods. So far they seem to be showing humans desperate and in need of gods. This one also brings up race, which is not discussed much in the book. We ended the first episode with a lynching, and now we’ve started with a discussion of race. This episode ends with Czernobog regretting that he’ll have to kill his only black friend. I’m glad to see a broader discussion of race and culture.
Roz: It took me until this intro to see the value in these different gods and their roles in the lives of their followers. It is about depth and an understanding of different cultures/religions which can be hard to appreciate when most of us stick to what we know. These gods and the stories of their followers are important to where we are today.

2. Speaking of that Coming to America story, how do you feel about Mr. Nancy?
Mynda: The SPIDER Made my skin crawl which is most likely the point. Love that they based his character after the dancing peacock spider.
Alex: He’s cool, he’s chaotic, and I can’t wait to see him again. His spider form is too pretty to disgust me.
Leah: It was Mr. Nancy’s speech that made me actually get the Coming to America with our God’s. I haven’t read the book and in the first episode I was a little lost. This brought it together. His speech was very impassioned.
Cara: I love Mr. Nancy. Neil Gaiman wrote him his own book, and it’s great. Everyone should read it. I think this Mr. Nancy is angrier and more bittter. Rightfully enraged at what has happened to his followers in America. But he’s a trickster, so he can’t help but laugh at the awfulness of it all. I can’t wait to see him interact with Shadow and Wednesday.
Roz: Can I just keep his brand of cynicism with me always? He was so blunt about the future that I couldn’t help but smile. As for his spider form, I’ll pass on it.

3. Media is also trying to seduce Shadow Moon to her side (and I guess that side also includes Technical Boy). How do you feel about the general difference between the old gods and the new “gods”?
Mynda: I have already picked a side. Love the old school charm of the old gods. Sexy!
Alex: Technical Boy is easily my least favorite character, god or otherwise, but that doesn’t mean I trust Wednesday. For me, all the gods come across as varying degrees of selfish. The old gods just happened to get to Shadow first. Maybe he would have listened to Media if he hadn’t already met Wednesday.
Leah: I’m with Mynda. I like the old gods. There is something, for me, about the way things were. It feels like the “original” gods are old money. They are powerful, they know it, they aren’t flashy. The new gods have to show you just how cool they are by flashing their technology at you. I like old money.
Cara: I like media and the technical boy way more in the show than I did in the books. Maybe that’s because they dominate the way that I’m seeing the show (on a screen, instead of on the page). That said, I’m old gods all the way. I’ll take a mischievous trickster over a slick media personality any day.
Roz: I’m not a fan of Technical Boy so far, but Media was really compelling in her talk. I don’t know if I trust Technical Boy or Media, but I’m not sure I want to put more faith in Mr Wednesday either. Can I stay on the fence for now?

4. There’s something calming about the series talking place in the Midwest – sort of like its own character to visit some of these places forgotten by modern life. Do you agree with that idea or do you think Mr. Wednesday has another reason for walking to explore these towns as he does?
Mynda: I’m really enjoying Big W’s distain for the new and old school love of road trips!
Alex: There has to be an ulterior motive, maybe there’s a new god of industry he wants to avoid. Right now I’m more focused on trying to figure out how Odin’s hammer ended up in Chicago, and why Wednesday lost it in the first place.
Leah: I like when the towns/scenery are their own character. There is so much visually you can do with that. I definitely think Mr. Wednesday has an ulterior motive.
Cara: As a fan of back roads, I’m loving the scenery. Like the gods, these out of the way places are charming but disappearing. They are America to me.
Roz: The back roads are a great look at the sort of forgotten parts of America. Since it seems that Mr Wednesday has been forgotten, it feels right that he’s looking to the lost places.

5. Favorite Scenes/Line/Moment?
Mynda: Big W and his dandelion was enchanting. It endears me to him all the more.
BONUS! Bilqui’s Vagina is a MARVEL! 

Alex: The dandelion thing was cool, I’m partial to the checker game. Shadow finally got to make his own choice when he agreed to the bet, and on top of that I love it when characters gamble- it’s the perfect way to raise stakes and increase tension. Not the most visually compelling, I’ll admit, but plot-wise I was completely invested. Definitely enjoyed this episode more than the first since I’m finally getting a feel for what American Gods really is.
Leah: I’m still undecided about this show in general. I’m not in love yet and I’m not sure I have a favorite scene.
Cara: I love Zorya Vechernyaya, and Cloris Leachman is great. Wednesday has some great lines. I love “unless strange is a new language, and what we’re doing is vocabulary building.” Also his discussion of the”chance of serendipitous lovely” and later that ” there are greater sacrifices one might be asked to make than going a little mad.” Wednesday is the voice of reason in a world that’s becoming increasingly strange, gods help us.
Roz: Anything with Cloris Leachman was the best!

American Gods airs Sunday on Starz

About Roz

Roz is a Southern California native, who grew up watching all of the revived Disney cartoons before being introduced to "Into the Woods" well before she understood half the nuanced jokes. In addition, she loves any fairy tale tropes that are incorporated into modern stories.

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