After just two episodes, it was announced that American Gods will be renewed for a second season. It’s no surprise, since the groundbreaking adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s novel has made a massive impact and been a huge instant hit with both fans and critics. But if you’re likely to find yourself at a loss as to what to do with yourself once Season 1 comes to the end of its eight-episode run, here are some suggestions to help you scratch your American Gods itch ahead of Season 2.
Listen To a Podcast
The American Gods Podcast is hosted by former Hungry for Hannibal hosts Michael and Sarah – superfans of both shows. With writer Bryan Fuller behind both series, these guys know better than many what they’re talking about when it comes to Fuller’s newest venture to hit screens.
Their recent instalment covering Episode 2 unpacks the events that unfolded and offers explanations of some of the more confusing elements of the episode. They also touch on differences between the show and the book. So if you’re looking for more insight or different perspectives on what you’ve just spent the past 8 weeks enjoying, try revisiting the series in this way. It will also give you the chance to ensure that what’s happened is fully explored and understood in your (potentially confused) mind ahead of diving into Season 2.
But don’t just stop at this podcast. Others include the American Gods Aftershow, which reviews each episode entirely independently of any reference to the book – great if you don’t want to compare the two – or there’s this one here from the team behind the popular Westworld podcast. There’s These American Gods too, among others.
Join a Book Club
Find a local book club or start one yourself, and then read the novel. Book clubs are great for making sure you get through a novel – if you’re meeting weekly, you’ll need to read a set amount of the book before you get together to discuss what you’ve all got through. It’ll also allow you to explore themes that you might not have identified in the series. Perhaps you could also all watch the show as well, and discuss that together.
Not only will you be able to keep your enthusiasm for American Gods at a high, but you’ll also learn more about what you’ve seen on screen, and gain an insight into what might come in Season 2. Plus you can explore questions like: Why are coin tricks so important? Hurrah!
Explore What Season 2 Might Hold
Check out the internet for fan theories and other speculation as to what secrets Season 2 may have up its sleeve. There’s chatter that the book spans two seasons, but there’s also speculation it’s being split into three seasons. Bryan Fuller, meanwhile, suggested there could even be four seasons to be extracted from the novel. He told Deadline: “It feels like the book would be anywhere from three to four seasons, depending on where we get into as we’re arcing out the second season. The first season was fairly easy to arc out when we went, ‘Oh, this point in the book, that’s where we end the first season’.”
Whatever, reading the book will most likely reveal a lot – if you want to know.
Here are some of the things we can expect to see later in the series to get you started. But a word of warning: look away now as you’re about to read potential SPOILERS from the book.
- Bilquis’s death at the hands of Technical Boy, indicating that the war between gods old and new has already started.
- The revelation that Shadow could be a god…
- …And his realisation that he is the son of Odin/Mr Wednesday.
- Mr Wednesday’s death.
- Shadow’s death and subsequent resurrection at the hands of the god Easter.
- Another Odin.
Immerse Yourself in Further Reading
American Gods author Neil Gaiman has himself written another book inspired by the very topic – with the perfunctory title Norse Mythology. But the subject matter is anything but routine. Gaiman’s novel is an ambitious re-telling of the primeval stories of the Norse gods. If you’re still hungry for more background on Norse myths, a Reddit user has also recommended browsing The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Mythology.
Also check out Gaiman’s comic The Sandman which shares similarities with American Gods. The John James novel Votan is also worth a read – Gaiman has said it’s the best book ever written about the Norse.