Good God, There Are More Choices!
Whether it be the trippy visuals, the mythological storyline or the numerous trips to different dimensions, there really is no other show like American Gods. While the story does stray quite far from the books, there’s also something unforgettable about Starz’s supernatural thriller.
If you’ve finished watching and are looking for more of the same, fret not! We’ve combed through the archives and saved you the hassle of having to try and find something similar with our top 10 picks.
To keep things simple for skim-readers we’ve added what similarities these have.
Of course for all the shows we’ve reviewed, we’ve also added a handy link so you can check out our full thoughts on that series and see if it’s something you want to invest your time with.
So without further ado, we present 10 TV shows that should whet the appetite when you’ve finished streaming American Gods.
Similarities – Unsettling Atmosphere
If you’re looking for a deliciously sinister thriller that hits all the right notes, look no further.
The story of Hannibal predominantly revolves around two key characters; the calculated cannibal Hannibal Lector and criminal profiler Will Graham. Interestingly, Will can “see” crimes as they happen which gives him an edge while out in the field.
Each episode has a different case to deal with but an overarching story tackles one murder in particular that brings both these characters together.
Mads Mikkelsen does an incredible job portraying Hannibal Lector and the chemistry between these two leads is enough to make for a unique offering in the crime drama genre.
Similarities – Eclectic Characters & Mythology
Set in Victoria London, Penny Dreadful combines blood-soaked horror and mystery beautifully into one atmospheric series. The story essentially sees explorer Sir Malcolm Murray, American gunslinger Ethan Chandler, scientist Victor Frankenstein and medium Vanessa Ives uniting to combat supernatural threats together.
It’s a simple enough premise but where this show excels is in its storytelling and acting. Everything about Penny Dreadful oozes charisma and despite a slightly slow start during season 1, it quickly grows into a real powerhouse on the horror circuit.
It’s beautifully produced too, with some lavishly dressed sets and some well-rounded characters. This one is well worth checking out.
Similarities – Violence & Characters
Based on the comic book series of the same name, Preacher is a well written, bloody, violent romp that’s certainly worth checking out. The basic premise revolves around a preacher enlisting the help of a vampire and his ex to find God.
Only, the story goes so much deeper than that. This one does require a bit of patience to begin with, introducing a host of different characters and seemingly jumping around at random. If you can take to the tone though, this one should definitely quench that American God-sized thirst. Across the four seasons, this one quickly becomes one of AMC’s best originals.
Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency
Similarities – Supernatural Mystery
Based on the books of the same name, Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency is a frenetic, witty, intelligently paced show with a great mystery at its heart.
The series revolves around an eccentric, enthusiastic amateur sleuth called Dirk who whisks up unimportant nobody Todd on a supernatural, time bending adventure to solve a bizarre mystery.
Dirk begins as a comedy before quickly growing into a really engrossing, endearing comedic drama that only becomes more wild and wacky as it moves into the second season. If you’re in the mood for a fantastical adventure, complete with trippy visuals, crazy shenanigans and a few hearty laughs along the way, this may be the show for you.
Similarities – Violence & Mystery
Not to be mistaken by Amazon Prime’s indifferent reboot last year, the original British series of Utopia is a wonderful, hedonistic trip into the weird and wonderful.
The striking colours, moody atmosphere and unflinching storyline are well-poised to make the most of this cult hit. For those unaware, the story revolves around a group of people who meet online only to discover a bizarre graphic novel that seems to hold more than ink and words on its page. Unfortunately they’re mercilessly hunted by an organization known as “The Network”, desperate to snatch the novel for themselves.
Although the second season does end on an unresolved note, there’s enough within this gem to make it a compelling and worthy investment of time nonetheless.
Similarities – Tone & Horror
Twin Peaks is one of those classic, quintessential shows from the 90’s that sticks with you long after the final credits have rolled. The simple story about a peculiar FBI agent investigating the murder of a young woman – in the even more peculiar town of Twin Peaks – is simple but surprisingly effective.
It’s one of those rare gems that completely changed the landscape of the small screen when it released in 1990 and showed what could be achieved with horror through this medium.
There’s some genuinely creepy moments along the way, typified by the stunningly horrific nightmare montage in the episode “Lonely Soul.”
If you haven’t watched this already, you absolutely should – it’s one of the better shows out there.
Similarities – Visuals & Story
Legion is a challenging sci-fi series that exists somewhere within the weird space of the X-Men universe. It’s also one of the more unusual and visually stunning shows you’re likely to see in quite some time.
The show revolves around a super mutant named David Haller. This troubled young man spends his time institutionalized after being diagnosed as schizophrenic.
What follows is an unforgettable journey that makes Legion one of the better shows to grace the small screen. It also ends with a decent conclusion too, making it a must-watch for fans of American Gods.
Similarities – Violence & Expansive Story
Following the journey of Ragnar Lothbrok, Vikings is a fascinating and often violent look into the lives of the first Norsemen in history.
Full of dramatic tension and leaning (mostly) toward historical accuracy, Vikings does a great job blending fact and fiction. In doing so, it produces a methodically paced, interesting journey through the lives of the infamous warriors of the North.
While the later seasons do take some liberties with that realism and the plot does run out of steam before its final season limps over the finish line, there’s enough here to enjoy nonetheless.
Similarities – Mystery, Tone & Themes
If thematic depth is your jam, The Leftovers is definitely worth checking out. Running for three seasons, the story picks up just after a global event called the “Sudden Departure.”
This inexplicable event sees the disappearance of 140 million people – or 2% of the world’s population to be precise.
Following that, mainstream religions decline and pave way for a number of cults to emerge. The most notable among them is the Guilty Remnant.
The story then picks up from here and only grows more intriguing and interesting over time. We won’t spoil anything else here but suffice to say, The Leftovers should definitely be on your radar.
Similarities – Gods & Mystery
Terry Pratchett books have a very distinct humour that’s sometimes hard to translate onto the big or small screen. Thankfully Amazon Studios rolled up its sleeves and opened its chequebook back in 2019 to deliver a very funny, quirky drama in Good Omens.
With a tasteful amount of religious humour and a story that builds to a climactic showdown at the end, Good Omens blends a mythological story involving Gods and Christianity around some trademark Pratchett humour. Oh, and it also features a pretty stacked cast too!
While tonally different to American Gods, the compelling story should be enough to keep you sticking around for more.
So there we have it, our 10 TV show alternatives to American Gods.
What do you think of our picks? Do you agree? Are there any notable omissions? Let us know in the comments below!