American Gods Season 2 Episode 2 Recap & Review

Chasing Shadows

This week we return to American Gods for another intriguing episode as the various groups of Gods regroup after the shoot-out at the diner.

The story begins with Mr. Wednesday vowing revenge on the New Gods and organising a wake in the parking lot of the diner. From here, Nancy and Wednesday head off for a separate mission, preparing for the Great War that lies before them while Laura and Mad Sweeney head off and chase after Shadow.

Until the end of the episode, Wednesday and Nancy’s driving antics don’t really serve up much in the way of plot development. The scenes themselves clearly act as a stop-gap between the various stories developing here but if I’m honest, the attempts at humour don’t really hit their marks that well. It’s not until the final part of the episode where this storyline gets more exciting, with a final set piece involving a train and the promise of visiting Valhalla.

Before we get there though, we catch up with Shadow whose been captured by a mysterious man who works on behalf of Mr World. As Shadow suffers unimaginable pain at the hands of this man, we flash back to Shadow’s past to gain a better understanding of his (no pun intended) shadowy past.

Through these flashbacks we witness his close bond with his Mum and the real reason he’s held to such high regard by the Old Gods. As Shadow struggles to regain consciousness from these various flashes, the man offers to make him a deal as he comes to – join the New Gods or perish.

Meanwhile, Technical Boy travels in search of Media whose whereabouts remains a mystery. A mystery, that is, until Media herself appears via various billboards and discusses her plans for the future. As the two debate about what direction to take their ideals, we leave these two New Gods with their futures still unclear. 

As Laura races to catch up with Shadow, she discusses religion with Mad Sweeney before reaching a sudden end to the road. Lying before them is a mysterious field of purple flowers. Before we get a chance to contemplate whether this is the work of Easter, Mad Sweeney uses his powers to transport them closer to Shadow’s light, and consequently teetering precariously on the edge of a bridge.

Taking a leap of faith, Laura jumps down onto a passing train where Shadow is currently being held captive. Mad Sweeney begrudgingly joins her and the two fight off several guards on their way to freeing Shadow. As Laura and Shadow lock eyes and carnage lies around them, we leave the episode with one final shot of Wednesday’s brilliantly blue eye turning to fire as the promise of Valhalla awaits.

American Gods once again delivers a fascinating episode and the conflict between the new and old Gods looks set to explode into a flurry of action pieces at the end of the season. Given the issues this show has had off-screen, on-screen everything seems to be moving along with the same precision and deliberate pacing seen the first time around. Although a few of the jokes don’t really hit their marks and other scenes could easily have been edited out, these are nitpicks really. American Gods’ second episode delivers another enjoyable slice of drama, one that looks set for a very interesting season ahead.


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