American Gods – Season 3 Episode 4 Recap & Review


The Unseen

Episode 4 of American Gods Season 3 begins with Ibis narrating about the changing wave of economic growth sweeping across America.

Bathed in blood dripping from slave-owner’s whips, we see African-American ancestors breaking their backs, picking cotton for the country to thrive. As we’re introduced to several African Gods and Goddesses, they rally their kin to push past their problems with one simple mantra: We Shall overcome.

We then return to Bilquis’ apartment as blood carpets the ground. Shadow confronts Technical Boy, knocking him against the wall repeatedly as he questions what he’s done. Only, the New God begins glitching as it turns out Bilquis messed him up. Given what happened with Bill Sanders, Technical Boy deduces that this founder of computer systems may have had a chain reaction on whatever’s happening to him.

We then cut back in time and see exactly what happened in the apartment. Bilquis tried to fight off her captors and despite slitting the throat of one, the others drugged her and took the girl away. The last messages on Bill’s phone happen to be from Alexandra Sanders, the eldest daughter of Bill. This gives Shadow enough of a lead to head off in search of answers.

Elsewhere, a young child stumbles upon the blood-stained corpse of Sweeney while Laura’s body is simply dust on the ground. Zooming in, this dust soon whisks us off to Purgatory, where Laura is currently awaiting her fate. Among others in the room, she asks just where Sweeney is as we receive a nice musical montage of this leprechaun.

As Laura continues to search around, a man arriving to wash away the blood somehow brings Laura back from purgatory. He’s obviously shocked to see her as Laura learns that Sweeney is due to be cremated.

Wednesday’s also on the hunt for Hutchinson too, having used his contacts to hack into Hutchinson’s business accounts. He’s certainly not the saintly figure he may paint himself to be. Offshore accounts and money siphoned from clients is enough for Wednesday to use as leverage going forward.

Technical Boy joins Shadow as they go after Alexandra, or at least her associate, Mark. Only, Shadow receives a phone call from Wednesday asking for his help. Shadow flat out refuses though until he finds Bilquis. For now, it’s the bad cop/good cop routine as Shadow encourages Technical Boy to show Mark what he can do. It doesn’t take long before he spills an address.

Meanwhile, Ms World learns there are problems with Sanders and Levitech, realizing that Bilquis is behind all this. Cursing her luck, Ms. World turns back into Mr World and dons his hat, heading out to confront her.

It turns out Mr World actually facilitated this meeting with Hutchinson under the pretense that she didn’t mess with the established order. Well, unfortunately that’s obviously gone awry, as Mr World heads in and starts antagonizing her.

Wednesday heads off to visit his contacts but unfortunately things get rowdy in the bar. Johan is there, causing problems, prompting Wednesday to flex his old God muscles and stop him from killing anyone.

Sitting down to drink, Wednesday talks to this musician, calling him a fire-bear and encouraging him to start a new band. As Johan plunges a knife into his own palm, he growls that he didn’t kill his own band members… as the All Father grits his teeth and tells him to do his job.

Well, Wednesday soon discovers Johan’s craziness first-hand, as he explodes the biker bar with Wednesday still inside. The All-Father survives of course, stumbling out and stripping down. As paramedics show up at the scene, he’s taken to hospital. This, of course, puts Shadow in a difficult position when he finds out about Wednesday.

Well, Shadow eventually decides to try and help her as Bilquis is tortured by Mr World and the others. Midway through her ordeal, she embraces her ancestry and begins dancing to the heavy metal her captors are playing.

Meanwhile, Laura collects up the ashes of Sweeney and hitches a ride to Cairo.

The Episode Review

American Gods returns this week with a changing direction for the season ahead. The show doubles down on its exploration of America’s past and in particular slavery and African Gods.

While there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, the show loses sight of the fact this is supposed to be Shadow’s story and how he’s the key figure in this war between Old and New Gods that’s been teased for 3 seasons without ever actually following through with God VS God action.

Instead, this week we’re given a strange buddy cop move with Technical Boy whose motivations aren’t initially clear to be honest.

Laura Moon’s plot line returns though and instead of the visual delight featuring Purgatory, she’s instead inexplicably returned to Earth as we receive confirmation that Sweeney is well and truly dead. Then again, given how dead isn’t really dead in this show, I wouldn’t be surprised if they bring him back.

We’re almost at the halfway point of season 3 and so far it’s been a pretty uneventful season to be honest. Hopefully things pick up soon though.

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