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Wednesday, August 28

Midnight Horror Review: American Gods: Season Two Blu-ray


*This is a sponsored review. All opinions are 100% mine.


AMAZON
Back in 2017, I fell in love with the horror-fantasy series American Gods that aired on STARZ. It's based on the novel by Neil Gaiman, which I read shortly after the series debuted. The first season followed very closely to the book and at times went far beyond it by expanding the characters. Thanks to the showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green, the series had an unique artistic look that was very graphic at times.

I, like many all other fans, had to wait nearly two years for the second season. This is due to the fact that the original showrunners were fired and a few cast members quit. Jesse Alexander was hired as the new showrunner but was also later let go. The second season premiered back in the spring and was quickly renewed for a third season despite losing over half its audience.

American Gods: Season Two was released to Blu-ray (+Digital) last week by Lionsgate Home Entertainment, featuring all eight episodes on a 3-disc set. The season is also available on DVD.

Season Two picks up shortly after the first season's finale with many of the Old Gods reuniting at The House of Rock. However, their reunion is cut short when Mr. World attacks the restaurant, leading to the death of Zorya Vechernyaya (played by Cloris Leachman). Once again, Mr. Wednesday (played by Ian McShane) and his human bodyguard, Shadow Moon (played by Ricky Whittle) are going on a quest across America looking for a way to end the war with the New Gods.


Meanwhile, Shadows undead wife, Laura, has to once again rely on the leprechaun Mad Sweeney (played by Pablo Schreiber) to help keep her decaying body alive.


Special Features include:
  • The House of the Rock: Setting the Stage
  • The Second Coming: Neil Gaiman on Season Two
  • Gods and Ends: Random Musings from the Cast 


Final Thoughts

I don't know what exactly happened behind-the-scenes during season 2 but it hurt the quality of the series. The first season had amazing visuals, smart writing, witty dialogue, and it was just plain fun to watch. The second season lacks creativity and feels more generic. New Goddess Media (played by Gillian Anderson) was my favorite character from the first season and the writers/producers decided to butcher her by resurrecting her as "New Media" (now played by Kahyun Kim). I wished the producers had recast a similar-looking actress to play New Goddess Media instead of dumbing the character down for a younger actress, who, in my opinion, cannot act. The character is more or less treated as a joke.

The old gods vs. new gods plot feels misguided for the most of the season, as if the writers had no clue on how to expand the story any further. The best subplot involves the flashbacks of Mr. Wednesday's son, Hercules. Additionally, I also enjoyed the road trip storyline with Laura Moon and Mad Sweeney but it mostly felt like a repeat of the first season with nothing new except for the sick & twisted, forced "love scene" between them. (SPOILER ALERT) - I hated the outcome of their tryst as it ended with the death of one character. While there's always ways to bring the character back next season, I highly doubt it considering the actor/actress has been cast in the upcoming Halo live-action series.

The video and sound qualities for all 8 episodes on the Blu-ray are topnotch. The special features are nothing to be excited about. It would have been nice if there were a few commentaries with the cast.

Overall, American Gods: Season Two is a misguided season that's neither good or bad. Let's cross our fingers and hope season three (probably its last) will be better.


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