American Gods - 108 - Come to Jesus (No Book Spoilers)

DaveyMacDaveyMac Tokyo
edited June 19 in Other TV
Dir. Floria Sigismondi 
Writ. Bekah Brunstetter, Michael Green, Bryan Fuller

Comments

  • Excellent epsidoe even if it was "out there". The final reveal of Odin was really well done. It's interesting to hear that Shadow isn't special, yet he seems to be a "hot commodity". This show seems to be really clicking now, looking forward to see how they close out the season.
    pavlovsbellElisa
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    edited June 19
    KingKobra said:

    Excellent epsidoe even if it was "out there". The final reveal of Odin was really well done. It's interesting to hear that Shadow isn't special, yet he seems to be a "hot commodity". This show seems to be really clicking now, looking forward to see how they close out the season.

    Oh, I don't think that Shadow is not special, although it is interesting why Sweeney thinks that. Shadow seems like a typical fantasy hero / hero's journey archetype: seemingly average dude (with unknown father) who happens to be special and is wanted by everyone. He's probably Wednesday's son, but Gaiman could certainly subvert that trope.

    I'm curious about Mr. World. Why was he glitching in and out? If he's the leader of the New Gods, why was he being so... I don't know... avoidant? He made his side look even weaker. I loved Media as Judy, and how she became less like Judy the more Wednesday and Easter seized control of the narrative. Technical Boy was spot on as usual -- nice touch with the braces.

    And FINALLY Shadow clues in! Sort of. He still needs Wednesday to spell out Odin to him. I liked the subversion of the Romeo and Juliet balcony scene with Laura looking more dead than ever, and Shadow being like the sun to her. I'm looking forward to seeing how Wednesday gets Shadow away from Laura before she spills the beans on him.

    The multiple Jesuses were killing me. I hope we see more of Jeremy Davies in S2, but I don't picture Jesus as participating in this war. Then again, they have no problem with irreverence:

    image

    Kristin Chenoweth was divine, as was Yetide Badaki. I loved seeing all the powerful women in this episode. Do y'all think Bilquis will stay with the New Gods, or were they implying at the end that she's breaking from them?

    It was a messy season that definitely could have used one or two more episodes, more coherence in general, and some readjustments on Shadow's character. But overall, I'm super glad it was made.


    KingKobraElisaDaveyMacCory
  • Crap, just found out that this was the season finale :(
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    It was supposed to be ten episodes, but they had to reshoot earlier stuff, which ate into their budget. Then they figured they had enough story for eight episodes and decided to cut it off there. :(
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    Oh my goodness, according to Bryan Fuller, that was a Fabergé egg-inspired grill in honor of Easter. Such attention to detail. How much money did they spend on this show?!

    image
    KingKobraDaveyMacMrX
  • @pavlovsbell if you have to ask, welllll.... :p one does not simply ask how much a BF production costs....
    pavlovsbell
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    I think Bilquis is done with the new gods.  Here's to her breaking free.  I really enjoyed her backstory at last.  All the Jesuses was hilarious and Easter was pretty awesome.  I think this was a great way to end the season and leave us asking for more.
    KingKobraDaveyMacpavlovsbell
  • All the ChickensAll the Chickens Birmingham, AL
    Bryan Fuller mentioned in the post show featurette thing they do that one of the interesting parts of this is that Kristin Chenoweth (Easter) is a devout Christian.

    She's a great sport.
    KingKobraDaveyMacpavlovsbell
  • DaveyMacDaveyMac Tokyo
    edited June 19
    Well that was a wild hour of television. Really enjoyed it on the whole, even if some of the Shadow stuff continued to fall flat for me. In his defense, though, I'm sure a ton of people aren't aware of how many names Odin has or even about his eye or any of that, though I suppose Marvel has helped with that. I know I was ignorant of a lot of Norse mythology when I first read the book several years back.

    Anyway, loved Easter (Eostre) and Bilquis and Nancy and Jesus Prime and all the Jesuses and Laura and Mad Sweeney and Wednesday and Media, and now I'm naming pretty much every character in the episode.

    I was really bummed that we didn't get to House on the Rock this season. That's where I thought the finale would be, until I saw that they had a shortened season. I heard an interview with Elvis Mitchell on The Treatment earlier in the season where Fuller and Green said that they packed in a lot of bits that they loved in the first few episodes in case they got cancelled and I think it kind of shows. 

    As much as I enjoyed this season, I do agree that it was messy and lacked cohesion. I also think that, because the novel is such hard source material to adapt that they were using this first season to kind of figure out what exactly this show is, so they threw a lot of stuff at the wall played with a lot of ideas and I think that it's really starting to take shape.

    This cast, for the most part has been incredible and a ton of fun to watch and I've seen things in this show that I've never seen on television before. It didn't all work, but what did was fantastic. I can't wait to see where they take it next season.

    Lastly, the biggest surprise for me this season is that my favorite episode was "A Prayer for Mad Sweeney" and Ian McShane was nowhere to be found in that episode. It's also really impressive to see what they've done to expand that particular character make him for fully fleshed out.
    KingKobraElisapavlovsbell
  • MrXMrX CO
    edited June 19
    Holy cow that was glorious  ... really cool how they framed Bilquis's "coming to America" scene from her at full strength (which I describe as the Matrix Reloaded orgy with flesh-toned Night King from Game of Thrones dissolving into black goo), and then with disco in the 70's, and tying it to oppression of women in the Iranian revolution and in modern day with ISIS.

    That Easter set - the color and the bunnies pooping jelly beans and Jeremy Davies Jesus and the new-gods henchman doing their silly dance ... it's all just an insane mess and really fun. Glad they gave McShane a chance to really go to town w/ the Odin reveal. And Kristin Chenoweth is another excellent casting choice, I loved her transformation when she took away spring.

    Also, happy to see Mexican Jesus alive and well!
    KingKobraElisaDaveyMacpavlovsbell
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    Awesome, awesome episode. I am so glad I live in a world where this crazy ass show exists. Uuuhh, that opening Bilquis scene, now that is how you do an orgy HBO! I am reveling in all this mythology, if my fourteen year old self knew one day all the myths I was obsessed with would get their own show...

    Oh, and for the LOVE OF GOD TV AND MOVIES, Stop making me look at this.  It makes my fucking skin crawl. All the "Ladies of A Certain Age" were blurred into oblivion. I fucking hate this trend, STTAAAAAPP. 
    image
    DaveyMacpavlovsbellElisa
  • @aberry89 the only time I saw her blurred was with the SFX (before power use). Otherwise she was clear as rest of group.
    pavlovsbell
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    edited June 19
    @aberry89  I was wondering about that, also. They do it with Media sometimes, which is understandable given Media's appropriation of cultural icons, and with Bilquis, which is usually when she is in full goddess mode (fresh and renewed). So I wonder if the same is for Easter, who is the goddess of the spring, of rebirth and renewal. The blurring happened when she was powered up. She is supposed to look youthful and vibrant, whereas Cloris Leachman is allowed all of her beautiful wrinkles and looks fantastic, imo. I think Jeremy Davies looked softened and youthful, too. I hope I don't sound like an apologist, because I am not down for CGI-ing women's faces unless it is for valid story purposes. 
    KingKobraElisa
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    edited June 19
    The whole episode we were reminded how Easter, an ageing symbol of spring had been long forgotten. I think aesthetically it would have worked so much better if we saw her wrinkles behind all her makeup and frills. She shouldn't have had her youth restored until she went full goddess at the end. Gillian I can understand, and the blurring effect would really work with that charachter - giving her a creepy, fake glossy feel. But she is a NEW god. Don't use that blur effect on an OLD god - you're mixing your metaphors. 

    It happens in Hollywood WAY more than we realize, on men and woman - but the human eye can pick it up when it's done poorly, or too much. 

    pavlovsbellElisaDaveyMac
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    KingKobra said:

    Crap, just found out that this was the season finale :(

    image
    I hate suprises. 
    KingKobrapavlovsbellJovial_Falconalexander.klassen
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    @aberry89  Yeah, that's a good point.

    A little meta, perhaps?
    image

    Matt Zoller Seitz had a lovely writeup of the finale, which won him over completely: http://www.vulture.com/2017/06/american-gods-finale-review.html

    I particularly liked this part, although if McShane is the soul, Sweeney is -- for now at least -- the heart of the show for me. Laura remains the spleen. (Bryan Fuller's description, not mine)

    McShane is the true soul of the series, playing Mr. Wednesday/Odin as a grandiloquent con man–mentor who seems aware that he’s a character in a story and figures that if he manipulates the other characters skillfully enough, he can wrest it away from the author. When you look into McShane’s face as he grins wickedly, I think you’re seeing the show that American Gods kept threatening to become, only to hold back at the last second. Fuller’s prior work, including Pushing Daisies and Hannibal, were notable for their fusion of mordant screwball comedy, wet-eyed sincerity, and operatic melodrama.

    The volatility and bigness of the emotions showcased on a Fuller series, even one about FBI profilers and serial killers, is what has traditionally made them stand out from the competition — more so than the controlled excesses of the filmmaking, which can fascinate, too. The makers of film and television are still afraid to get in a Fuller-esque mode and stay in it for long, because nothing kills a series faster than public sneering, and nothing invites sneering like sincerity. To willfully ignore that risk automatically marks a series as one worth watching.



    aberry89DaveyMacKingKobra
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    @pavlovsbell  Damn, well said. Sincerity is always what I have admired about Fuller as well :)
    pavlovsbell
  • edited June 20
    @pavlovsbell will probably consider these fighting words, but I kind of enjoyed this more than Hannibal.  At least compared to season 1? I have no explanation why, but I think it's harder to "wow" an audience in a positive way compared to making them feel sad or uneasy.  In a non-hyperbolic way, I think every episode challenged the status quo and pushed the envelope further as far as artistic endeavors on television.  All while being a hilarious and emotionally resonant story about Gods fucking around with humans on earth.  The melancholy in Hannibal is an enormous emotional mass that one never really gets rid of, but I think sheer scale and spectacle of what Fuller's doing here is something that's giving it a run for it's money.
    Elisapavlovsbell
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    @GredalBee  Lol, no. I would only fight you if you said something like, "Hannibal sucks, yo!" And by fight, I mean, cluck my tongue and shake my head. 

    Another thing that Fuller shows have in common is the close relationships between humans and animals.
    image image
    image
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    aberry89
  • aberry89aberry89 California
    Fuller was definitely testing the waters of what he could get away with on season 1 of Hannibal, I still love it, but it's far tamer. That show truly blossomed and flourished into it's lavish, rhapsodic self as it went on. :)

    pavlovsbell
  • @pavlovsbell Well said indeed. I've really enjoyed reading yours and everyone's takes this season.

    I'm just bummed we don't have a few more episodes this season.
    pavlovsbell
  • Oh and one thing on the Bilquis scene at the beginning, the black goo at the end of that sequence really reminded me of Under The Skin. I wonder if there was some influence there.
    pavlovsbell
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    edited June 20
    The black goo was for sure an Under the Skin homage (similar premise, too). Bryan Fuller said that it was his favorite film of 2014 and put it on the list of films he wanted to evoke in Hannibal S3.

    I've enjoyed chatting with everyone here, too. With this show and The Handmaid's Tale and BCS over, there's nothing on except Preacher until GoT returns in July. Will y'all be watching that also?

    @aberry89  Hannibal got more European arthouse later, but it was pretty out there in S1. I think I saw you mention Peter Weir in The Leftovers threads, I got strong The Last Wave vibes off of --- I forget which episode it was -- I call it the water episode, I think it was the one with the human totem pole. Anyway, I love the second half of Hannibal S1 through S2. I'm less enamored of the with S3. I don't care for the Red Dragon arc. I think BF works best when he's not beholden to source material and just doing his own thing. Or riffing off it like with most of Hannibal and American Gods.
    Elisa
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    Well there's Twin Peaks the Return (!!!), as well as a lot of sci fi, horror, comedy etc in June - Orphan Black, Killjoys, Dark Matter, The Mist (gonna check it out), Claws (gonna check it out), Queen Sugar, and Turn to fill my summer.  Then GOT and Insecure for July.
    pavlovsbellKingKobra
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    Oh shoot, duh, I forgot about Twin Peaks. Probably because I don't really talk about it -- it's not a show that I'm interested (so far) in dissecting and analyzing. I just like to experience it.

    I am looking forward to Insecure returning. Very happy that Issa Rae got a TCA nomination.
  • aberry89aberry89 California

    The black goo was for sure an Under the Skin homage (similar premise, too). Bryan Fuller said that it was his favorite film of 2014 and put it on the list of films he wanted to evoke in Hannibal S3.


    I've enjoyed chatting with everyone here, too. With this show and The Handmaid's Tale and BCS over, there's nothing on except Preacher until GoT returns in July. Will y'all be watching that also?

    @aberry89  Hannibal got more European arthouse later, but it was pretty out there in S1. I think I saw you mention Peter Weir in The Leftovers threads, I got strong The Last Wave vibes off of --- I forget which episode it was -- I call it the water episode, I think it was the one with the human totem pole. Anyway, I love the second half of Hannibal S1 through S2. I'm less enamored of the with S3. I don't care for the Red Dragon arc. I think BF works best when he's not beholden to source material and just doing his own thing. Or riffing off it like with most of Hannibal and American Gods.

    I watched a lot of Aussie cinema that i have never seen before while watching Leftovers. I am so happy I did because Walkabout and The Last Wave are incredible, and I count them as some of my favorite movies now. I will have to re-watch that Totem pole one! :)  I agree that the Red Dragon storyline wasnt my favorite in S3 of hannibal, but I completely loved all the stuff with Will and Hannibal. And all the Italy stuff. I was ALL in on how artistic and crazy it got :)
  • DaveyMacDaveyMac Tokyo
    edited June 21
    Thanks for the Under the Skin confirmation @pavlovsbell . Cool to know.

    As to other tv, I've been so overwhelmed with all the great shows on these past three months, that I'll probably take a bit of a breather and then pick up again with GOT. 

    I'm watching Twin Peaks as well, but I'm also just kind of letting the show wash over me and not digging too deep into discussions or analysis. 
  • DaveyMacDaveyMac Tokyo
    edited June 22
    aberry89 said:

    Awesome, awesome episode. I am so glad I live in a world where this crazy ass show exists. Uuuhh, that opening Bilquis scene, now that is how you do an orgy HBO! I am reveling in all this mythology, if my fourteen year old self knew one day all the myths I was obsessed with would get their own show...



    End Quote (not sure why the quote box is gone.)



    Have you ever read any of Neil Gaiman's Sandman comic series? You might really dig some of the mythology that he weaves into the series. Bast shows up a few times and tons of myths and gods from many different cultures. And Shakespeare and all kinds of other characters from history as well. The first volume is a little rough as I think he's still trying to figure out exactly what it is he's writing. But each volume becomes more assured and I think the storytelling is fantastic. Especially the scope of it all. It's not for everyone, but I'd recommend checking it out, if you haven't already.
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