After a long wait and a great deal of uncertainty as to whether or not it would come back, American Gods season 3 has hit, and it’s coming out swinging in a big way as Shadow Moon, aka Mike Ainsel, is finding that as fast and as far as he runs, destiny is bound to keep messing with him as much as it possibly can. And of course, Wednesday, who’s been revealed as his father, is going to be there, whispering in his ear, attempting to pull him back into the maelstrom no matter how many tricks he has to pull and how many ways he has to make it obvious that Shadow is needed and IS going to be a part of the coming war. The trickery of Odin/Wednesday is still in fine form, but he’s not nearly as subtle as he could be, since from the act of using an old woman to project his voice through, to using his runecraft to transport himself, Shadow, and their mode of transportation across the miles to visit none other than Wisakedjak, or Whiskey Jack, as we’re introduced to him. Sadly, Wisakedjak is as unwilling to follow Odin as anyone, as the one-eyed god has apparently angered just about every god he could in his long life, in one way or another. While it doesn’t feel as though we’ve seen the last of Wisakedjak, it does feel that he’ll be just as unlikely to come running to the rescue unless Odin’s premonitions become a little too close to home for his liking, since the new gods appear to be seeking to wipe the old gods from the face of the earth entirely.
And yet, the old gods are not so easily forgotten, as Bilquis makes it obvious when reminding Technical Boy that he’s never experienced the horror of a true war. It would appear that the old gods still have plenty to offer if they can pull together, as Odin is one of the last people that many of them want to help. The thing about this is that Wednesday is not the Odin that the MCU might have people feeling warm, fuzzy feelings toward, he’s the god that many people from the old country might remember as a bit of a trickster, someone that craves worship, and that is not the kindly old man that seeks to embrace his followers as a father figure. If anyone reads the old tales, Odin is kind to those he deems worthy, as he tends to ignore everyone else. He enjoys the fealty, the worship, and the ability to seek and gain power, but as has been seen in Neil Gaiman’s story, he is the god of deception, war, and trickery, rivaled only by Loki in the Norse pantheon in some ways. But he is also a powerful force when riled and given dominion, as has already been seen.
We do see the return of Laura Moon and even Mad Sweeney, but whether or not they’ll continue onward after this first episode is hard to say since Laura turned to dust once she retrieved the lucky coin that was keeping her alive, and while she tried to return it to Sweeney the coin slid out of his cold hand, falling to the floor before it could work whatever magic she needed it to. The goal of both however is to kill Odin, which is counterintuitive at this time given that as crafty and as sneaky as he’s been, Odin is still needed to at least try to pull the old gods together, since none of them appear to be willing to do this on their own, and are content to simply let the new gods of technology take over. Those that have read the book likely already know what will happen, but whether the show will completely conform to the book is hard to say, since it does sound as though there’s already a season four being planned, which means that things could be drawn out even further than we’ve already seen. But up to this point, it should be noted that even with the slight decline in popularity of season 2, the show is doing a rather good job of following Gaiman’s vision, though of course many would like to see Mr. Nancy and the ifrit come back. But until their involvement in the story has returned, there’s no need to have them in the show, no matter how entertaining they both are.
So far the story has left off with Shadow finally finding his way to Lakeside as many readers might have become excited to see, and as Mr. World has become Ms. World for the time being and pulled an Al Capone on one of her subordinates, it’s obvious that despite their power and influence that the gods of technology are still a bit worried about the old gods, as they should be. The idea of the new supplanting the old is a tale that’s been ongoing for a while, but the trick is that what the old lack in unity and power, they make up for in experience and wisdom. The battle to come is going to be interesting no doubt.