30th May2017

‘American Gods 1×05: Lemon Scented You’ Review

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Ricky Whittle, Ian McShane, Emily Browning, Crispin Glover, Bruce Langley, Yetide Badaki, Orlando Jones, Pablo Schreiber, Peter Stormare, Kristin Chenoweth, Gillian Anderson, Cloris Leachman | Created by Neil Gaiman | Developed for TV by Bryan Fuller


After last week’s flashback episode American Gods finally delivers us with the big confrontation of new and old. The question is, just what will the New Gods want out of the meeting, and where will Shadow (Ricky Whittle) fit in? This week Shadow has a reunion with Laura (Emily Browning) and it doesn’t go well. When he and Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane) are arrested for their bank heist, it seems the visit to the police station is a setup for a much different meeting.

This episode is interesting because not only do Laura and Shadow get to talk over her what happened before her death, but we also get to catch up with the other Gods. It seems that Technical Boy (Bruce Langley) went a little too far with Shadow, and there will be repercussions.

What these repercussions lead to is the arrival of Mr. World (Crispin Glover) who is his predictably manic self as one of the most powerful gods we’ve seen so far. His apparent respect of Mr Wednesday and his peace-offering is interesting to see. Glover plays the part with a double-edged personality though and you can tell there are other plans being formed behind those eyes. This is arguably where the lines of war are being drawn.

Along with Technical Boy and Mr. World, Media (Gillian Anderson) returns, and of course steals the scenes she is in. Her David Bowie impression has already been gaining attention, but this actual scene lives up to the hype. Her use of Bowie song lines is just perfect, and of course there is also her Marilyn Monroe moment too. What we see in her Monroe form though is her strength as a God when she has to discipline Technical Boy.

What is interesting about this episode is the fact that Mr. Wednesday shows his weakness in this meeting, but also his shrewd nature. Taking notice that Mr. World is willing to negotiate, gives him time, though it seems other Gods are taking notice too.

Another meeting in this episode of American Gods is the coming together of Laura and Mad Sweeney (Pablo Shreiber) still searching for his lucky coin. It is interesting that poor Sweeney doesn’t stand a chance against Laura. The fact he makes it clear that he’ll get his coin back sooner or later though also hints that these two side-lined characters could be an interesting partnership as they help Shadow and Mr. Wednesday.

Twin Peaks may be dominating people’s minds right now, but American Gods isn’t going to get lost in the show’s shadows, in fact it refuses to. If anything, the story is escalating at just the right moment to keep the fans attention, at a time when television is seriously full of good shows (add the Handmaiden’s Tale onto the list too).

Put simply, American Gods is a must-see show that delivers with every episode. With a stellar cast, and a wealth of characters that is growing every week, it can be expected that American Gods is just going to get better and better. This episode merely proves that the show is living up to those expectations.

***** 5/5

American Gods is available in the UK on American Prime every Monday.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek

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