Post Mortems

American Gods Kills Off Another Deity — Hear From the God Himself

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Warning: This post contains massive spoilers from Sunday’s American Gods.

If you’re an American Gods viewer who read Neil Gaiman’s novel on which the Starz series is based, this week’s episode came as no surprise. But if you weren’t acquainted with the source material… good Gods almighty.

The hour, titled “The Lake Effect,” saw a despondent Mr. Wednesday attempting to hold peace talks with the New Gods. But those didn’t go well: “You can accept my offer and fade from existence in peace, or we will systematically hunt and kill every one of you that gets in our way,” Mr. World informed Wednesday.

And then not long afterward, Laura Moon achieved the goal she’s been talking about for quite some time: She killed Mr. Wednesday, aka Odin, with his own spear.

Naturally, we had to talk with Ian McShane to get his thoughts on his character’s mortal wound and its aftermath. Because after all, what is an impaling to a god?

TVLINE | As the spear hurtles toward him, it seems like he’s accepting of what’s coming.
Absolutely! I think he’s planned it. He has to have the whole thing. He has to have himself die, and then — as you’re coming up on Episode 10 — have his son sacrifice. He said, “You’ll sit vigil for me.” This is not a shock. This is from [Season 1]. “You’ll sit vigil for me.”

TVLINE | Do you think he has every step planned out? Or do you think he has an overarching plan, he knows the outcome, but he doesn’t have all of the details nailed down?
No, I don’t think he can… Don’t forget: He had to get rid of Laura, because he didn’t know Shadow was married. So he tried to get rid of Laura. Also I think it’s great that they brought Laura back more than they did in the book, because you have to have that presence, and she so good, Emily [Browning], playing that lunatic character. Because you have to have people who hate each other. She says, “I’m going to f–king kill Wednesday.” But maybe all along, that’s why he killed her.

TVLINE | That’s what I’m getting at: Do you think he thought she would be the one to deliver the final blow?
Oh, I think so. By the time it’s been manipulated that she will be the face of the New Gods that will do this, yes, I think by then. It doesn’t happen that way in the book, but I think it’s an interesting idea to have it be Laura. I agree with that, instead of doing what they do in the book which is have a series of Old Gods getting killed off and then a few New Gods getting killed off and then finally Wednesday gets shot by an unknown whatever. It’s a whole different thing. This make is personal, and it makes it more [about] the actors that you’ve become used to through the show, so there’s a personal connection between all of them.

TVLINE | We’ve seen the orisha show up to guide Shadow this season. Is Mr. Wednesday aware of them and their pull on Shadow?
No, I don’t think so, because I’m not even aware of it. [Laughs] I mean I keep thinking, “Who are these women who keep popping up? Where the hell did they come from?” [Laughs] No, I don’t think that’s part of Wednesday’s [plan]. That’s why he never refers to it. That’s why he never talks about it. That’s why you see him in a mood when Episode 9 starts, the last two episodes. His plan has failed with Johan, Marilyn Manson’s character. Tyr came out of the blue. Demeter, it didn’t work out there. And he’s like, “Screw it, I’ll have to think of something else.” Then he says, “Fine, I’m going to get rid of myself. I’ll see if Shadow can stand up for me when I’m gone,” which is what Episode 10 will be about.

Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!