Once again, mythological Gods of yore get ready to take on modern-day deities in Season 3 of AMERICAN GODS – adapted from the book by Neil Gaiman.

Ten episodes and we’re off to a rocking start when Shadow Moon’s (Ricky Whittle) meeting with the god Wisakedjak points to his own destiny while in another corner of the land, Wednesday aka Odin (Ian McShane) indulges in a bit of stage diving with Norse rock god Johan Wengren (Marilyn Manson looking scarier than ever) – the unhinged lead singer of Viking death metal band ‘Blood Death’. Fate brings Shadow to the outwardly quaint town of Lakeside where he makes the acquaintance of chatty convenience store owner and self-appointed mayor Ann-Marie Hinzelmann (Julia Sweeney) who in fact harbours a dark and bloody secret. He also meets police chief Chad Mulligan (Eric Johnson) and gets on the wrong side of Marguerite Olsen (Lela Loren), a local reporter. In order to get away from bad vibes (with many more to come!) Shadow decides to visit goddess of love Bilquis (Yetide Bataki) while Wednesday pursues his former sweetheart Demeter (Blythe Danner), the Greek goddess of the harvest now going by the name of Caroline Wells. Surprise surprise, she doesn’t want to know about Wednesday when he appears in the psychiatric asylum with a big bouquet of flowers. As for the psychologically tortured Laura Moon - a revenant who seems to suffer from Tourette Syndrome as every other word she utters is basically the F-word (which really gets tiresome and irritating after a while!), she visits her past and finds herself in purgatory before she even knows it! We also have more shenanigans from ‘Technical Boy’ (Bruce Langley), a former failed inventor. His failure is demonstrated in an inspired sequence set at the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893’s Chicago where he is defeated by the traditional ways of magician Maximilian (Jeremy Crutchley). Steampunk automatons anyone? In the present, the new God of Technology is constantly at loggerheads with the various incarnations of Mr. World (Crispin Glover and Danny Trejo) as well as the unscrupulous Ms. World (Dominique Jackson) – a female incarnation of the new God of Globalization who doesn’t shy away from beating an ‘employee’ to pulp with her baseball bat in an unsettling scene that seems like a rip-off from The Walking Dead in which psycho Negan Smith makes bloody good use of his beloved baseball bat ‘Lucille’…

It’s up to Shadow and Wednesday’s feisty and much younger girlfriend Cordelia (Ashley Reyes) to ensure Demeter is released from the clinic while Laura Moon gets together with Salim (Omid Abtahi) who still wears his former lover’s jumper and she also meets keeper of stories past and present Mr. Ibis (Demore Barnes) in a Cairo funeral parlour. That girl gets around! We also see Bilquis breaking out and literally devouring an unfortunate member of the male species via her nether-regions while re-connecting with her own tribal power – this she achieves with the help of the Orishas – a trio of ancient African goddesses who keep on calling for her. Episode 6 btw (‘Conscience of The King’) is particularly engaging what with the setting once again harking back to the past, this time at the battlefields of the American Revolution… Norse war god Tyr (Denis O’Hare) who, in present day America, has morphed into dentist Dr. Tyrell, has a love rival in Odin/Wednesday as both men (their younger incarnations) fight for the affection of a young Demeter - but when she foolishly chooses Wednesday the scoundrel leaves her after their baby daughter dies. No wonder that the current incarnation of Demeter won’t forgive Wednesday for his wrongdoings in the past! In fact there are several flashback scenes throughout Season 3 – one in particular is harrowing as it involves the sacrificial slaughter of an animal by a female farmer whose sacrifice is rewarded by a certain goddess and it has something to do with another certain person in present day Lakeside. Speaking of: Shadow initially falls under suspicion of having abducted and killed a young local girl by the name of Alison. However, seeing how Shadow is the new kid on the block and Alison is the latest victim in a string of abductions the suspicion then falls on a young chap called Derek (Spencer Macpherson), a secret cross-dresser who cat-burgles to obtain ladies undergarments! When he commits suicide (oh the shame, the shame) police chief Mulligan is none the wiser but the truth is much more disturbing…

Meanwhile Bilquis travels to Chicago to hook up with her midwife Eugenia (Sharon Hope) who seems hostile but is eventually won over by Bilquis and the Orishas on the dance floor! Eugenia confronts Bilquis with a riddle in which she is tasked to find Shadow’s other half or “our days will be numbered.” This dilemma doesn’t seem to concern Shadow’s estranged wife Laura who is much more interested in obtaining Odin’s deadly spear from the Leprechaun’s hoard, so she can assassinate Wednesday/Odin. Which brings us to the most decadent episode of Season 3, titled ‘The Rapture of Burning’. Tianbo (Daniel Yun) is chased by some homophobic coppers and finds refuge in a quaint little motel called the Grand Peacock Inn after its trans-woman owner Toni (Dana Aliya Levinson) hides him. Again we’re transported into the past, this time to the early 1950s where the young Tianbu seems to have had a thing with one of the coppers (no names shall be dropped here). As it turns out, Tianbu is in fact the Chinese rabbit god of homosexual love Tu’er Shen who rewards Toni for saving his neck by bestowing her with eternal youth and turning the old motel into a glittering temple of decadence and love… in which Salim and Laura Moon soon arrive – mainly because rumour has it that a Leprechaun (key to Odin’s spear) works behind the bar. And indeed so he does although the Leprechaun Liam Doyle (Iwan Rheon) and Laura get off to a somewhat bumpy start. The same can’t be said for Salim who, during a kinky party, makes the acquaintance of ‘hot bellhop’ Kai and after a steamy sex scene Salim is finally able to let go of his jumper.

For Shadow, however, things fare less pleasantly when he’s taken hostage by dentist Dr. Tyrell because he too wants to take revenge on Wednesday (going back in time again when Tyr sacrificed his arm to Fenrir the wolf) and hopes that by keeping Shadow in the Wolf’s Den, Wednesday might show up… Instead, Wednesday couldn’t give a darn about taking on New Gods, Tyr et all and heads to Chicago in order to appoint the crazed Czernobog (Peter Stormare) – Slavic god of death and malevolence – as his second-in-command during ‘peace talks’. Clearly Wednesday is oblivious of Czernobog’s gigantic deadly mallet!
Laura, with the help of Leprechaun Liam who hands her a lucky coin, manages to get her hands on ‘Gungnir’ – Odin’s spear, leading up to the somewhat confusing finale. Yes, Laura manages to kill Wednesday but we also know the old scoundrel won’t die easily – having been re-incarnated numerous times anyway. Back with a vengeance and flying high in a plane (a baffled Shadow seated next to him) he reveals his apparent demise was all part of his very own master plan. In a mind-boggling climax set in the Center of the America Motel, a meeting between selected old and new gods takes its course but as so often in American Gods, what appears to be real is dream and Neil Gaiman/the script writers clearly had fun indulging in mind games.

SEASON 3 is a feverish and visual tour the force with mind-boggling effects, take my word for it!