‘American Gods’ 2×01 Review: The Good, Bad, and Ugly of “House on the Rock”

Our fears at the fate of American Gods season two have been laid to rest in “House on the Rock.” This premiere, put simply, was awesome. It was just as wild, crazy, and visually stunning as season one was. And better yet, we got to spend more time with fan favorites Laura Moon, Bilquis, and newcomer Mama-Ji.

So, without further ado, let’s dive into the good, the bad, and the ugly of American Gods “House on the Rock”!

The Good – Working Past the Losses of Season One


I thought that American Gods was going to be a hot mess when it started season two. A HUGE AND HELLA HOT MESS! Since season one, this show has lost its EP’s, Kristin Chenoweth, and Gillian Anderson. Those are considerable blows that would make anyone wary of what was to come. But after watching the season premiere, I think they’re going to be ok.

In their (the talent that left AG) absence we’ve been gifted with some amazing things. Just in episode one we’ve already got more Bilquis, played by Yetide Badaki, and who I truly believe looks like a goddess every single day of her life. We’ve got more Laura Moon, played by Emily Browning, who continues to be a spitfire BAMF that everyone should be wary of. And we’ve got Sakina Jaffrey’s Mama-ji, who looks like an absolute VISION!

At the center of all of this, and the main reason I think that this show is going to survive the losses of season one, is Ricky Whittle’s “Shadow Moon.” He’s not the same man that he was in the beginning. He’s grown, changed, and now looks at the world through different lenses. It’s the reason why he stood up for Mr. Wednesday in front of the counsel of Old Gods, and the reason why he stuck around after, when he wondered what the hell had happened on the House on the Rock.

Shadow Moon isn’t just the light that guides Laura Moon and keeps her going. He’s the heart of this show, the beacon that draws us all in on this adventure. So, I’m down and 100% invested in the storylines and woes that are coming for Shadow Moon, the Old gods, and the ones that don’t quite fit in yet like Laura, Mad Sweeney, and Salim. Let’s do this season two!

The Bad – Bilquis, the Traitor?


Look, I get it. Girls got to look after herself, especially in these times and after everything that Bilquis has been through. But girl, the side you’ve chosen was two seconds away from destroying you. They can’t be trusted and you are putting yourself in the way of considerable danger just as a means of keeping yourself topped up and sated in worship.

It’s going to be your downfall. Following Mr. World or even just breathing in agreement in the same vicinity of him means trouble is coming your way. And when the Old Gods find out that you’ve betrayed them for the New, who are you going to have left? Because let’s be honest, as soon as you become an inconvenience to the New Gods, you’ll be out on the street again with no allies at your back.

On the flip side, maybe Bilquis knows that the New Gods are and will continue to be two seconds away from destroying her. So she’s biding her time, gathering up strength, and waiting for the moment to strike and jump on the side of the winning team. It still leaves her up in the air on where she stands but maybe this is the best our girl can do. Survival is tough but Bilquis is tougher.

The Ugly – What Laura Moon is Going to Do Next


This part of my review is in anticipation of what Laura Moon is going to do to the people who took Shadow. She’s going to tear them down, limb by limb, because she feels like she owes it to Shadow. She fucked up, big time. And she knows that her puppy might never forgive her. But she’s sure as hell going to try to make it up to him in any way she can.

Laura Moon’s strength is something else I’d like to take note of. Her strength, her power, comes from Mad Sweeney’s coin. But on screen, and every moment that she’s center stage, I don’t see the coin as being the true source of her power. Laura is stronger, bigger, and badder than some coin that keeps her shambling about.

It’s her strength that keeps Mad Sweeney from going after his coin and setting himself free. It’s her strength that keeps Mr. Wednesday wary of her and what she can do if not bargained with. And it’s her strength that leaves even Bilquis and the Jinn confused and intrigued at what Laura Moon is and what she’s doing in the midst of all this crazy.

Laura Moon is the wild card, the unknown factor. And it’s what will keep all the gods, the New and Old, just the tiniest bit wary of fucking with Shadow Moon for what she will do in return.

Favorite Scene from American Gods “House on the Rock”:

Laura Moon and Mad Sweeney are the hot mess OTP that I never knew I wanted but here I am with. I need more of them, especially if the sass is ALIVE AND WELL LIKE THIS all throughout season 2.


American Gods airs Sundays on Starz.

What did you think of this episode of American Gods? Let us know in the comments below!

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