American Gods “Sister Rising” had us crying in a way we’ve never done so for this show. And it’s completely due to the transformation that Bilquis went through. Throughout the seasons we’ve seen different versions of Bilquis. We’ve seen supreme goddess Bilquis, broken and sleeping on the streets Bilquis, and trying to acclimate to the world of 2021 where what she needs is given through dating apps. Each version of Bilquis has hidden the truth and put a veil over who she is.
In a way, Bilquis has been trapped in her mind for a very long time; eons, if we’re being honest. What makes this situation different from the rest is that her body was now physically trapped and she didn’t know how to find a way out. That’s where her ancestors come into play. They surrounded her with love, kindness, understanding, and strength. And with their guidance she was able to break the chains holding down her mind, soul, and body.
“Let the water return you to your beginning,” sent a shiver down our spines in American Gods “Sister Rising.” Each stomp of her feet was one more chain breaking away as she clawed her way to freedom. And you could see the power in her stances, the way she threw her arms forward, and the look of utter wholeness on her face. It was a life changing moment for Bilquis and in many ways we feel like we were intruding on something that was deeply personal.
Then there was that yell! That was her being set free. That was her knowing in her heart that things would never be the same. The smile that followed only added to that feeling of wholeness that left us wanting to see more of this Bilquis. Because this version of her isn’t going away. We’re stuck with her and so are the other gods, Old and New. And they better watch out for their asses because Bilquis isn’t here to play anymore.
The moment where Bilquis walked out of the water in American Gods had us shook. She didn’t need anyone to rescue her. She pulled the veil away from her own eyes with the help of her ancestors. And it was kind of amusing as she asked Shadow if he was there to rescue her. His reaction in response was basically, “No ma’am. You have this and all your bases covered. Where would you like me to take you, oh goddess?”
The conversation that Bilquis then had with Shadow was really enlightening. She doesn’t need worshipers to make her powerful or fill the emptiness inside. All she needs to do is believe in herself and the rest will come afterwards. And it’s so important that she knows it, feels it, and understands it. That is going to lead to a Bilquis like none that we’ve seen before and that we’re excited to see going toe to toe with the Old and New gods.
As for Shadow, Bilquis made sure to tell him that he has a veil over him as well that he must remove. He mustn’t wait for Wednesday to do it or live his life only half awake. He must liberate himself himself like she has done. So when shit really hits the fan, he’ll be prepared and at his full strength (like Bilquis is) to take on those that want to strike him down.
American Gods will return February 14th on Starz.