Cast: Ricky Whittle, Emily Browning, Crispin Glover
Release Date: August 20, 2019
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 7.5/10
We were forged in God’s image, but the Gods are also made in ours — and in Season Two, the battle moves inexorably towards crisis point as the destinies of gods and men collide. While Mr. World plots revenge for the attack against him in Season One, Shadow throws in his lot with Wednesday’s attempt to convince the Old Gods of the urgency for full-out war, with Laura and Mad Sweeney in tow. A council at the House on the Rock explodes into chaos, sending deities both Old and New on quests across America that will converge in Cairo, Illinois. Shadow is forced to carve out a place as a believer in this strange new world of living gods — a dark world where change demands commitment, and faith requires terrible sacrifice.
The second season of ‘American Gods’ continues the uncertain journey of Shadow Moon as he accompanies the powerful Mr. Wednesday and his associates in preparing for the war to come, but as more questionable moments and warnings are presented Shadow can’t help but start to wonder about some of Wednesday’s peculiar moves and the motivation behind them. Especially as Laura and Mad Sweeney’s personal connection starts to cause issues, risking the revelation of hidden actions that can only result in further trouble if uncovered. But as Shadow finds himself falling deeper under Wednesday’s spell amid the uncertainty, he’ll have to make his own choice once and for all as to where his loyalties lie before the clash between these old gods and the clever, technologically savvy new gods led by Mr. World begin setting their pieces in motion for the inevitable conflict to come.
The sophomore season of ‘American Gods’ looks spectacular, continuing the tale of gods new and old and the looming battle between them with all of the dazzling visuals, bloody mayhem and beauty fans of season one have come to expect, combined with a handful of new troubles, moves and surprising moments that all come together into a quite competent sophomore run. Occasionally dragging at times and lacking some of the magic, style and heart of the debut run, the latest season still manages to deliver overall, bringing the story to some new levels and sending a few characters and storylines down unexpected paths, while always keeping things looking gorgeous and at times almost dreamlike in its style and tone. At the same time it never hesitates to delve into the grimier aspects that accompany the beauty and visual splendor, entirely unafraid to get a bit graphic when necessary. Even with the various changes implemented this season such as some recasting and the absence of the previous creators/showrunners, I would still encourage anyone that enjoyed the first season to make a point of giving Season Two of ‘American Gods’ a fair chance whenever possible. Filled with visually stunning imagery and some noteworthy new revelations, not to mention plenty of impressive performances from the highly capable cast, the show clearly still has some magic left to offer.
Overall, the second season of ‘American Gods’ continues the show’s focus on tense relationships and mythology, complimented by its mesmerizing visuals and unexpected twists and turns, not to mention plenty of humor and violent fun along the way. I would definitely recommend that fans of the first season who haven’t had the chance to check out season two of ‘American Gods’ try and make a point of doing so whenever convenient. It’s a generally solid and enjoyable sophomore season that may not be quite as magnificent as the previous season but is still well worth taking the time to watch, at least at some point before the already confirmed third season arrives a year or two down the road. Dedicated fans of the series looking forward to bringing the new season home on Blu-ray should also be quite pleased with the impressive high definition video and audio presentations this 3-disc set has to offer.
The Blu-ray release of ‘American Gods: Season Two’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the show’s original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio on all of the sophomore season’s episodes. The video presentations look wonderful and offer sharp, smooth and beautifully detailed presentations on every episode. They hold up admirably even during the numerous darkly lit, heavily populated and almost dreamlike sequences, never causing anything onscreen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible at any point. Overall, these are magnificent high definition video presentations that look consistently fantastic and should have no trouble whatsoever satisfying the show’s fans.
The Blu-ray release features a 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on all 8 Season Two episodes. The rear artwork lists Dolby Digital 5.1 audio presentations, and while the first season featured Dolby TrueHD 5.1 audio presentations, this season’s release does in fact feature 5.1 DTS-HD MA presentations on every episode even if the boxart doesn’t mention DTS audio. These multichannel soundtracks make a marvelous compliment to the onscreen beauty and tension, providing crisp, clean and quite aggressive audio presentations on each episode. They constantly take full advantage of all five available channels in order to send music, action and fantasy effects, along with a whole lot more whipping throughout the various speakers with regularity, and never allowing any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible along the way. Overall, these are fantastic 5.1 DTS-HD MA soundtracks that sound great and continually compliment the overall viewing experience along the way.
The Blu-ray release of ‘American Gods: Season Two’ includes some enjoyable extras in the way of a few Behind the Scenes Featurettes which include interviews/comments with members of the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more. The included Featurettes (which can all be found on the third disc) are: ‘The House on the Rock: Setting the Scene’ (running approximately 10 minutes in length), ‘The Second Coming: Neil Gaiman on Season Two’ (running approximately 14 minutes) and ‘Gods and Ends: Random Musings from the Cast’ (approximately 10 minutes).
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They will additionally suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on this Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Disc Rating: 7.5/10
‘American Gods: Season Two’ Arrives Home on Blu-ray & DVD August 20, 2019 & is Now Available to Own on Digital from Starz & Lionsgate Home Entertainment
You can purchase your copy of ‘American Gods: Season 2’ by clicking on the Amazon cart icon below!