(Note: This was originally written and posted right after I viewed the first episode of the second season, so things have been updated and changed since then).
It was a good episode. I’m back in the mood, baby! No, seriously, it was like watching the first season, I didn’t see much difference. Maybe it was a bit less “grandiose” but it was still beautiful and interesting.
- So, actually Easter refused to reappear because Wednesday killed her rabbits. On one hand, I’m like “What? It’s too easy!”. But on the other hand… it makes perfect sense. And it’s actually something I thought about when watching the Easter episode. When Wednesday killed the rabbits with his car, I thought to myself “And that’s how he hopes to conquer Eostre? That’s a bad start”. And I’m quite happy it came back to bite him in the ass. So I’m quite pleased.
- Media is missing, and from the snipets we’ve seen (I’m not only referring to the episode but also to other promotional material), it is because she is too old and was replaced by New Media. I have to say, it is also the most logical explanation, and one I talked about when trying to guess how they would explain New Media. It was clear that Media was an old New God, she even said it herself: she was a goddess of radios before being the one of television, and all her references were a bit “outdated” and not well known of the younger generation (Monroe, Lucy Ball/Ricardo, David Bowie, Judy Garland). Plus it illustrates perfectly a point that was made in the book: the New Gods have a very limited lifespan, and when they get too old or outdated, they are replaced. (remember the god of railroads and trains in the final part of the book). So yeah, I’m quite glad with that.
- Something really weirds me out… Did Mr. World said he could have been killed by Odin? In the beginning, when he gets out of the limousine. Because… first because he is a god, I didn’t imagine he could be “killed” that easily. Especially since he is one of the New Gods, the current more powerful god. The Old Gods, them, are forgotten and powerless, hence why they can be easily killed (however… if it is a nod to the book reveal, then it is brilliant). Secondly, because, at the end of season 1, I thought it wasn’t Mr. World in person that was at Easter’s party. I thought it was merely a projection of him through a Children, and not a real one. Or maybe the Children are an extension of Mr. World himself? It’s something to think about.
- So, Mr. World was implied in Operation Paperclip, the “Compton Crack War”, the Roswell crash and the (fake) Moon Landing. Nice. It just reinforce him as the god of conspiracy theorists. “The man behind the man behind the man”.
- We have now Black Briar. A secret facility that… is still quite mysterious. They are the adaptation of the “spooks” and “black hats” of the book, the new version of the “Men in Black”, another aspect of the conspiracy theories. And, just like in the book, it’s still ambiguous over what they truly are. In the books, it looked like they were humans working for the New Gods, and it was unclear if they actually knew that they were obeying gods. Here it’s the same thing. We only see one man in Black Briar, an old military man, that doesn’t recognize or seem to know Mr. World. He is only convinced to obey him when he discovers that he is above the President of the United-States himself. Also, Black Briar seem to be the “secret facility of the Government”, since their “Eyes of Argus” is only destined to be used by the President himself. It’s also quite a nice touch that Black Briar (both the secret facility and the club above it) are populated by eldery, rich, white men, playing golf or linked to the military. Really a nice touch.
- However… I have the problem with the Eyes of Argus. It’s apparently the first time Mr. World uses it, and it is apparently merely spying people through satellites. BUT he already used satellites in season 1, to help the police arrest Shadow and Wednesday. He was already using satellites before that, so… What about the Eyes of Argus? A possible explanation may be that the satellite was in fact used by another god. Maybe Media (after all, her eye appeared in the surveillance camera of a bank) or maybe by Technical Boy (since he is associated with websites, he can have used a Google-Map like thing). Or maybe, Mr. World suddenly uses Black Briar and its Eyes of Argus only to come in contact with Mr. Town…
- … speaking of Mr. Town… He appeared here, kind of. Mr. World used the secret keyboard of Black Briar (only accessible with a special code) to contact him. As a result, I wonder: is Mr. Town really just an underling of Black Briar? Given that they upgraded Mr. World to a whole new god in himself, I thought they would do the same with Mr. Town and give him a bit more importance. Make him a god, for example. But here, it seems that he is probably just a mortal man, obeying to Black Briar…
- … well, almost a normal mortal man. He is the sniper that shoots the gods at Motel America. I’m quite sure of that. I haven’t checked the credit for the role of the sniper, but I’ll do it again soon. And this same sniper actually uses… the aliens. When Shadow beats him, he summons a ray of light from the sky that kidnaps Shadow, like an UFO would do, and then he is gone far away in the sky. So, yes, the aliens appeared. And apparently they were summoned/obeyed to this sniper/Mr. Town. So… are they really the aliens we were waiting for? Or is it just some of the high-technology used by the spooks/black hats, that looks like they are aliens using UFOs? I mean, the men in black and aliens were always associated so… it could be quite normal.
- TV Tropes identified Black Briar as a god in itself, not an organization or a facility, and they said it was the little old man in military garb. I just checked and they are completely wrong. Black Briar is a facility (during the dialogue between the man and Mr. World they talk about it like if it was an object, not a person), and the little old man is said in the credits to be “The Caretaker” (Eric Peterson). So this little man is not named Black Briar, he is only the caretaker of Black Briar. And he is probably not a god.
- Let’s just appreciate the list of the other gods present at the meeting… Outside of Mama-Ji (Kali), we have Ame-No Uzume (Uni Park), Ahura Mazda (Al Maini), Frau Holle (Colleen Reynolds). There is also a bunch of other gods whose identity is not identified : Unknown God (Jack Foley), MJ Hobo God (Edward A. Queffelec), Beautiful Woman God (Sonya Cote), Old Wizard God (John Stoneham Sr.) and Thuggish Man (Mike Scherer).
- There is in the credits a Jamieson M. Donnell credited as a “New God”. Who is this guy? I haven’t spotted him in the episode. Is he the sniper? In that case, it’s not Mr. Town (Dean Winters).
Edit: Nope, I checked, this “New God” isn’t the Sniper. The sniper is played by Felix Famelart, so he isn’t Mr. Town either. So I guess Mr. Town is rather the leader of the operation, and the one giving order to the snipers and alien/people stuff. The New God also isn’t the Golfer (he is Chad Camilerri). He isn’t the Bunny Suit Newscaster (Ariel Lukane) nor the Security Guard (Bryan Kelly). So… who is this guy? I need to rewatch the episode
I also love how to access to the Black Briar secret facility you have to show a paperclip. Outside of the reference to Operation Paperclip, it’s a whole symbol. The paperclip is the symbol of every bureaucracy, every administration, of all the paperwork.